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11.99%

Interest Free Days

55

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for 12 months then $49

$12.5

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Purchase Rate

12.49%

Interest Free Days

55

Annual Fee

$58

$20

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18.79%

Interest Free Days

55

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$95

$20

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11.99%

Interest Free Days

45

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$0

$20

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19.74%

Interest Free Days

55

Annual Fee

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for 12 months then $87

$20

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Purchase Rate

20.74%

Interest Free Days

55

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$129

$30

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20.24%

Interest Free Days

55

Annual Fee

$225

$20

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19.99%

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55

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for 12 months then $149

$12.5

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20.74%

Interest Free Days

44

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$50

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18.79%

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$80

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19.99%

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44

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$95

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19.99%

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55

Annual Fee

$425

$20

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19.99%

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55

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$295

$20

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19.74%

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44

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$30

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18.79%

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55

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$375

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19.99%

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55

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$29

for 12 months then $49

$30

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0.00%

for 15 months then 13.99%

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55

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$100

$15

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19.99%

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55

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$149

$12.5

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20.74%

Interest Free Days

44

Annual Fee

$289

$30

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Purchase Rate

20.74%

Interest Free Days

44

Annual Fee

$64

for 12 months then $129

$30

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0.00%

for 14 months then 20.74%

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44

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$64

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$30

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11.99%

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44

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19.99%

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55

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$199

for 12 months then $299

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11.99%

Interest Free Days

55

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$0

for 12 months then $45

$15

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11.99%

Interest Free Days

55

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$49

$25

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17.74%

Interest Free Days

55

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$55

$20

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Learn more about credit cards

Not all credit cards are created equally. Whether you’re a traveller, rewards points chaser, or big spender, it pays to do your research around which credit card could be right for you. 

What credit card will suit me?

There's no shortage of cards to include in your credit card comparison. Your credit card choice will ultimately depend on what you want to use your card for, and the perks you may receive whenever you do. There are a range of credit card types available in Australia. Some of the most popular include: 

Low rate credit cards

As the name implies, low rate credit cards are credit cards that come with lower than average interest rates. They are able to keep rates down by not offering perks like rewards programs or high credit limits. If you’re looking for a no-frills option that’s theoretically easier to manage, consider a low rate credit card. 

Keep an eye out for what rate the ‘low’ label applies for. A low rate credit card may have a low purchase rate, for example, but a higher than average cash advance rate. Make sure you read the key fact sheets for any credit card you may be interested in. 

Platinum credit cards

Unlike low rate credit cards, platinum cards are aimed towards Australians looking for high credit limits and extensive rewards programs. They can come with higher interest rates and annual fees. However, the idea is that those taking out a platinum credit card can afford these costs as they’re marketed towards those with higher incomes. 

Balance transfer cards

If you have existing credit card debt, balance transfer cards can be a helpful debt management tool. They charge no interest on a balance you transfer from your old credit card for a limited time. This means you can concentrate on clearing your debt without being charged more interest on top of it. 

Just remember that you’ll still be charged interest on new purchases, often straight away, without the benefit of interest-free days. If you get a balance transfer card, it’s advised that you put it in the freezer and focus on paying off your debt. 

Rewards credit cards

Rewards credit cards are those that are attached to rewards programs. The dollars you spend will earn you rewards points. Credit card providers will allow you to exchange these points through the rewards programs for things like gift cards, home goods and electronics. 

If you plan on using your credit card regularly, they can be a competitive choice. Consider how you plan to use your card and how closely this matches with the card’s rewards program. For example, if you regularly use your credit card at a local supermarket, you may want to consider a credit card that lets you earn points that can be redeemed at these shops.

Frequent flyer cards

One of the most popular types of rewards credit cards are those that offer frequent flyer points. It works similarly to rewards points, but you earn frequent flyer points instead based on the amount you spend. They can be spent on flights or upgrade with major airlines. If you make regular plane trips for work or to visit family, or if you love to travel, this card type may suit you. 

What to look for in a credit card

Here are a few things to consider when shopping around for a credit card:

  • Credit card purpose: how do you plan on using your credit card? For everyday shopping or major purchases only? For buying overseas or travel? To transfer an existing balance? Narrow down your purpose so you can compare apples with apples. 
  • Interest rates: credit cards can charge different rates for purchases, cash advances and balance transfers. Also, keep an eye out for introductory, promotional, or “honeymoon” rates that revert to a higher one after a period of time. Knowing what rates you may be charged before applying can keep you from growing debt. 
  • Interest-free periods: how long you’ll have to pay back your purchases before you’re charged credit card interest. The higher number of days, the more breathing room to make repayments. 
  • Rewards programs and extras: rewards programs let you earn points on your everyday spending that can be exchanged for goods or transferred into frequent flyer points. Some credit cards also offer extras such as travel insurance. These programs and extras typically incur higher annual fees. 
  • Fees and charges: are there any extra costs, such as annual fees, or charges for overseas purchases? Consider whether the credit card’s benefits would likely be worth these costs. 

