Things you didn't know about credit cards [Infographic]

Although credit card interest rates are generally higher, a credit card debt can be short term and doesn't necessarily mean interest charges1 - if you pay the balance you owe in full each month.

However some of us don't use them like that. Here are some good reasons to rethink how you use them - or whether you use them at all.

Credit card interest is costing Australians a lot of money.

an icon of australian map with a dollar signa christmas present icon with a gift tag of 29 billiona calendar icon with 55 days written on it

Many of us are not as good at managing credit card debt as we think we are.

a chart representing increase in paying interest as it takes longer to payan image of people illustrating one third of australiansan image of a hand holding a credit card

Reward programs are not always rewarding for all of us.

a chart illustrating decrease in credit card valuean image illustrating zero rewards when you spend below $5000 a month on credit cardan image illustrating higher fees with reward programs


View the accessible text version of the infographic below or download the PDF version.

Credit card interest is costing Australians a lot of money.

  • We use credit a lot. Australia has a national credit card debt accruing interest of $31,627,035,870. That's 31 billion.1
  • Aussies borrowed a collective $29 billion on credit cards over Christmas alone in 2017.1
  • On an average 55-day interest-free period, December 2017 cost Aussies $230 million in interest.2

Many of us are not as good at managing credit card debt as we think we are.

  • 19% of card holders take longer than three months to service their debt, which means their interest costs likely to pile up. 5% of this group takes a year or more!2
  • One-third of Australians pay interest without realising it but the real figure is actually about double that.3
  • 70.19% of Aussies have a credit card. 20.69% of adults 35-54 have 3 or more!4

Reward programs are not always rewarding for all of us.

  • Decreases in credit cards rewards value in the last 12 months in Australia are at around 63%.5
  • After fees, reward programs deliver little or nothing unless you spend well over $5,000 on your card monthly.5
  • Cards with reward programs are enticing, but often come with higher fees and above average interest rates.5

If you're good at managing your money, and can easily pay the balance off each month - then a credit card can really work for you. But if you struggle to manage multiple credit card debts, a debt consolidation loan may be an option. Learn the pros and cons of consolidating your debts here.

When you're ready, get your individual rate before applying in just a few minutes (it won't affect your credit score), or learn more about our debt consolidation loans here. Couldn't find an answer to your questions? Give us a call on 1300 108 794. We're here to help.

Sources:

1. http://www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/abs@.nsf/Lookup/4102.0main+features402014#credit
2. https://www.finder.com.au/australians-have-racked-up-29-billion-in-christmas-credit-card-debt
3. http://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-12-16/credit-card-debt-australia/6928326
4. https://www.finder.com.au/credit-cards/credit-card-statistics
5. http://www.smh.com.au/money/borrowing/credit-card-reward-value-falls-63-per-cent-over-past-year-20170831-gy7zun.html

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