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Purchase Rate

19.74%

Interest Free Days

44

Annual Fee

$30

$15

More details

Purchase Rate

20.74%

Interest Free Days

55

Annual Fee

$64

for 12 months then $129

$30

More details

Purchase Rate

20.24%

Interest Free Days

55

Annual Fee

$30

$20

More details

Purchase Rate

16.99%

Interest Free Days

55

Annual Fee

$125

$20

More details

Purchase Rate

20.24%

Interest Free Days

55

Annual Fee

$375

$20

More details

Purchase Rate

20.24%

Interest Free Days

55

Annual Fee

$0

for 12 months then $30

$20

More details

Purchase Rate

20.24%

Interest Free Days

55

Annual Fee

$425

$20

More details

Purchase Rate

20.24%

Interest Free Days

55

Annual Fee

$95

$20

More details

Purchase Rate

20.24%

Interest Free Days

55

Annual Fee

$95

$20

More details

Purchase Rate

20.24%

Interest Free Days

55

Annual Fee

$295

$20

More details

Learn more about credit cards

Why you need to compare credit cards 

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 You wouldn’t buy the first car you saw without looking under the bonnet and doing a little research first, so why should it be any different for credit cards? 

Credit card comparison is one of the essential ways that consumers can protect themselves from higher than average interest rates and fees. By comparing credit cards, you can ensure you’re choosing a credit card that suits your financial needs and budget. 

There are a multitude of different factors that can influence how much you’ll pay for your credit card, including:

  • Credit card interest rates
  • Balance transfer introductory rates
  • Credit card rewards and perks
  • Credit limits
  • The number of interest free days
  • Overseas credit card fees
  • Ongoing fees, such as annual fees and late fees 

Not all credit cards are created equally, so before you take out a new credit card, make sure you’ve made a thorough comparison of all the cards on offer. 

What credit cards can I compare? 

There’s a wide range of card types available for credit card comparison, with the most popular types being: 

Credit card type

About

Low rate credit cards

Offer consumers a lower interest rate than competitors. No-frills product (minimal perks and/or bonuses – if any).

Low fee credit cards

All credit cards come with an annual fee, however some providers offer special low annual fee credit cards to entice customers. Keep an eye out for potential hidden costs and fees.

Balance transfer cards

Allow you to move a debt balance from one financial provider or product to another with a lower or no interest rate (for a set period of time) to help you pay back your debt.

Rewards credit cards

The money you spend earns you rewards points that can be redeemed for exclusive discounts or offers through rewards points systems.

Frequent flyer cards

Similar to rewards credit cards, however you specifically earn points to be exchanged for frequent flyer rewards (such as discounted flights, upgrades, travel and medical insurance etc.)

How do I compare credit cards? 

  1. Look at the type of credit card 

How you plan on using your credit card will drastically impact how you compare it against other credit cards. If you’re looking for a no-frills option without the extras like travel insurance, you may want to consider low rate or low fee credit cards. However, if you’re a big spender, or you want to take advantage of rewards points, premium credit cards or rewards credit cards may be better suited to you. 

  1. Look at the credit card rates 

Another important way to compare credit cards is to look at the interest rates, including purchase rates, balance transfer rates and rates for cash advances. Low credit card interest rates tend to sit in the 10 – 12 per cent range, however these rates can be higher or lower depending on the type of credit card. 

  1. Look at the credit card fees 

It goes without saying that the more fees your credit card stings you with, the more it will cost you in the long run. While it’s difficult to avoid an annual fee, there are a range of common credit card fees that you can find lower cost options for, or avoid all together. 

These include late payment fees, foreign currency conversion fees, foreign ATM usage fees, dishonour fees, over-the-limit fees, ATM cash advance fees and replacement credit card fees. 

  1. Comparison tables and tools 

The easiest way to perform a total credit card comparison is to use credit card comparison tools. RateCity.com.au provides Australians with a range of easy to use comparison tools, such as comparison tables and balance transfer calculators. 

Comparison tables allow you to easily search and filter for the type of credit card you want. The tables then showcase important cost factors such as rates, fees, credit card limits and the number of interest free days, so you can find the most competitive choice for your financial needs and budget. 

Credit Cards 101 

 

What are the best credit card deals in Australia? 

There are a range of factors that you need to consider when comparing credit cards, and the best credit card for one person may not necessarily be the best for another. 

If you’re hunting for the best credit card for you, the easiest thing to do is to utilise credit card comparison tools, such as comparison tables, balance transfer calculators and credit card guides to ensure you’re making the most educated decision for your financial needs and budget. 

What are the pros and cons of credit cards? 

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Credit cards can be a helpful financial resource if you’re disciplined and financially savvy, however, they’re one of the most common ways you can fall into debt if you struggle with self-control or lack a strong level of financial literacy. 

There are a number of pros for credit cards, and first and foremost is the easy ability to “borrow” money. When you make a purchase with your credit card, you’re expected to pay back the “loan” at the end of your payment period. If you’re not able to pay off your balance each month you’ll be charged interest, which can quickly grow into debt if not handled responsibly. 

