Credit cards can be a great tool. But credit card debt is a huge problem! Credit card debt is a slippery slope! It is so easy to slide down, and hard to get back up. Some people get down so deep that they are struggling just to make the minimum payments, and some get to a point where they only get deeper and deeper into debt.

With discipline and a plan it is usually possible to get out of credit card debt!

The horror of the minimum payment
When you get your bill, the credit card company has listed a minimum payment due. They are more than happy if you only make that minimum payment. Why? Because if you only make the minimum payment, they will have you in their pocket for years! Maybe 20 or more years! The minimum payment pays mostly interest, and very little of the balance. Imagine if you had loaned someone money, and they were paying you 15-20% interest per year, year after year. Would you be in a hurry to get the money back? Try to find an investment that returns a consistant 15-20% a year.
So if you want to get out of credit card debt, you HAVE to make more than a minimum payment.

Late fees!
If you pay late, the credit card company charge you a late fee. They really don’t mind if you pay late, because those late fees make them A LOT of money! Another penalty that you can be hit with is an interest rate hike! I have read that people have had their rates raised to close to 40% With an interest that high, it makes it much harder to get out of credit card debt!
Stuff happens. If you do accidently pay late, you can try calling the credit card company, and ask if they will waive the late fee. If they say no, ask to speak to their supervisor. Then ask the supervisor to waive the late fee. Tell them that you normally pay on time, and often they will waive the late fee. Record the names of the people you speak with. You may need to call back more than once, but usually you can get the late fee waived.

Try to get your rate lowered
If you can get your interest rate lowered, that will go a long way to helping you getting out of credit card debt. How can you get it lowered? Ask. Pretty simple, huh? Find out what you are paying in interest. You might find on your credit card statement, but they try to hide. You can also call your credit card company and ask them what your interest rate is. Now if you are like me, or most people, you get a ton of credit card apps in the mail. Look at the pre-approved credit card applications and see what rate they are offering. Is it less than what you are paying? There are also websites you can go onto and find what interest rates different credit cards are charging. You can alway switch to one of these. But it is much easier to call your credit card company and ask them to lower your rate. Tell them that you are considering switching to a different card because they are offering a lower rate. If the first person turns you down, talk to their supervisor. If they turn you down, call back and talk to someone else. If they keep turning you down, then switch to a different card. Often they offer a low or even zero percent interest rate on trasferred balances for maybe six months. That will help you get out of debt!

Stop using the card!
This may seem obvious, but if you keep spending on your card, you will never get out of credit card debt! You have to stop using it. Start using cash to pay for stuff. Credit cards are so easy to use, they don’t seem like real money. But if you pay for stuff in cash, you are less likely to buy that junk you don’t need. Some of they stuff will be worn out, out of style, broken, obsolete, etc, before you have finished paying off the credit card debt that paid for it. Stop using your credit card!

Summary:
1. Make more than the minimum payment.
2. Never ever pay late.
3. If you do pay late, call and ask them to waive the late fee.
4. Ask to get your interest rate lowered.
5. If they wont lower your rate, switch to a new card with a lower rate.
6. Stop using you card!

With a bit of work, you can get out of credit card debt. Good luck!