Learn why a credit card expires, how to renew it and what to watch out for.
In addition to a series of numbers, one element that characterizes your credit card is its expiration date. Let’s now consider why this date is to be taken really seriously, even though most of us do not even know about its existence.
Usually creditors will automatically send your renewal card to you a few weeks to a month before it expires. You need to be aware of the credit card expire dates on your cards, so you know when to expect your renewal card. If you don’t have your new card at least 1 week before it is supposed to expire, contact your credit card issuer as it may have been stolen!
Each January, take one of the multitude of free calendars we all get, and go through and list the expiration for each card you have. Keep it near where you usually pay your bills or review your mail.
Top Reasons Why a Credit Card Has an Expiration Date
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First of all, credit cards have an expiration date because their magnetic strips cannot work forever. While the plastic card is not likely to be destructed as time goes by, strips will eventually wear out, making credit card terminals or ATMs no longer capable of accepting them.
Some companies make use of this date to stay in touch with their customers. In fact, it may represent an opportunity to meet and even talk about the customers’ opinions or objections. This might also contribute to build a positive image of a company that really cares about its clients. To keep you as a customer, companies will probably send you a letter reminding you of the expiration date, as well as offering you the chance to extend your contract with the same, reliable company.
Besides these reasons, security is also an important issue in a world of increasing identity theft incidents. This way companies can carefully check your identity, and consequently reduce the possibility of cards being opened in your name without your approval.
Furthermore, for those customers who do not frequently use their cards, the expiration date can be used to remind them of the card itself, and the presence of a certain company behind it.
Nearing The Credit Card Expire Date
Renewing your credit card is often an easy task. Companies will usually send you a new card about a month before the old one expires by mail. If you are going to be out of town, remember to check your card in advance and contact the company to receive a new card if it expires before you return.
Creditors often update the terms and conditions near when the credit card expires so when you receive the new card, always read what the updated conditions are. In fact, this is likely to include new terms. If these do not fit your needs, do not hesitate to call your card company for further verification. Until this happens, do not use your card. If you cannot agree with the company, you can of course cancel the card and look for another card company.