Consumers increasingly 'savvy' with credit cards

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UK consumers are becoming increasingly knowledgeable about how they can save money on their credit card bills, a leading market expert said.

Mark Bowerman, spokesperson for UK trade association for payments APACS, says that his agency's research showed that the amount withdrawn by consumers from ATMs by credit card fell from £9.17 billion to £8.22 billion between 2005 and 2006 - a decline of ten per cent.

This, combined with the greater numbers of consumers who are switching providers as they find the best deals, shows that UK credit card holders are gradually beginning to realise that they can save money by withdrawing cash with their debit, rather than credit, cards.

"The number of withdrawals at cash machines by credit cards went down last year, whereas withdrawals from debit cards went up," Mr Bowerman commented.

"This suggests that customers do understand that taking cash from cash machines with their credit cards will generally cost them more, so they prefer to use their debit cards where they can."

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