10 Good uses for a credit cards

By glblguy

Teething Toy?
Photo by: shortiestar3000Teething toy? Maybe not…

I am not a fan of credit cards. I’ve been burned and I’ve seen and read about far too many people’s lives turned upside down through the use of credit cards. Recently though, I’ve been trying to focus on being more environmentally conscientious. If you’re anything like me, you probably get 5-10 credit card applications a week and many of those contain those fake sample credit cards along with a ton of paper. Also, if you’ve gone credit card free like I have, and don’t want to just throw away or destroy them, what can you do with all those extra cards laying around.

Here are 10 good uses for those fake sample credit cards and old expired credit cards:

  1. Car Window Scrapers – On that cold winter morning and your windshield is all frosted over.
  2. Unlock doors – If you have the right kind of doors, credit cards are a great way to unlock your door if you’ve locked yourself out of your house. Slide the card in by the bolt and move it back and forth until the bolt is moved over far enough to pull the door open.
  3. Fake Wallet – A friend of mine who lives in New York city has been the victim of a pick pocket a few times. Now, he carries a fake wallet in his rear pocket and his real wallet in his jacket. He fills the fake wallet with expired or fake credit cards, a dollar or two, and other misc. stuff.
  4. Test your shave – Not sure if you’re getting a good shave? Run the edge of a credit card over your beard. The noise will tell you how well you shaved.
  5. Aquarium Glass cleaner – Have a saltwater aquarium? Credit Cards make excellent glass scrapers for removing Coraline algae, and other crustaceans that grow on your glass.
  6. Straight edge – Not able to find your ruler, use a credit card instead. The edge is very smooth and straight.
  7. Caulking – Ever wonder how those professional carpenters get that nice smooth look? Me too, but I’ve found a really great cheat. Run the rounded corner of your credit card across the caulk bead for that professional look.
  8. Bookmarks – Although I prefer something a little longer and thinner, credit cards can make for great bookmarks
  9. Shims – Ever need to level something or fill a small gap when nailing up molding? Credit cards stacked up make great shims.
  10. Guitar Pick – Now this is one I would have never thought of, but the thickness is about right. Brett over at The Frugal Law Student suggests using credit cards as a guitar pick. For me it would be a bit big, but cut into a triangle, I think it would work great!

What ideas do you have? What do you do with your old or fake cards?


19 Responses (including trackbacks) to “10 Good uses for a credit cards”

  1. Four Pillars Says:

    Not unlike the girl in the photo, my son likes playing with old credit cards, drivers licenses etc…

    Mike

  2. Kristen Says:

    Did you know you can opt out of unsolicited credit card offers? If you call (888) 567-8688, you will be prompted to enter in some information. If you have more than one person in your household, each person has to call and opt out in his or her own name. It says it will reduce your unsolicited credit offers, but since I registered several months ago, I haven’t received one. I used to get at least four a week.

  3. Mr. Stupid Says:

    A fake wallet? That’s hilarious.

    Unfortunately, your friend has to buy a new fake wallet once in a while.

    -mr. stupid

  4. No Debt Plan Says:

    I agree with Kristen. If you’re getting 5-10 offers a day, go to https://www.optoutprescreen.com/ to opt-out.

    I like credit cards. I love getting cash back for purchases I would have made regardless of it being on credit/debit or cash. But I do use old ones as ice scrapers.

  5. MoneyBlogga Says:

    Hey, #3 is an excellent idea. Seriously. I am totally going to use #3 because of the neighborhoods I have to venture into to collect rent. Which hopefully wont be for that much longer …

  6. paidtwice Says:

    not a good idea? eating it like the picture. lol

  7. Mrs. Micah Says:

    11. Math class

    My freshman math professor passed out his old credit cards for experimentation.

    We didn’t get to use them in stores, but we got to test out the mathematical algorithm that goes into making card numbers. Apparently it’s more than just 1, 2, 3,…

    I don’t remember the algorithm, but I remember getting the cards.

  8. Shanti @ Antishay Says:

    I’ve used an old card as a defroster before! What a great list you have here :D

    I have also used old credit cards or fake credit cards for cleaning under my nails (when very bored), for smashing bugs that come into my house (just place on top and BAM), for scrubbing dishes that have stuck-on food (I now have an actual pan scraper) and for cleaning crumbs off of a counter (the crumbs stick to my hand… they just sweep up with the card :D). I’m sure I could think up more uses if I put my mind to it ;)

  9. Frugal Babe Says:

    I’m a big fan of not getting the card offers in the first place – we used
    https://www.optoutprescreen.com/?rf=t and haven’t gotten any offers since. Unfortunately we still get lots of offers for our business, which is incorporated and has its own bank account – I haven’t found a way to opt out of those offers :(

  10. Barb Ryan @ Pasadena Financial Planner Says:

    The ten alternative uses that you listed are fine. Fortunately, there are equal or better tools for each of these jobs — and you listed these tools or implied what they might be.

    Unfortunately, credit cards carry with them them additional risks related theft or loss and the major fun of potentially dealing with identity theft. For example, some local theaters have gotten the bright idea that they do not need to get a signature, and some of the ticket agents fail to ask for picture identification. Some vendors will take anything to make the sale.

    Personally, I think that credit cards — even unused and/or expired — are still dangerous “tools” of “toys” to leave around. Destroy the little beggars, before they come back to bite you.

  11. Frugal Dad Says:

    I used to let my daughter play with my expired cards, until it occurred to me I may be subtly brand marketing for Visa. Now we just shred’em and move on!

  12. ChristianPF Says:

    I like the guitar pick idea – I am always looking for guitar picks around the house anyway, so that would be a great idea!!

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