CARDIFF, Wales, March 7, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Confused.com research has shown that whilst Government changes enforcing a positive order of repayments on credit cards are now saving consumers an estimated 500 pounds (Source: Guardian.co.uk, The Observer, 14th March 2010) a year, UK consumers are still collectively wasting 150 million pounds per year on unnecessary late credit card payment charges.
The comparison website found that 57.5% of credit card customers don't have a direct debit set up to make the minimum repayment on their credit card each month, making them liable for a 'late payment' charge from their provider if they forget to make a payment. Costing an average of 12 pounds per time, these charges can soon stack up.
26% of credit card holders have been charged at least once in the last year for missing a minimum payment; a further 8.5% have been charged three or more times in the last 12 months, and 1.2% have been charged ten or more times in the last 12 months - that's over 120 pounds each in charges.
Chris Griffiths, head of credit cards at Confused.com, said: "Setting up a direct debit to make a minimum payment on a credit card is such a simple thing to do, yet well over half of credit card holders haven't done it. Collectively we are wasting millions of pounds each year on these charges. As well as late payment charges, many credit card holders are likely to have lost out on attractive low interest introductory deals or rewards as well, as these deals are often withdrawn if minimum payments aren't met. Missing minimum payments can also adversely affect customer's credit profiles, which may be detrimental when they want to borrow in the future.
"We would encourage anyone without a direct debit set up to get one in place. Not only will this save money on charges and help contribute to a healthy credit profile, it will allow money that would have been spent on charges to be used to repay more than the minimum amount, saving more money as interest charges are reduced."
Notes to editors
Research carried out by One Poll, based on responses of 2,000 participants.
BBA figures November 2010 show 33,552,000 active credit card accounts in the UK.
Confused.com survey found 19,292,400 of these accounts (57.5%) don't have a direct debit in place. On average, each account has been charged a fee 0.65 times in the last 12 months, incurring an average fee of 12 pounds, creating 150.48 pounds million in charges.
Confused.com is one of the UK's biggest and most popular price comparison services. Launched in 2002, it generates over one million quotes per month. It has expanded its range of comparison products over the last couple of years to include home insurance, travel insurance, pet insurance, van insurance, motorbike insurance, breakdown cover and energy, as well as financial services products including savings accounts, loans, mortgages and annuities.
Confused.com is not a supplier, insurance company or broker. It provides a free, objective and unbiased comparison service. Confused.com's service is based on the most up-to-date information provided by UK suppliers and industry regulators.
Confused.com is owned by the Admiral Group plc. Admiral listed on the London Stock Exchange in September 2004. Confused.com is regulated by the FSA.
For further information please contact the Confused.com press office: