3 things to remember when using supplementary credit cards


With the advantage of spending first - paying later, credit card has earned its vast popularity. Yet, not many cardholders understand the concept of "supplementary credit card". It will be useful to learn about its features, usage and some things to remember in order to maximize this type of credit card's benefits.

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The supplementary credit card (supplementary card) is usually opened together with the primary credit card (primary card), aiming to increasing the number of credit card users in addition to the primary cardholder. Supplementary card is issued following the issuance of and under the control of primary card.

It is easy to issue a supplementary card since proof of supplementary cardholder’s income is not required. Number of supplementary cards varies among different banks. Primary cardholders can apply for supplementary cards for their relatives such as parents, spouse and children.

In order to understand and totally enjoy the benefits brought about by a supplementary credit card, please remember 3 important things below:

Information security

One thing to keep in mind when using a supplementary credit card is to ensure card information security. Joint account may face potential risks such as data leakage. It is even more dangerous when supplementary cardholder is often unfamiliar with safe use of card. Therefore, the primary cardholder needs to educate his/her relatives how to keep personal information, card information confidential and take prudent steps when shopping online at strange websites, and refrain others from using the card,...

Supplementary cardholder's obligations

Supplementary card can be used for all services like primary card and all transactions are included in the credit limit of primary card. The monthly statement will list all transactions incurred by both cards. The main cardholder is responsible for paying all the transactions to the bank, even if he/she does not make signature confirmation on the transaction receipt. In case the primary cardholder fails to pay the outstanding balance, the supplementary cardholder(s) are responsible for doing so and vice versa.

When the primary card expires, the supplementary card becomes invalid accordingly. However, the supplementary cardholder does not have right to request the primary cardholder to terminate the card use. This is one of the important things to remember about supplementary credit cards.

Credit limit of supplementary card must be controlled

The primary cardholder should pay attention to controlling the credit limit of supplementary cards. When opening a supplementary card for a relative, many primary cardholders fail to impose credit limit and hence the secondary cardholder’s limit can be used up like primary card. In many cases, the amount spent by a relative can exceed the primary cardholder's income. In case of failure to pay in time for the bank, the primary cardholder will be subject to penalty fees and extremely high interest rates.

One more thing to remember is credit card’s main function is payment, rather than cash withdrawal. Significantly high fees and interest rates will be imposed for cash withdrawal via ATM using credit cards. Without proper guidance, the supplementary cardholder may not be aware of this and use credit card to withdraw huge amount of money, resulting in large charges on the monthly statement.

In order to manage your financial well-being and avoid becoming a bank debtor, before opening a supplementary credit card for your relatives, primary cardholder needs to carefully consider and impose credit limit on supplementary card, thereby well controlling any potential risks.

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