Regularly swiping on your credit card and paying your bills on time is an easy way to develop good credit, collect rewards and enjoy multiple promotions and deals. But is it a smart thing to have more than one credit card in your wallet?
To help figure this out, let's first take a look at the advantages of having two or more credit cards:
You Can Boost Your Credit Score
The more credit cards you have, the more diverse your credit report will appear. Pat yourself on the back if you never make late payments for all of the bills and rest assured that your credit score is probably in your favour when you need to take up a loan.
Multiple cards contribute tremendously in your credit history, but don’t let them harm your financial well-being because of unsettled debts or high credit utilization (meaning you tend to reach your credit limits often).
Have Different Cards For Different Needs
A credit card that is used for grocery shopping may not be ideal for big purchases such as electronic gadgets. Simply because you will not get to enjoy the bank’s cashback offer as your card is usually featured with benefits for a specific spending category. Furthermore, you wouldn’t want to use up your credit before the month ends on a single item, or worse is not having enough cash advance for emergency situations.
Having two to three credit cards for different spending purposes can in fact be a healthy financial plan. For example, you can assign one card for everyday use (petrol, food, grocery) and another one for major expenditures (medical bill, insurance, holidays).
If you own a basic credit card, your second one can be something that offers extra benefits based on your lifestyle and spending habits. That way, not only will you get to prioritise your finances more effectively, you will also enjoy greater deals just by simply enjoying your life!
Of course, having more than one credit card isn't all fun and merriment. There are some important caveats to note when you're juggling multiple cards at once.
Multiple Credit Card Applications Count as Hard Inquiries
It is not recommended to apply for many cards at once. The reason is the moment all of your lenders pull out your credit score, they will be recorded as hard inquiries.
To put it simply, it means that the creditor perceives a large number of credit score viewing as a sign of credit risk, which of course will negatively affect your report.
Trickier to Manage
To those who don't have a solid monthly financial plan, owning several credit cards can be cumbersome. This is simply because you are exposed to higher chance of missing your payment for a specific account and end up drowning in debt (that you are possibly not even sure where they came from).
Furthermore, the flexibility of swiping for big purchases, not just with one but multiple cards, might negatively affect your spending habits. It can be hard to resist your inner shopaholic knowing that you can have the items without having to pay first.
So How Many Credit Cards Should You Have?
It is true that maintaining a good credit report really boils down to consistent on-time payments and healthy purchasing limit. Although a single credit card may be all you need to achieve good financial health, there is no exact ideal number of credit cards that one should own especially when taking into account personal spending habits.
It is worth considering multiple credit cards as they can help you to improve your credit score and net you awesome promotions and rewards. Head over to our credit card comparison page to discover the extra perks await you with a new credit card!