I love credit cards so much that I use them to pay for virtually everything – including my wedding. Today I’m writing all about the smart way to use a credit card to pay for wedding expenses.
The Benefits of Using a Credit Card
First, let’s see why credit cards are so awesome. Here are just a few benefits of using a credit card to pay for your wedding:
Improve your credit score! This is probably my favorite thing about using credit cards – the more you use ‘em, the more your credit score increases with each on-time payment. If you have bad credit or a very limited credit history – using credit cards is a great way to increase your score. (Besides paying your bill on time, it’s also a good idea to pay your credit card bill in full each month to avoid paying interest.)
Rewards (points, miles, cash back, etc.). This is a fun one – come on, you literally get rewarded for using your credit card! There are credit cards that reward you with airline miles, hotel stays, cash, gift cards, all kinds of stuff – it’s amazing. If you’re not using a rewards card to pay for wedding expenses, you’re missing out on free money! Consider applying for a rewards card. You’re going to pay for a lot of wedding expenses – why not get some rewards out of it? (Luis and I paid for our honeymoon flights and hotels purely with credit card points!)
No foreign transaction fees. If you’re planning to travel abroad for your honeymoon, many travel rewards cards don’t charge foreign transaction fees. This makes traveling abroad very convenient because you don’t have to carry cash, you can just use your credit card like you would normally – without extra fees.
Security. Credit cards have built-in fraud protection and insurance. It’s much easier to dispute fraudulent or incorrect transactions on a credit card than on a debit card, or a check payment, or a cash payment. All it takes is a phone call to your credit card company and they’ll refund the charges in question while they complete the investigation. You never know when you might need to use this benefit!
Balance transfer offers. Some credit cards provide balance transfer offers – these are especially beneficial if you plan to fund a large chunk of your wedding costs using a credit card. Many balance transfers offer 0% interest for a period of 6-18 months. This is what Luis and I did to fund some of our wedding expenses and it worked out perfectly – in case you’re interested, I wrote about it in detail.
Tips for Using a Credit Card to Pay for Wedding Expenses
Use a SINGLE Credit Card to Pay for Wedding Expenses
If possible, charge all of your wedding expenses to just ONE credit card. That way, if you want to figure out how much you’ve spent, or whether you’ve paid a vendor – you’ll just have ONE single account to check. This makes it much easier to track wedding expenses, which in turn makes it easier to ensure that you’re staying within your budget.
Use the Right Credit Card
Credit card rewards are like free money – so I’d like to emphasize the benefits of using a rewards credit card again. So if you don’t have a rewards credit card, I definitely recommend applying for one. There are so many different rewards cards to choose from – all it takes is a little bit of research. Personally, my favorite card is my Chase Sapphire Preferred credit card. I’ve been using it for years and I’ve earned thousands of dollars in cash rewards from this card.
Some high rewards credit cards (like my Chase Sapphire) require an annual fee. An annual fee might sound like a burden, but if you’re able to earn enough rewards – the annual fee pays for itself. So don’t rule out cards with an annual fee – sometimes it’s worth paying!
Use a Credit Card with a High Credit Limit
If possible, use a credit card with a high credit limit. Wedding expenses can really add up, so you’ll want to make sure that you have enough credit to cover all of your big purchases – to maximize your credit card points!
Full Disclosure: Some Wedding Vendors Do Not Accept Credit Cards 🙁
Some wedding vendors don’t accept credit card payments – this is especially true for freelancers and small businesses who prefer not to pay merchant fees that the credit card companies charge. And that’s ok! Don’t refuse to work with a vendor because they won’t accept credit card payments. But …
Before you send off your check payment – it’s worth asking the vendor if there’s any way to pay via credit card. In some cases, vendors may indeed take a credit card payment for a small fee (they’re basically passing the merchant fee on to you). Depending on the amount of the fee – you can decide if it’s worth paying on your credit card, or if you’re better off using the vendor’s preferred payment method. For example, if your credit card earns 2% cash back, and the vendor charges 1% for a credit card transaction – then it’s worth paying the fee because you’ll still earn 1% cash back. Just make sure that the benefit outweighs the cost of running a credit card transaction.
How I Used My Credit Card to Pay for Wedding Expenses – A Quick Case Study
I used my credit card to pay for as many of our wedding expenses as possible. And I used my card for the following reasons:
- It earns many rewards (we paid for our honeymoon flights and hotels using the reward points!)
- A high spending limit (even though I never maxed it out, it was nice to know that I had more than enough credit to cover our wedding expenses)
- It has a relatively low-interest rate (about 15%, and even though we didn’t pay any interest, it was nice to have a reasonable interest rate for a short-term revolving balance)
- Here’s the best part: it offered a transfer balance option which allowed us to pay a 2% fee to borrow up to $18,000 at 0% interest for 15 months (that’s way cheaper than carrying a credit card balance and way cheaper than a personal loan!)
There are so many benefits of using a credit card to pay for wedding expenses – from improving your credit score to earning rewards. So I really hope you consider using a credit card to pay for your wedding expenses and I hope this was helpful!