There are many Americans who scan through their credit card statements every month and bypass the so-called grey charges that many people fall prey to. A grey charge, in the simplest terms, is charges that are unwanted but not illegal. They mainly are from when free trials turn into paid subscriptions with little to no notification to the consumer. Based on a study done by BillGuard and the Aite Group, there are around $233 million hidden debit and credit card charges and fees each year. This means that around 35 percent or 5,000 people were paying on average $61 dollars in grey charges per transaction and around $215 a year. They are all the miscellaneous costs that are hidden within the terms and conditions of company’s services that most people over look. The high use of misleading advertising, claims and unintended subscriptions are the culprits of the charges.
There are many different options that Americans have to avoid paying these extra charges. The firs is by staying away from freebies where a credit card is involved. If you are signing up for a subscription read the fine print to make sure that there is not an automatic monthly charge at the end of the trial period. It is also important to look over each credit card bill making sure that you can account for every transaction. This way you can minimize the amount of mistakes and rectify any areas where you may be getting charged.