The Finder app is here! 🥳

Get your savings sorted.

Do I make enough money to get a credit card?

Compare options with low minimum income requirements and find the right credit card for you.

Updated

Young lady laying down on couch holding credit card and tablet.

When you apply for a credit card, your income is an important eligibility requirement that the issuer will use to assess your ability to repay. Minimum income requirements generally start at $15,000 p.a. gross (before tax), so there are some low-income options to compare. However, you'll need to provide proof of income and meet other eligibility criteria to receive approval. Use this guide to learn how much you'll need to earn to apply for a credit card in Australia and the other requirements you'll need to meet to get approval.

What are minimum income requirements?

Minimum income requirements are the lowest amount of money you need to earn before tax per year to apply for a credit card.

Credit card income criteria help banks and card issuers reduce the risk of lending. It also means that people are only approved for products that are appropriate for their financial situation. In turn, you can use these requirements to help you choose and apply for credit cards that suit your individual needs. If you apply for a credit card with a minimum income requirement that is higher than what you earn, you'll be declined and this can hurt your credit score.

Compare credit cards with a low minimum income requirement

Data indicated here is updated regularly
Name Product Purchase rate (p.a.) Balance transfer rate Annual fee Min credit limit Max credit limit Minimum Income
ME frank Credit Card
11.99% p.a.
11.99% p.a.
$0 p.a.
$1,000
$15,000
$25,000
Save money with an ongoing $0 annual fee, the same low 11.99% p.a. interest rate on purchases and cash advances, and up to 55 days interest free.
BOQ Low Rate Visa Credit Card
13.49% p.a.
0% p.a. for 14 months
$55 p.a.
$2,000
$20,000
$25,000
A no-frills card offering 0% p.a. on balance transfers for the first 14 months with no balance transfer fee.
loading

Compare up to 4 providers

How can I find out what the income requirement is for a credit card?

screenshot of application requirements

On Finder, the details are listed in the ‘Application requirements’ section in the product reviews for individual cards.

Some issuers also include this information on their websites or product pages, so you can double-check before you apply for a particular credit card. Other lenders don't outline minimum income requirements, so you won’t see this information for every credit card you look at.

If you can’t find minimum income requirements for a particular card, you can try calling the issuer to ask about your eligibility.

Why are some income requirements so much higher than others?

The relationship between income and credit cards can influence a wide range of credit card features, from the credit limit and interest rate of the card right through to complimentary extras or rewards programs. In general, cards with high minimum incomes will have a lot more features than low income credit cards, but there are still many different credit cards you can choose from if you make a relatively low income.

Comparison: High vs low minimum income requirement

The following table shows the differences between a card with a high minimum income requirement and one with a low minimum income requirement. In general, high income credit cards offer more “other features”, while low income credit cards are good for basic money management.

Credit cardMinimum incomeMinimum credit limitPurchase rateOther features
Citi Prestige$150,000$30,00021.49% p.a.
  • Rewards program with high, uncapped earn rates
  • Complimentary insurances
  • Concierge service
  • Complimentary hotel stay
  • Airport lounge access
Virgin No Annual Fee$25,000$2,00018.99% p.a.
  • No annual fee
  • Free additional cardholders

The examples in this table also show that high minimum income credit cards also tend to have bigger minimum credit limits and more expensive purchase rates. These features, as well as the complimentary extras, are designed to benefit people who earn and can spend more money. They're also suited to people who regularly pay off their balance in full to avoid interest rates.

In comparison, credit cards with lower minimum income requirements tend to have smaller credit limits and fewer features as well as more competitive purchase rates and fees.

Other factors that affect your credit card application

Credit card issuers consider a range of other factors before approving or denying your request for credit, including:

  • Credit score. Your credit history or credit rating outlines details of your current and previous loans, cards and other credit accounts (such as utilities). Generally, you need to have at least a 'good' credit rating to apply for a credit card. If you don't know what your credit score is, you can get a copy of your credit report for free through Finder.
  • Age. You must be at least 18 years of age to apply for a credit card.
  • Residency status. While credit card issuers generally prefer people who are citizens or permanent residents of Australia, there are some credit cards available for people with temporary residency status. These cards may have higher minimum income requirements to help meet lending standards.
  • Employment status. While credit card issuers typically prefer people to have full-time employment, you could still be eligible for some cards if you work part-time or casually, are self-employed, are a student or if you have a pension.
  • Income vs expenses. When you apply for a credit card, you will have to provide information about your current income, spending habits and any existing debts to help issuers determine whether or not you can manage more credit.

Credit card income requirements help issuers assess the risk of lending and give you an idea of what cards are available to you based on your financial situation. So, now that you have a better understanding of minimum income requirements, you can compare and apply for a card that fits your needs. If you're unsure if you'll be approved based on your income, contact the bank beforehand to discuss your options and don't risk applying for the card if you think you'll be declined.

