I’ve admitted that I have an irrational attachment to certain travel credit cards. You know, the cards that I’ve had for a while and keep paying the annual fee even though the benefits aren’t worth what the card cost me every year. I tried to rationalize why paying for the card made sense. My arguments were convincing but eventually, I took a step back and gave a long and hard look at the money I was spending. I realized that I was giving away too much value to the “possible uses” for the card instead of looking at the actual value I was getting.
I give the credit card companies credit; they were able to make me think I was winning at this game. I had all these perks, got statement credits for expenses and my out of pocket cost whittled down to almost nothing. It’s like they were paying me to keep the card. Wait, I know that’s not true. No bank is going to pay you to keep a card for the long term. They’d eventually go out of business.
So how’d the person who is so proud of not being loyal to any airline, hotel or rental car company end up in an unhealthy relationship with some credit cards? Here are just a few of the traps that I fell into that lead to making irrational decisions.