ON AIR NOW

LISTEN NOW

Weather

clear-day Created with Sketch.
64°
Clear
H 71° L 45°
  • clear-day Created with Sketch.
    64°
    Current Conditions
    Sunny. H 71° L 45°
  • clear-day Created with Sketch.
    69°
    Evening
    Sunny. H 71° L 45°
  • clear-day Created with Sketch.
    46°
    Morning
    Sunny. H 78° L 59°
LISTEN
PAUSE
ERROR

Krmg news on demand

00:00 | 00:00

LISTEN
PAUSE
ERROR

Krmg traffic on demand

00:00 | 00:00

LISTEN
PAUSE
ERROR

Krmg weather on demand

00:00 | 00:00

Consumer Advice
7 places you should never use your debit card
Close

7 places you should never use your debit card

7 places you should never use your debit card

7 places you should never use your debit card

Clark Howard is a nationally syndicated consumer advice expert

Debit cards are a popular alternative to credit cards because they only allow you to spend what you have in your checking account. But they are rife with other dangers for your wallet.

Long called "piece of trash fake Visas and fake MasterCards" by Clark, debit cards are overwhelmingly inferior to credit cards for several reasons.

Here's why you might want to kick that debit card out of your life

First, hotels, gas stations, and rental car companies will put a hold on your checking account if you use a debit card. If you have other checks floating around that someone tries to cash, that could throw you over into insufficient funds land and result in heavy fees. Plus, the company that runs your debit card may even do a hard inquiry on your credit without you knowing, which will lower your credit score! 

Second, you have fewer consumer protections with debit cards. For example, let's say you notice fraudulent activity on your credit card. You have 60 days to report it and dispute the charge with your credit card company. But if you used a debit card, you have only 2 days to report it!

Several months ago, Clark published an article that listed 4 places you should never use a debit card. It was a wildly popular story on ClarkHoward.com, and we wanted to follow up with more places for your consideration:

Pay at the pump
 

Skimmers aren't the only danger to your wallet. The gas station will put a big hold on your account, typically for 4 days, that could cause your checks to bounce. If you must pay with debit at gas station, go inside and pay at the cashier.

When you're buying online

Credit card is a much better option. If you don't get your merchandise, you can do a chargeback during a 60-day window.

At the supermarket

 A couple of years ago, Save Mart supermarkets were hit by criminal rings that put skimmers on the credit/debit card readers at self-check lanes in 20 Save Mart and Lucky branded locations throughout California. Very often, this particular kind of scam will be perpetrated by a crook dressed in the counterfeit uniform of the technology company that does regular routine maintenance on credit/debit card readers at a business!

At the car rental counter


Pamela Yip of The Dallas Morning News found that it's standard practice (and completely legal) in the industry for car rental companies to do a hard inquiry on your credit report, often without your knowledge or consent. They're trying to protect themselves against auto thieves that love to use debit cards as a low-risk method to get rentals that they can steal. But that inquiry can drastically lower your credit score in the process. The simple solution is to use a real credit card instead.

When booking advanced travel


If you have concerns about the solvency of a company you're buying future travel from, you're better off using a credit card. This holds true particularly during an economic downturn when leisure travel businesses like cruises and some airlines can go bust. Paying with credit card ensures you can do a chargeback if you don't get the travel you paid for.

While we're at it, have you considered trip insurance if you're taking a cruise, a tour, or traveling on a trip that requires pre-payment of thousands of dollars? 

When buying furniture and major appliances


If you are ordering furniture or appliances and waiting on delivery, pay only by credit card. You reduce your risk if the store goes bust by doing that, which we saw a lot of during the housing slump when furniture and appliance retailers really took it on the chin. If you do not have your delivery within 50 days, put the credit card charge in dispute. You lose all right to any dispute after the 60th day. 

When setting up automatic drafts


Auto drafts are a favorite way of utility companies, cable companies, health clubs, burglar alarm companies, and even mortgage lenders to get their money from you each month. But that business may continue to make monthly automated clearing house (ACH) debits from your account once your contract with them ends. That is illegal and you can get it to stop byciting what's called "Regulation E" and using Clark's sample letter to stop automatic payments

But why open that can of worms to begin with? 

