1. Online: If you have problems with a purchase or the card number gets hijacked, a debit card is vulnerable because it happens to be linked to an account.The Federal Reserve sets a consumer's liability for fraudulent purchases at $50, provided they notify the bank within two days of discovering that their card or card number has been stolen. Getting 100% of the money that was stolen back into your bank account is another story.
2. Big-Ticket Items: With a big ticket item, a credit card is safer. A credit card offers dispute rights if something goes wrong with the merchandise or the purchase. With a debit card, you have fewer protections.
3. Deposit Required: Putting a deposit on your bank account puts a freeze on those dollars in your account. Using a credit card ensures that you have access to 100% of your money at all times.
4. Restaurants: The danger: Restaurants are one of the few places where you have to let cards leave your sight when you use them. The other problem with using a debit card at restaurants: Some establishments will approve the card for more than your purchase amount because, so the amount of money frozen for the transaction could be quite a bit more than the amount of your tab. And it could be a few days before you get the cash back in your account.
6. Buy Now, Take Delivery Later: Buying now but taking delivery days or weeks from now? A credit card offers dispute rights that a debit card typically does not.
7. Recurring Payments: We've all heard the urban legend about the gym that won't stop billing an ex-member's credit card. Now imagine the charges aren't going onto your card, but instead coming right out of your bank account.
8. Future Travel: Book your travel with a check card, and they debit it immediately. So if you're buying travel that you won't use for six months or making a reservation for a few weeks from now, you'll be out the money immediately.
9. Gas Stations and Hotels: This one depends on the individual business. Some gas stations and hotels will place holds to cover customers who may leave without settling the entire bill. That means that even though you only bought $10 in gas, you could have a temporary bank hold for $50 to $100. Same with hotels, except it could be hundreds of dollars.