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Two questions: Cell Phone, Credit Card


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1. What is a good cell phone to buy for our two 10 year olds so that they have a phone when they are away from us (which is becoming more common)? We can't put them on our AT&T family plan because we share it with my MIL and all the lines are already being used. We just want an inexpensive talk-only/no-text pay-as-you-go plan.

 

2. We racked up some credit card debt while my husband's job hours were reduced a year ago. I'm now trying to pay it off. Usually I put my gas and grocery purchases on the credit card and then come home and immediately pay them off; I don't wait for the end of the month. I do this so that I can earn Amazon gift cards. Should I stop doing this and just use cash/bank card for everything so that NOTHING new goes on the card (even if it's going to be paid off that day)?

 

Thanks!

 

Tara

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1. What is a good cell phone to buy for our two 10 year olds so that they have a phone when they are away from us (which is becoming more common)? We can't put them on our AT&T family plan because we share it with my MIL and all the lines are already being used. We just want an inexpensive talk-only/no-text pay-as-you-go plan.

 

2. We racked up some credit card debt while my husband's job hours were reduced a year ago. I'm now trying to pay it off. Usually I put my gas and grocery purchases on the credit card and then come home and immediately pay them off; I don't wait for the end of the month. I do this so that I can earn Amazon gift cards. Should I stop doing this and just use cash/bank card for everything so that NOTHING new goes on the card (even if it's going to be paid off that day)?

 

Thanks!

 

Tara

 

1) I don't know, I'm in the same spot myself :bigear: We have a Tracfone for her, but I'm wondering if there's a better option.

 

2) If you're disciplined enough to ONLY use that card for gas and groceries and you really pay it off the same day, I don't see any point to not doing what you're doing. It's the same amount of money spent, right? Might as well get a perk from it. However, if you think this might be leading you to buy some extras at the grocery store that you wouldn't buy if you were constrained by using cash only, then maybe. IMO, using a debit card instead of a CC in this way makes no difference, and I feel like debit cards are more at risk for fraud, so if I was going to use a card, I'd keep using the CC.

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1. What is a good cell phone to buy for our two 10 year olds so that they have a phone when they are away from us (which is becoming more common)? We can't put them on our AT&T family plan because we share it with my MIL and all the lines are already being used. We just want an inexpensive talk-only/no-text pay-as-you-go plan.

 

2. We racked up some credit card debt while my husband's job hours were reduced a year ago. I'm now trying to pay it off. Usually I put my gas and grocery purchases on the credit card and then come home and immediately pay them off; I don't wait for the end of the month. I do this so that I can earn Amazon gift cards. Should I stop doing this and just use cash/bank card for everything so that NOTHING new goes on the card (even if it's going to be paid off that day)?

 

Thanks!

 

Tara

 

Not sure why you want to pay them off immediately that day. Usually, the cc company limits the number of payments you can make each month online. Are you still charged interest on your new purchases? Usually, the interest will apply to an average daily balance and not just the old balance and, if that is the case, you are getting interest on your new purchases. I would not use the card until it's paid off because of the way interest is calculated. I do see your point about getting the reward points though.

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Not sure why you want to pay them off immediately that day. Usually, the cc company limits the number of payments you can make each month online. Are you still charged interest on your new purchases? Usually, the interest will apply to an average daily balance and not just the old balance and, if that is the case, you are getting interest on your new purchases. I would not use the card until it's paid off because of the way interest is calculated. I do see your point about getting the reward points though.

 

I've done it before, just so there's no "surprise" at the end of the month. It's mental more than anything. I never thought about the interest though. That might change things.

 

Tara, can you transfer the balance to a 0% APR card, maybe? That was part of how we got out of debt, but that was also years ago, before all the changes.

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Not sure why you want to pay them off immediately that day.

 

Basically so that all my money is accounted for. If I spent it, I want it out of my bank account so it doesn't get spent on something else, kwim?

 

Usually, the cc company limits the number of payments you can make each month online.

 

We used to be limited to 8, but I have not seen their little warning about how many payments I can still make that month in quite some time, so I am thinking they don't limit it anymore.

 

Usually, the interest will apply to an average daily balance and not just the old balance and, if that is the case, you are getting interest on your new purchases. I would not use the card until it's paid off because of the way interest is calculated.

 

Hmmm. I didn't know that. See, that's why I ask these things! :D

 

Tara

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We have a tracfone which comes out to around $15 a month, and a Straighttalk phone that is $30 a month for our cell phones. I have the tracfone for emergencies, and dh has the ST phone be ause it has 1000 minutes and 1000 texts a month so he can use it for work.

 

I agree, do not put anything on the card until it is paid off to avoid interest charges which are higher than the rewards for Amazon.

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