Best introductory credit card offers July 2017

Amy Bradney-George 6 July 2017 NEWS

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From saving money on balance transfers to earning bonus points or cashback, these top introductory offers can help you get more from your next credit card.

The new financial year has brought a mix of credit card introductory offers designed to give you more value through savings or rewards. Depending on your goals, you could enjoy a promotional 0% interest rate, thousands of bonus reward or frequent flyer points or even cashback for your account.

Here, we’ve rounded up the best offers for balance transfers, rewards and cashback from our database based on potential dollar value, card costs and what you need to do to enjoy these benefits when you apply.

Rates and fees are correct as of 6 July 2017 but may change subsequently.

Best 0% balance transfer offer

Citi Rewards Platinum

citi-rewards-plat-210x130If you’re looking for a long balance transfer offer, this card gives you 0% interest for 24 months with a one-time balance transfer fee of 1.5%. Citi is one of the only providers that lets you balance transfer debts from personal loans and lines of credit, as well as existing cards not issued by Citi. So if you have debts from multiple sources, this offer is could help you consolidate them and save on interest for the first two years.

The Citi Rewards Platinum also offers a reduced annual fee of $49 in the first year, which reverts to a fee of $149 per year after that. These introductory offers end 31 July 2017.

What do I have to do to get this offer?
Take note of these details to enjoy 0% p.a. on balance transfers for 24 months with this card.

  • Apply by 31 July 2017. You have until the end of July to apply and take advantage of this offer.
  • Request the balance transfer at the time of your application. You can only get 0% interest on balance transfers if you request it when you apply for this card. At the end of the balance transfer period, the interest rate on any outstanding transferred balance will revert to the variable cash advance rate, currently 21.74% p.a.
  • Balance transfer amount. You can transfer up to 80% of your approved credit limit for this card. For example, if you get a credit limit of $10,000, you’d be able to transfer up to $8,000 of existing debt to the account (subject to approval).
  • Balance transfer fee. A one-time fee worth 1.5% of the debt you move to the new card applies with this offer. Note that the introductory 0% interest rate also applies to the balance transfer fee.
  • Activate the card. Your balance transfer will only be processed after you have activated your new Citi Rewards Platinum. You may need to allow a couple of weeks from card activation for this process to be completed, so remember to make any required payments to your existing accounts during this time. The 0% for 24 months period begins when the balance transfer debt is moved to your new card.

Alternative offer: ANZ Platinum (exclusive)

If you want to pay down debt but also have some planned purchases coming up, the ANZ Platinum currently offers 0% p.a. on balance transfers for 12 months and 0% p.a. on purchases for 3 months. This offer is exclusive to applications made through finder.com.au and also includes a $0 annual fee in the first year (reverts to $87 p.a. after that).

Best reward or frequent flyer bonus points offer

American Express Explorer

amex-explorer300x190This American Express Explorer offer gives you 100,000 bonus Membership Rewards points when you spend $1,500 in the first 3 months from application approval. As well as redeeming points for travel, merchandise or discounts on your purchases, you can transfer them to eight different frequent flyer programs – including Velocity, KrisFlyer, Etihad Guest and Asia Miles – with 1 Membership Reward point equal to 0.75 frequent flyer points.

With tax time upon us, it’s also worth noting that the Amex Explorer is one of the only cards offering points for payments to the ATO. You’ll earn 0.5 points per $1 spent on government payments and 2 points per $1 for most other purchases. The Amex Explorer offers a host of other perks and has an annual fee of $395.

What do I have to do to get this offer?
Here’s what you need to know to take advantage of this 100,000 bonus points offer.

  • Apply by 2 October 2017. This offer is only available when you apply by 2 October 2017 and are approved for the card.
  • New cardmembers only. You can only get 100,000 bonus points if you’re new to American Express or if you’ve had a bank-issued Amex card. But if you have had a card issued by American Express in the past 18 months, you won’t be eligible for this offer.
  • Spend $1,500 in the first 3 months. You need to meet the minimum spend requirement for eligible purchases to receive the bonus points. Eligible purchases include most of your everyday spending but excludes transactions such as cash advances. The 100,000 points will be credited to your account around 8–10 weeks after you meet this spending requirement.

Alternative offer: NAB Rewards Platinum

You can earn 110,000 points with a new NAB Rewards Platinum, although there are two elements to this offer. Firstly, you’ll earn a bonus 50,000 NAB Rewards points when you apply by 1 October 2017 and spend $2,500 on eligible purchases in the first 3 months. You can earn up to 60,000 additional points through an introductory earn rate of 2 points per $1 spent on purchases in the first 6 months (with a 10,000 bonus point cap per month). After the first 6 months, a standard earn rate of 1 point per $1 spent applies.

If you’re interested in converting your rewards to frequent flyer points, a minimum of 3,000 NAB Rewards points gets you 1,500 Velocity Points, 1,000 Asia Miles or $15 Air New Zealand Airpoints Dollars. The NAB Rewards Platinum also has an annual fee of $195 that is lower than some of the other platinum and premium cards offering bonus points at the moment.

Best cashback credit card offer

Westpac 55 Day Platinum

westpac-55-plat250x158This platinum version of the no-frills Westpac 55 Day credit card gives you the option to receive $200 cashback when you spend $400 or more in the first 90 days from card approval. It also offers a $0 annual fee in the first year ($90 thereafter).

In terms of ongoing features, the Westpac 55 Day Platinum gives you access to complimentary overseas travel insurance, transit accident insurance, purchase security insurance and extended warranty cover. You can also get the standard $90 annual fee waived in future years when you spend at least $10,000 on the card annually.

What do I have to do to get this offer?
Here are the steps you need to take to get $200 cashback on a new Westpac 55 Day Platinum.

  • Apply by 26 October 2017. This offer is available for new customers when you apply by 26 October 2017.
  • Spend $400 in the first 90 days. You have to meet this spending requirement for eligible purchases before you can get $200 cashback.
  • Eligible spending. Most everyday purchases you make will help you meet the $400 spend requirement for this offer. The following transactions won’t count towards this spend: fees, cash advances, cash equivalent transactions, BPAY, refunds and balance transfers debited from the card account.
  • Cashback credit. The $200 cashback is paid as a statement credit to your account within 60 days of meeting the minimum spend criteria.

Alternative offer: bcu Rewards credit card

While this is not technically an introductory offer, the bcu Rewards credit card is a new offering that gives you cashback for your everyday spending on an ongoing basis. Launched in June 2017, this card earns 0.66% cashback per $1 spent with a cap of $500 cashback per year. It also has a low variable purchase rate of 12.80% p.a. and an annual fee of $89 that make it a seriously competitive low-cost rewards option.

All of these offers give you extra value when you apply before the end date and meet the eligibility requirements. They also have the potential to offer ongoing benefits through the standard features, although you may still want to compare other cards and offers before applying for one that’s right for you.
Pictures: Shutterstock

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