My shock at credit card fat cats

Christine Toner's picture

My new position at Moneywise inspired me to get a grip on my finances. I'm generally ok. I spend a lot, don't get me wrong, but I'm careful to make sure that even though I'm probably spending more than I should, I never leave myself at risk of being unable to pay my rent or bills.

My plan to get things in order was to move my credit card balance to a MBNA 0% interest card with the intention of clearing it in 2011. It's not a massive bill by any means but having it on a card where it won't garner interest would make it much easier to pay off.

My problem was through sheer stupidity I was late with a couple of payments this year (once when I was travelling around New Zealand and another time when I had a particularly busy month and it just slipped my mind). This was careless I know and so I was not surprised when I was refused the transfer.

Fair enough, I thought. I'll just have to curb my spending and clear it sooner than I'd planned.

What shocked me though was the email I received. It confirmed I had not been accepted for the transfer but then offered me an alternative credit card with Vanquis Bank.

The card did not provide a 0% balance transfer so was of no use to me in terms of making headway with my current card. And it had an extortionate APR of 39.9%. Here was I, trying to be good and organise my finances and instead I'm being offered the chance to get into an incredible amount of debt!

Thankfully I am not in any difficulty and am not seeking to take on another credit card, let alone one with such a ridiculous rate. But what's worrying me is that I know people who are struggling, and who aren't financially aware, who might very well see the Vanquis card as a way out.

Lenders have a responsibility to protect consumers and this should always come before their need to flog products.

Your Comments

Unfortuntately, wrong! Lenders main need is to flog you anything which will make the most profit for them. What the end result might be them is anyone's guess but then this is what it's all about. Don't you see the familiar old underlying bankers pattern here: gamble on making a packet, or lose it. There's always the government (taxpayers) to bail them out................but the government won't regulate these people - just ask yourself why.

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