What's so bad The fees are at an all-time high. Plus, the bank may let you overspend - and then sting you. Credit cards issuers say they approve transactions that exceed your limit as a "convenience." But, argues Ed Mierzwinski of the U.S. Public Interest Research Groups, "they should just raise your credit limit and charge interest."
Ouch! As much as $39 at many major banks
What you can do Request that ATM withdrawals, debit purchases or checks be approved only if you have enough money. Some banks, including HSBC, Wachovia and Washington Mutual, let you. Another safeguard is to link your checking account to a line of credit or savings account and raise your credit limit before a spending spree. Also, many banks will send you an e-mail alert or a text message if your balance runs low.
29. Same-day payment fee
What it is Your credit-card bill is due today. You never mailed it. Drat. But wait. You can go to the issuer's Web site and transfer money from your bank account. For a fee.
What's so bad You're paying on time!
Ouch! Washington Mutual collects $15.
What you can do Sign up for e-mail alerts if you tend to procrastinate. Or take your business to an issuer that doesn't charge for last-minute payments, like American Express, Capital One or Discover.