(Last Updated: October 9, 2019)
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How many credit cards should I have to improve credit score?

  • A very common query that comes to our mind, "How many credit cards should I have?" Now, do you actually ponder over "How many credit cards should you have?" Can we lookout for a perfect answer to these questions. May be 1, 2,3 or 5 is it so? Is having too many credit cards good?
    Although, there seems to be no single answer to this. But, in my view, having 2 credit cards seems to be the ideal choice. Some, may look for a 3rd credit card as well, but anything beyond that doesn't sound interesting to me.
    Does having extra credit cards improve credit score? No, I don't think so. What I feel is that having too many credit cards shows our credit hungry behaviour. At any time, applying for more credit cards doesn't seem a good idea to me.

    • The number of credit cards that you have plus how you spend your credit actually impacts your credit score.

    • To build a good credit score, one needs to be careful while applying for a card and further utilising the credit card limits.
      So, what I feel is having one credit card is must but try settling at 2 or at maximum 3 that too if you really need these. That's it!
      What do you think? How many credit cards do you have? What's your take on the number of credit cards you should have? Any suggestions to add here.

  • I prefer having one credit card only. Too many credit cards just seem to be an attraction. When it comes to clearing its bills, it becomes difficult if we have many credit cards. Have one credit card and pay its bill on time. This way we can build good credit score. This is what I feel.

  • @ishu Yes, I too feel that having 2 credit cards is more than enough. If you already have one credit card, applying for another card immediately can reduce your credit score. So, its better we stick to one credit card initially. Use it and look if it actually suits your requirements. If yes, great!
    If not, you can go for another credit card. Continue the first one only if it serves any purpose. It's tricky to choose the best credit card in one go. You can actually judge its actual benefits while using it. So, one should be careful and don't overburden yourself with too many credit card bills to pay. And yes, if you miss the bill due date, you'll have to bear the interest charges as well.

  • By holding one Credit card you can improve your credit score. If you are having too many credit cards then that hampers your image in front of the bank. It depicts that you don't have money & you are only arranging credit cards for credit.
    Secondly, having too many credit cards also makes difficult for you to arrange funds for repaying their monthly instalments which can definitely hamper your credit score and ruin it.
    However, depending upon the benefits and utilisation, having two cards is a good idea. You can have one card for fuel and another for rewards and cashback. As this will generate a lot of value to you and you can enjoy the reward points and other services.
    So, you can have two cards if you are in a stable and sound position to pay the monthly payment of both the cards. This will surely increase your credit score.

  • @aggarwalshipra Hey, that's very well explained. Having too many credit cards displays one's credit hungry behaviour. If only 2 credit cards can serve the purpose why bear the financial burden of clearing so many credit card bills.
    You have rightly pointed out: To have 1 credit card for fuel benefits and other one to enjoy rewards & cashback. This seems a wonderful idea. Thanks.

  • @aggarwalshipra I presently have 3 credit cards. But, after reading good reviews here, I feel I should continue with 2 of them only. Actually, one additional card I was getting for free. So, I opted for it looking at free offer. But, I feel I can do with 2 credit cards also. So, I am thinking to surrender one credit card now. Am I correct in doing so? Or should I wait for sometime.

  • That doesn't affect anything, you are only having an add-on card so bills and all other monthly payments are clubbed with your main/primary card. So, if you use it or not that depends on you but it does not affect anything.
    Other then that add-on cards are basically taken if your family member is there and you want to give them the alternative card then you can take an add-on card on your actual credit card. Moreover, add-on card which you were getting was free so no fees are included.

  • @ishu I think having one credit card is fine. What to do with so many credit cards? No use piling up too many credit cards. Who'll pay the bill later on? So, limiting our needs to one credit card is good. Choose the best one that can fit your different needs even if that comes at a small fee.

  • These days many people get attracted towards different credit card offers. Having too many credit cards is not good. We should only keep one or two credit cards and use them only when we do shopping or paying bills.

  • Hi Karan, I agree with you. Having one credit card is completely ok if that meets our needs. Looking for more credit cards can lead to bills overdue and unnecessary expenses.

  • One credit card is a must. We can need it at different places like shopping online or at store, paying bills etc. I think one credit card is quite manageable. We can easily clear dues and enjoy credit as well.

  • @ishu Yes, restricting to 1 card is ok. Don’t fall in trap of holding too many credit cards because they are free or have less fee. Even if you fail to pay bill of any one then it can affect your credit score. So better to limit credit card usage. Also, I think paying through credit card prompts to buy more things. So, cut expenses save money. Just that you get credit shouldn’t mean you spen more and increase your bills.

  • @Ishu I think having one credit card is good enough. I don't want to get burdened with so many credit card bills. I don't think having more credit cards improves credit score. I feel its otherwise. If you have more credit cards with huge spending banks will hesitate issuing you any personal loans. Am I right in saying so?

  • Yes, having one credit card is also fine. I agree to your point that too many credit cards can affect the score negatively. Since, missing any bill payments or delayed payments plus too much utilisation of credit all impact our credit score.
    As I already said, having too many credit cards show credit hungry behaviour. So, it's better to limit to maximum 2 credit cards only. That's my personal opinion.

  • I too agree one card is much more than enough, but why suggesting to have more than 1? Increasing the limit? that itself would be a trap and affect the score badly. Please share your view why you need more than 1 card.

  • @Tarun Hi, I am not suggesting to go for 2 credit cards. I do agree that one good credit card is enough, if you can actually get the perfect one in a single go. There are so many cards out there. You can't be sure which is the perfect one. One might be good at cashback & rewards while other may offer discount on shopping, paying utility bills etc.

    It's just in case, one comes across a better card with extra benefits or some ongoing offer. We can look for a second card also. Like when I applied few years back I got a StanC credit card for free. They have increased my credit limit also. Though, I am cautious to spend much below my limit.

    But, then I felt to grab some more discounts so opted for a second credit card. I could have surrendered the earlier one, I know. But, that's a free card so I don't feel like giving it away.
    There's no harm in continuing a free card that offers decent benefits alongwith a new issued card with additional advantages. What do you think about it?

  • @Anmol I think one credit card is perfect. At the max 2 only. More than that is an additional burden . Don’t fall into the debt trap.

  • @Ishu That's cool. Sure it does not harm if one is matured. Thanks for clarifying. Like most of us looking for offers, I think it's good to have more than one card.

    But if one is immature and having hard time to control the spending, it's better to have one and surrender all others, even freebies. It's important to avoid large debt, which can harm later, lead to fight, depression, these kinds of harm.

  • @Aggarwalshipra I have only one credit card. It’s doing good for me. I don’t feel like having another one now. Will it increase my credit score if I continue with one credit card only?

  • No having one credit card will not increase your credit score but it will provide you an average fluctuation in your credit score. It is better to go for 2 credit cards to increase your credit score and it will also provide you with an extra fund.

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