Tips for managing your credit card

This guide covers how to manage and make the most of your Halifax credit card.

Five key tips for managing credit

1. Limit what you borrow

It's difficult to predict the future, but consider how you’d manage if your circumstances changed. Try to borrow only what you need and think you can realistically afford to repay.

If you’re planning to make a purchase or transfer though, make sure you use any introductory rates while they’re available. That way, you’ll benefit from the lowest and longest lasting interest rates.

2. Don’t go over your credit limit

If you do, you could lose any introductory and promotional interest rates, plus your credit score could also be affected, which might make it harder for you to get credit again in future.

If you need more flexibility, you could ask to change your credit limit, subject to status and security checks. We might also contact you to offer a higher credit limit, but you don’t have to take it if we do.

3. Know the cost of borrowing

Different rates of interest might apply to parts of your outstanding balance, based on transaction type and whether a standard or promotional rate applies.

Fees could also apply to some accounts and transactions. Additional charges might apply if you don’t manage your credit card account in line with the conditions of your credit agreement.

4. Check statements carefully

It’s important to check your statements as soon as they’re issued, so you’re aware of your balance and any due payments. You should also check over any recent transactions, fees and charges.

It’s a good idea to keep hold of recent receipts and email confirmations, so you can check them against your statement when it arrives.

5. Make payments on time

You need to make at least the minimum payment detailed on your statement each month, and it must reach us by the due date shown. It’s a good idea to pay as much as you can to reduce your balance and any interest costs. 

If you miss a payment or it’s late, in addition to fees and charges, you could lose any promotional interest rates on your account and your credit score could be affected.

To help you to stay on track, you could set up a Direct Debit to make payments to your credit card account automatically each month, but there are a few payment options available.

Using your credit card

It’s useful to understand how a credit card works, and all the ways you can use one.


  • Using a credit card gives you the option to spread large and unexpected costs, or just to manage your everyday spending.

    Just bear in mind, you might need your credit card PIN to complete a transaction.

    Change your PIN or get a reminder

  • If you’ve got a contactless card, you can make secure payments of up to £45, without entering your PIN. From cafes to corner shops, a growing number of retailers offer contactless as a payment option.

    More on contactless

    To use Apple Pay or Google Pay, simply add your card details to a compatible device.

    More about mobile payments

  • Shopping online offers you convenience and choice, but it’s important to know who you’re buying from, whether there are any additional costs and how to keep your information safe.

    More about online shopping

  • Why was my card declined? 

    We know how frustrating it can be to get your card declined. That’s why we’ve put together this page, so you can see all the possible reasons. 

    Your card hasn’t been activated

    • If you’re using a credit card, double check that it’s been activated and follow the instructions on the sticker if it hasn’t. 

    You have a card freeze in place

    • This is when you have applied a temporary card freeze on our app or by calling us. If you’re registered on the app, please check to see if you’ve applied a card freeze, or you can call us on 0345 944 4555.

    You’ve reached your agreed credit limit

    • That’s the total amount of money you can borrow on your credit card at any one time. You may have reached it, or your transaction may have taken you over it. You can learn more about your credit limit on our website, app or by calling us on 0345 944 4555.

    Your card has expired

    • Double check the expiry date. We’ll send you a new card before the last week of your expiry month. If you haven’t received it, please give us a call on the number below. 

    You’ve reached your daily cash machine withdrawal limit

    • We set a daily withdrawal limit of £500 and you may have reached it. It’s also worth knowing that other lenders and cash machine operators can set their own limits as well. Learn more about your limit.

    If your card was declined while paying for something online or over the phone, it could be because of these reasons:

    Your name and address don’t match our records

    • It’s worth checking that your name and address details match our records. If you need to update any details, you can find out how to do it on our manage your details page.

    Wrong CVV number

    • This is the 3 digit number on the back of your card. You’ll always be asked for it if you pay for something online or over the phone. Double check that you’ve entered it correctly. 

    If none of those answers have helped you, please get in touch:

    You can call us on 0345 944 4555, or if you're calling from abroad, you can call us on +44 (0) 1733 573 189.

    Calls to 03 numbers are charged at no more than local rate.

  • You could move balances from most credit cards and some store cards, to a single credit card. With everything in one place, it should be easier to stay on top of your balance and payments. Transfer fees may apply.

    More on balance transfers

  • If the option is available, with a money transfer you could move funds to your UK current account. That could help you to manage cash only purchases or unexpected bills. Transfer fees may apply.

    More on money transfers

  • Your credit card can be a great addition to your wallet when you travel, but it’s important to understand what additional fees may apply when you use your card outside the UK.

    More on using cards abroad

  • You could use a credit card to take cash out at an ATM, in-branch or at a bureau de change. Just be aware that fees might apply to these transactions.

    This is usually the most expensive way to borrow too, so perhaps best used for emergencies only.

    More on cash advances

Managing your account online

Online Banking

You can check and manage your Halifax accounts at any time using Online Banking.

Sign in or register to check balances, view statements, make payments and transfers, manage your contact details and more.

Sign in


Mobile Banking app

Our app puts popular services at your fingertips when you’re out and about, plus there are some app exclusives, including:

  • The option to view your PIN online, rather than waiting for a reminder by post.
  • The option to freeze your card if you’ve misplaced it, or to freeze certain transaction types, giving you more control over the way you and other cardholders use your account.

Once you’ve downloaded the app to your smartphone or tablet, sign in using your Online Banking username and password. On compatible devices, you can set up fingerprint or face ID, making it even easier for you to sign in on the move.

Get the Mobile Banking app

We’re here if you need support

If you’re ever finding it difficult to make credit card payments, please let us know so we can help.

Help with money worries

A summary on managing credit cards

You can manage your credit card account using Online Banking and the Mobile Banking app.

  • Try to borrow only what you really need, and be careful not to go over your credit limit.
  • Make sure you understand the interest rates, fees and charges which apply before using your card.
  • Check your monthly statements carefully, including recent transactions payments due details.
  • You need to make at least the minimum payment on time each month, and stay within your credit limit.

Want to read more?

We don't charge you to use our services, but your mobile operator might charge for some things (such as downloading or using the app), so please check with them. Services may be affected by phone signal and functionality. 

To use our Mobile Banking app you need to have a valid phone number registered to your account and be set up to manage your accounts using Online Banking. Our app is available to iPhone and Android users only and minimum operating systems apply, so check the App Store or Google Play for details. Device registration required. The app doesn’t work on jailbroken or rooted devices. Terms and conditions apply. 

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Halifax is a division of Bank of Scotland plc. Registered in Scotland No. SC327000. Registered Office: The Mound, Edinburgh EH1 1YZ. Bank of Scotland plc is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority under registration number 169628.