We tend to think that credit cards have been around FOREVER, but the truth is that the credit card is a relative baby on the money scene.
Consider the following timeline of the history of money:
• 2500 BC – Gold & silver rings used for trade. • 650 BC – First minted coins • 1600’s – First paper money and national bank • 1934 – Modern mortgages became widely available • 1950 – First credit card: Diners Club • 1970 – Only 15% of Americans had a credit card. • NOW: Buying on credit is a way of life. You can finance anything and everything! “What’s in your wallet?” “Life takes visa!”
Currency in the form of gold and silver rings began about 4,500 years ago. Minted coins first appeared around 650 BC. Paper money appeared on the world financial scene in the 1600’s. By comparison, the credit card was “born” in 1950 in New York City (Diners Club). This is less than 70 years ago! In 1970, less than 50 years ago, only 15% of Americans even had a credit card. Now, you’d be hard pressed to find someone without a wallet full of plastic.
However, you don’t need credit cards to have a prosperous financial situation. In fact, they are usually a detriment. Commit to using debit cards, cash, and checks instead!