Ted Rossman, an industry analyst at CreditCards.com, recently booked a trip to Walt Disney World with his wife, Chelsea and 3-year-old daughter, Ashleigh.
He charged the $3,000 vacation on a new credit card. Shortly after, he was shocked to find his credit score had dropped to 790 from 831. "Still good, but a far cry from 831," Rossman said. (Scores from FICO, the data analytics firm that develops and sells credit scores, range from 300 to 850 — and the higher, the better.)
Although he paid off the $3,000 before he even received a statement, the balance was still reported to the credit bureaus. "The card has a $7,500 credit limit and for a few days I was using more than half of that," he said.
The standard advice for a healthy credit score is to avoid paying your bills late or letting your balances get too high. Yet many other moves can lower your score, experts say.