If you already have a few credit cards and are considering opening another, you may wonder if there's a number of cards that's too many.
While there's no perfect answer to how many credit cards you should have, the 2019 Experian Consumer Credit Review found that the average American has four. If you can responsibly manage multiple credit cards, you can maximize rewards, annual statement credits and interest-free financing.
While having more than one credit card can be beneficial, you should always consider your credit score, finances and personal goals prior to opening a new card. A credit card application can ding your credit score roughly five points, so it's not in your best interest to apply when you're looking to take out a mortgage or trying to improve your credit.
CNBC Select breaks down whether four credit cards is too many and the average number of credit cards Americans have in every state, according to Experian's report.
Residents of many states on the East Coast have multiple credit cards, and New Jersey takes the top spot of any state with an average 4.1 cards.
Both Alaska and Mississippi residents have the lowest average number of credit cards, 2.8. If you have fewer credit cards than the average four, that's OK. It's up to each individual to decide the right number of credit cards for their lives.
While Americans carry an average of four credit cards, that doesn't mean four cards is ideal. It all depends on your situation.
Credit card optimizers might be curious if there's a number of credit cards that's too many. Thankfully, there really isn't a one-size-fits-all answer. It all depends on how responsible you are at managing multiple cards.
If you always pay on time and in full, then you can open as many credit cards as you want. On the other hand, if you often carry a balance or miss your payment deadline, it's in your best interest to limit the number of cards you open.
If you decide to open another credit card, it's a good idea to consider how each card can help you save money on your spending. You can take advantage of increased benefits by selecting a mix of cards, such as travel rewards, bonus cash back on select purchases, introductory 0% APR cards, and more.
Here are some of our top choices in popular categories.
4X Membership Rewards® points when you dine at restaurants worldwide and shop at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per year in purchases, then 1X), 3X points on flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com, 1X points on all other purchases
35,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $4,000 on eligible purchases within the first 3 months from account opening
See rates and fees
See rates and fees
5X points on Lyft rides through March 2022, 2X points on travel and dining worldwide, 1X points on all other purchases
60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening — worth up to $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
17.49% to 24.49% variable on purchases and balance transfers
Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater
Check out CNBC Select's roundup of the best travel credit cards.
2% cash back: 1% on all purchases and an additional 1% after you pay your credit card bill
No current offer
0% for the first 18 months on balance transfers; N/A for purchases
15.49% to 25.49% variable on purchases and balance transfers
Either $5 or 3% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater
5% cash back at different places each quarter after you activate bonus categories (on up to $1,500 in purchases, then 1%). Plus, unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases.
At the end of your first year, Discover automatically matches all the cash back you earned
0% for the first 14 months on purchases and balance transfers
13.49% to 24.49% variable on purchases and balance transfers
3% intro balance transfer fee, up to 5% fee on future balance transfers (see terms)*
*See our methodology, terms apply.
Check out CNBC Select's roundup of the best cash-back credit cards.
0% for the first 21 months on balance transfers and 0% for the first 12 months on purchases
16.24% to 26.24% variable
5%, minimum $5
2X Membership Rewards® points at U.S. supermarkets on up to $6,000 per year in purchases (then 1X), 1X Membership Rewards® points per dollar spent on all other purchases
Earn 10,000 Membership Rewards® points after you make $1,000 in purchases in your first 3 months
0% for the first 15 months on purchases and balance transfers
14.49% to 25.49% variable APR
See rates and fees, terms apply.
Check out CNBC Select's roundup of the best 0% APR credit cards.
For rates and fees of the American Express® Gold Card, click here.
For rates and fees of the Amex EveryDay® Credit Card, click here.