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Benefits of having a credit card

Personal finance • September 17, 2019 • Jen Ryan


Getting—and using—a credit card can be a powerful tool that helps you work toward financial goals, like building a solid credit history.

What you’ll learn

  • Why credit cards help you build credit
  • Why credit cards may offer you more security online


If you don’t have a credit card yet—or if you don’t use your credit card often—you may wonder what’s the benefit of regularly using one.

Well, a credit card can be a powerful tool that helps you to work toward financial goals. Here are just three benefits you can take advantage of by getting—and using—a credit card.

Establish and build your credit.

The biggest perk of having a credit card is the ability for you to build a credit history, which will translate into a credit score. A credit score is important because you need a good one to rent an apartment, get a car loan, buy a home, and more. You primarily build a good credit score by spending under your credit limit and making on-time payments towards your credit card balance.

Earn rewards for your regular spending.

Points. Cash-back. Travel perks like hotel discounts. There’s no end to the types of credit card rewards you can earn for buying your everyday purchases like groceries or gas. Think about your personal goals—Do you want to travel more? Do you want to pay off a debt, like your student loans? You can choose a credit card that gives you rewards you can put toward your goals.

Enjoy extra security and protection.

Your credit card can give you more peace of mind when you’re making purchases online. Most credit card companies will help you fight fraudulent charges and won’t hold you responsible for unauthorized charges. Plus, some cards even include extra security benefits, like card encryption and the ability to instantly freeze your account if you lose card.

Every credit card will offer additional perks and benefits that go beyond these three basics. So when it’s time to choose a card, be sure to shop around to see what can best help you reach your financial goals.


Jen Ryan is a senior copywriter at Sallie Mae. When she’s not helping make college happen, you can find her reading, running, or exploring Boston with her husband.


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Sallie Mae does not provide financial, tax, or legal advice and the information contained in this article does not constitute tax, legal, or financial advice. Sallie Mae does not make any claims, promises, or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness, or adequacy of the information contained in this article. Readers should consult their own attorneys or other tax advisors regarding any financial strategies mentioned in this article. These materials are for informational purposes only and do not necessarily reflect the views or endorsement of Sallie Mae.