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Holiday Shopping: 3 Reminders for Smart Credit Card Use

​​The holiday season is almost here, and things might just be a little different this year. One survey found that nearly half of all Americans plan to shop online this season. If you'll be shopping online this year too, keep the following tips in mind for smart (and safe) credit card use during the holidays. 
Track your spending
In the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, it can be all too easy to overlook how much you're actually charging to your credit card. To prevent a post-holiday debt headache, make a spending plan and track every purchase you make. Money Management, a free service available through Wright-Patt Credit Union's (WPCU) Mobile and Online Banking can help you stay on top of your holiday spending. This helpful tool allows you to see all your accounts in one place, with one login. Use it to track your purchases, manage your budget and see exactly where your money is going!
Prevent credit card fraud
Anyone can be a target for credit card fraud, but you can take steps to reduce the risks and protect yourself this holiday season. 
  • Only shop on secure, reputable websites. To check if a website is secure, look for “https" and the lock symbol in the address bar. Before clicking on links, hover over the link to be sure it's taking you to the correct website. Misspellings in a retailer's website URL are the sign of a scam.
  • Use a credit card, not a debit card, for online transactions. Credit cards generally offer greater protection against fraudulent activity. Unlike with a debit card, if your credit card information is stolen, the money won't be taken directly from your checking account.
  • Set up account alerts and check your statements carefully. The sooner you notice fraudulent activity on your accounts, the sooner you can take action to stop it.
  • Choose one credit card for online purchases. Using only one card will make it easier to monitor your account for fraudulent activity. Sticking with one card for the holidays will also help you avoid building balances you can't pay off quickly.
  • Insert your card's chip, rather than swiping, for in-store purchases. Whenever possible, insert your credit card's chip instead of swiping your card. The chip provides extra security to protect your card data.
Maximize credit card rewards
If you have a credit card that offers perks like cash back on purchases, the holiday shopping season is a great time to maximize your rewards. Cash back credit cards, like WPCU's Platinum Rewards Credit Card, put more money back in your pocket. You can use the cash back you earn to pay down your balance or put it toward future purchases.
For new and existing cardholders earn 5% extra cash back during the holiday season on the first $1,000 you spend until December 31, 2020!* After that, earn 1.5% cash back on every purchase with no spending categories or annual fees**.  

Make life a little easier this holiday shopping season
The holidays should be full of joy, not worry! By using credit cards safely and responsibly, you can stay ahead of debt while enjoying your favorite holiday traditions.

At WPCU, we want to help you save better and borrow smarter during the holidays and all year round! Be sure to visit our online Education Center for more helpful budgeting tools and resources to use when preparing for seasonal shopping. 

​*Earn 5% cash back on your first $1,000 in purchases made between 11/2/2020 through 12/31/2020. Earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on all purchases after your first $1,000 or after 12/31/2020, whichever comes first. This promotion is available only once per Wright-Patt Credit Union Platinum Rewards Card. Cash advances and balance transfers are not included in this promotion.

**All loans are subject to credit review and approval. Annual Percentage Rates (APRs) are accurate as of 10/23/2020 and may change at any time. The APR for Purchases, Balance Transfers and Cash Advances for the Platinum Rewards credit card will vary from 9.25% APR to 17.25% APR, depending upon your creditworthiness. The APR is variable and is based upon an index plus a margin and will vary with Prime Rate (the index) as published in the Wall Street Journal, currently 3.25%. The rate for the Platinum Rewards credit card may increase or decrease monthly, but it will never go below 6.00% APR and will never exceed 18.00% APR. There is a Foreign Transaction Fee of 1.00% of the final settlement amount for transactions that are initiated in a foreign currency or for transactions occurring in foreign countries and initiated in U.S. Dollars. There is a Returned Payment Fee of up to $25.00. There is a Late Payment Fee of up to $20 if your payment is five or more days late. Credit card applicants under 21 must demonstrate an ability to repay or have a qualified co-signer who is 21 or older. Please refer to or contact a Member Center partner for rate, fee and other cost information related to our credit card products.