Praying for the death of credit card cheques

March 3, 2006

banking

You know what it is like, post arrives from the bank. You open it up thinking it’s a statement, or important info regarding the account, only to find it is a wad of un-asked-for credit card cheques. Straight in the shredder.

Two days later, post arrives from the bank. You open it up thinking it’s a statement, or important info regarding the account, only to find it is a wad of un-asked-for credit card cheques. Straight in the shredder.

A few days later,….

It is like entering the banks equivalent of groundhog day. Every time you destroy one set of cheques, these wretched things reappear with some chirpy letter about how you can use them to pay off another credit card, book a holiday, or some other fatuous way build up greater levels of debt.

The problems are not only that these cheques are completely unwanted, have never been requested, and require effort on the customers part to be rid of them each time to prevent them being fraudulently used by someone else, but if you were to believe the chirpy letter and use one thinking it is the same as spending on the credit card, you would be in for another unwelcome shock.

Not only are there additional charges that get added, but there is no interest free period with them, and you also don’t get the same degree of protection as you do when using the actual credit card.

These cheques are so terrible, that various financial information sites are warning to, “avoid credit card cheques like the plague”. Which? has said that they, “want unsolicited credit card cheques to be banned, especially as we have found that companies use them to encourage indebtedness, for example cheques have been sent out with marketing literature suggesting they can be used to pay for holidays or gifts.”

There is currently a Government discussion going on with credit card representatives at APACS as to whether these cheques should be banned, but it looks as though there will simply be an opt out clause added to stop receiving them.

Until this option is added and this form of potentially financially dangerous junk mail can be stopped, the best thing that you can do is shred them and make sure they are completely unusable, the moment they arrive.

Rant over.

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