6 On Your Side Answers: Why was my credit card declined?

KNOXVILLE (WATE) – The average American holds nearly four credit cards in his or her purse or wallet, and it can be embarrassing when your credit transactions are rejected.

Linda from Sweetwater asks, “My credit card was recently declined. Why would this happen?”

A declined credit card can happen to anyone, no matter your credit score, credit limit or income level.

One of the common reasons is you exceeded your credit card limit. You’ve maxed out the amount your card company will allow you to borrow. Check the available balance online or call the toll free number on the back of the card.

Making a “suspicious charge” is another reason why your card may be declined. This can happen if you have a high number of transactions in one day or you shop at an unusual place.

It could be declined because your card’s security has been threatened. In today’s world, credit card companies are extremely cautious of identity theft. So, they may freeze your account if it has been exposed to a potential problem.

Perhaps you are trying to make an online purchase from a foreign country or an international purchase. Avoid this problem by calling your bank ahead of time, informing them about your international trip or purchase.

Perhaps there’s a “hold” on your account.  It could have come from a hotel, rental car company, or gas station. The hold ensures that the company gets the money they need from your use of their services.

Another reason could be you missed a card payment. If you’re behind on your payments, your issuer will eventually stop accepting new purchases.

Your card will be declined if it has expired. Check the date on the front of the card to see if it is still useable. If not, request a new one.

Based on Federal Reserve statistics and other government information, the average household owes a little more than 7,000 on its cards.

You can see Don Dare’s 6 On Your Side Answers every Tuesday and Thursday on 6 News at 4:00.

If you have a question you can send Don an email at ddare@wate.com or call his 6 On Your Side hotline at (865) 633-5974.

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