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Thread: Credit card usage - not enough

  1. #1
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    Credit card usage - not enough

    Got a call from my bank yesterday. I haven't used my credit card since March, so they let me know that "sometimes" cards are cancelled if they aren't used in a year.
    There's a zero balance on it, and I don't expect to use it except for an emergency. So, is this something new?

    If that's their rules I expect I'll use it for something small and then pay it off right away. Seems like a waste but maybe it's also a security issue to make sure you're still an active customer. I sure don't want to apply for a new credit card with someone else now that I'm in retirement.

  2. #2
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    It happened to my parents, who were not using theirs, then my brother started using it for airline tickets to visit them, as he is poa.
    They cancelled it without any reason.
    I figured it was probably too hard to figure out the patterns of use and a fraud risk as parents are very elderly.

  3. #3
    Moderator Float On's Avatar
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    I had a Target credit card that did that. I got it for a big discount on something and thought I'd use it if I needed more big items. Apparently I didn't use it enough so they cancelled me. With our bank debit cards we really have to stay on top of letting them know about travel plans and such. One use at some place we have haven't been to before and they get shut down. It's annoying as all get out. I've started using a credit card again instead of the debit card due to the hassle.
    Float On: My "Happy Place" is on my little kayak in the coves of Table Rock Lake.

  4. #4
    Senior Member iris lilies's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Float On View Post
    I had a Target credit card that did that. I got it for a big discount on something and thought I'd use it if I needed more big items. Apparently I didn't use it enough so they cancelled me. With our bank debit cards we really have to stay on top of letting them know about travel plans and such. One use at some place we have haven't been to before and they get shut down. It's annoying as all get out. I've started using a credit card again instead of the debit card due to the hassle.
    not just debit cards. Last year I bought a computer at Best Buy and my credit card would not work, they wouldnt take the sale because I never go to Best Buy and do not buy electronics, so their security system flagged it as fraud and they blocked the sale.

    Very very annoying. Fortunately my backup credit card worked.

  5. #5
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    Yes, we have one from the bank-it's a debit card but is used as a credit card. We must use it at least once every 2 or 3 months or there's a fee. so, I use it for gas and eating out- oddly the one time I used it for eating out it got hacked....got a phone call and a new card issued. It was the only time I had used it for at least a month. I pay cash at that diner now. I first thought the phone call was a scam, but I called the bank and they said an attempted charge was made. It frustrating.

  6. #6
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    We use ours once a while for that reason. We only use Cc’s on vacation. Tried to buy a refrigerator and card denied so called the company and they let me use it. They thought it was fraud.

  7. #7
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    I have friends who work retail who say that they are seeing a lot more credit cards being denied. It is usually due to suspected fraud. Usually, the customer just calls the 800 number on the back of the card, clears things up, and the sale goes through. Things that can trigger fraud alerts are a much larger than usual purchase or making a large purchase somewhere the customer hasn't been before.

    I'd rather have a slight delay to clear things up than to have a fraudulent charge go through.

    I think inactive accounts cost the banks money. They have extended a credit limit, but aren't making any money off it. So they'd rather close the inactive account and offer that credit limit to someone who will use it. The banks charge merchants a fee for every credit card purchase, and they also collect interest from many card holders.

  8. #8
    Senior Member rosarugosa's Avatar
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    I've had a few cards cancelled due to inactivity. These are typically cards I got for the sign-on bonus and never used again.

  9. #9
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    A few months ago Citibank canceled my card--one that I'd held for more than 30 years--completely out of the blue. I had been using other cards to rack up bonus points for quite some time, but if Citi had let me know they were going to cancel it, I probably would have used it just to prevent the (very minor) hit to my credit rating.

    I called them, and was told that to get the card reinstated they'd have to do a credit check, which would also have caused a (very minor) hit to my rating. I told them no thanks--your loss.

    Strange way to run a business. Even though I hadn't used the card for a while, I'm sure I generated plenty of profit for them during the 3 decades I did use it.

    All of which reminds me--time to apply for another card and rack up some more points.

  10. #10
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    I can go for many weeks only buying groceries and gas every other week. I usually use my atm card for groceries so I can also get a minimal amount of cash at the same time. But then I have to be careful to switch off the 2 credit cards when I guy gas. I always go online within a day or two and transfer money to pay them off right away. Gas, groceries, odds and ends at Ace Hardware, but Ace doesn't accept cards of any kind for purchases less than $20, hence the cash. This simple and often frugal living is a process that requires conscious work!

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