The only safe way to handle a debit card is...

If you wish to continue using a debit card in the future, be sure you tie it into a separate account that's only used for debit transactions so only that money is at risk. You want your account that has the money you pay your mortgage, your car payment, your student loans, etc. cordoned off so it can't be compromised.

For further reading:

Read More
VIEW COMMENTS

There are no comments yet. Be the first to post your thoughts. or Register.

  • Saturday, funeral services were held in Tulsa, for Oklahoma State Rep. David Brumbaugh. He passed away last weekend due to an apparent heart attack. Friends, family and colleagues had nothing but good things to say about Brumbaugh. “Every time that he spoke, he did it not because of what he thought politically, but because it’s what he thought was right,” one colleague said.  “Hopefully, those of us that are still there will be able to follow that.” The service was held at Tulsa Bible Church.  During the service, Brumbaugh was remembered as a man dedicated to public service and to his faith.
  • A cashier is said to be in stable condition, after getting shot during an armed robbery Friday night. The shooting happened around 7:29 p.m., at the RK Food Mart on North Utica Avenue. “After the cashier cooperated and handed over an undisclosed amount of cash, the suspect shot him in the foot one time,” Tulsa police said.  “The victim was transported to a local hospital for treatment.” A description of the suspect hasn’t been released.   Anyone with information regarding the robbery is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 918-596-COPS.
  • The heavens opened up in and around the Tulsa area on Friday, but how much rain did we actually get? National Weather Service Meteorologist Robert Darby has the answer. “We did see wide-spread 3 to 4 inches across a large portion of northeast Oklahoma and Tulsa County,” Darby said.   There is a chance of rain in the forecast for Saturday as well.   Sapulpa suffered some damage in Friday’s storms.   While driving around, we found uprooted trees, a destroyed gazebo and one resident received quite the surprise when he woke up. “Getting my dogs ready to go outside and kind of noticed I had no roof towards the bathroom area,” the resident said.   Crews were out helping with the debris around the city.
  • United Airlines is apparently trying to make the 'bumping' process a little less confrontational. A United passenger tells People magazine that when he was checking in for his flight on the airline's website, a pop-up screen asked him if he would be interested in taking a different flight in exchange for a travel certificate of at least $200. A United spokesman says they've done it for years, but the passenger said he didn't see it on the United check-in he did a few days before. Whether it’s new or not, the airline is taking other steps to try to avoid the ugly situation where Dr. David Dao was dragged down the aisle of a plane. United also now has a rule in place that passengers cannot be bumped if they're already seated on their flight. You can read more about the story here.
  • A veteran firefighter died in the line of duty Thursday when he fell from the roof of a five-story apartment building while fighting a fire in New York City. >> Read more trending news William Tolley, 42, was critically injured while battling a 2-alarm fire in Queens on Thursday afternoon, the New York City Fire Department said. He was taken to Wyckoff Heights Medical Center, where he died of his injuries. He is survived by his wife, Marie, and his daughter, Isabella. “We lost another hero today,” Mayor Bill de Blasio said Thursday. “A man dedicated to protecting others gave his life to this work and, like all members of the FDNY, understood every single day that he was putting his life on the line, but he did it willingly in the service of others.” Firefighters were called around 2:20 p.m. to respond to a fire on the second floor of an apartment building on Putnam Avenue. Tolley was working on the roof with other firefighters to ventilate the building and protect higher floors when he fell, Fire Commissioner Daniel Nigro said. “It is a terrible tragedy for a department that’s certainly known more than its share of tragedies,” Nigro said. Authorities are investigating the circumstances that led to Tolley’s death. Tolley was with the New York City Fire Department for 14 years and most recently assigned to Ladder 135. He was also the drummer of Internal Bleeding, a well-known heavy metal band, The New York Times reported. Band members described Tolley as “the heartbeat of the band” in a Facebook post Thursday. “There are zero words to describe the loss,” the post said. “He was a good, decent and honorable man who loved his friends, his family and the people he served. There will never be another like him. There are no words to describe the utter sadness and despair we feel right now.” Tolley is the 1,147th member of the New York City Fire Department to die while serving the city, Nigro said.