Updated on: 07 Feb 2017
BELGIUM - What's the best credit card, and which one should I get? It's a common question among friends, especially for bankers, and it seems like the answer should be easy. In reality, though, the tremendous variety of credit cards means that the answer is more complex.
Credit card benefits are popular
While picking the right card seems like it should be a simple matter of going online to look through offers from various banks, the mix of benefits makes selecting the right card complicated.
For many people, rewards or cash back are the most important factors in selecting a card. There are plenty of options, so even just looking at a few of them offers a dizzying array of choices.
First you should look at where you spend your money. The best card for you often depends on whether you spend the most on online shopping, travel, restaurants or something else. You'll also need to figure out how much you spend in the categories, though, since there can be conditions for getting the biggest benefits.
Next, you'll need to decide whether you want discounts or other benefits. While discounts keep money in your account, points or airline miles can be better if you want particular items.
Discount cards are quite useful if you use your credit card mainly for shopping. In Belgium you have some credit cards that offer discounted prices for shopping like Beobank Extra World MasterCard which offers 1% discount on all purchases up to 100 euro and 0.5% discount on all purchases higher than 100 euro, Beobank Brico World MasterCard which offers 2% discount on all your purchases at Brico and 0.5% discount on your other purchases or Beobank Q8 World MasterCard which offers 2% discount on fuel at Q8 and heating fuel at Q8Mazout.
Airline miles are another popular perk, with most travel cards giving at least 1 mile per euro of spending. Some cards offer more, with one example being the Beobank Premium Flying Blue World MasterCard card which ups that to 1.25 miles per euro paid and 1.5 miles for each euro spent on plane tickets from AIR FRANCE KLM.
Beyond credit card discounts
Beyond discounts, there are a variety of other factors to consider in selecting a card.
Insurance is another popular benefit to look at. A lot of Belgian credit cards offer various type of insurances like purchased goods insurance (BNP Paribas Fortis MasterCard Gold, Argenta MasterCard Gold or ING MasterCard just to name a few) or some sort of travel insurance (KBC MasterCard Gold, ING Mastercard Gold or Beobank Premium Flying Blue World MasterCard)
For many consumers, the interest rate is also very important as well as the annual fee of the card which in Belgium may range from 0 to 150 euro depending on the bank issuing the card and the benefits of the card.
Choosing the right card
Choosing which card is best, then, really does depend on what you value most.
Rather than looking through every website on your own, an easier way to compare cards is to use online comparison sites such as moneySaver.be.
Choosing the right card doesn't mean you need to choose just one, of course. Once you do select your cards, the best way to maximize your benefits is often to focus on using the one or two that give you the best deals.
While there's no one best card for everyone, figuring out what matters most and comparing cards to find the ones that give the best value specifically for you can provide plenty of benefits.