Essential Credit Card

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Pros:
  • No Annual Fee
Cons:

    Basic

    Card Level
    Card Level
    Standard
    Interest Free Days
    Interest Free Days
    55
    Maximum credit limit
    Maximum credit limit
    $25,000
    Minimum credit limit
    Minimum credit limit
    $2,000
    Minimum repayment dollars
    Minimum repayment dollars
    $30
    Minimum repayment percent
    Minimum repayment percent
    2.5
    Number free supplementary
    Number free supplementary
    4
    Annual Fee
    Annual Fee
    Late Payment Fee
    Late Payment Fee
    $30
    Over limit fee
    Over limit fee
    $15
    Duplicate statement fee
    Duplicate statement fee
    $10
    Supplementary card annual fee
    Supplementary card annual fee
    $0
    Apple Pay available
    Apple Pay available
    Google Pay available
    Google Pay available
    Samsung Pay available
    Samsung Pay available
    Card Level
    Card Level
    Standard
    Interest Free Days
    Interest Free Days
    55
    Maximum credit limit
    Maximum credit limit
    $25,000
    Minimum credit limit
    Minimum credit limit
    $2,000
    Minimum repayment dollars
    Minimum repayment dollars
    $30
    Minimum repayment percent
    Minimum repayment percent
    2.5
    Number free supplementary
    Number free supplementary
    4
    Annual Fee
    Annual Fee
    Late Payment Fee
    Late Payment Fee
    $30
    Over limit fee
    Over limit fee
    $15
    Duplicate statement fee
    Duplicate statement fee
    $10
    Supplementary card annual fee
    Supplementary card annual fee
    $0
    Apple Pay available
    Apple Pay available
    Google Pay available
    Google Pay available
    Samsung Pay available
    Samsung Pay available

    Rates

    Purchase Rate
    Purchase Rate
    14.99%
    Cash advance rate
    Cash advance rate
    Purchase Rate
    Purchase Rate
    14.99%
    Cash advance rate
    Cash advance rate

    Balance Transfer

    Balance Transfer Rate
    Balance Transfer Rate
    0%
    for 12 months then 14.99%
    Transfer Limit
    Transfer Limit
    70%
    of the chosen credit limit
    Balance Transfer Fee
    Balance Transfer Fee
    $150
    Balance Transfer Rate
    Balance Transfer Rate
    0%
    for 12 months then 14.99%
    Transfer Limit
    Transfer Limit
    70%
    of the chosen credit limit
    Balance Transfer Fee
    Balance Transfer Fee
    $150

    Overseas spending

    Foreign Exchange Fee
    Foreign Exchange Fee
    3% on AMEX
    Overseas charges
    Overseas charges
    Estimated ATM Cost
    Estimated ATM Cost
    Foreign Exchange Fee
    Foreign Exchange Fee
    3% on AMEX
    Overseas charges
    Overseas charges
    Estimated ATM Cost
    Estimated ATM Cost

    Rewards

    Program name
    Program name
    Amex Membership Rewards Gateway
    Rewards Available
    Rewards Available
    Gift Card, Cash Back
    Program name
    Program name
    Amex Membership Rewards Gateway
    Rewards Available
    Rewards Available
    Gift Card, Cash Back

    Eligibility

    Minimum age
    Minimum age
    18
    Minimum income
    Minimum income
    $40,000
    Eligibility conditions
    Eligibility conditions
    No history of bad debt or payment default
    Minimum age
    Minimum age
    18
    Minimum income
    Minimum income
    $40,000
    Eligibility conditions
    Eligibility conditions
    No history of bad debt or payment default

    Earn Rates

    RateCard TypeEarnsCondition
    1 point for $1 spentAMEXuncappedall other eligible purchases
    0.5 points for $1 spentAMEXuncappedutilities, insurance, government bodies

    Perks

    • Extended WarrantyWarranty is extended for the same duration as the original warranty up to 1 year.
    • Purchase ProtectionCovers up to $10,000 per year
    • Free Supplementary CardsSupplementary cardholder must be over 18 years of age
    Other Benefits
    Smartphone Screen Insurance of up to $500
    Other Restrictions
    Cash Advance not available

    Features

    The American Express Essential Credit Card offers cardholders $0 annual fee and rewards points. It also comes with a moderate amount of interest-free days and 12 months balance transfer at 0 per cent (with a 3 per cent establishment fee), all with a moderate interest rate.

    The American Express Essential Credit Card offers uncapped rewards, complimentary insurances and plenty of features without the hefty fees usually associated with rewards cards.

    Standout features include the ability to add up to four supplementary cardholders at no additional fee, as well as smartphone screen insurance covering $500 of screen repairs. You also get access to pre-sale tickets to events through American Express Invites and a range of complimentary insurances such as purchase protection, refund protection, buyer’s advantage and online fraud protection.

    The American Express Essential Card can also be used with Apple Pay, Samsung Pay and Google Pay.

    Pros
    • No annual fee
    • Flexible rewards program
    • Four free cardholders
    Cons
    • Establishment fee on balance transfers
    • High late payment fee
    • High overseas spending fees

    Who is it good for?

    The American Express Essential Credit Card offers value to customers looking to reap the rewards without paying any annual card fees. Those who regularly spend on their credit card and pay off their balance in full each month stand to gain the most from the American Express Essential Credit Card.

    Unlike other rewards cards on the market, there is no cap on the number of reward points you can earn in a statement period. Every $1 spent on eligible purchases will earn you 1 rewards point. This can either be transferred to a choice of eight airline partner programs, redeemed online for a retail gift card or used to pay for card charges on your statement. Participating airlines include Air New Zealand Airpoints, Asia Miles, Emirates Skywards, Etihad Guest, Malaysian Airlines Enrich, Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer, THAI Royal Orchid Plus and Velocity Frequent Flyer. 

    What RateCity says

    The American Express Essential Credit Card may suit frequent spenders looking to make the most of their everyday purchases. Regarding standout features, the lack of annual fee is a bonus, especially for a card that offers rewards, complimentary insurances and four free additional card holders. When it comes to redeeming rewards points, this card offers plenty of flexibility to choose between eight airlines, gift cards or using points to pay card fees.

    Unlike other rewards programs, Membership Rewards point don’t expire; however, they may be forfeited for payments later than 40 days.

    The 12-month 0 per cent balance transfer option is also appealing to those looking to consolidate debt and earn rewards – the caveat being the 3 per cent establishment fee.

    Overseas travellers should note that complimentary travel insurance is not offered with this card and foreign currency conversion fees apply.

    Applying/eligibility

    To be eligible for the American Express Essential Credit Card, you need to be over 18 and provide proof of identity. You’ll also need to have an annual gross income of over $40,000, be an Australian citizen or permanent resident, and have a good credit history. At the time of application, you will need to provide proof of employment and details of any other assets or financial responsibilities like loans or debts. Applications can be made through the American Express website.

    About American Express

    American Express, also known as Amex, is an American multinational financial services corporation best known for its credit cards. American Express offers a wide range of credit cards including low-rate credit cards, frequent flyer credit cards, rewards credit cards and cards that offer no annual fee. Some American Express cards offer extra rewards like bonus points, introductory balance transfer rates, complimentary travel and purchase insurance, concierge service and access to a range of presale events and concerts.

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