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Allie Johnson

Allie Johnson

Allie Johnson is an award-winning freelance writer covering personal finance, business and lifestyle. She loves tracking down tips, tricks and cautionary tales about credit cards and money. She has written about Zen and the art of credit cards, crazy credit card purchases, true tales of identity theft -- and more.

Allie Johnson's stories for CreditCards.com

'Webrooming' trend reduces online shipping costs, problems -- This holiday season, shoppers are more likely to price compare online, then head to the store to buy, to avoid shipping costs, delivery problems ... (See Webrooming)

Teach your teens about these 5 scams -- You've alerted your teen to many dangers lurking in the world, but have you ever had a talk about how to avoid being scammed? ... (See Teaching teens)

How a DUI can tank your credit -- While a conviction for driving under the influence won't show up directly on your credit report, the financial ramifications that follow a conviction can really flush your score ... (See DUI)

Buying a car with a credit card often an uphill fight -- Using a credit card to buy a car could give you consumer protections and perks. But most dealers hate the fees that go with accepting plastic, so you might have to wheel and deal ... (See Buying a car on credit card)

9 signs your spouse is a financial bully -- Many couples argue over money, but what if your spouse takes away your credit cards or demands you turn over your paycheck? Watch out: you might be married to a financial bully ... (See Bully)

2014 balance transfer survey: Beware combo deals, two-tier fees -- Long-lasting 0-percent balance transfer offers abound to help consumers pay down card debt, but new tweaks aren't so friendly ... (See Balance transfer survey)

Do you have what it takes for DIY debt settlement? -- Settling your own debts instead of hiring someone else can save you money and put you in the power seat, but it's not for the fainthearted ... (See DIY debt)

9 credit-buildings tips for US immigrants -- The land of opportunity requires newcomers to establish credit anew once they arrive in the U.S., but you can go from nothing to good credit in a short time ... (See Immigrant credit)

Charity gift cards let recipient donate to favorite cause -- School a foreign student? Sure. Feed orphaned chimps? Of course. Support local artists? Why not. For a fee, charity gift cards let recipients choose a favorite cause to support ... (See Charity gift cards)

2013 airline gift card comparison chart -- While most airlines offer gift cards, their terms and conditions vary. Make sure you know what you're getting before you buy ... (See Airline gift card)

Rent-to-own vs. credit cards: Which costs less? -- What if you need a new TV, sofa or even a set of tires but you're broke? Do you turn to plastic or a rent-to-own store? Consumer advocates weigh in ... (See RTO)

Your map through Chapter 7 and 13 bankruptcy -- If you've decided that bankruptcy might be the solution for you, you need to be prepared for the stops along the way for Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcies ... (See Bankruptcy map)

2013 survey of balance transfer offers -- CreditCards.com's annual balance transfer offer survey finds fees are falling, but a new breed of tempting hybrid cards is on the rise ... (See Balance transfer survey)

Funding dreams on credit: Fragrance creation -- Geir Ness created his own fragrance line by charging $12,000 on his credit cards to work with a perfumer and manufacture the first 1,000 bottles ... (See Geir Ness)

Funding dreams on credit: Film financing -- Kenny Golde maxed out multiple credit cards and took out a business loan to finish a movie that went over budget, for total debt of $220,000 ... (See Film financing)

Funding dreams on credit: Bike champ -- Gene Hamilton charged as much as $10,000 every year during mountain bike racing season for gas, hotels and airfare and spent the rest of the year paying it off ... (See Bike champ)

Funding dreams on credit: Vintage arcades -- Michelle and Michael Ware maxed out their card at $25,000 to start their vintage arcade game business, only paying the minimum due until things took off ... (See Vintage arcades)

Funding dreams on credit: Travel junkie -- Jeremy Jones strategically opened travel rewards cards to get promotional bonus deals to fund his goal of traveling around the world ... (See Jeremy Jones)

5 who funded their dreams on credit -- Do you have a big aspiration, but a small bank account? Check out how these five people went into debt to fulfill their fantasies, and the lessons they learned ... (See Funding dreams)

Costly tax refund loans not really gone -- While RALs have effectively been banned, consumers are still being pitched to pay big on costly tax refund advances ... (See Refund anticipation loans live on)

11 options for filing tax returns for free -- Want to file your taxes for free? Depending on how much money you make and other factors, you might have several choices for free filing online or in-person with volunteer help. ... (See 2013 tax filing)

