3/14/2008

NtJS Mailbag - Mr Credit Card

I got an email today. Congratulations, right? Anyways, it was from a fellow PF blogger - one Mr Credit Card. He was asking me to take part in a survey he is conducting with other PF bloggers on their credit cards. First thought: Have you seen my blog? His email is below.

Mr Credit Card here. I am conducting a survey among personal finance, investment
bloggers about their credit cards and would appreciate if you would participate
in this survey. I would compile the results and publish it in my blog

FYI - I will not reveal your individual answers.

His questions and my answers along with some thoughts below.

What's the harm, right? He wasn't asking for account numbers, and was not asking me to reset my password, so I kept going. I checked out his blog, Ask Mr Credit Card and his corresponding non-blog site. First thought: Wow, so complicated. Now that's not intended to knock Mr CC or his site. I agree with him - the world of credit cards is so incredibly complicated, that consumers do need help 'navigating'. We just differ in how to 'help' consumers. While he has chosen to draw lines between good and bad and calculated the rewards and kick-backs from various card programs, I have chosen to simply say, "No thank you."

While Mr CC so graciously offered to keep my answers confidential, I have chosen to publish them. I chose to do this, not to undermine his efforts or tip his hand, but rather in the spirit of full disclosure.

Mr. CC-

Thanks for including me on your survey. I would be happy
to participate. See answers below in blue.

1. How many credit cards do you have? Zero, zip, zilch, none

2. Which are the credit cards you have (please be specific about the actual cards - eg Amex blue cash or Chase Freedom)? See previous answer.

3. Do you have any credit card debt and if yes, how much? None - We're Debt Free, baby!

4. What is the apr you are paying? N/A - Only a fool would pay for the privilege to spend money.

5. What is your average FICO score? 730-ish, maybe higher. But I really couldn't care less. I only know that much from when we bought our house last year.

6. Have you got any credit cards solely for balance transfer? Nope. Didn't fall for that one either.

7. If yes - which card? N/A

8. Do you charge your utilities, cable bills and internet bills etc to your credit card? No, that would be silly. We pay for our utilities with money.

9. Is your credit card bills set up such that it is automatically paid every month? No, I would never let those blood suckers have access to my accounts.

10. Do you use your credit cards at gas stations and supermarkets? No, I have enough free hats and t-shirts.

11. Which is your favorite credit card? (be specific, not visa or mastercard as an answer pls) My favorites would be all the dozens of cards that we shredded while teaching Financial Peace University. Those are great!

12. Which is your favorite credit card issuer? (banks, not visa or mastercard) None, they are all scum. Do people really have "favorite credit card issuers"??? That's kinda sad.

13. When did you get your first credit card? What was the card? I've never had one, but thanks for asking. My wife, on the other hand, had a Discover Card as her first.
Since then, we've 'Discovered' FREEDOM.

Interesting questions. Sorry, but I doubt that my answers
are what you are looking for, they are however, 100% true.


I hope it didn't come off too snarky, but when you ask these kind of questions.... Seriously, "favorite credit card issuer"?!

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hello,

I understand your hatred. The only thing is, I am make around 2000 dollars a year with my two credit cards. I run my life through them, and I get money back. I get a penny per mile I drive, 3% on gas and grocery, and 1% on everything else..............You should look into it.



Signed,
Mr. Smart Cards.

(not) the Jet Set said...

Mr. Smart Cards? Any relation to Mr. Credit Card?

Anyways, whta you are talking about is a 'rewards card'. The problem with rewards cards in general is that they reward you for spending money - which is a behavior that most Americans need no encouragement on.

And you aren't "making" money, so much as they are giving you a kick-back. Since they've found that consumers will spend as much as 10-12% more when they check out with plastic vs. cash, they can easily afford to kick some of that back to card holders as a 'reward'. 3%, 1%? Do you know how long it takes to overspend by 1-3%? Not long.

Besides all of that, there is also all of the inherant risk associated with credit cards as well as the slimeball tactics credit card companies employ.

Thanks, but no thanks.

Anonymous said...

No relation to Mr. Credit Card.

I have a stone solid budget I stick to using the YNAB way... all while paying my self first... I can assure you my friend there is no overspending in my budget.

It works for me... I dont feel I am reaching for the cash/rewards.... they are just coming with normal spending.... bills.... gas....necessities.

Guess I will just have to disagree with you on this one. I am surprised a frugal hacker would dismiss 3% on gas.

(not) the Jet Set said...

As I said, I don't need the credit card company's slimeball tactics. Universal Default, moving due dates without notification, fees out the wazoo. The customers they appreciate are the ones paying fees and finance charges.

On top of that, I do get 3% back on gas - without credit cards! My child's school sells Scrip cards for local businesses. These are gift cards with a percentage kick-back going to the school and a percentage kick-back going to the student's family in the form of tuition discounts. Cards for the gas stations run ~3%.

3% back on gas. Some restaurants are upwards of 10%. I don't have the forms in front of me, so I guess we'll have to give the Scrip cards their own post in a we weeks when we find out what our total kick-back is for the year, and we can give you more juicy details and percentages.

These gift cards are great for people on a budget as there is a finite amount on the gift card. Once its gone its gone. No overspending.

Best of all - friends and family can buy them through us too, with all the kick-backs going to our child's tuition.

It's not a perfect system, but we'll take it over credit cards any day.

Maybe we could be Mr. Scrip Cards!

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