Credit cards (as we know them right now) had been first launched in 1958 in the USA by the Bank of America. The primary outside the USA was the launch of Barclaycard in 1966 by Barclays bank. In 1967 a rival to the Bank of America System called Mastercost was created and in the UK the Access credit card was first introduced in 1972 by a consortium of the other main UK banks. The Bank of America and Barclaycard payment systems have evolved into the Visa network, whilst Mastercharge and the Access brand have developed into MasterCard. Any card issued in the UK right now will normally include a Visa or MasterCard logo. The exception being cards issued by American Express which can only be utilized in establishments that accept their cards. There’s a fourth smaller network in the USA called Discover.
All major banks and a few building societies within the UK offer cards to present and new customers. Many supply each Visa and MasterCard networks and it is quite widespread to have one account, with particular person Visa and MasterCard cards.
In the 1980s the gold and platinum cards had been introduced to the market. Initially these have been offered to customers who had a high income. They typically included a higher than regular credit limit. There was normally an annual payment hooked up to the card. The charging of a payment enabled the issuer to offer particular benefits comparable to free journey insurance to the holder as well as lower interest rates if the full balance was not paid off each month.
Nowadays, the distinction between a gold or platinum card and a traditional card has diminished. Simplistically, a gold card will supply the shopper a reduced interest rate and longer interest free interval for a balance transfer when compared to these of a normal card. The platinum card will supply even better terms than these available to a gold card. Some gold and platinum cards give the holder additional benefits similar to discounts for purchases by way of selected companies. Most issuers have ceased the apply of charging an annual payment for the holding of a gold or platinum credit card.
Applying for a gold or platinum credit card is easy. Generally there are set minimum earnings levels required and often a better than common credit history before a card is issued to the customer. The minimum month-to-month repayment requirements will usually be similar to those of an ordinary credit card. Some issuers still supply special reductions or different benefits to the gold and platinum credit card holders, however this follow is far less widespread than the times that they have been first introduced. Typically the initial credit limit is higher on a gold card than for a traditional card, and with a platinum card it will be even higher.
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