Should you get a new credit card in 2023? Ask yourself these questions to decide

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Carry the right credit card can benefit your finances in a number of important ways, from helping you earn rewards to saving you money on interest charges.

Unfortunately, many people stick to the status quo and don’t explore their credit card options. You don’t want to be one of them.

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With a new year just around the corner, asking yourself six key questions could help you decide if 2023 is the time to finally add a new card to your wallet.

1. Have your consumption habits changed?

A good rewards card can earn you lots of points, cash back or miles for spending you would have to pay anyway. But in order to maximize the rewards you earn, you want a card with a bonus program that matches your spending habits.

For example, if you tend to spend most of your money on groceries, you might want to look for a card that offers cash back or bonus points on groceries. But if you’re a frequent flyer, it may be more important that your bonus rewards come from flight purchases or hotel purchases.

If your spending habits have changed since you signed up for your existing rewards card, it makes sense to see if a new card might be a better fit.

2. Do you use your card benefits?

Many cards offer benefits beyond simple rewards. For example, you can get airline lounge access, purchase protection, rental car insurance, extended warranty, or a host of other cardholder benefits. .

If you’re not using the extra benefits your card offers, it might be worth switching to another card with features you’ll actually enjoy. This is especially true if you’re paying an annual fee for a card that’s no longer worth it.

3. Will you need to borrow for any purchases?

If you plan to carry a balance on your credit card, the most important thing you can do is make sure your APR is as low as possible. If your current card has a typical high rate (as most credit cards do), you might want to consider signing up for a new card that offers an introductory APR of 0%. This way, you could finance your purchases over the year and pay no interest on them.

Just make sure you have a plan to pay back what you borrow before finance charges kick in – and don’t borrow so much that you’ll be in over your head.

4. Could a balance transfer help you pay off your debts?

If you currently have high-rate credit card debt, applying for a new balance transfer card could help lower your repayment cost. A balance transfer card usually comes with a 0% APR for several months. Although you’ll pay a small fee to transfer your balance, qualifying for that 0% rate might be worth signing up for a new card.

5. Have you checked out credit card bonus offers lately?

Many cards offer bonus offers for new customers, such as $500 extra cash back if you spend a certain amount within three months of opening the account. If you haven’t opened a new card to get a bonus offer in a while, it might be worth looking into the offers available. If you can get a free plane ticket or some extra cash just for opening a new card, you may decide that’s right for you.

6. Are you going to take out large loans?

Finally, consider whether you’re going to take out a large loan, such as a mortgage or car loan. If you anticipate this, you might want to wait before opening a new map. This could temporarily hurt your credit score by lowering your average credit age and leaving you with an investigation into your credit report. And it’s not worth paying a higher rate on those larger loans.

By asking yourself these six questions, you can make a smart choice about whether to open a new card in 2023. If you decide to go ahead with opening a new account, make sure do your research to find the one that’s right for you.

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