Acquiring credit and maintaining good credit makes life in the United States much, much easier. Financial transactions in the country revolve heavily around the credit system. It is difficult to rent a hotel room without a credit card, and virtually impossible to rent a car. Basic Internet use is difficult without a credit card, as is access to the entire world of e-commerce. Credit cards also function as secondary means of personal identification.
Having a credit card or account is only the first step. You will need to establish a good credit history to rent an apartment, get any kind of loan, begin telephone or utility service without a putting down a deposit, and for many other purposes. A cash economy does exist in the United States, but full participation in the American economy does require credit. The sections that follow concentrate on the serious pursuit of acquiring and maintaining good credit.
Next Section:How to Start Getting Credit
Personal Finance: Chapter Home
Life in the USA Home Page.