History of Credit Cards - In Particular The Diners Card
In 1950 the Diners Club card was launched with 200 customers, Frank McNamara started the company with a view to clients using it to pay for their dinners, hence the name.
The Great American Credit Card Factory
In the USA there are in excess of three hundred million credit cards being used. Whereas cards were originally launched for buying big items that would take a long while to save for they can now be used for dentistry, holidays and meals. This convenience makes it easier than ever for people to buy what they want, when they want but it is not without its pitfalls. As far back as 1971 financial ruin knocked on the door of 250,000 US citizens and in 1972 unpaid credit debt came to about $137 billion and that is over thirty years ago!
Credit Cards, You Use 'Em
The council for consumer affairs issued a report saying that credit allows people to buy what they want, when they want and then pay for it later, no sh*t Sherlock! A lot of consumers say that it is easier to use a card than carry cash, that it makes dream purchases easier and traveling has never been easier. Some people think a wodge of credit cards makes you appear a suitable financial risk.
Research shows that we people will spend more on credit cards than cash, up to 23% more! We don’t see the cash so we don’t worry! This trend has led to the growth of the ‘new’ credit industry
Edward Bellamy a lawyer and writer first coined the phrase ‘credit card’ in the publication, Looking Backward; 2000 to 1887. This forward looking chap predicted that each person would have a credit card that would be issued by the local government on a yearly basis. This would he thought be used to pay for goods and services. The money amount on the card would be equivalent to the persons entitlement of the country’s gross product. When something was bought the cost of the goods was marked out on the card. Edward Bellamy saw this as a contract between the government and the citizen so there was no case for cash!
In around1900 hotels issued credit cards to their even posher clentelle.
Just before the start of World War One in 1914 some stores and gas stations entered the arena with their own cards.
Two years after the end of World War Two when everybody wanted to travel Rail and airlines decided to issue their own credit cards.
True Cost, Nothing Is Free
As everyone in virtually every country continue to press billions and billions of pounds onto their credit cards, the issuers are rubbing their hands together,counting massive profits and projecting huge increases in the future. With 80 million people on rotating credit it is necessary to assess the cost of credit cards.