Kristin McGrath

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In her career as an editor and writer, Kristin McGrath has covered everything from personal finance, to politics, to arts and entertainment. She most recently worked as an editor for Bankrate Insurance, tackling topics like coverage questions and complex policy clauses.

Previously, she worked as managing editor of Louie, a small monthly magazine in St. Louis. She also spent a year covering entertainment for USA Today's Life section, interviewing actors, musicians and American Idols.

Kristin holds a master's degree in Journalism and Public Affairs from American University in Washington, D.C. She has had the same credit card for nearly 10 years and admits she's sometimes afraid to use it.


Kristin McGrath's blog posts at

  • I turned down car rental insurance at the counter. Bad idea?

    I don’t rent cars often, but when I have, I’ve always responded “sign me up!” when the agent got to the part about insurance. But when I picked up my rental early this morning, I said, “Thanks, but I’ll pass.” The reason? My new credit card’s rental insurance protections. The story My boyfriend and I […]

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  • My rewards card plan

    As I mentioned last week, I applied for the Citi Platinum Select AAdvantage card. And I’m glad to report that I was accepted. The card is in my wallet, it’s linked to my AAdvantage rewards account, and I’m ready to start charging. I’ve got a sign-up bonus of 30,000 miles to earn and $1,000 to […]

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  • How I picked the rewards card that (I think) is right for me

    I’ve been in the market for a new credit card for a while. My credit history suggests I can probably get a pretty good card, so I’ve been scoping out rewards cards for the past few months. I’m an extreme comparison shopper at heart, and found myself oscillating between cash-back cards and travel rewards cards. […]

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  • “I Can’t Believe I Charged That:” Our contest winners

    Last week marked the end of our “I Can’t Believe I Charged That” Facebook essay contest. We asked contestants to share their story of an unbelievable credit card purchase — and we’re thrilled to announce our Top 3 winners and honorable mentions. Thanks so much to all who entered. Our panel had fun reading (and […]

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  • Shopping to cure loneliness? It may actually work

    Ever turned to retail therapy to cure a bout of loneliness? If you fit the right personality profile, it may be a pretty effective cure, new research says. The most expensive article of clothing in my closet was purchased right after I moved to a new city. With no local friends yet and a week […]

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  • The Rules I Made as an Underemployed, Freaked-Out College Grad

    Did you graduate from college in May? If you’re like a lot of new grads, this summer has been a tough one of job searches and inconsistent (or non-existent) work. According to a July 6 article in the Miami Herald, recent grads are learning the hardest lesson that personal finance courses can’t convey: How much […]

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  • Dreading Your Annual Financial Checkup? Graphs are Your Friends

    It’s an oft-repeated bit of financial wisdom: Look carefully at your bank statement to see where your money is going. We may have repeated it a few times on this site as well. However, when it comes to spotting long-term spending patterns, logging in to online banking and scrolling through past transactions will make you […]

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