What do you do in case of a financial emergency?
In my pre-S days, an emergency tended to go along the lines of “omg, I’ve had such a bad day, I absolutely must go shopping immediately.” Or perhaps, “wow, I really need a holiday…”
The days, my financial emergencies are altogether more boring, and usually involve the burning need to pay a bill or replace broken electrical equipment. The joys of growing up, hey.
Credit cards can be dangerous things, but they don’t need to be. If you use them sensibly (i.e. don’t class “I want to go shopping” as an emergency), and pay them off as quickly as possible, they can be really useful. The temptation can be to get a credit card and immediately see that credit limit as an amount of free cash you have to spend. In reality though, it’s best to save a credit card for a real emergency.
Perhaps frozen into a block of ice, at the back of the freezer where all temptation to buy some nice new shoes is not anywhere you’ll see it on a daily basis.
As we get older, with more responsibilities, it can be really useful to have a credit card available for emergencies. For me, being a single parent with a small child, I don’t exactly have huge wads of cash hanging about in case of emergencies… and any way, a credit card takes up less space under the mattress!
N.B. There are no cash or credit cards under my mattress. I’ve checked.