Credit cards with rewards systems allow you to grow rewards points or frequent flyer points. Another pro is the ability to exchange points you’ve earned through spending on exclusive discounts and offers, though it’s important to keep an eye out for credit card fees that charge you for the privilege. 

Further, if you manage your credit card well it will reflect positively on your credit history, helping you to build a great credit score. If you’re unable to pay your credit card bills, or start to grow too much debt it will reflect negatively, which can be detrimental to your ability to take out loans, rent property, buy a house or even join a mobile phone plan.

Pros
  • Easy way to borrow money
  • Enjoy rewards perks and discounts
  • Can improve your credit history
Cons
  • Can grow debt if poorly managed
  • Fees may negate the "free" rewards perks
  • Can negatively impact your credit history

Frequently asked questions

Can a pensioner get a credit card?

It is possible to get a credit card as a pensioner. There are some factors to keep in mind, including:

  • Annual income. Look for credit cards with minimum annual income requirements you can meet. 
  • Annual fees. If high fees are a concern for you, opt for a card with a low or $0 annual fee. 
  • Interest rate. Make sure you won’t have any nasty surprises on your credit card bill. Compare cards with a low interest rates to minimise risk.

How easy is it to get a credit card?

For most Australians, there are no great barriers to applying for and getting approved for a credit card. Here are some points that a lender will consider when assessing your credit card application.

Credit score: A bad credit score is not the be all and end all of your application, but it may stop you being approved for a higher credit limit. If your credit score is less than perfect, apply for the credit limit that you need, rather than the one you want.

Annual income: Most credit cards have minimum annual income requirements. Make sure you’re applying for a card where you meet the minimum.

Age & residency: You need to be at least 18 years old to apply for a credit card in Australia, and most require that you are an Australian citizen or permanent resident. However, there are some credit cards available to temporary residents.

How do you use credit cards?

A credit card can be an easy way to make purchases online, in person or over the phone. When used properly, a credit card can even help you manage your cash flow. But before applying for a credit card, it’s good to know how they work. A credit card is essentially a personal line of credit which lets you buy things and pay for them later. As a card holder, you’ll be given a credit limit and (potentially) charged interest on the money the bank lends you. At the end of each billing period, the bank will send you a statement which shows your outstanding balance and the minimum amount you need to pay back. If you don’t pay back the full balance amount, the bank will begin charging you interest.

What should you do if your credit card is compromised?

Credit card fraud is a serious problem. If your credit card is compromised and you’re wondering what to do, here are a few precautionary steps to take.

Contact you credit provider – Get in touch will your credit card provider. If you feel your card has been compromised, you should be able to lock or block it.

Monitor your accounts – Keep an eye on your credit card accounts. Any unauthorised transactions could be a sign your credit card has been compromised.

Check your credit rating – It’s also important to check your credit rating, to ensure you’re not a victim of identity theft or some other financial mischief.

Do you need a credit card to get a loan?

You do not need a credit card to get a loan, but you usually need to have a credit history. Without a credit history, a financial institution cannot assess your ‘credit worthiness’, or your capacity to pay off the loan.

If you don’t have a credit card, your credit history can reflect any record of paying off an asset. Without any credit credit history, you’re limited in the type of loans you can apply for. But you may be able to obtain a secured loan against an asset. For more information on improving your credit score, go here

What is a balance transfer credit card?

A balance transfer credit card lets you transfer your debt balance from one credit card to another. A balance transfer credit card generally has a 0 per cent interest rate for a set period of time. When you roll your debt balance over to a new credit card, you’ll be able to take advantage of the interest-free period to pay your credit card debt off faster without accruing additional interest charges. If your application is approved, the provider will pay out your old credit card and transfer your debt balance over to the new card. 

How do you use a credit card?

Credit cards are a quick and convenient way to pay for items in store, online or over the phone. You can use a credit card as a cashless way to pay for goods or services, both locally and overseas. You can also use a credit card to make a cash advance, which gives you the flexibility to withdraw cash from your credit card account. Because a credit card uses the bank’s funds instead of your own, you will be charged interest on the money you spend – unless you pay off the entire debt within the interest-free period. If you pay the minimum monthly repayment, you will be charged interest. There are many different credit card options on the market, all offering different interest rates and reward options.

What should you do when you lose your credit card?

Losing your credit card is a serious situation, and could land you in financial trouble. Here is a simple guide detailing what to do when you lose your credit card.

Lock you card – Contact your provider and inform them about your lost credit card. From here lock, block or cancel your card.

Keep track of transactions – Look out for unauthorised credit card transactions. Most banks protect against fraudulent transactions.

Address recurring charges – If your card is linked to recurring charges (gym membership, rent, utilities), contact those businesses.

Check credit rate – To ensure you’re not the victim of identity theft, check your credit rating a month or two after you lose your credit card.

Should I get a credit card?

Once you've compared credit card interest rates and deals and found the right card for you, the actual process of getting a credit card is quite straightforward. You can apply for a credit card online, over the phone or in person at a bank branch. 

