How to effectively manage your credit card fees

Last updated on November 25th, 2021
  Written by 
Bill Tsouvalas
Bill Tsouvalas is the managing director and a key company spokesperson at Savvy. As a personal finance expert, he often shares his insights on a range of topics, being featured on leading news outlets including News Corp publications such as the Daily Telegraph and Herald Sun, Fairfax Media publications such as the Australian Financial Review, the Seven Network and more. Bill has over 15 years of experience working in the finance industry and founded Savvy in 2010 with a vision to provide affordable and accessible finance options to all Australians. He has built Savvy from a small asset finance brokerage into a financial comparison website which now attracts close to 2 million Aussies per year and was included in the BRW’s Fast 100 in 2015 as one of the fastest-growing companies in the country. He’s passionate about helping Australians make financially savvy decisions and reviews content across the brand to ensure its accuracy. You can follow Bill on LinkedIn.
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If you own a credit card you know the benefit of its convenience when it comes to handling expenses, but this can be dampened by credit card fees. Credit card fees can add up and you could end up paying more than you should. Thankfully, there is a way that you can track your credit card fees and find a way to manage them with these handy tips.

Annual fee

These are probably the most common fee you have heard of which is charged to your credit card every year. Depending on the type of credit card you own you could be paying anything between $30-$700. Your credit cards annual fees can also be increased due to the features you have added on to it such as rewards. Therefore, always know what you are paying for and if the features that you are currently paying for are something that you don’t use then it’s time to switch to a new credit card.

Late payment fees

Not paying your monthly credit card fees can have its consequences. That is why it is vital that you take out a credit card which you know you will be able to meet its monthly repayments. Late payment fees are charged when you default on your monthly repayments, but it can also push you into a debt spiral as this fee is added to the interest that you already owe on the card.

Cash advance fees

Taking money out of an ATM may not be such a good idea. Every time you use an ATM to withdraw money from your credit card you are slapped with a cash advance fee which is not good for your credit card. This fee can be as much as 3% charged on the amount you have taken out. Your provider can also slap you with an additional fee that can go up to 20%. It will be better to use ATM withdrawals for an emergency to help keep this fee at bay.

International transaction fees

Planning to take your card on holiday? Then you need to be aware of the international transaction fee that charges you up to 4% on every purchase that you make while abroad. This fee is charged to convert your money into the currency of the country that you are in. You could be still charged with this fee even if you are shopping online from the comfort of your home. You could consider getting yourself a 0% foreign transaction fee credit card that will protect you from these fees.

Going over your limit

Your credit card is there for convenience to help you take care of those unexpected expenses that pop up now and again. However, try not to be taken away by the convenience factor as this can see you going over your limit which will cost you. Some providers will charge with an over the limit fee which can just be a financial inconvenience. If you find that you are now edging towards going over the limit, then it is time to re-assess how you spend your money by creating a budget.

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