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5 Reasons Owning A Credit Card Is A Good Idea For 2023

In the last two years, keeping our distance from other people and minimizing physical contact has redefined various things in our lives and that includes how we pay for our purchases.  

This means, adapting to the “new normal” greatly calls for cashless and contactless payment. And how can you do that best? By using a credit card.  

Social distancing aside, owning a credit card in the dawn of the new normal has its benefits. Here are the reasons why you should get one in 2023. 

1. Installments and grace period 

Installments may be an overrated feature of credit cards but it is for a good reason – it isn’t just made for those lavish big-ticket purchases, but it can also work towards your own financial advantages especially in a time when it’s common to accumulate 3-months worth of dues.

Nevertheless, credit cards can provide you the buffer you need to fulfill your financial obligations and perhaps split your bills into more manageable monthly installments.

In addition, some cards will even reward you with points for using your credit card for utilities payment or purchasing gadgets and appliances.

How to apply for a credit card installment plan

Depending on your bank, you can arrange an installment plan on some of your purchases provided that the amount reaches the minimum your bank requires.

Furthermore, local banks in the country have extended and adopted more flexible credit card payment policies due to the pandemic. 

2. A faster and easier way to pay

Convenience isn’t just about saving time and effort in doing something, this pandemic has shown us that it’s the key to minimize physical contact and curb the spread of the virus. Today, every department store and shop in the country are slowly adapting cashless transactions, and the government is encouraging them to do so to limit physical contact with customers. Besides, now more than ever, cashless payments have become more prominent in the market with the rising demand of food deliveries, online shopping, and online bills payment. 

Online transactions aside, contactless payments enable cardholders to pay with just a single tap (Paywave for Visa or Paypass for MasterCard) of their credit cards. While in other countries, this card feature is implemented even on prepaid debit cards, banks in the Philippines mostly offer it only in their credit cards.

Nonetheless, it seems like retailers are moving towards a cashless system and it’s high time that you also do!

3. Insurance and consumer protection

Many credit cards come with life and health insurance coverage. Owning a credit card can make it easier to subscribe to some insurance policies, which you can further expand to cover your respective beneficiaries.

And as countries slowly open their doors for tourists and travelers, some credit cards would even provide you with travel insurance during your trips. If there’s one thing that this pandemic has proven, it’s that we can never have too much insurance – the more the better. 

On the other hand, fraud protection is important no matter what the economic climate is. The BSP reported that the pandemic has revealed that more frauds and scams aimed at baiting customers to give out their account information have become rampant. While vigilance and being cautious about your personal information is still paramount in protecting yourself from these fraudsters, it’s always good to have a backup plan or a safety net. 

Credit card providers offer security to their cardholders in cases of fraud or unauthorized transactions. You can easily dispute transactions that you deem as unauthorized or fraudulent and you can get the money back and you can even be compensated for it.  While banks all over the world nowadays have protocols in place to ensure consumer protection from fraud, fraudsters also continue to evolve their means. Having the type of protection that comes with a credit card is never a bad idea. If you have the option to enable OTP (one-time password) for your online transactions, we highly suggest you do so for your own safety.

4. Access to better product options online

Owning a credit card can grant you easy access to online shopping platforms with better product offers. The current movement restrictions might give you a hard time looking for some products in your area with many businesses shutting down, your best bet would be to find them online and even outside the confines of Shopee and Lazada, where COD isn’t an option. 

Online shopping aside, there are various deals that you can grab for a steal using a credit card. Most of these deals are bank exclusive, so you’ll miss out on them if you don’t own a credit card. Add the fact that you will have the option to pay those in installments if you want to.

While these may not be that significant right now, it’s also a perfect opportunity to bag some great travel and shopping deals that may save you thousands of pesos especially now that international travel is slowly going back to its normal operations.

Pro tip

Got a travel plan for the coming year? Your credit card may be able to offer you some reasonably priced airfare and accommodation and even travel insurance.

5. Rewards, rewards, rewards

We Filipinos love rewards, it’s deeply rooted in our culture, and what can give us more reward opportunities than a credit card. Banks offer a range of rewards to allow potential customers to join in order to attract more consumers and more credit card purchases especially during this pandemic where consumer’s activity is limited.   

Most incentive credit cards award bonus points, vouchers, and credit card points for such spending categories, such as restaurants, grocery stores, or department stores. This is, of course, important in the aspect of saving some money, but most especially, this is important to feel at least a sense of normalcy (well in this case the definition of old normal) and to feel a little bit of motivation and excitement upon receiving the reward from your credit cards

Besides, now is the perfect time to accumulate those rewards points. You’ll naturally be earning those points while going cashless in your transactions.  So whenever you fancy going out for a nice meal or plan to buy your next electronic gadget, you’ll find great use of those points!

The new normal may have taken away many of life’s conveniences we’ve enjoyed then, but it has also pushed us to come up with better ways to do things- like how we can automate or safeguard our finances better with a credit card. 

New normal or not, you deserve better financial tools to carry on your daily endeavors.

This article was first published in July 2020 and has been updated for freshness, accuracy and comprehensiveness.

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