How to get a credit card for the first time

A credit card can be a useful financial tool, provided you understand the risks and can meet repayment obligations.

If you’re a credit card first-timer, review your options. Think about what kind of credit card would suit your lifestyle, and compare providers by fees, perks and repayments.

Once you’ve selected a card, it’s time to apply. Credit card applications can generally be completed in store, online or over the phone.

When you apply for a credit card for the first time, you must meet age, residency and income requirements. As proof, you must also provide documentation such as bank account statements.

How do you cancel a credit card?

It’s important to cancel your old cards to avoid any additional fees. Unless you’re doing a balance transfer, you’ll need to pay the outstanding balance before you cancel your credit card. If you’ve opted for a card with reward points, make sure you redeem or transfer the points before you close your account. To avoid any bounced payments and save yourself an admin headache, redirect all your direct debits to a new card or account. Once you’ve done all the preparation, call your bank or credit card provider to get the cancellation underway. Once you receive a confirmation letter, destroy your card and make sure the numbers aren’t legible.

How to pay a credit card

There are a few ways to pay a credit card bill. These include:

  • BPAY - allows you to safely make credit card payments online.
  • Direct debits - set up an automatic payment from your bank account to pay your credit card bill each month. You can choose how much you want to pay of your credit card bill when you set up the auto payments.
  • In a branch.
  • Via your credit card provider's app.

How do you apply for a credit card?

You can apply for a credit card online, over the phone or in person at the bank. Once you’ve compared the current credit card offers, the application process is quick and easy. Before you get your application started, you’ll need to gather your personal information like proof of ID, payslips and bank statements, proof of employment and details of your income, assets and liabilities. To be eligible for a credit card, you’ll need to be an Australian citizen over 18 and earn a minimum of $15,000 each year. Once you’ve applied for a credit card, you should get a response fairly instantly. If your credit card application has been approved, you should receive a welcome pack with your new credit card within 10-15 days.

What's the best credit card for rewards?

There is no one-size-fits-all best rewards credit card. It's best you research what type of rewards program you'd like, as well as the fees, interest rate and conditions associated with those types of cards before making a choice. 

Rewards credit cards can also come with high annual fees that may end up nullifying the rewards, so think how often you use the card to decide whether the benefits outweigh the extra cost for you. A card with a lower annual fee might require a lot of spending to get any useful rewards, while another card with a higher annual fee might need fewer purchases to get a reward. 

How to make a credit card online

If you’re wondering about how to make a credit card online application, here are some steps to follow:

  • Test the market. Many credit card options are available online. Compare providers by fees, interest and perks to ensure you’re getting the best deal.
  • Complete the application. Once you’ve selected a card, head to the provider’s website and complete the online credit card application form. Forms vary by providers.
  • Provide details. Most cards require you to meet age, residency, income and credit status condition, and you need to provide details like a bank account statement to prove this.
  • Review details. Ensure the information you’ve entered is correct.

How to get money from a credit card

You can get money from a credit card, but generally it will cost you.

Withdrawing money from a credit card is called a cash advance, as it operates more as a loan than a simple cash withdrawal. Because it is a loan, you may be charged interest on your cash advance as soon as you make the withdrawal. Interest rates are also usually much higher for cash advances than standard credit card purchases.

In addition to the interest rate, you may also be charged a cash advance fee. This could be a flat rate, or a percentage of your total cash advance. If you are considering a cash advance, make sure to add up how much it will cost you before committing.

How long does it take to get a credit card?

There are a few stages you need to go through to get a credit card; each one takes a different length of time.

Applying for the card online, over the phone or in person is the fastest step. This usually takes around 15 minutes, provided you have all of your documents handy.

After submitting your application, it usually takes between one to 10 business days for the lender to assess your eligibility. Some lenders offer instant approval, although you will need to send supporting documents before it is official.

Once your application has been approved, expect to wait between one to 14 days to receive your card in the mail. Keep in mind that delays can happen during busy periods, such as if the lender has launched a special deal.

How do I apply for a credit card online?

How to get cash with just a credit card number

Banks and merchants usually will not allow you to access cash without a physical card, because doing so would open up opportunities for fraudulent activities. Even most non-cash credit card transactions (such as shopping online) require you to know the expiry date and CVV on your credit card in addition to the card number.

However, some banks offer cardless cash for transaction accounts. Using a secure app installed on your mobile phone, you can log onto an ATM and withdraw the money you need. This could be a practical and secure solution if you don’t have a card and need cash.

Where can I get a credit card?

Looking to get your first credit card? You might be confused as to exactly where to go to apply for one. Here’s where to go when you are ready to put in that application.

The bank: Your bank is a great place to start, provided that you have a good banking history. Since you already have a financial history, you have more chance of your application being approved.

Credit card provider: Another option is to apply for a credit card directly from the issuer, such as Visa, Mastercard or Amex. This will most likely be an online application, so do your research and apply for a suitable card for your circumstances.

Major retailers: Coles, Woolworths, Myer and David Jones all have credit cards available. But watch out for the interest rate and annual fees – these cards are designed to help you spend more in store.