I see that my credit card company offers the ability to "freeze" and "unfreeze" my credit card with the tap of a button on their mobile app. I'm pondering using that as an additional constraint to avoid impulse buys or using it out of laziness. Is this a horrible idea?

The credit card company appears to market the freeze feature as a way to temporarily lock a card in case you think your credit card is stolen but aren't sure.


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    Does not sound like much of a deterrent given "the ability to "freeze" and "unfreeze" my credit card with the tap of a button on their mobile app". – void_ptr Jun 7 '19 at 5:29
  • @void_ptr right but if you forget and are in line at the checkout stand... – Mike B Jun 7 '19 at 6:02
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    Such freeze features sound like a security feature than spending hinderance. i.e. When you go for week-long hiking, – mootmoot Jun 7 '19 at 7:41
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    @MikeB - Then you just get to say "hold on a sec", log into the app, unfreeze it, and try again. Vs the embarrassment of saying "Oh, I shouldn't be making this purchase" and walking away. Some people can do that, but I think most would err on the side of less social friction. – Bobson Jun 7 '19 at 12:07
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    I read "bad idea" as "Will my credit card company flag me for repeatedly freezing my card?" If the issuer doesn't care, there's no harm in trying this. If it curbs your spending, great! If not, you can look for other techniques. – chepner Jun 7 '19 at 16:07

It's not a bad idea; it's -- as explained by void_ptr -- a fruitless idea.

The rest of us who had (or have) CC spending problems (except for Ramseyites1) just stick them in "the back of the sock drawer" and use a debit card until such time as they've paid off all CC debt and have ingrained the habit of living below their means. .

I stuck mine in a basket on the shelf above my desk for four years, paying off debt, getting in the habit of living below my means and then deeply ingraining that habit.

1 Followers of Dave Ramsey, who cut them up, cancel the accounts and never use CCs again

| improve this answer | |
  • Ron, a good answer, a +1 from me, but. Celebrity and cult leader, Dave Ramsey doesn’t advocate using a credit card under any circumstance. Not for those who have learned how to manage their money, nor for those who save 30% of their income, and never paid a cent of interest ever. Your “until such time as” is a misrepresentation of a fundamental belief of “The David” and his followers. – JTP - Apologise to Monica Jun 8 '19 at 16:39
  • @JoeTaxpayer point taken. I know that, and should have made that clearer. – RonJohn Jun 8 '19 at 17:35

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