How and When To Pay Your Credit Card in Canada



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The due date and actual time you make your credit card payment has a great impact on the interest rate you are charged. You can simply reduce your interest rate if you pay earlier. If you’re new to the credit card system in Canada, we’ve put together a quick guide to help you.

How to Pay your Credit Card

To pay off your credit card bill, you can either transfer the outstanding bill manually via your banking app or set up autopay. If you’re forgetful person, you’re better off setting up autopay. With autopay, you set up online payments from your checking account or savings account. That way, your bill will automatically get paid on the due date each month. This works best for building up an excellent credit score.

Another way to pay your credit card is by check. You can send in a check to your card issuer.

When To Pay Your Credit Card

Here are the best times to pay your credit card in Canada.

Pay Before Due Date

Ensure to make the least payment before the due date. This will automatically keep your account in good standing and help prevent late payment penalties. Paying early can be helpful, although it is not necessary for terms of timely payments and keeping your account in good standing.

Posting your credit card bill a few days before the due date is the best way to ensure your payment arrives timely.

Pay Before Closing Date

Ensure to pay your credit card bill before the account statement closing date. This will guarantee a lower credit card balance will be reported to the credit bureaus.

Having a high credit card balance updated on your credit report can increase your credit bill and end up with a lower credit score. Having a good credit score is vital if you plan to apply for a major loan before your next account statement closing date.

Early In the Billing Cycle

Even if your due date falls later in the billing cycle, try to pay your credit card early in the billing cycle. It can lessen your interest rate, particularly if you do not buy anything during the billing cycle. Having a lesser balance for several days in a month will result in a lower interest rate.

Make Direct Deposit

Making your credit card payment immediately after getting paid, indicates that you can afford the payment and lowers the chances that you will have your payment returned. Ensure to cross-check your other bills so you do not pay over from one paycheck.

Pay Before Making a Large Purchase

Putting a large purchase on your credit card when you already have an outstanding can increase your credit bill and dent your credit score. Paying down your outstanding before making major purchases can keep your credit bill from surging and protect your credit score from a decline.

There are benefits to making earlier payments in the billing cycle, though the most major thing is to make timely credit card payments.

Credit Card Payment FAQs

How many days before should you pay your credit card?

It is advisable to pay your credit card bill by its due date monthly. You can save yourself a lot by paying it even earlier, whenever your credit bill gets close to or exceeds 30%.

How are payments applied to credit cards?

Payments are applied accordingly to decrease your debts by Credit Card Company. Your payments are applied in two ways:

  • Minimum Payments 

This is the least amount you are mandated to pay monthly. Your credit card issuer can use the minimum payment to whichever outstanding it deems fit. Generally, the minimum payment goes towards the lowest-interest outstanding.

  • The Excess Payments

These are payments made above your minimum payment. Issuers apply this payment to the highest-interest outstanding first. Afterward, the rest are used to offset other outstanding in descending order, usually based on the applicable annual percentage rate by law.

Do I Pay My Credit Card On The Due Date Or Before?

It is advisable to make your payment before your due date if your payment is not automated. This is because it takes some days before your issuer receives your payment when you send a check. Your payment might be late when it finally gets to your issuer.

When Should You Not Use A Credit Card?

It is advisable to not use your credit card in the following scenarios

  • Unsecured website
  • After midnight
  • When you’re close to your credit limit
  • When rates are high
  • For large purchases
  • If you are paying one card with another

Can I Pay My Credit Card Multiple Times A Month?

Yes, you can pay your credit card multiple times a month. Aside from improving your credit score, it also reduces your balance earlier in the billing cycles. Hence, giving you extra credit and more freedom to spend.

Is It Bad To Pay Off Your Credit Card In Full?

Ideally, it is better to pay off your balance in full monthly if you want to build good credit and stay clear of the debt.

Does Credit Limit Reset After Payment?

Your credit limit will remain the same after payment, though the amount you can borrow will be reduced by the outstanding plus the accrued fees. Generally, it is advisable to only change what you can completely repay before the due date.

Do You Still Get Points If You Pay A Credit Card Early?

Yes you do.

Is it better to pay a credit card weekly or monthly?

Yes, weekly payment gives you room to keep your credit utilization rate low, which goes a long way in improving your credit score.

What Happens If I Pay More Than My Credit Card Balance?

If you mistakenly overpay your credit card bill, here is what you can do with the extra.

  • Spend it
  • Request for a check
  • Request for a refund if not used after six months

Why Did My Credit Score Drop After Paying Off My Credit Card?

Most times paying off your credit card may lead to a temporary score plunge. Below are a few reasons why your credit score dropped after payment.

  • It was your only account with a low balance
  • It was your only installment account

What Happens If I Don’t Pay My Credit Card For 5 Years?

Not paying your credit card for long severally damages your credit score. Here are a few things that happen to your credit score if you delay payment.

  • Interest and penalty fee increases
  • A lasting dent on your credit score
  • Collect efforts by billing department increases

Can I Live Without A Credit Card?

The answer is yes and no. You can choose to live without credit cards. On the other hand, a credit card comes in handy, especially when you need to rent/buy a house or car. You do not need too many credit cards, having one or two is okay.

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Avid researcher, freelance writer, and personal finance enthusiast passionate about financial education and literacy.

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Kareena Maya

Personal Finance and Travel Rewards Expert Contributor



Kareena Maya is a freelance writer focused on the personal finance and travel spaces. He frequently writes about credit cards, banking, student loans, insurance, travel rewards and more. His work has been featured in publications such as Forbes Advisor, Bankrate, Credit Karma, Finance Buzz, The Ascent and Student Loan Planner.

Kareena Maya is a freelance writer focused on the personal finance and travel spaces. He frequently writes about credit cards, banking, student loans, insurance, travel rewards and more. His work has been featured in publications such as Forbes Advisor, Bankrate, Credit Karma, Finance Buzz, The Ascent and Student Loan Planner.