Earlier I wrote explaining why I no longer carry credit card balances, and have been promising to point out why I still use them after realizing how bad it can be to carry credit card debt. I will share my reasons in three parts instead of making a very long post.
I have had a number of unfortunate experiences with merchants, such as undelivered or damaged goods as well as improper charges. While many of these were resolved by contacting the merchants, there were times I was forced to call the credit card company whose card I used. In those cases where I had to make the call, the issues were resolved almost immediately. I have also been fortunate to have them not only block fraudulent charges, but remove any such charges from my account.
On the other hand, if you have ever dealt with fraud or any transaction dispute with a traditional bank account, you will know that resolving these issues is not as smooth. You are generally on the hook until the matter is resolved, which means you are likely to have money missing from your bank account for that period. If the matter cannot be resolved by their methods, it is then on you to take action to recover your money.
Therefore, for my protection and continuing the theme of eliminating financial distractions, I have chosen to use credit cards for any transaction I can. It gives me a middle man to help sort out any issue that may develop and this allows me to have peace of mind. It also helps that I have alerts set for any notable transaction on my cards. I also follow the rule that if I do not have the budget to pay for the item, I do not charge it.
I am not going to be lulled into believing that these companies care about their customers that much, because I realize that they are protecting their own interest. When you make a charge, you are actually borrowing money from the credit card company. The terms of the credit card use typically shield the user from fraudulent purchases as well as handle disputes within a specified period of time.