Using A Credit Card Vs Using A Debit Card Online

The best way to make smart purchases online using credit cards instead of debit cards.

You have just found the book that you have been searching for for the past five years. The online bookstore where you found it only takes credit cards. You have your debit card, which can pass for a credit card and you have your credit card. You've got enough money in the bank to cover the book but are unsure if that would be the safest method of payment to use on the internet. The site says it is secure, and you are sure it is, but you are not sure if this book is really in the good condition that the seller claims it to be.

In this scenario, use the credit card. Credit cards offer buyer protections that are unavailable to debit card users. If the book arrives and it is in poor condition as opposed to the good condition claimed on the website, a dispute can be filed with the credit card company and they will stop payment to the vendor until the dispute has been resolved. The debit card offers no such protection, leaving the cardholder to negotiate with the seller to resolve the dispute.

In such cases where the merchandise is unseen and from a vendor that is unknown, using a credit card is the safest way to purchase items online. After the vendor site has proven that they are trustworthy and secure, using the debit card may make you feel a little better and more in control of spending than using the credit card. Of course, in the scenario first mentioned, paying the credit card off in full when receiving the statement will let you avoid paying interest on the item purchased. As long as the bill is paid in full each month, there is no interest accrued thus making it like a purchase with the debit card but with the full protection of buying with a credit card.

Online shopping has indeed come quite far in the past few years, but there are still fraudulent vendors, sites get hacked and numbers get stolen. If your credit card number gets stolen and used, you are only liable for $50 of what was charged. Some companies even go so far as to hold the cardholder liable for zero dollars of the fraudulent charges. With a debit card, if the false activity is not reported within two days, then the cardholder is responsible for up to $500 in false charges. Once the error is found on the bank statement, it must be reported within 60 days to only be liable for $500 in false charges. Otherwise, the account holder must cover every penny. Another positive to using the credit card over the debit card is that if the number somehow is used fraudulently, the money isn't coming out of your checking account, which saves you from paying overdraft fees that can climb into hundreds of dollars if the activity takes place in a short period of time.

Using the credit card to make purchases online makes more sense because of the protections offered to credit card users. As mentioned before, as long as the bill is paid in full each month, there is no interest, which gives the same result as buying with the debit card. Besides, seeing that nice big account balance can make a person feel more secure, at least until you pay the credit card bill.

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