Press release

Half of over-50s manage their money with multiple credit cards

Wednesday 2 September 2009

  • More over 50s have two or more credit cards than any other age group
  • A quarter of Brits believe having multiple credit cards can improve their credit rating. 1.

The over 50s own more plastic than any other age group, with one in two (49%) saying they use more than one credit card to manage their finances and 7% say they carry five or more credit cards in their wallets1

Research from Saga Platinum Credit Card reveals almost a quarter (23%) of over 50s do not use any credit cards in comparison to over a third (34%) of under 50s.

Of those over 50s that hold more than one card, a third say they use all their cards in the same way, whereas a fifth (20%) use their cards occasionally as an extra financial ‘cushion’ when they need some extra credit and another fifth (19%) just use a credit card for buying big-ticket items. In contrast one in ten (9%) under 35s use one credit card until they reach their spending limit and then switch to another card, compared with just 2% of over 50s.

The over 50s are much less likely to incur late payment fees than younger credit card users. Nearly three quarters (73%) of people aged 50 and over have never missed a credit card payment deadline in their lifetime. In contrast, one in two (47%) under 50s have missed a credit card payment at some point, and 8% of under 35s say they regularly miss payments.

With so many people carrying more than one credit card there is a worrying lack of knowledge about the impact multiple credit cards can potentially have on people’s credit ratings. Over a third of people (36%) believe having multiple credit cards can’t have any impact on their credit rating, while a quarter of people think having several credit cards can actually improve their credit rating.

The majority of the over 50s (69%) are not worried about the impact owning more than one credit card has on their credit rating, but one in ten (9%) admit they are concerned.

Andrew Goodsell, Chief Executive, Saga Group, commented: “The over 50s are much wiser when it comes to using credit cards, not exceeding their credit limit or missing payment deadlines. Choosing a card with a fair order of payment2, is one of the most effective ways of managing your credit card spending, as people can be sure that they are paying the most expensive debt back first2, which is reassuring in the current tough financial climate. ”


Editors notes:

1 Saga omnibus research commissioned with Opinium Research LLP, surveying 2,006 people in Great Britain in July 2009

2. Payments received will be deducted from the outstanding balance on the account in the following order:

• interest;

• fees from previous statements;

• Cash Advances (including cash from a Cash Machine) from previous statements; and

• purchases from previous statements.

The remainder (if any) will be applied to transactions on the current Statement in the following order:

• fees;

• Cash Advances;

• purchases and Balance Transfers; and,

• any other promotional offers.

About Saga Platinum Credit Card

· Typical APR of 11.9% variable

· 0% on purchases for the first 9 months*

· 0% on Balance Transfers for the first 9 months* (a 3% fee applies)

· 0% foreign currency charge on transactions in Visa Europe: 1% elsewhere

· Interest free cash withdrawals – up to 55 days†

* Introductory Rate is charged for the first nine months on purchases and Balance Transfers from the date the Account is opened. At the end of this period the Introductory Rate reverts to the Standard Interest Rate applicable to the product at the time. A Balance Transfer fee of 3% applies.

** Terms & Conditions apply.

†If you use your card to withdraw cash, you will benefit from an interest free period of up to 55 days if the balance is settled in full before the due date. After that, interest will be charged at 23.9% APR from the date of the transaction. There is a 2% fee (minimum £2) for each cash advance, whether it is made abroad or in the UK.

Saga Personal Finance Limited is registered in England and Wales (Company No. 3023493) and is a wholly owned subsidiary of Saga Group Limited. Registered Office: Enbrook Park, Folkestone, Kent, CT20 3SE.

The Saga Platinum credit card is issued by Allied Irish Banks, p.l.c. Registered office: Bankcentre, Ballsbridge, Dublin 4, Republic of Ireland. Registered in the Republic of Ireland: Registered No. 24173. Allied Irish Banks, p.l.c. is regulated by the Financial Regulator in the Republic of Ireland.

For more information, please contact the Saga Press Office on 01303 771529



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