 

Can anyone get a credit card?

No, not everyone will be approved for every credit card. It is easier to be approved for a credit card than some other forms of finance, like a home loan, as you don’t need to offer up a deposit to be approved. But you will need to meet credit card eligibility criteria, such as:

  • Being an Australian citizen or permanent resident
  • 18 years old or over
  • No history of bankruptcy
  • Meet minimum income requirements (can range from $10,000 to $1000,000 and higher for platinum and above cards)
  • Good credit rating

Credit card providers will assess your eligibility at different scales, depending on the type of card you’re applying for.  For example, if you’re applying for a Titanium credit card and you don’t meet the minimum income required, your application is more likely to be rejected. 

When applying for a credit card, you’ll need to provide the following:

  • Proof of income: salaries or wages
  • Proof of employment: two or more recent payslips
  • Photo ID (driver’s license, proof of age card or passport)
  • Additional assets and income (such as a savings account or managed investments)
  • Credit history
  • Tax file number
  • Details of any existing loans, such as personal loans, a lease or other credit cards
  • Recent tax returns, particularly if you’re self-employed

How much do I have to pay on my credit card?

All credit cards have minimum repayment requirements. These are usually a percentage of your total balance (2 - 3.5 per cent), but can be a dollar figure - usually around $20. It’s highly encouraged that you make more than the minimum repayment requirements, however, or it can take you years to pay off an outstanding balance. 

For example, Mark has an outstanding credit card balance of $10,000 at an interest rate of 18 per cent. His card has a minimum repayment amount of $20 or 2 per cent (whichever is higher). If he only made minimum repayments to this debt, it would take him 43 years and 11 months to pay off his balance. However, if he made higher monthly repayments of $400, it would only take 2 years and 7 months to pay off his balance. 

How do you compare credit cards?

Now you know the type of card you want, and the extras to keep an eye out for, it’s time to narrow down your options. The best way to compare credit cards is to do your research and use comparison tables. 

Comparison tables are a helpful way to compare things equally, side by side. You can view a range of credit card options in a table that outlines some of the more significant costs and features. These include the purchase rate, annual fees, maximum interest free days and late payment fees. Filter down your options to create a short list of credit cards. 

Once you’ve made a short list, it’s worth checking out the Key Facts Sheet for those cards. These are kept on the credit card providers website. They offer more detail on the cards you’re interested in, such as a break down of all fees and interest rates.

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Frequently asked questions

How to get money from a credit card

Strapped for cash but only have your credit card available? You may be wondering if you can withdraw money from your credit card. The short answer is yes, but 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 will 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 will 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 does credit card interest work?

Generally, when we talk about credit card interest, we mean the purchase interest rate, which is the interest charged on purchases you make with your credit card.

If you don’t pay your full balance each month (or even if you pay the minimum amount), you are charged interest on all the outstanding transactions and the remaining balance. However, interest is also charged on cash advances, balance transfers, special rate offers and, in some cases, even the fees charged by the company.

The interest rate can vary, depending on the credit card. Some have an interest-free period, otherwise you start paying interest from the day you make a purchase or from the day your monthly statement is issued. So avoid interest by paying the full amount promptly.

What happens if I have a bad credit score?

What happens if I have a bad credit score?

If you have a bad credit score, you might encounter two main problems. First, the lower your credit score, the more likely you are to be rejected when you apply for a loan or any other credit product. Second, if your application is accepted, the less likely you are to qualify for the lowest interest rates.

What is a credit card?

A credit card is a payment method which lets you pay for goods and services without using your own money. It’s essentially a short-term loan which lets you borrow the bank’s money to pay for things which you can pay back – potentially with interest – at a later date. Credit cards can also be used to withdraw money from an ATM, which is known as a cash advance. Because you’re borrowing money from a bank, credit cards charge you interest on the money you use (unless you repay the entire debt during the interest-free period). When you apply for a credit card, the bank gives you a credit limit which sets the maximum amount you can borrow using your card. Credit cards are one of the most popular methods of payments and can be a convenient way of paying for goods and services in store, online and all around the globe.

Monthly repayment

Can a pensioner get a credit card?

Pensioners can get credit cards with certain banks – if they can convince the bank they’re credit-worthy. Here are some points to consider if you are a pensioner looking for a credit card:

Annual income: Look for a credit card for which you easily fall within the minimum annual income requirements. This can be from the pension, superannuation or any other sources.

Annual fees: If high fees are a concern for you, opt for a card with a low or $0 annual fee. You want to make it as easy as possible to fit a credit card into your current lifestyle and spending habits.

Interest rate: Make sure you won’t have any nasty surprises on your credit card bill. Choose a card with a low interest rate to minimise risk (to both yourself and the bank – and this will help your application).

How do you pay off credit cards?

