7 Things to Take a Second Look at Before Picking a Credit Card
Whether it’s to request for emergency funds in a foreign land or to avail of massive cash back deals at the local supermarket, the best credit cards in UAE perfectly capture their owner’s lifestyle and reward them for their spending habits. However, with the hundreds of credit cards in UAE, the true challenge lies in finding that perfectly suited card, without parting with your life savings to do so. This is where the justified need to compare credit cards in UAE arises from.
But while most people usually compare credit cards in UAE in terms of rewards and incentives, experienced cardholders understand that there are many more features to consider when searching for the best credit card in UAE. Here are the top 7 features to keep an eye out for when one compares credit cards in UAE.
1. Annual Membership Fee
The annual membership fee can be thought of as the cost of using the credit card’s services. It is a maintenance fee that is charged yearly. Many of the best credit cards in UAE offer the same blend of services and features with no annual membership fee, albeit without the same level of rewards. Be sure to compare credit cards in UAE to find one with a reasonable annual membership fee. Many of the best credit cards in UAE also give access to loyalty programs and offers which allow the cardholder to waive annual membership fees by redeeming points or meeting a minimum spending requirement. Credit card issuers do not make as much profit of annual fees as they do of monthly interest, and so can afford to waive the fee without compromising on rewards.
2. Retail Interest
The monthly retail interest plays an important role for both the customer and the credit card issuer alike. Retail interest is charged on the outstanding balance amount at the end of every billing cycle and is how credit card issuers make a profit. Interest is a highly useful tool to compare credit cards in UAE with, as it provides customers with an idea of what their monthly credit card bills could typically amount to. Credit card issuers generally gave a document labelled Statement of Charges, which can additionally be referred to for detailed breakdowns of card-wise interest rates and other associated charges.
3. Rewards & Cashback
So far, we have considered annual fees, retail interest and other charges to compare credit cards in UAE. With the technical aspect of some of the best credit cards in UAE thoroughly analyzed, we can now turn our attention to the more exciting features of rewards and cash backs. When it comes to rewards schemes, credit cards very easily lure customers through attractive discount rates and big brand names. However, it is important to stay focused on your own spending habits and to identify the best credit cards in UAE that offer incentives on the same. Like rewards cards, cash back credit cards offer incentives in the form of guaranteed saving on every purchase. But even these credit cards often face restrictions in the form of partnered stores and maximum monthly limits.
4. Add-On Services
Most of the best credit cards in UAE also provide the highly useful services of balance transfers and easy payment plans. An easy payment plan allows the cardholder to convert any big transaction into monthly instalments at low-interest rates and fixed tenors. Some of the best credit cards in UAE even charge 0% interest on purchased for tenors of up to 12 months. Balance transfer schemes, on the other hand, allow cardholders to transfer their outstanding balance on other cards to the credit card in question. These schemes generally work at 0% interest and fixed tenors ranging from 6 months to 12 months. No-interest balance transfers are extremely useful as they allow the cardholder to clear away debt without any extra charges.
5. Type of Lifestyle
The next factor we take into consideration to compare credit cards in UAE is the cardholder’s type of lifestyle. Depending on which lifestyle benefits the customer opts for, the best credit cards in UAE may be further analyzed on these terms:
a. Travel Cards
When it comes to travel benefits, the best credit cards in UAE provide everything from discounts on flights to complimentary hotel stays and more. Here are some things to keep in mind when considering a travel card.
- Foreign Transaction Fees - As the name suggests, some travel cards charge a fee on every foreign transaction made with the card. For frequent travellers, it is important to compare credit cards in UAE and find one with minimal or no foreign transaction fees.
- Currency Conversion Charges - Some of the best credit cards in UAE may charge no foreign transaction fee, and instead charge a currency conversion fee. The service converts foreign currency into the cardholder’s local currency during purchases and charges a fee to do so.
- Travel Insurance - The best credit cards in UAE also offer complimentary travel and emergency medical covers. It is advised to compare the max coverage amounts these insurance policies offer.
b. Lifestyle Cards
Such cards give the cardholder huge discounts on daily spending and utility services.
- Partnered Stores - Not every store is eligible for discounts, cash back or the previously mentioned Easy Payment Plans (EPP). Customers should find the best credit card in UAE by identifying partnered stores they frequent regularly.
- Daily Expenses - We also recommend that the customer compare credit cards in UAE to find one that rewards them for day to day expenses such as grocery shopping and fuel purchases. These incentives may be in the form of a cashback, rewards points or a flat discount.
c. Rewards Cards
As some of the best credit cards in UAE for regular spenders, rewards cards offer loyalty points on the majority of purchases made with the card. These loyalty points may be redeemed for electronics, store vouchers, hotel stays, flight tickets and a lot more.
- Restrictions - Not all rewards cards are as generous as they seem. It is extremely crucial to compare credit cards in UAE with the various restrictions kept in mind. Restrictions on rewards can include monthly cap amounts, minimum spending requirements and partnered store locations.
- Blackout Dates - Some rewards points are further restricted via blackout dates, i.e. the date till which the points will be valid. Cardholders that have not redeemed their points by the specified date will lose out on the option to do so.
6. Customer Care
When people think about acquiring the best credit cards in UAE, very rarely do they think to compare the issuer’s customer service qualities. However, customer support plays a key role throughout the card’s Whether it’s the smallest of queries or an urgent emergency, the best credit cards in UAE will always ensure there is a customer representative that is ready to aid the cardholder.
The easiest way to compare credit cards in UAE is through an aggregator service, i.e. a service that allows the customer to compare credit cards in UAE from different issuers in one common platform. Be sure to compare credit cards in UAE through an online aggregator for the best results.
Over to You
Good luck and we hope you are able to find the best credit card in UAE for your particular lifestyle.