2012 airline gift card comparison chart -- While most airlines offer gift cards, their terms and conditions vary. Make sure you know what you're getting before you buy ... (See Airline gift card)

Using credit, debit instead of cash can make you fat -- Dieters, watch out: paying with plastic at the grocery store can make you more likely to load up your cart with donuts, ice cream, potato chips and other fattening foods ... (See Plastic versus cash)

11 smartphone tips to ease holiday shopping stress -- Ease your holiday shopping experience by employing these handy dandy apps and tips that can save you time and money while preventing headaches ... (See 11 smartphone tips, apps)

Credit card emergency travel assistance plans -- Luggage lost in Lithuania? Jailed in Jamaica? Your credit card's emergency travel assistance concierge service can lend a helping hand ... (See Emergency travel assistance)

6 reasons it's time to break up with your credit card -- Sometimes relationships fizzle -- and that can be especially true of your relationship with your credit card. Here are six ways to know when it's time to move on ... (See Breaking up with your credit card)

Zombie debt business booms; consumers at risk -- Do you have a debt from years ago that you never paid? If so, beware: that old account could come lurching back to life when you least expect it ... (See Zombie debt)

Chased by zombie debt? 7 steps to take - fast -- Old debt coming back to haunt you? These seven steps may not all kill off 'zombie debt' but they'll sure keep you ahead of it ... (See Zombie debt)

How to out-talk yourself from getting into debt -- You deserve it! Everyone else has one! It's the last one! How your inner voice can talk you into debt, and how to out-talk those inner desires ... (See Debt's inner voice)

Your credit card purchase protection plan: Will it cover your loss? -- You drop your new Nexus in the tub or have your iPhone pilfered from your gym locker. Out of luck? Not if your credit card can reimburse you ... (See Purchase protection )

Bad credit no longer keeping consumers out of the driver’s seat -- In the market for a new car but worry that your iffy credit score will put the brakes on getting a good deal? Take heart, a new report shows that you might be able to snag those keys after all. ... (See Bad credit car loans)

True debt collection horror tales -- Even a polite call from a debt collector can ruin your day, but what would you do if he threatened bodily harm and started to stalk you on Facebook? ... (See Debt collector horror tales)

7 tips for dealing with college debt -- Now that you have your degree, put those smarts to use to figure out how to get out from under your huge student loan debt ... (See 7 tips to pay off college debt)

More consumers ditch rewards, go with plain vanilla credit cards -- Basic credit cards won’t help you rack up free flights, wads of cash or gift cards. But new research shows they’re back in a big way, and they’re especially popular with young, financially savvy consumers ... (See Plain vanilla credit cards)

Lost your credit or debit card? Want it fast? Expect to pay -- As banks look for new ways to make money, some have started charging to replace lost credit or debit cards. Want it in a hurry? It'll cost even more ... (See Replacement credit card costs)

Refund anticipation loans coming to an end -- After years of soaking consumers with high fees for tax refund anticipation loans, tax preparers are finally closing them down ... (See RALs)

CreditCards.com survey of 2012 balance transfer cards shows offers getting better -- CreditCards.com's annual survey of balance transfer cards show increasingly longer zero percent periods, but with higher balance transfer fees ... (See Balance transfer cards)

How to save on debit card foreign transaction fees -- We've researched what each major debit card issuer charges in foreign transaction fees -- and give you tips for avoiding them ... (See Foreign transaction fees)

2011 airline gift card comparison chart -- While most airlines offer gift cards, their terms and conditions vary. Make sure you know what you're getting before you buy ... (See Airline gift cards)

Walmart continues layaway's revival, but will deferred gratification payment -- The layaway concept -- paying over time without incurring debt -- works in the current economic environment, but does it have lasting power? ... (See Layaway plans)

Buying airline miles: Is it worth the cost? -- The offers can be tempting: buying airline miles to boost your mileage account. But how do you know you're getting a good deal and not just adding to the airlines' bottom line? ... (See Buying airline miles)

15-minute fixes for your credit score -- Spending just 15 minutes on these expert tips can give your credit score anywhere from a small bump to a major boost ... (See Quick credit fixes)

7 tips for managing your online spending -- From Amazon to Groupon offers, it is easier than ever before to inadvertently rack up big balances on your credit cards ... (See Managing online spending)

