IN Phoenixville Area Summer 2017 - Page 56

YOUR FINANCES Are You Confused When Asked ‘Debit or Credit?’ By Rebecca K. Worthington, Vice President of Marketing, Benchmark Federal Credit Union It’s time to pay for groceries at the supermarket, and you pull out your debit card. The cashier then asks, “Debit or Credit?” Ever wonder why you’re asked – and what the answer should be? If you choose “Debit” Many people automatically say “Debit” because they are using a debit card. Choosing Debit actually means the transaction is processed as a point-of-sale through the ATM Network and requires a personal identification number (PIN). The transaction is deducted from your checking account. If you choose “Credit” Many people think that choosing “Credit” means the transaction will be billed to a credit card…this is not the case! Choosing Credit simply means the transaction is processed through your financial institution’s debit vendor (MasterCard or VISA). You sign for the transaction, and sometimes a PIN is required as a secondary form of identification. The transaction is deducted from your checking account. Again, the purchase will NOT get billed to a credit card. So which should I choose? At this point, some consumers are so confused that their response is, “It doesn’t matter…whatever works best for you (the merchant).” But think twice about your answer. If you’re a member of a credit union, such as Benchmark Federal Credit Union, and are using a credit union debit card, it is more beneficial to choose “Credit.” Credit transactions are more cost-effective for the credit union and – since credit union profits go back to the members through higher savings dividends and lower loan rates – credit transactions benefit you, the member, as well. Another reason to choose “Credit” is the card protection offered via MasterCard and/or VISA if someone were to make fraudulent transactions using your lost or stolen debit card. VISA and/or MasterCard’s zero-liability policies only apply to signature-based transactions; however, financial institutions may offer their own zero- liability policy for PIN transactions. To find out what protection you’re getting, look at the back of your debit card to see which networks can handle your transactions – then ask your financial institution what you’re guaranteed in the event of fraudulent PIN transactions. Remember, Benchmark Federal Credit Union offers financial products and services for all of life’s benchmarks, from birth through retirement. We not only offer competitive rates, low fees, and an array of deposit and loan products, but we also pride ourselves on being your financial partner to assist you with finding the right accounts/ cards to meet your financial needs. Benchmark has affordable banking services that are now available to anyone who lives, works, worships or attends school in Chester County. Come discover what we can do for you! Rebecca Worthington is Vice President of Marketing with Benchmark Federal Credit Union, which has new branches in Phoenixville and downtown West Chester. Celebrating more than 75 years of service, Benchmark is the only federal credit union to exclusively serve Chester County. 610.429.1600 / benchmarkfcu.org. 54 1.800.558.0940, ext. 202 TO ADVERTISE | Phoenixville Area