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Most national newspapers have a best buy section showing a wide range of financial products and their providers, including credit cards.

These usually appear in the weekend editions and are buried deep inside the paper. You've probably noticed them before. Long lists of names and figures (nb these are not the stock market listings of the latest share prices that most papers publish daily).

You'd think that it's fairly simple. Go to the best buy table. Look for the credit crads section and choose the one at the top of the list.

However there are a few problems. The first is deciding on what type of credit crad you want.

These tables will be ranked by the interest rate ie the lower the interest rate the less it will cost you so the better the buy.

However, it's not necessarily, what it seems.

They'll usually show what's politely called the Headline Interest Rate. The more accurate term for it might be the misleading interest rate.

The only way to truly compare interest rates is by using the APR - the annual percentage rate.

As we've seen, the APR is a way of levelling the playing field by providing a true comparison between different loans - in this case credit cards.

It takes all the costs into account.

Another problem is that, sadly, many newspapers seem to have got into bed with certain large financial providers.

What they list as the best buy might be good for them but ain't necessarily the best thing for you.

So the simple thing is to

(a) Decide on what you want from your card and

(b) Where relevant, check the APR - ie if you're not planning to pay back your balance on time so will start running up a debt on which you'll have to pay interest.

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All material UK Credit Card Guide and Information © Moneysorter Ltd 1999 - 2013 | Author: By Ed Parry