As last minute shoppers unite, new study puts Florida 5th in nation with highest credit card debt

Posted at 5:56 PM, Dec 23, 2016
and last updated 2016-12-23 19:26:35-05

Last minute Christmas shoppers are taking to the malls in full force today in Tampa Bay, but the big question: will they pay with cash or credit card?

A new study out just in time for the holidays shows Florida ranks fifth in the nation with the highest credit card debt burden.

According to, Florida’s average credit card balance is $5,603. Florida ranks so high because the median income here is so low — just over $28,000.

“I have one credit card,” said Theo Royal, a last-minute shopper at Westfield Brandon Mall. “Right now I use it for Christmas and then after the holidays I go ahead and pay it off in the next year.”

Experts recommend the best way to get out of debt is to carefully plan it out and pay off large chunks at a time.

They warn against paying just the minimum because with interest, you may never pay it off.

Two days before Christmas may be a bad time to talk finances, but it may not be a bad idea to start planning.