Zales Credit Card: A Bad Idea?

ringsQ: Do you recommend the card from Zales? My longtime girlfriend likes their pink diamond engagement rings and I was thinking of finally popping the question. Think I should apply for a Zales card to get it?

A: First all of all, congrats on the relationship! I think Zales is a great jewelry store – they make some great stuff at somewhat reasonable prices. However I’m not a fan of the Zales card. Here’s why…

Extremely high interest rate
The Zales credit card has some of the most brutal APRs on the market. For example, at the time of writing, the card application listed a 28.99% APR for purchases! That’s not just high, that’s really high! Of course interest rates can change at any time, but I can never recall a time when their credit card had what I would consider to be reasonable rates.

Unattractive financing offers
At the time of writing, the promos were for no monthly interest if paid in full within 6 months on a purchase of $300 or more. For a purchase of $1,000 or more, there’s no monthly interest if paid in full within 12 months.

Why is is this a bad deal? Well, if you don’t pay for the entire balance in full before the promo period is up (either 6 or 12 months) then interested will be charged to your Zales credit card going all the way back to the purchase date! That’s a lot of money considering that their crazy APR! A lot of people don’t realize that’s how these deferred interest gimmicks work.

Limited acceptance
The Zales card is not associated with any major payment network (like Visa, Discover, etc.) so you can only use it at their stores and website.

Customer service complaints
On our affiliate’s site, there are a number of Zales credit card reviews which have been posted by purported customers over the last several years. The vast majority of the reviews are extremely negative and many of them are about the service. One customer describes it as “Their customer service is pretty much non existent.” Now to give Zales the benefit of the doubt, maybe those disgruntled customers are just a small minority. But usually where there’s smoke, there’s fire.

Do you really need that jewelry?
Their credit card aside, the real question you should be asking is how important a piece of jewelry is? Our culture these days equates material things with love. Well if someone really loves you, they will understand if you can’t afford the best engagement ring right now. Is it something that’s worth going into debt for? I do know this… most arguments and disputes in relationships center around debt and money related issues, so keep that in mind!

What are the best credit cards for financing purchases?
If you absolutely insist on financing a purchase, store cards are rarely the way to go. If you have good credit, there are plenty of major credit cards on the market that have promotions such as “0% on purchases for the first 6 months” but unlike the Zales credit card, there won’t be any “deferred interest” involved if it takes you longer than 6 months to pay it off. To see the best deals, check out our sponsored list of the best low interest credit cards for purchases.

The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

At the time I received my card with a pretty good limit for the purchase of wedding rings, I thought wow what a good deal. I had dealt with deferred plans before and they worked out great. This cards interest rate and the way they do their plan…NOT SO MUCH! Its misleading. I didnt know if I was unable to pay off the initial amount charged for the promotion…By the end date all the interest is assessed!!! No matter what your balance is at the end of the promotion. A hefty price to pay. The interest rates says between 23 to 28% when you apply for the card. Its not until after your purchase you find out on your statement you got the higher rate. There is nothing you can do about the accrued interest unless you pay the remaining amount before the end of promotion billing cycle. My remaining from a 3600 original balance was 1700..unfortunately I did not have the extra money hanging around like most of us. I decided to close my account and pay it off as quickly as I can. I will not deal with the zales card again!!! I will use another form of payment if I ever decide to purchase anything from them again!!! Buyer Beware!!!! Unless you can pay the whole balance off in a year….Dont do it!!!!!

they added an insurance policy that never signed for and I have asked them to remove the charges that I didn’t realize I was paying for. 18 months later still haven’t removed the charges these people connected with a bank that is nothing short of thieves. FRAUD FRAUD FRAUD – NEVER AGAIN WILL I EVER BUY SOMETHING FROM THIS STORE ON CREDIT… BUYERS BEWARE!!!!

I just looked at my statement and they charged us all this insurance crap too!

We’ve been going through the same thing w/ them for over a year now!! 🙁 This is shady business right here!! We never asked for any insurance & didn’t catch it on the bill until a bit into having the card. When we called to complain, they said they’d remove the insurance going forward but, would have to look into the crediting back part. Unfortunately, they never removed it like they said they would. The customer service is terrible!! The wasted time & money spent on this we can never get back!! We will never purchase from Zale’s again!!

Gosh I was going to open a zale’credit card. But after reading all the negative reviews.I have decided I will just pay cash. Zales clean up all this negative reports or u will be closing ur doors

I just close my Zales credit card on 6/23/2014. be aware of they prectices, even if you pay on time they charge you $35 late fees.. very bad customer service, I spoke with Edgar (51268260) in customer service, he coudn’t removed unfare fees, them I was transfer to a supervisor called Gorget (gpo14398) she didn’t care at all.. I pay my remain balance and close my credit card account, wont go back to zales. Please don’t accept they 6 month no interests.. It’s a lie..

Your information is right on. If people more people would listen to your advice, they would’nt be in the financial worm hole most are in today. I never take more credit on a card than I can pay off in the same month.

Very excellent advice! Keep it up

I have had my Zales card since 2006 and I like it since I have responsible spending habits and don’t buy out of my budget.

I closed my Zales account 2005/2006 and eventually shredded all information so the account number could not be compromised.

Now in 2012 while speaking with my financial institution they relayed to me that ZALES did not close the account and/or report it to the three credit bureaus. Now this stupid account goes against my credit score even though there has never been a balance carried on this account!

I have made numerous attempts through ZALES customer service to fix this situation, NO customer service exists! Oh by the way, Zales credit cards are controlled by crooked Citigroup! DO NOT GET THIS CARD! Take it from someone who is being burned for it!

why did this hurt your credit? if you weren’t using the card then it should have no effect on your credit score. if you close the account it will though. closing credit cards hurts your credit score because it erases your credit history

I received the card a year ago to buy my fiancé’s engagement ring using the 12 month free of interest promotional offer. I was going to paid off the whole debt when I noticed that they charged me an extra $495.00 on top of my previous balance which it was $395.00 (Total of $890.00). All of that because I didn’t pay the entire balance in full before the promo period is up (12 months). They charged me all the interest from the original purchase on my Zales credit card. If I knew about this I would’ve paid off my balance long ago. But the Zales store never mentioned to me about the fine print of the deferred interest trap after the 12th month period.