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Old 14.08.2011, 12:39
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What do you need a credit card for in Switzerland?

Just cancelled by old expensive UBS credit card and got the BonusCard application in the post. Since I have the effort of photocopying various IDs and posting the application off, I wondered what I actually needed a credit card for and whether I could avoid having one completely.

I remember using one for kitag.com but other than that i haven't used credit cards much here. Anyone here had problems from not having one here in Switzerland? Or know of a reason why it is good to have one?
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Old 14.08.2011, 12:41
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Re: What do you need a credit card for in Switzerland?

Booking flights
Buying contact lenses online
Buying train tickets online
Buying anything online to be honest
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Old 14.08.2011, 12:45
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Re: What do you need a credit card for in Switzerland?

Buying champagne in lap dancing clubs?
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Old 14.08.2011, 12:46
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Re: What do you need a credit card for in Switzerland?

I don't have one, and the on very rare times I've needed one I've used my girlfriend's
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Old 14.08.2011, 12:50
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Re: What do you need a credit card for in Switzerland?

As a backup for when two successive debit cards fail to operate?
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Old 14.08.2011, 13:05
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Re: What do you need a credit card for in Switzerland?

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Booking flights
Buying contact lenses online
Buying train tickets online
Buying anything online to be honest
+ Car rentals require one, sometimes two credit cards..!
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Old 14.08.2011, 13:16
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Re: What do you need a credit card for in Switzerland?

take two credit cards.. purchase something with the first ..near the end of interest free period of the first ..pay the first's bill off with the second....then near the end of interest free period of the second pay the second's bill off with first... repeat as necessary
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Old 14.08.2011, 13:30
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Re: What do you need a credit card for in Switzerland?

I used to have more than 11 credit-cards when I were in US. After moving here I don't even think about apply for one. But sometimes it's difficult to buy stuffs from online.
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Old 14.08.2011, 13:39
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Re: What do you need a credit card for in Switzerland?

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take two credit cards.. purchase something with the first ..near the end of interest free period of the first ..pay the first's bill off with the second....then near the end of interest free period of the second pay the second's bill off with first... repeat as necessary
i knew someone who did that in the UK. he juggled around 60k through various 0% credit cards which he offset against his mortgage.
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Old 14.08.2011, 14:04
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Re: What do you need a credit card for in Switzerland?

Not really.
I never really liked credit cards. Its another one of the easy ways to pay for sh1t you don't need and end up spending way too much. And spending money that you don't have...is never a good idea.
I didn't have one until I had to get one coz the company policy about how to pay for food in office changed.
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Old 14.08.2011, 14:07
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Re: What do you need a credit card for in Switzerland?

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i knew someone who did that in the UK. he juggled around 60k through various 0% credit cards which he offset against his mortgage.
How can you offset debt with more debt?

Either way if he had taken 60k worth of credit and put it as cash withdrawal into an account, he will start accrueing interest at a higher rate than the mortgage no?

Last edited by The_Love_Doctor; 14.08.2011 at 14:09. Reason: realised what you might have meant...
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Old 14.08.2011, 14:12
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Re: What do you need a credit card for in Switzerland?

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I didn't have one until I had to get one coz the company policy about how to pay for food in office changed.
The only reason I don't like credit cards is because they put up the price of goods by about 5% or so as that's how much the credit card companies charge retailers! But nothing we can do about it because I suspect there are rules and regulations against charging different prices depending on the method of payment, however I did manage to get discounts from retailers on big purchases as long as I said I was going to pay by a debit card
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Old 14.08.2011, 14:17
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Re: What do you need a credit card for in Switzerland?

The first CC I got was tied to my bank account, so they take my total balance directly out of my bank each month. That means I can't go wild with it (at which point I ask also, why do I have this???).

I just got another CC from CornerCard that doesn't have access to my bank account. I haven't used it yet, and I'm not sure if it's going to be the same way with having to owe the balance due each month or if carrying a balance will be possible. It's got a decent limit on it, so I'm thinking to just make one small purchase each month, pay it off, and otherwise keep it as my "Get Out of Switzerland In A Hurry If I Have To" card.
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Old 14.08.2011, 14:24
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Re: What do you need a credit card for in Switzerland?

I don't know much about the bank cards here but the credit cards in the UK for instance offer much better fraud protection than a "debit card". If you are travelling in other countries or shopping online and you don't quite fully trust the vendor that you are dealing with, a credit card that is not linked to your bank account is often the safe option.
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Old 14.08.2011, 14:30
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Re: What do you need a credit card for in Switzerland?

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I don't know much about the bank cards here but the credit cards in the UK for instance offer much better fraud protection than a "debit card". If you are travelling in other countries or shopping online and you don't quite fully trust the vendor that you are dealing with, a credit card that is not linked to your bank account is often the safe option.
This is true, you do have some protection under the Consumer Credit Act, what it covers you for I'm not entirely sure, and I don't know anyone who's ever claimed on it...
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Old 14.08.2011, 14:31
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Re: What do you need a credit card for in Switzerland?

We keep an assortment of cards for purchases abroad such as kid's books & games in English, birthday gifts for family back home and having it shipped within Australia instead of paying expensive postage costs (grandma just paid CHF 70 in postage for a birthday gift ). Buying things in online from Germany has also meant we save up to 50% of the Swiss price for an identical item.

I keep an Amex for special deals on hotel rooms and car rentals through them, especially in Asia (eg. a suite for USD 100 a night with happy hour unlimited drinks). The first thing I did when I started working here was apply for a credit card and establish a credit history, since I know that's important when you apply for a mortgage.

I have a crazy amount of credit but never have I never once maxed out a card or not paid the full balance off at the end of the month. I travel with a few cards since once bitten with a card not working I won't risk that again.

There's also free travel insurance that come with some cards and consumer protection. We once got a dud computer and VISA intervened to get it repaired/replaced and sent letters on our behalf.
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Old 14.08.2011, 15:38
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Re: What do you need a credit card for in Switzerland?

I have English & French but nothing from CH. My only issue is Itunes that wont accept a foreign card with a registered address in a country that did not issue the card.

I had a CH card until 2001 & have managed for 10 years without one.
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Old 14.08.2011, 15:40
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Re: What do you need a credit card for in Switzerland?

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I don't know much about the bank cards here but the credit cards in the UK for instance offer much better fraud protection than a "debit card". If you are travelling in other countries or shopping online and you don't quite fully trust the vendor that you are dealing with, a credit card that is not linked to your bank account is often the safe option.
For a UK card yes, a CH card in CH? not so sure.
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Old 14.08.2011, 15:49
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Re: What do you need a credit card for in Switzerland?

I use my CC rarely but -as others said- it's super useful for online shopping and holidays (especially in the US).
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Old 14.08.2011, 15:50
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Re: What do you need a credit card for in Switzerland?

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How can you offset debt with more debt?

Either way if he had taken 60k worth of credit and put it as cash withdrawal into an account, he will start accrueing interest at a higher rate than the mortgage no?
no. all the cards were 0% so any amount that he had withdrawn was used as cash against his mortgage. the funny thing was the more he did it, the bigger the limits the CC companies gave him. he paid nothing for this source of financing.
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