Shopping is about to pick up for many people, and that means an increase in offers to get department store credit cards.
CNN Money has several tips for people wondering if that instant 20 percent off at the register really is as good as deal as it sounds.
The biggest caveat to those store cards: how much will the interest or possible fees cost you down the line? Some stores offer special, lower interest rates if you pay off the card quickly, but most will stiff you with an interest rate that will more than make up for any savings at that moment.
Thinking you can cancel the card later could also put you in bigger trouble down the road, since canceling cards puts a hit on your credit score. That can make it more costly if you need a loan for something like a car in the next year or two.
Check out the article to arm yourself before making your next trip to the mall.