Brits' credit card behaviour revealed

08 February 2006
Over a third of British card users are still swapping card balances to keep zero per cent deals, according to a survey by financial website Moneyfacts.

With the number of consumers defaulting on their debt rising, many lenders have begun to reign in generous zero per cent deals on purchases and new balances transfers. But despite some changes 36 per cent said they had switched cards more than three times to keep the offers.

A third of card users also complained of being penalised for making a late payment - a hazard when transferring large balances to zero per cent cards.

"Credit cards are offering some fantastic deals at the moment, but the savings on interest can be eradicated by consumers being late on a payment," said Emma Butler, editor of Moneyfacts.

She said that a borrower who incurs a late payment charge on a £2,000 credit card balance could end up doubling the money they owe to the card company to as much as £48 a month.

"With large balances being transferred and a lot of consumers being at their card limit, these charges can be compounded. A late payment can incur a £25 charge that can then push the borrower over their limit and incur another £25," she added. also discovered that just over half of consumers have been give APRs which fall beneath the advertised rate offered by personal loan lenders.

To read more about 0 per cent credit cards, click here.

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