Charity credit cards may not be best bet for consumers

Credit cards that give rewards points for purchases have been around for some time, offering consumers perks like free food, extra cash and special discounts.

Recently more issuers have been promoting charity cards, offering consumers a chance to donate these rewards to their favorite non-profits. There are currently 45 such cards on the market, including the new eco-friendly cards by American Express and Bank of America.

However, a new study by suggests these cards may not be donating as much as consumers think, Consumer Affairs says. The report found consumers could donate three times as much by getting cash back on purchases and making donations to the charities themselves.

“Given that so many providers have corporate social responsibility programs and extol their own ‘green’ virtues, it would be nice to see them apply the same standards to their charity cards as they do to their best reward cards,” Chris Griffiths of says.

However, like any credit card, excessive spending, even when done with honorable intentions can lead to credit card debt and poor personal finances.

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