Best Credit Card

A selection of the Best Credit Card Offers are featured in the credit card comparison table below. The Best Credit Card Offers include the best 0% balance transfer credit cards, the best Low Rate Credit Cards, the best Rewards Credit Cards and those with the Best Introductory Offers.

Simply put, there is no one credit card that fits all. What may be the best credit card for one person, may not be the right one for another. And with well over 200 credit cards in Australia, finding the best credit card to suit your needs and spending is a rather tricky and challenging process.

The key to finding the best credit card that works best for you and one that won’t break your bank is to find out as much information about the different credit card types and establish which credit card best suits your financial situation. Only then can you make an informed decision on what could be the best credit card for you. Below we have pulled together the best of the credit card deals which offers a good starting point in your quest to find the best credit card for your personnel financial circumstances.

Introductory offer: $50 Credit PLUS 0% p.a. Balance Transfer for 12 months

  • $0 p.a. annual card fee
  • Membership Rewards - Earn up to 1 Membership Rewards point for every $1 spent
  • Frequent Flyer Friendly - Transfer your points to a choice of 8 airline rewards partner programs
  • Smartphone Screen Insurance for up to $500 - when you pay for your phone or contract with your Essential Credit Card
  • Low Minimum Income for eligibilty - At just $40,000 p.a.
  • Enjoy a low interest rate - of 14.99% p.a. on purchases

Offer Conditions: Spend $750 on your new card within the first 3 months to attain the $50 credit

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Guide to the Best Credit Card*

 

The initial step toward selecting the Best Credit Card* is to ensure you understand the types of Credit Cards which are available and how these may  or mayne suit your circumstances and needs. Eight credit card types, of which there are many derivatives, are offered in Australia, here we outline the features of these credit card types:

 

Best Low Interest Rate Credit Card

What are Low rate credit cards? - Low rate credit cards offer the lowest purchase rates in the market, with rates generally below 15% p.a.

Why would I choose a low rate credit card? - These credit cards are favored by cardholders who do not clear their credit card balance each month and so carry a balance on their credit card, This balance will be subject to interest charges at either the purchase rate or cash advance rate depending on the type of transaction. By choosing a low rate credit card you will minimize the interest charges on any purchases that are carried over in your monthly balance.

How do 0% Purchase rate cards work? - These 0% Purchase Credit Cards or Interest Free Credit Cards are an evolution of the low rate card into a promotional offer to entice new cardholders to apply for an issuers credit card. They offer a 0% p.a. rate on any new purchases made with the card for a fixed introductory period of between 6 to 24 months. 0% p.a. Purchase Credit Cards are certainly amongst the Best Credit Cards when a low interest rate is the key criteria, but it is important to remember that the 0% p.a. rate is only valid for the introductory period, post which the purchase rate will generally revert to rate closer to 20% p.a.

 

Best Balance Transfer Credit Card

What are Balance Transfer Credit Cards? - These cards use the enticement of a low or even 0% p.a. interest rate to encourage cardholders to move their current credit card debt and enjoy an introductory period where the interest charges on this debt will be significantly less than they are currently being charged.

Why would I choose a Balance Transfer Credit Card? - Cardholders who are carrying a balance on their credit cards month on month will be paying significant amounts of interest on this debt. A Balance Transfer Credit Card is designed to alleviate the strain of these high interest charges by applying a very low or even no interest to this balance, when it is transferred to a new card featuring a balance transfer offer. This balance transfer rate will be applied to the debt for a fixed promotional period that tend to be between 6-24 months, post which the interest rate will then revert to a higher rate, which will be the cards standard purchase or cash advance rate. To maximize their savings in interest balance transfer credit card holders should have a focus on clearing the balance transferred in full prior to the lapse of the balance transfer period.

What’s the best Balance Transfer Credit Card? - As saving interest is the primary motive to switch to a balance transfer card the best balance transfer card would be that which delivered the greatest savings in interest charges. We could then assume that any of the 0% p.a. balance transfer card on offer would fit the best definition as they would all deliver the same amount of savings in interest, but this assumption would be incorrect as we need to consider the term of the balance transfer in conjunction with the rate.

