Best Credit Card for 2014

The qualities of the best credit card in 2014 are going to be multiple. Granted, there are plenty of cards available from the lending industry split apart by individual benefits so that they can make one card a little bit distinct from other credit cards. However, the best credit card will have multiple benefits included in its package, ranging from no annual fee to reward points earned to reward bonuses to discounts with affiliated business partners or coupons.

Get a Free Card Where Possible

To increase the stretch of borrowers’ spending, obviously, the best credit card is one that is free to use. Many credit cards have what’s called an annual fee which is basically just a service charge for a person to have the permission to use that card. This fee is just money lost and can range anywhere from $35 to as much as $90 or more annually. Smart shoppers will try to find a card that doesn’t have a fee whatsoever.

Buy Two Things for One

best credit card for 2014The next big area of bonus or benefit in a 2014 credit card is going be one that gives a little bit more for every dollar spent. This reward concept could be in the form discounts, travel miles, a refund, or even reward points. Whatever the case, the buyer should be looking for a credit card that gives something back.

Unfortunately, reward cards for discount are likely going to come with an annual fee so a buyer often has to make a choice of either sticking with the fee card for the first year, which usually has a free introductory period in the first year, and then switching to another card, or just stick with the fee and anticipate that the discounts earned will be more than whatever is paid.

Buyer Protection

Further, additional benefits involve buyer protection package details. Borrowers often don’t pay attention to the protection plans that come with a particular credit card. Not every credit card is the same. Some of the better credit cards are going to have protections that basically provide a warranty or a money-back guarantee for defective purchases. However, this type of credit card protection is usually buried deep in the details of the credit card plan. So customers have to take the time to read the details and understand what they’re getting with a new card service.

Network Access

Another big but often overlooked area is whether the credit card is accepted in multiple areas. Not every credit card brand is accepted by every merchant. American Express, for example, is a charge card brand that many merchants refuse to take because the transaction fees are too expensive. Visa and MasterCard are often the better credit cards to have in terms of popularity and reach. For those who travel regularly, particularly overseas, the difference matters.

Internet-Based Account Management

Additionally, a good 2014 credit card company should provide an electronic, Internet-based system of data access so that the borrower can see his transactions on a daily basis as well as make electronic payments from his bank account. Both features allow a borrower to manage his credit a lot better and pay down his debt a lot faster versus a paper billing system used by smaller credit card companies. Most major brand credit cards offer electronic access through the Internet, and they will send out electronic statements as well as visibly connect multiple accounts with the same borrower.

Affiliate Savings

Finally, a number of credit cards affiliate themselves with coupon programs or saver programs which give a borrower access to shopping with discounts. Those savings are provided because of the affiliation with a given credit card brand. These are the kind of things that shoppers would already be looking for if they do a lot of retail Internet shopping. Most of the discounts are Internet-related when offered, so the borrower needs to go through a particular vendor website with a credit card brand to score the savings. This type of purchase relationship is not going to work with retail physical stores. Borrowers who look for these type of advantages can realize anywhere from 3 to 10 percent savings on the purchases made, buying the same things that they would buy from regular brick-and-mortar store. The related savings can add up quickly over time.

In Summary

The best credit card for 2014 is not going to be a credit card associated with a particular store, a particular travel company or airline, or a particular lender. Instead, it will be a credit card that comes with multiple benefits, including some which a customer needs to research to make sure he understands all that’s included.

Often, customers go with a particular credit card simply because of one attractive perk. The better credit card in 2014 will be the ones that package multiple benefits and give the customer the best stretching power of his dollar.