Canceling unused credit cards is an excellent idea, but keep a few things in mind to do it right.
Keep an account open, and don’t let the card issuer know you’re thinking of canceling until the balance is paid off. Some issuers may increase the interest rate if you try to cancel while you still have a balance.
If you cancel your credit card over the phone, know that your card issuer may transfer you to someone who will try to convince you to keep the card. Also, make sure you receive written notification from the card issuer of your cancellation and write down the day, time, and who you spoke with for your records. Ask the card issuer to report that the account was “closed at customer’ request.”
If the card issuer offers you a better rate or an improved deal on a card you’re trying to cancel, get all the details; consider keeping it and possibly canceling another card instead.
If you have balances on several cards, consider consolidating those balances on one or two low-rate cards and cancel the rest.