Banks penalizing cash payments for credit cards

In another ridiculously anti-customer move, banks like ICICI and Standard Chartered are charging Rs. 100 for any cash payments made for credit card dues. This move is ostensibly for reducing footfalls at branches but seems like another revenue stream adding gimmik.

Actually from the look at the note attached with this month’s electronic statement, there are a number of quite disturbing changes at ICICI credit cards:

  1. Firstly, it is the flat charge of Rs. 100 for any cash payment made to credit card at branches. So even if you have just a few hundreds to pay, you have to pay a significant proportion as a penalty for depositing in cash. Also, if you could not deposit a cheque in time, and the deadline is today, you have to pay this charge anyway which sort of partially negates your aim to avoid late payment charges.

  2. Maximum credit-free period is reduced to 48 days from 52 days. So you date for payment has actually been advanced.

  3. Late payment charges are revised to 30% of minimum amount outstanding (Minimum Rs. 400/- and maximum Rs. 600/-). So late payment charges have been increased.

Since these card companies act virtually like a cartel for these services and charges, even if you have credit cards from a different bank, expect your life as a credit card customer to get worse.

All this is on top of the fact that credit card companies have recently been quietly increasing your credit card interest rates. ICICI now charges upto 3.4% per month (>40% annual interest rate) on credit cards. They now discriminate between customers to give a variable interest rate based on their credit history.

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