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The average British family spends over £800 on Christmas each year. And if you put any of that on a credit card, chances are you’re feeling the squeeze more than usual this month.

So to help you get through it, we’re sharing our golden rules to help you manage credit card debt and stay free of credit card related money worries.

Pay off the one with the highest rate first

The higher the interest rate (APR) on a credit card, the more interest you’ll pay on your spending. So if you have more than one credit card, prioritise paying off the one with the highest rate. (You’ll find the APR on your credit card statement.)

But don’t forget about your other credit cards. Oh no, late payments damage your credit rating, and some lenders charge a fee if you don’t pay on time. So pay at least the minimum payment on all of them, and pay a little extra off the highest rate one if you can.

Pay more than the minimum payment

If you can afford to pay more than the minimum payment each month, you’re winning.

Paying more than the minimum means you’ll clear your credit card debt faster, you’ll save money on interest, and you could even improve your credit score.

Yep, using less of your credit limit shows that you borrow and spend responsibly, which looks great on your credit report.

Pay by Direct Debit

Paying by Direct Debit minimises the risk that you’ll miss a credit card payment and get charged a fee.

As long as you have enough money in your bank account, the lender will automatically take the payment when it’s due.

And most lenders let you choose how much your Direct Debit is – you can choose the minimum payment, the full balance, or any amount in between.

Credit cards aren’t the only way

Credit cards can be useful at times like Christmas when we tend to spend a little extra, but follow our credit card golden rules to avoid Christmas spending hanging over you all year.

We’re here to make paying your Christmas credit card bills a breeze. With the thinkmoney Current Account, we’ll hold money you need for credit card payments and other bills to one side to make sure they’re paid on time, every time.

Open your account today for help staying on top of your personal finance.

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