Saturday, October 21, 2006

"How many cards are you going to get?"

My boyfriend remarked this when I pulled yet another card out of yet another unmarked white envelope. This one is the American Express that I got for CashDuck expenses. I have indeed been getting a lot of cards lately. In my wallet I have:

Chase PerfectCard credit card
Credit union debit card

And in my old wallet in my desk I have:

Bank of America debit card
Chase Universal credit card
StockBack credit card
KeyBank debit card
Amex for CashDuck
National City debit card for CashDuck

Does that seem like a lot?


Matt said...

It's not how many, it's how you use them! Besides, you're safely still below average (9, from

Single Ma said...

Nope that's not a lot. I agree with Matt. It's not how many you have, but how you use/manage them. If I were you, I'd sign up for Yodlee or an aggregator to monitor the activity all on one screen. It's too easy to forget a small balance or difficult to track spending or catch an unauthorized charge when you accumulate 20+ cards over the years. A program like Yodlee just makes life easier. I use the BofA (My Portfolio) version and I love it.

Wendy said...

not at all. split it up like this and it makes perfect sense:

1 debit/1 credit for everyday use (bare minimum necessary)
1 debit/1 credit for business (bare min. again)
2 other credit cards (could be for emergencies, different rewards categories, 0% BTs, or just to build history)
2 other debit cards (separate checking accts for budgeting or internet safety reasons, or left over from sign-up bonuses)

you have a total of 4 credit cards for personal and business use combined. if anything that is fewer than expected. i think the average of 9 that matt mentioned is just for personal use. 4 checking accounts is higher than most, but as mentioned above i can think of a few reasons for having them. out of curiosity (if you don't mind), what do you use the separate checking accounts for? and why are they all at different banks rather than sub-accounts at one bank? i would think that one bank would be easier to deal with, but then you would miss out on some pretty sweet account-opening incentives. i know keybank offers some sign-up bonuses, but i didn't think BofA did.

prlinkbiz said...

I only have a debit card and one low limit credit card, with a business acount coming soon. What do you all need so many cards for? Is this a strategy of some kind?

Matt said...

Wow that is a lot of cards. I've got 2 debit cards, and 1 Visa in my wallet. I have an additional visa at home but that one never gets into my wallet. I have been contemplating changing the types of cards I have from 2 visa cards to 1 visa, 1 master card, and 1 amex... I guess time weill determine what I do.

Good Luck with all your Cards

Kira said...

Wendy got it right. =)

I have accounts at different banks so that I won't see the money - the KeyBank account is for bills, and the Bank of America account is for gifts and odd expenditures. That way I can just whip out the debit card, and not have to worry about transferring money. My direct deposit at work allows me to direct deposit in up to 5 accounts at once - so I don't even have to set up an automatic transfer, the money never even hits my checking account in the first place.

I got an iPod nano from KeyBank, and $100 from Bank of America. I'm pretty bonus happy on checking accounts but I've never opened a credit card to get a bonus.

GolbGuru said...

That's not too much if you are managing them well.

You can't really put a number on what is "too much" it depends on how well you use them. If you can't manage all of them ...then probably they are too much :)..otherwise just chill.

Anonymous said...

I have 1 ATM card and 3 credit cards
Citi Diamond Rewards is the one I use now. This card gets you free gas, and 5% gas rebate. 0% APR for 1 year.
First USA platinum in my desk. This card give 1% cash back
Chase platinum in my desk. I forget why I applied for this card, it came in the mail, I have not called to activate it yet.

Two years ago I had about 12 credit cards (no balance on any of them) and I thought it was too much. So I canceled 10 of them. My credit score promptly fell about 60 pts, lesson learned there.

I've had a credit card since I was 14, my father thought it was a good idea to get me some credit. I was taught to use only what can pay off at the end of month. Luckily that principle stuck with me.

I don't think 9 is too many, it's a good safe number as long as you are not carrying balances on them.

Ken said...

Given that half of them are debit cards you don't have many cards at all. Most banks automatically give you a debit card for every account. These don't show on your credit rating. I've got a ton of debit cards which I never use, I don't even count them as a card cause they are basically a check.

Adventures In Money Making said...

i have in my wallet
1 personal atm card.
2 biz atm's cards
1 biz pension deposit-only atm card
3 personal credit cards [and about 4 not in my wallet]
2 biz credit cards

Debt R US said...

I have one debit card and that's all you need:) We are in a load of debt because of credit cards. Cut up all your cards or one day you will be like us!

ASAP Credit Card said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
credit card girl said...

If you feel that you have to many cradit cards you can choose the one you like the most and use the balance transfer option to transfer the balances to this one card and close all the othe rones you don't need. But it would be wiser to use a particular credit card for particular purchases so you can save the most.