To gain the maximum savings in interest charges you must repay every last dollar of the balance transferred before the end of the balance transfer period, so it is crucial that you select a balance transfer period which is going to be sufficiently long for you to repay the debt in full, and you need to be 100% confident you have the means to repay the debt within the chosen period.

 

Best No Annual Fee Credit Card

What are no annual fee credit cards? - With these cards what you see is what you get, as they promise to charge you $0 per year to hold the card, though the range of card features tends to be culled back to support the zero fee.

Why would I choose a No annual fee credit card? - These cards are popular with cardholders who are an infrequent credit card user or wish to hold a credit card on hand for emergency situations. Generally these cards have a limited range of features though exceptions do exist with a limited number of no fee cards offering a good range features and some such as the American Express Discovery card and American Express Velocity Escape card include a reward program.

What’s the best no annual fee credit card? - Quite simply the one that guarantees the $0 p.a. fee for the life of the card with no need to hit any spend thresholds to keep the $0 p.a. fee. When accessing the no annual fee card options you will probably come across 2 variants of the genuine article, both of which could be a solution for your needs.

The first variant is the 0% p.a. fee which is offered for an introductory period to new customers, so essentially it’s an incentive to sign up for the new card. These introductory periods tend to range from 6-24 months after which the card fee will generally revert to the standard card fee.

Secondly, and the most recent iteration of the no fee credit card is that which offers to charge  $0 p.a. so long as certain conditions are met, conditions which in the majority of cases are related to card spend levels either on an annual basis or a monthly basis. Failure to meet these spend thresholds will trigger the cards standard annual card fee to be charged to your credit card account.

 

Best Frequent Flyer Credit Card

What is a frequent flyer credit card? - These credit cards work on the basis that cardholders are rewarded with frequent flyer points for each dollar they spend, and charge to their card, on eligible purchases. The 2 largest Frequent Flyer programs offering these cards are Qantas Rewards and the Virgin Australia’s Velocity Program.

Why would I choose a Frequent Flyer Credit Card? - These cards are favored by cardholders whom are current members of a frequent flyer program and whose preference to focus on accumulating points for a program they have an existing relationship with. This focused approach means that any points earned are added to those you have earned through your loyalty to the airline by choosing to fly with them, resulting in a single account for all your rewards points. A key benefit of choosing a frequent flyer credit card is that the card issuers and airlines have invested in the systems to make managing your points very easy with all points earned from your credit card activity automatically deposited into your nominated frequent flyer account.

What’s the best Frequent Flyer Credit Card? - Those cards that strike a balance between a good point earn rate, a low annual card fee, generous or no point capping and competitive purchase and cash rates. Once you have established cards with the aforementioned criteria it’s time to assess the introductory offers, which are offered by many frequent flyer credit cards, with offers up to 75,000 bonus points regularly on offer. When considering these offers be mindful that they are increasingly subject to some hurdles, generally spend related, which must be met before any of the bonus points are awarded.

 

Best Reward Credit Card

What is a Reward Credit Card? - Over 50% of all credit cards held by Australian’s include some form of reward program, with the frequent flyer rewards programs being the most popular followed by Coles and Woolworths respective reward schemes. These rewards credit cards offer the opportunity to earn points as a reward for making eligible purchases using your credit card. With points then being redeemed for an ever-increasing array of goods and services, and in some cases even cash.

What’s the best Reward Credit Card? - In a similar vein to frequent flyer credit cards it’s about selecting a card that strikes a balance between a good point earn rate, a low annual card fee and competitive purchase and cash rates. Though unlike the frequent flyer credit cards reward credit cards tend to offer greater flexibility with how you may use any points you earn. So for example he Reward Programs run by Westpac (Altitude Rewards), St George (Amplify Rewards) and Citi (Citi Rewards) all offer the facility to redeem points for a wide variety of goods and services through their own online reward stores but they also offer the opportunity to transfer points to other programs, most specifically frequent flyer programs. This means that you are tied to a single airline when earning points and have the flexibility to transfer points to other programs as and when it makes sense to do so.

