Ever since graduation we have had a credit card through Citibank which has unfortunately carried a balance. We've been good about paying more than the minimum and making our payments on time but this last month I missed the due date by roughly 2 hours since I was out of town. While you might view me as simply irresponsible for making a late payment; I, like many people will blame the Citi and their floating due date. Over the past few years our monthly due date has shifted from as early as the 16th to as late as the 23rd depending on the billing cycle.
I guess I shouldn't have been too surprised, the same thing happened to my back in 2007 when my due date floated a full week early. I had planned to cancel the card but never got around to it and just last week I got hit with a late fee and a HUGE increase in my interest rate for missing the due date thanks to it floating 2 days early. I have corresponded with Citi before about this issue to try and get them to pick a fixed day like I have on a different credit card but they stood strong in their inability to do this by stating, "We would like to inform you that the number of days in the month can vary." While I was pleasantly surprised to find out that not all months have the same number of days the problem wasn't solved. In fact any reasonable individual should be able to see that floating due dates serve no real purpose other than extracting extra late fees from consumers.
Thankfully as soon as I found out I sent a short email to Citi asking for my late fee to be refunded, which they quickly did. The bad news is that my interest rate will still stay jacked up which spurred me to initiate a balance transfer to another card. I hope you can learn from my story; always know your due date, always ask to have a late fee waived and always be on the lookout for lower rates. Thankfully unless your credit card company is moving your due date around as much as Easter these actions are easy to do and can save you a lot of money.
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