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Charity cards 'not so charitable'

With Red Nose Day just around the corner, consumers are being warned that some credit cards designed to donate money to charity only offer 'paltry' sums.Consumers have been warned to choose carefully, after price comparison website moneysupermarket studied which of the most popular charity credit cards was the most charitable.The Amex Red card came out top in the survey donating up to 1.25 per cent. However, the study suggests that a person with an RSPCA credit card, spending £200 a month for a year and repaying the minimum amount each month, would face nearly £200 in interest charges â€" with only £21 going to the charity itself.They claim that a better move would be to stick with a conventional credit card and donate the difference saved on the APR to your chosen charity."Unfortunately, most of these cards only match a pitiful percentage of the value of the purchase to give to charity, typically between 0.25 per cent and 0.5 per cent," Robert Kenley, head of credit cards at moneysupermarket said."Anyone who really wants to support a charity should consider a credit card with the longest 0 per cent offer on either balance transfers or purchases (depending on their typical usage) and instead, donate the interest they save directly to the charity. "Ultimately, charity credit cards are most effective for people who really want to give something to charity, but know they will not be disciplined enough to transfer the interest they have saved from a 0 per cent offer. "So, if the latter seems like too much hassle, then even though charity cards do not give the most generous donations, any contribution to a worthy cause is better than none." Figures from UK payments association Apacs in January 2006, showed an average donation of £75.55 per charity credit card.

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