Owning a credit card is a sign of a person having become mature and responsible. They are very helpful and everyone should have one in case of emergencies. Adults and university students, especially those who study and work part-time, should own one. Using credit cards teaches you how to manage your money and to spend it only when you need to.
Everybody now needs a credit card.
You will be amazed to know that to apply for a credit card these days is as simple as participating in one of those online surveys; entering your information and hitting “submit.” But getting approved is another business entirely. One that requires careful planning that should start long before you apply.
Are you trying to make your first credit card? Well, you have come to the right place. In this credit card 101, you will find out how you can go about having one made for yourself, and what your bank might require from you.
First and foremost, here is what you must know:
1. Reduce your debt
Most of the time, people with bank loan history are denied credit cards. Make sure you have none before you proceed to apply for a credit card.
You are supposed to ensure that you have no debts before you apply. If you do, try to pay off your debts prior to the application process.
2. Don’t apply for the first offer you see
Falling for the first offer you find yourself or through some other source has its disadvantages. It does people good to compare between offers and the banks offering them.
In Pakistan, however, you can apply only where you have an active account. Even with this, there are more than one offers. We recommend talking this out with the bank people.
Let them help you out. They will know what is best suited to your needs.
3. Include all of your income in the application
Your income, and all of it, is an important aspect of this entire process. Credit card issuers will want to know your income level to compute your debt-to-income ratio, which in turn will aid them to determine your capability to pay.
If you have more than one employer, more than once source of earning money, like earning apart from your full-time job or the like, be sure to include all of it on your application so as to avoid future confusion.
Another thing of note, upon providing incorrect information, whether intentional or not, about your income might lead to credit card fraud. The only way out of this mess is to pay your way out.
Also read: 5 Tips To Save Money Using Your Credit Card!
Secondly, what you must present:
1. Identity Documents
Usually, they’ll want a CNIC with your photo, or your passport. Make sure that you present valid originals of these documents.
They should not be tattered or crumpled.
2. Proof of Income
Your credit card issuer would need some proof income. This includes a salary slip, a letter from your employer, and your bank statement can testify to this. Anything that holds validity and proves that you have a constant, trustworthy source of income to pay off your credit card loans.
The documents being presented should be in their original form and not crumpled or folded.
3. Proof of debt if applying for balance transfer
This varies with your case. If you qualify for this one, make sure—again—that the credit card statement you provide is recent and not old, the document being neat and creaseless.
4. Decide on a type
A credit card is categorized into Silver, Gold, Platinum categories. The names may differ from bank to bank. But their purpose is similar. Credit You need to choose your credit card based on your salary. If your amount doesn’t coincide with the policies of your chosen card and the minimum salary requirement, then your application will be rejected.
Make sure you choose your card appropriately with your salary.
5. Cards with higher credit limit
As per the rules and policies applied and abided by here in Pakistan, the limit your credit card can have can be three times that of your salary. For instance, if you earn 50 thousand rupees a month, then your limit can be three times of that amount, that is 150 thousand rupees. This is offered by the Gold Card.
The Silver Card offers a limit that is two times of your original salary.
9. Multiple cards and what you need to know
If you apply for more than one card with a number of banks, this reduces your chances of approval. This is usually restricted to cards with higher limits.
However, if you wish, you can apply for multiple cards with less limits to have a higher cumulative limit. Caution is advised in this case. One must know the total lending limit of each card to avoid trouble.
Information you need to put in your application form.
This depends upon your credit card issuer. But almost all of the following information is asked of you. Generally
- Full name
- Date of birth
- Residential address and status—status being either citizen, permanent resident, long-term visa, et cetera
- Contact details—this should include your email address, as well
- Number of dependents—dependents are your children
- Employer’s name and contact details
- Income per year—this shall include annual salary, bonuses or commissions, and secondary income et cetera
- Current balance of your savings and transactions accounts
- Current balance of other credit cards and other debts you already have
- Monthly expenses—this shall include rent, mortgage, groceries, fuel or public transport, utilities, insurance, and possibly more depending on your issuer
- Your preferred credit limit for the card—this one is usually optional
- Any other general information asked of you
Bottom Line and Conclusion.
1. Being cautious
You need to be cautious when it comes to filling your application. One mistake, even if it is a minor one, can lead to your credit card application being denied. You need a clear head and possibly another person well-versed in finance or a relative having relevant experience with dealing with credit cards to help you fill your form.
2. Don’t give up
In case your application ends up being denied, there is room for consideration. This is practiced by a lot of credit card issuers. You can call them and talk it out. Plead your case and see how it goes.
Concluding, abide by the rules needed to get yourself approved the first time. Do not make haste, as this process will cost you time. Also, make sure to give accurate information during the application process so as to avoid denial.
If you go by the books, you will have your credit card assigned to you. There is always a second try if that doesn’t work out.