A credit card is more than a little lump of plastic in a Long Island resident’s wallet. It is a tool that allows the holder to access spending power that the person might not be able to attain with his own monetary resources. Although a credit card can give a person an economic boost over the short-term, anything that the spender chooses to charge to his card will eventually have to be paid off.

For some, credit card debt becomes a problem when the holder of the card cannot make full payments when they become due. If, instead, the holder only satisfies the minimum payments required by the credit card company, he may see his bill increase each month as fees are applied to the carried over balance. While any charge can create problems for a person on his credit card, some items charged to credit accounts may be more detrimental than others.

For example, some charges tack on a processing fee above and beyond the fees assessed by the credit card company. A person’s owed state and federal taxes can incur additional fees if the payer uses a credit card to satisfy those debts. Big expenses like college tuition and medical bills are also dangerous to put on credit cards as their exorbitant sums can be difficult to pay down in a timely and economical manner.

Some purchases like those related to travel expenses are smart to put on credit cards because many creditors offer travel protection to their users for just such charges. Though any charge can put an individual in a dangerous position with regard to credit card debt, some charges on credit cards are wiser than others. Individuals who need help weighing their legal options for getting out of credit card debt may consider working with bankruptcy attorneys to better understand their rights.

Source: CBS Money Watch, “The best and worst things you can charge on your credit card,” Kristin Colella, July 21, 2015