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What's the Best Way to Discard Credit Cards?

Summary:Learn the best practices for disposing of credit cards, including destroying the card, canceling the account, and disposing of related documents securely. Tips for credit card usage also included.

Discarding Credit Cards: The Best Practices

Credit cards have become an indispensable part of our daily lives. They enable us to make purchases, pay bills, and earn rewards. However, there comes a time when we need to discard an old or unused credit card. Whether it's because of a high annual fee, a lack of rewards, or the risk of identity theft, knowing the best way to dispose of a credit card can save us from headaches and financial losses. In this article, we will discuss the best practices for discarding credit cards and share some tips on how to make the most of your credit card usage.

Destroying the Credit Card

The first step in discarding a credit card is to ensure that the card is completely destroyed. This means cutting the card into small pieces, shredding it, or using a dedicated credit card destruction device. Destroying the card prevents anyone from using it for fraudulent activities and safeguards your personal information.

Canceling the Credit Card

After destroying the card, the next step is to cancel the credit card account. This can be done either by calling the credit card company's customer service hotline or by sending a written request via mail or email. It's important to confirm that the account has been closed and that there are no outstanding balances or fees. Failure to do so may result in continued charges, interest, and damage to your credit score.

Disposing of the Credit Card

Once the card has been destroyed and the account has been closed, it's time to dispose of the card's remnants. This includes the card itself, any paper statements, and any other documents related to the account. It's best to dispose of these items in a secure manner, such as using a cross-cut shredder or a secure document destruction service. This ensures that any sensitive information on the documents is irretrievable.

Preventing Identity Theft

Discarding a credit card requires careful attention to preventing identity theft. This includes destroying the card, canceling the account, and disposing of any related documents. Additionally, it's important to monitor your credit report and credit score regularly to detect any suspicious activity. You can sign up for free credit monitoring services or use reputable apps to track your credit information.

Tips for Credit Card Usage

In addition to knowing how to discard a credit card, it's important to make the most of your credit card usage. This includes applying for credit cards with low annual fees, high rewards, and low interest rates. It's also important to pay your bills on time and in full to avoid interest charges and late fees. You can also take advantage of cashback rewards, travel perks, and other benefits offered by credit card companies.


Discarding a credit card requires careful attention to security and privacy. By following the best practices for destroying the card, canceling the account, and disposing of any related documents, you can prevent identity theft and safeguard your personal information. Additionally, by making the most of your credit card usage, you can save money, earn rewards, and enjoy the benefits of credit card ownership.

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