Credit cards – can’t live with them, can’t live without them.
But after years of helping us spend, then spanking us with high interest rates, suddenly the credit card companies want to be your new bestie.
With Christmas just round the corner and the big four banks cutting interest rates on credit cards – yes, cutting! – which are the best fee-free credit cards on the market?
For a start, unlike what many people assume, credit cards which do not charge an annual fee for the life of the card or for a promotional period, can also give you a variety of other perks such as balance transfers, rewards or frequent flyer points.
According to finder.com.au, there isn’t one “best” no annual fee credit card because everyone has different spending habits that influence what card works best for them. To pick the right card, you have to compare the conditions and features of the card to find the right one for you.
The biggest mistake you can make with a no annual fee credit card, is if you don’t pay the balance on time. Then the interest charges may end up higher than the annual fee you saved in the first place, warned creditcard.com.au site.
Finder.com.au picked the “best” four credit cards which do not have an annual fee.
They are Coles No Annual Fee Mastercard where you pay no annual fee and 0 per cent pa for six months balance transfer offer; Citi Simplicity Card with no annual fee for life including all the perks of Citibank Dining Program and Visa Platinum benefits; ME frank Credit Card with no annual fee for the life of the card and a low interest rate offer and Bankwest Zero Platinum Mastercard with no annual fee and offers a concierge service, travel insurance and 0 per cent foreign transaction fees.
However, a word of warning: “As there are many types of zero annual fee cards on the market, it’s important to consider your financial situation and how you intend to use the card. Make sure to consider not only the conditions of the annual fee, but also the other features, benefits and costs of the card before you apply for a credit card with no annual fee.’’
Creditcard.com.au also warned that no annual fee credit card usually have a high interest rate on purchases.
“Any savings made in the annual fee can quickly be eroded away by high interest charges. If you have a no annual fee card, it’s best to pay off the balance in full each month.
“The biggest mistake people make with no annual fee credit card is using it as an everyday card. If you use it frequently but don’t pay the balance on time, the interest charges may end up higher than the annual fee you saved on paying in the first place,’’ creditcard.com.au said.