When managed properly, credit cards can be a convenient way to access cash and reap rewards. As convenient as they can be, it’s important to keep on top of your repayments so you don’t end up paying more in interest than the item originally cost. Each month, you’ll get a credit card statement detailing how much you owe and how long it will take to pay off the balance by making minimum repayments. If you only make the minimum repayments, it will take you years to pay off your outstanding balance and add extra costs in interest charges. To avoid any extra charges, you should pay the entire bill.

Can we pay stamp duty by credit card?

Stamp duty is a tax that’s payable when you buy a property in Australia. The amount varies from state to state. Different states also have different rules about whether you can pay stamp duty with a credit card.

Some allow payments only from a savings or chequing account, whereas others allow payment through BPAY – and you may be able to do this through your credit card.

Check the payment options for stamp duty on your local state revenue office website. Also read the fine print to see if BPAY payments on your credit card are considered cash advances, as this could attract a higher interest rate.

Are there credit cards for students?

Yes, there are credit cards available with students in mind. These can help young Australians to build their credit report and learn crucial life skills around budgeting and managing personal finances.

How to pay a credit card

There are a few ways to pay a credit card bill. One way is to pay via BPAY. This means you can make your credit card payment on the phone or via the internet.

You can set up an automatic payment from an Australian 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.

Different Australian banks will also allow you to pay off credit card bills in person at one of their branches.

Some credit card companies also allow you to pay your credit card via an app whenever each statement is due.

Should I get a credit card?

Credit cards are a personal responsibility, so the reasons behind getting a credit card should also be personal.

You should always consider all the pros and cons of taking out a credit card before you sign on the dotted line.

For example, pros include the fact that credit cards can be a good way of paying for purchases, earning rewards points and building a credit history.

But there are also cons – credit cards can be expensive and put a lot of financial pressure on you.

You need to consider your personal finances and your lifestyle choices. Do you need a credit card? What options are out there for me? Can I handle the repayments? Why am I getting a credit card in the first place?

What's the best credit card for rewards?

Credit cards offering rewards can be great if you know you’ll use the card enough to get significant rewards points, and use the rewards you earn.

They 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.

Also, think about the types of benefits you’d like. There’s no point in getting a card with rewards for retailers you never visit, or travel you don’t have time to use.

How is credit card interest charged?

Your credit card will be charged interest when you don’t pay off the balance on your credit card. Your card provider or bank charges you the individual interest rate that is associated with your card, which is usually between 10 and 20 per cent. 

The interest will be added onto your bill each month or billing period if you don’t pay off the balance, unless you are in an interest-free period.

You will be charged interest on anything that hasn’t been paid for inside the interest-free period. Usually you will receive a notice on your bill or statement saying you will be charged interest so you have some form of notice before you’re charged.

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How to make a credit card online

Credit cards can be useful, provided you understand the risks. 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.

Can I get a credit card on part-time/casual work?

Yes, as credit card providers look at your annual income amount as well as your occupation. Minimum income requirements tend to be between $30,000 – $40,000 for standard and rewards credit cards, however low income credit cards can have minimum income requirements as low as $15,000 per year.

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, such as a retail loan for goods.

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 by providing evidence you have stable income through a full-time and secure job, an unblemished debit card history and regular monthly saving. The loan, however, may come with higher interest rates and repayments.

How do I apply for a credit card online?

To make applying for a credit card as straightforward as possible, most lenders offer plenty of online prompts to guide you through the process.

Once you’ve decided on the product you want, follow the link on the lender’s website to start your application. Most lenders will list the documents and information you will need before you begin – for example, identification documents, employer details, your income, regular expenses. It helps to have these handy when you start.

Once you’ve entered all the necessary information, you’ll have an opportunity to review your answers and check everything is correct. You’ll also receive an immediate response from the lender once you submit your application – usually with a reference number so you can track your application’s progress.

How many numbers are on a credit card?

The numbers on your credit card actually follow a universal standard which is used to identify specific functions. Each credit card has a different amount of numbers: Visa and Mastercard have 16, American Express has 15 and Diner’s Club has 14. The first number on a credit card always identifies what type of credit card it is. Visa cards start with a 4, whereas Mastercard starts with a 5 and American Express with a 3. The remainder of the digits represent the account number, including the last number which is used to verify that your credit card is actually valid. Credit cards also have additional verification numbers, which are mainly used when the card isn’t present for phone and online purchases. These are the three-digit numbers on the back of Visa and MasterCard or the four-digit numbers on the front of an American Express card.

How to pay a credit card from another bank

Paying or transferring debt from one lender to the other is called a balance transfer. This involves transferring part or all of the debt from a credit card with one lender to a credit card with another. As part of the process, your new lender will pay out the old lender, so that you now owe the same amount of money but to a new institution.

Many credit card providers offer an interest-free period on balance transfers to help new applicants better handle their debt. During this period, cardholders are not required to pay interest on the debt they brought over from the other card. This can be a great opportunity for consumers to pay off credit card debt with no interest. There are often fees associated with balance transfers; normally, these are a percentage of the amount transferred.

So make sure you read the terms and conditions of the card before transferring any debt across.