Credit card application rejected? 3 steps to getting next one approved -- Rejected for a new credit card? Take these steps to make sure that the next time you apply for new plastic you are approved ... (See Credit rejection)

5 mental money traps to avoid -- Turning your finances around is never easy, and these five mental money traps can keep you from making much progress ... (See Money traps)

10 credit commandments for young professionals -- The money habits you form in your 20s can set you up for financial success -- or failure. Be savvy with your cash early and reap the rewards later ... (See New to credit)

Credit monitoring services: Pros, cons and how to pick one -- Experts are divided about whether these services are worth the cost, but if you've been a ID theft victim, they can help raise red flags ... (See Credit monitoring)

6 expenses you should never put on a credit card -- There are some things experts say you should never put on a credit card -- because they're frivolous, can land you deep in debt or because there's a better alternative ... (See Things not to charge)

The 7 deadly credit card sins -- Commit one or more of the seven deadly sins, and you might find yourself headed straight for credit card hell. With a little help, it isn't too hard to trade vice for virtue ... (See Credit card sins)

Stolen: True tales of identity theft -- Identity theft happens when you least expect it -- and often committed by the people you least suspect. Read how victims worked to restore their good names and credit. ... (See Identity theft)

5 credit card urban legends and why we fall for them -- A magical way to erase debt, the debt collector who wants $0 and battling Osama with your plastic -- all urban legends that prey on our weaknesse ... (See Credit card urban legends)

Zen and the art of credit card management -- Credit cards can offer peace of mind, but more often than not, they create undue stress. You can bring tranquility into your financial life by following these five strategies for attaining credit card Zen ... (See Zen and credit cards)

5 steps to dispute a debt that's not yours -- Identity mix-ups are common, but if you're being tagged for debt that is not yours, you need to fix the problem instead of ignoring it. ... (See Not my debt)

9 best practices for debit card use -- Debit cards don't let you rack up debt, but they can still lead to trouble if not used wisely. Here are tips from the experts. ... (See Debit cards)

How the Credit CARD Act will affect types of credit cards -- The Credit CARD Act has pushed card issuers to make big changes -- and some types of credit cards will be impacted more than others. We look at each type. ... (See Card law impact)

How and when to use 'emergency' credit cards -- It's the end of the month, you're down to your last dollar before payday and your car breaks down. What do you do? Do you pull out the plastic? ... (See Emergency)

Frugality: Just a fad? Or will consumers keep saving after the recession? -- The tanking economy brought us recession chic. It became cool to clip coupons, throw potlucks and swap used items, but how long will it last? ... (See Spendthrifts)

Forecasters weigh in on new frugality -- Is the new frugality here to stay? Two economic forecasters debate whether American consumers will continue to cut corners or return to big spending. ... (See Frugal)

5 new rules in the credit card balance transfer game -- Transferring a credit card balance used to be so easy and painless that some consumers referred to it as a game, but that game has changed. ... (See Transfer)

4 ways to fight minimum payment increases -- Thousands of credit card customers were surprised by news that their credit card minimum payments will more than double. Find out what your options are. ... (See Ouch)

Laid off and in debt: 5 steps to take now to keep credit intact -- Millions of Americans are now without jobs, and many most likely carry credit card debt. Here are steps to take immediately to protect your credit. ... (See Laid off)

Giving the gift of flight with airline gift cards -- Anyone considering giving an airline gift card should make sure all the terms and conditions won't prevent redemption ... (See Airline gift cards)

Airline gift card comparison chart -- Anyone considering giving an airline gift card should check all the terms and conditions first to make sure your gift is a good fit ... (See Air cards)

Deferred interest, same as cash; Play the game right or you lose -- It's tempting: 'No payments for 12 months.' Find out the how deferred interest payment programs work, the best way to use them and what happens if you don't pay on time. ... (See Deferred interest)

Money and credit lessons from the past -- Experts are telling us to pay off debt and stop charging. Here are some money management lessons from the past that can help break the credit card debt cycle. ... (See Save)

US credit cards outdated, less useful abroad, as 'chip and PIN' cards catch on -- Sure, you can swipe to heart's content here in the United States. But bring that mag-stripe card to Europe and chances are it won't work as the credit card technology there is years ahead. ... (See PIN)

Good dog, bad bill: Veterinary care financing options -- Pet owners have more veterinary treatment choices than ever, which is good for pets, but can strain finances. We review the payment options. ... (See Pay the vet)


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