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Author: dsemmler Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 308846  
Subject: Re: Bank of America's Mini Card Date: 8/14/2003 2:45 PM
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Rick wrote,

What do you all think of the Mini? Convenience or not? Winner or not? Will other credit card companies follow suit?

In my opinion, this is a bad idea for numerous reasons, some of which you touched on in your article. Here are my reasons why the Mini is not a good idea, nor is it much more convenient.

1. The card is more susceptible to being stolen or lost. Being on a key ring, there is an increased risk that the card could fall off the key ring and you might not notice. If the card is in my wallet, I am not sure how it will fall out of my wallet and my pants pocket. In addition, when at work I often toss my car keys on my desk and leave them there all day. With the Mini, I would need to either lock up my keys or carry them with me more. Not very convenient. Advantage: Regular card.

2. Lose the convenience of pay at the pump. If I am not mistaken, and I believe you mentioned, most of the pumps require a full-size card to be swiped. This is one of my more frequent uses of a card so I would gain nothing by using the Mini. Advantage: Regular card.

3. Increase compulsive spending. Personally, I don't think this would be an issue for me but I view this as an attempt by the credit card company to entice people to use the card more frequently. Similar to the Speed Pass that can be used at McDonalds. They are hoping people will find it so easy and <cute> to use, you will purchase more than you otherwise might. You won't have to dig in your purse or wallet to retrieve a card and have the time to contemplate your decision. Advantage: Regular card.

4. Passing fad. In my opinion, this is an attempt to hit the market with a flashy new card that gets people's desire for "gadgets". The Discover card came out with a similar card to put on a key ring and were really hyping it for awhile. Funny but I don't see their commercials anymore, nor do I see people using the card. Advantage: Regular card.

I know that I will not ever get one of these mini cards for the reasons listed above. I really do not see any value into having this card as opposed to a standard card. There appear to be more concerns related to the ownership of this card versus a standard card.

Discover was the first to do this I believe and now BofA has come out with one as well. Will others do it? Probably. Will it catch on? Possibly. Will I ever use one? Never!

dt
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