I didn’t think of it much when, the other day at Kohl’s, I was asked if I wanted to save 15% on my purchase. It happens so regularly. But I read a post from Bible Money Matters today about the increasing aggressiveness of department store credit card sales attempts, and I started replaying that conversation in my head:
“Would you like to 15% today?”
“Uh, no thanks.”
“Thanks, that’s okay.”
It was pretty apparent that she was trying. Normally I only have to say “no” once. At any rate, I didn’t bite. Save 15% on an order of $30? That’s $4.50. Besides, I’m the Kohl’s email list. I get 15% and 20% offers all the time. I don’t need a credit card to save that money. Anyway, here are the reasons that giving in to department store credit cards may not be the best plan:
- Your credit will be checked. That means a ding against you and a possibly lower interest rate. If you apply for multpile department store credit cards, you will see an even bigger impact.
- Department store credit cards aren’t as “favorable” as major bank cards. A Kohl’s or Target charge card just doesn’t look as good or factor as favorably as a card from Capital One or Bank of America.
- Do you really want to give out personal information in line? Bible Money Matters makes this point — and it’s a good one. Do you want to give your Social Security Number and other information in a public place?
Department store credit cards also normally charge higher rates of interest and do not have rewards programs. Essentially, you are using such a credit card to get a one-off savings. It might be worth it if you are getting something big, but I’d rather use my cash back rewards card for something that big and then pay off the balance the next month.
How do you feel about department store credit cards?
image source: Kohl’s Web site