Rewards cards generally offer introductory offers of sign up points which tend to be in the range of 5,000 - 75,000 points, though these are only available to new cardholders of the card issuer, and as with frequent flyer cards tend to be subject to hitting certain spend thresholds.

 

Best Student Credit Card

What is a student credit card? - These student credit cards are designed specifically with the needs and circumstances of students in mind, which sees them feature low income eligibility requirements, low fees and a limiting of the card features to those which students are genuinely going to find useful.

Why should I choose a student credit card? - If you are a student at TAFE, University or an accredited college these cards will offer the best deals for you as a student from a cost and benefit perspective, as they have been specifically developed for students.

What’s the best student credit card? - One that is going to help cover your expenses without incurring high interest charges or fees.

 

Best Temporary Resident Credit Card

What is a temporary resident credit Card? - A credit card that will accept applications from non-Australian residents whom hold a visa to live and work in Australia, as temporary residents.

Why should I choose a Temporary resident Credit Card? - Given your visa status these are the only credit cards that will accept applications from you as a temporary resident.

What’s the Best Temporary Resident credit card?  The majority of the major banks in Australia welcome applications from temporary residents though their eligibility criteria vary quite significantly, particularly in terms of which visas they will accept applications from and the minimum level of income that applicants must have. The benchmark income levels for temporary residents is $50,000 p.a. though exceptions do exist with American Express leading the way with it’s Qantas Discovery Card ($35,000 p.a.), Velocity Escape Card ($40,000 p.a.) and Essential Credit Cards ($40,000 p.a.) dipping under the $50,000 threshold.


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Frequently Asked Questions

Which is the best card for dealing with credit card debt?

For those who are already carrying a credit card debt and want to pay it down as quickly as possible, the best option would be a Balance Transfer Credit Card. A Balance Transfer Credit Card allows you to transfer to it debt owed on another card at a very low or even zero interest rate for a limited period.

A Balance Transfer card is best for dealing with credit card debt because it lets you save a significant amount on interest costs, lets you pay off your debt much faster, and generally, simplifies your debt. If possible, go with a Balance Transfer Credit Card where the introductory period for the low or zero interest is long enough for you to fully settle your outstanding debt. If you can do this and hold off on new purchases for as long as possible, you will get your finances back on track before you know it. 

Which credit card type is best for a frequent traveller?

For the frequent traveller, the best credit card is pretty much a given - a Frequent Flyer Credit Card. These types of credit cards are very popular in Australia and there’s practically a horde to choose from in this category.

A Frequent Flyer Credit Card is one that is tied to a frequent flyer program of an airline company. Among the most popular programs in Australia are the Qantas Frequent Flyer and Velocity Frequent Flyer programs. For most credit cards linked to these programs, the exchange is usually pegged at 1 frequent flyer point for every dollar spent. While you can certainly get great flight and travel deals under this program, frequent flyer points can be also be redeemed for other rewards such as merchandise, shopping vouchers, and entertainment rewards.

However, there are still more a couple of points to consider when looking around for the best Frequent Flyer Credit Card. These are the:

  • Airline company. Your preference to fly Qantas, Virgin, Jetstar, or any other carrier will figure importantly into your decision. Definitely, you would have to get a credit card that is associated with your preferred airline. Do you often travel domestic or international? One frequent flyer program may have better deals for domestic travel (or international flights at that) than the other so you really have to look into the details before making a decision.
  • Points and rewards value. Some credit cards may offer higher points per dollar spent. If you’re not leaning towards flying exclusively with one airline and are more concerned about how many frequent flyer points you would be able to earn and the range of rewards and perks you would have access to, then there are also frequent flyer credit cards that would suit you.

Since a frequent flyer program is a type of rewards program, you would do well to remember that frequent flyer credit cards work best only if you pay your balance in full every billing statement and spend a considerably large amount every year to make up for hefty annual fees.