Well, the good news is that I’m not alone. According to a new survey by Credit.com, an astonishing 31 percent of Americans feel bullied by store clerks into opening a store credit card during the holiday shopping season. Of those that do succumb to the pressure and open a store credit card, almost half (49 percent) regret it and more than half (57 percent) avoid returning to the store where they felt bullied.
Is it really worth it for stores to force their sales clerks to get customers to open credit cards? Based on this survey, it seems they wind up losing customers by pressuring them into doing something they do not want or plan on doing. With the average American credit card debt sitting at more than $15,000 per household and growing, are credit cards really the answer to better personal finances and an improved economy?
While increased spending does lead to more jobs and, therefore, a better economy, you should still only be spending equal to or less than you earn. Living above your means is stressful, it’s expensive (hello 27 percent interest rates) and it traps you into your current lifestyle. While sales clerks can put an immense amount of pressure you on, unless you planned on opening the card before walking into the store, it’s best to continue politely saying no and walking away. Remember, store clerks have to ask you all those questions. They’re forced to try to convince you why you need a credit card.
Before opening a store credit card, Credit.com’s Gerri Detweiler shares five questions you should ask yourself.
The National Retail Federation recently released its Holiday Consumer Spending Survey, stating that Americans will spend an average of $804.42 this year on gifts, up 5 percent from last year. Sales clerks know shoppers may be more convinced this time of year to open up a credit card.
Before heading out for your holiday shopping extravaganza, create a budget and stick to it. Know in advance if you’re going to open a store credit card and know which stores you plan on opening one at.
We want to know! Do you feel pressured from sales clerks? Have you ever opened a store credit card only to regret it later? Let us know in the comments below.
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