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Not all plastic is created equal: Debit vs Credit Cards

Chances are if you looked in your wallet right now you could easily grab your debit card. If you needed your credit card, you’d know exactly which card to go for.

However, our kids just see a world being paid in plastic, and the answer about which is the debit card and which is the credit card isn’t so clear.

“Paying with plastic is convenient. After all, who wants to carry around a bag of cash?” says Katie Scofield, Financial Education Officer at Numerica Credit Union. “These digital transactions have created a mask of how we use our money, leaving many youth and teens not understanding the difference between debit and credit cards.”

Simply put, a debit card is connected to your checking or savings account.

When you swipe or enter your card, you’re taking money from your account to make a purchase. If you don’t have enough money, your card may be declined.

A credit card lets you make purchases using a credit limit, a pre-approved amount of money. It’s money you borrow from your bank or credit union and have to pay back with added interest.

“Not all plastic is created equal. For many young spenders, learning about finance is a trail-by-fire experience. Understanding the difference between debit and credit cards could mean all the difference in someone’s financial future,” says Scofield.

Help manage the conversation with teens using a Teen Debit card. They can learn about healthy money habits with the safety of parental controls.

Today's Rates

April 23, 2018

Home Equity Line of Credit

as low as 5.00% APR

Certificates

as high as 2.30% APY

Visa Rates

as low as 9.49% APR

Mortgage Rates

as low as 4.75% APR

Auto/Truck (New/Used)

as low as 2.99% APR

Sequel Checking

1.35% APY

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