Are Credit Cards Easy to Cancel in Switzerland? How-to-Guide

Kann man Kreditkarten einfach kündigen?

Are you no longer happy with your credit card? Then it’s time to cancel! But are credit cards easy to cancel in Switzerland? – This much in advance: the process is very easy and generally goes smoothly and quickly. This article provides a comprehensive insight into the process of canceling credit cards.

  1. The basics
  2. Cancellation steps
  3. Effects of the termination
  4. How long does it take?
  5. Can the bank also cancel?
  6. Common mistakes and tips
  7. Conclusion

If you are looking for a new credit card, we encourage you to take a look at our comparison of the best credit cards in Switzerland for every user category.

Credit card cancellation process

The basics ⛰

Legal aspects of termination: The right to cancel a credit card is enshrined in the card issuer’s General Terms and Conditions (GTC). It is generally possible to cancel a credit card at any time, but it is important to know and understand the specific terms and conditions of the respective provider.

Cancellation periods and contract terms: Although most credit card contracts can be terminated without a specific notice period, there are differences between providers. Some require termination in writing, while others may have additional requirements or processes that must be followed. It is, therefore, crucial to familiarize yourself with the specific cancellation terms of your credit card provider. If you are unsure about the form of termination, customer service should be able to help you.

Steps to cancel a credit card 👣

Steps to cancel credit cards

Preparing to cancel: Before you submit a notice of termination, you should definitely settle all outstanding debts on the card. Also, check any standing orders or automatic payments linked to the card and change them accordingly. Otherwise, you may incur high fees.

Carrying out the termination: Ideally, termination should be made in writing, by letter, or by e-mail. You should include your credit card number and personal details in your termination letter, but for safety purposes, not the CVV or your PIN. It is also advisable to request written confirmation of the termination to ensure that the process is completed correctly. Normally, physical letters are also sent by registered mail in such a case, so you can be sure it has arrived.

Possible effects of the termination 🧨

Impact on your credit rating: Canceling a credit card can affect your credit score, especially if it is a card with a long positive credit history. Such a termination could lead to a short-term reduction in your credit score. If you have a free credit card, it might make sense to keep it.

Returning the physical card: Once the card has been successfully canceled, it is common practice to destroy the physical credit card to prevent misuse and theft of the card information. In some (extremely rare) cases, the issuer may also request the return of the destroyed card.

Effect of card termination

Common mistakes and useful tips

Dealing with bonus programs: Many credit cards are linked to bonus programs. It is important to use or transfer these bonus points or rewards before canceling to avoid financial loss. As a rule, unused cashback, reward points, vouchers, etc., expire immediately upon termination.

Canceling unused cards: Holding unused credit cards can pose a security risk and make it difficult to keep track of your finances. It is, therefore, advisable to cancel such cards.

If you don’t use the card often but still want to have one, a prepaid credit card can be a good choice.

How long does it take to cancel a credit card? ⏳

The time it takes to cancel a credit card can vary depending on various factors:

How long does it take to cancel a credit card?
  1. Provider-specific processes: Each credit card issuer has its procedures for canceling. With some providers, the process can be relatively quick (a few minutes) as long as all the necessary information is provided and there are no unpaid balances. As a rule, it can take a few days to a week.
  2. Form of termination: The way in which the termination is submitted can, of course, also have an influence on the duration. A written notice of termination by letter takes longer than a notice by e-mail or via an online customer portal.
  3. Confirmation of termination: It is advisable to request written confirmation of the termination from the card issuer. The time it takes to receive this confirmation may vary.
  4. Outstanding transactions: If there are any outstanding transactions or statements, this may lengthen the process. The card issuer will likely not finalize the cancellation until all outstanding items are resolved.
  5. Returning the card: If the issuer requires the physical card to be returned, this can also take time.

Overall, the process of canceling a credit card can take between a few days and a few weeks, on average. However, it usually takes a maximum of one week.

Can my bank cancel my credit card? 🎓

Yes, your bank or credit card issuer has the right to cancel your credit card under certain circumstances. This can happen for various reasons:

Can my bank cancel my credit card?
  1. Breach of contract: If you breach the terms and conditions of the credit card, such as by making late payments or exceeding the credit limit, this can lead to termination.
  2. Credit rating: A sharp deterioration in your credit rating can be a reason for the bank to cancel your credit card or change the credit terms.
  3. Inactivity: If a credit card is not used for a long period of time, the issuer may decide to close the account.
  4. Economic factors: Sometimes banks make the decision to discontinue certain credit card products due to internal policies or economic conditions. For example, some time ago the Cumulus credit card was discontinued, and customers had to switch to the Certo credit card.
  5. Suspected fraud: If fraudulent activity or misuse of the credit card is suspected, the bank may temporarily block or even terminate the account.

In most cases, the issuer is obliged to inform you of the termination, often with a reason. However, it is important to understand the terms and conditions of your credit card, as these will always contain details of the issuer’s termination rights.

Conclusion 🎓

Canceling a credit card is usually straightforward and can often be done without having to comply with a specific notice period. You don’t even have to give a reason; you always have the right to cancel the card.

It is important to settle all outstanding amounts and redirect regular payments. A written notice of termination with confirmation from the provider secures the process.

Please note that termination may affect your credit rating, and bonus points may be forfeited. The process varies depending on the provider and can take anywhere from a few days to a week.

In the event of a strange termination by the bank, you should check the reasons and conditions in your contract documents.

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