Monday, June 25, 2007

Credit Card terms - India

For the traveller: In case you are travelling, please pay up your bill amount before you leave the city. In case you drop your cheque in any drop box outside your city, you will be charged a processing fee of 1 per cent of the bill amount, subject to a minimum fee of Rs 100. Some banks don't even accept outstation cheques.

Forex payment: While cards offer you the convenience of carrying out foreign exchange transactions, you are charged a mark-up of 3 per cent for this privilege.

Crossing the limit: You might be happily surprised when your bank honours a payment that crosses even you credit limit. But then, there is a catch, you will be charged 2.5 per cent for the amount that is in excess of the limit. Yes, your reputation is protected in front of the merchant establishment. But it comes at a price.

Drafting dues: The facility of dialling in and ordering a demand draft against your credit limit is available. But it comes for a pretty packet as well, another 2.5 per cent of the draft value, subject to a minimum of Rs 300.

Picture imperfect: Beware of additional frills such as "image cards". Banks charge an amount of Rs 150 or so for affixing your image on the card. However, this does not apply to "photo cards", which are free.

Nothing is free: You might be tempted to transfer from one bank to another under zero per cent balance transfers. However, remember that there are "handling charges of 2 per cent" in the fine print.

Of course, these are some general fine print and can vary from bank to bank. But then here is something that is common to all, since May 11, 2007, most of the above charges will also attract a service tax of 12.36 per cent.

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