Picture: Shutterstock

Related Posts

Ask an Expert

You are about to post a question on finder.com.au:

  • Do not enter personal information (eg. surname, phone number, bank details) as your question will be made public
  • finder.com.au is a financial comparison and information service, not a bank or product provider
  • We cannot provide you with personal advice or recommendations
  • Your answer might already be waiting – check previous questions below to see if yours has already been asked

Finder only provides general advice and factual information, so consider your own circumstances, or seek advice before you decide to act on our content. By submitting a question, you're accepting our Terms of Use, Disclaimer & Privacy Policy and Privacy & Cookies Policy.

50 Responses

  1. Default Gravatar
    jacksonAugust 12, 2019

    If I earn $70,000 that is $5000 less than the min salary requirement – min $75,000, would I be declined straight away or could I still probably get a card?

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      JeniAugust 13, 2019Staff

      Hi Jackson,

      Thank you for getting in touch with Finder.

      Basically, card issuers check your income to figure out how much you can afford to spend on your card and still be able to pay off your debt. Based on this information and other factors, the card issuer can determine the size of your credit line/limit. Therefore, not meeting the income requirement might end up with declined credit card application. If you have other source of income which could add up to what you’re earning, that can help you with your credit card application.

      I hope this helps.

      Thank you and have a wonderful day!

      Cheers,
      Jeni

  2. Default Gravatar
    TraceyJune 22, 2018

    How much do I need to apply for if I want to balance transfer $9000?

    • Default Gravatar
      ArnoldJune 22, 2018

      Hi Tracey,

      Thanks for your inquiry

      The credit limit you have to apply for to cover $9000 balance will depend on the institution you apply for. Some institutions don’t put a maximum on how much you can transfer, though this can sometimes sit between 75%-100% of your approved credit limit. It would be good to check the balance transfer limit first, before applying for a balance transfer.

      To know the key things you need to consider when applying for a balance transfer, please check out our short guide.

      Hope this information helps

      Cheers,
      Arnold

  3. Default Gravatar
    KazAugust 2, 2017

    I want to know if I can get a credit card for 16,000 for an operation that is not covered by private health insurance. A personal loan is asking 80.00 per week to pay it back. I was thinking this would be a better option. Im self employed and have a profit and loss statement from an accountant. I still receive new start allowance as well.. can you help??

    • Default Gravatar
      DanielleAugust 3, 2017

      Hi Kaz,

      Thank you for contacting finder. We are a comparison website and general information service, we’re more than happy to offer general advice.

      You may refer to this page for options that may suit your needs. You may review and compare the offers available on the table. Once you have selected one, you may proceed by clicking the green “Go to Site” button.

      I hope this helps.

      Cheers,
      Danielle

  4. Default Gravatar
    TracyMay 1, 2017

    Are the minimum income requirements published by banks referring to gross income or net income (after tax, repayments etc.)?

    Thanks in advance!

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      DeeMay 2, 2017Staff

      Hi Tracy,

      Thanks for your question.

      The minimum income requirement published by banks generally refers to Gross Income.

      Cheers,
      Anndy

  5. Default Gravatar
    ReeceOctober 6, 2016

    Can i get a credit i get $14000 a year

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      MayOctober 6, 2016Staff

      Hi Reece,

      Thanks for your inquiry.

      Generally, credit card companies in Australia would require their applicants to have a minimum income of at least AU$15,000 p.a. Nevertheless, you might want to reconsider a prepaid card, which is also convenient to use and does not have a minimum income requirement.

      Hope that helps.

      Cheers,
      May

  6. Default Gravatar
    GulshanSeptember 18, 2016

    My salary is 18000 per month am I able to get a credit card and how? my bank account in yes bank.

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      MaySeptember 18, 2016Staff

      Hi Gulshan,

      Thanks for your question.

      Aside from your income source, there are also other eligibility requirements that you have to meet to be approved for a credit card such as but not limited to employment stability and credit rating. However, these criteria/requirements differ from bank to bank and the type of credit card, so you may need to check the details of the card first or contact the issuer before applying to verify if you meet them.

      Hope this helps.

      Cheers,
      May

  7. Default Gravatar
    akbarSeptember 14, 2016

    how much p.a. income in rupees for credit card

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      DeeSeptember 14, 2016Staff

      Hi Akbar,

      Thanks for your question.

      The income requirement for the credit cards we feature on finder.com.au are only in AUD and these credit cards are also available for Australian residents.

      Cheers,
      Anndy

  8. Default Gravatar
    shainazFebruary 27, 2015

    minimum salary to apply for credit card and wt is age limit

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      JonathanMarch 2, 2015Staff

      Hi Shainaz, thanks for your inquiry!

      The minimum income requirements for a credit card vary depending on the lender but is generally around the $15,000 mark. The minimum age for a credit card in Australia is 18 years old.

      Cheers,

      Jonathan

  9. Default Gravatar
    AjayFebruary 21, 2015

    Hi , I want credit card for online shopping , my monthly income is 10,000 so plz help how can get

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      JonathanFebruary 23, 2015Staff

      Hi Ajay, thanks for your inquiry!

      For a list of 0% Purchase credit cards please see this page, we also have broken down the components and features of 0% Purchase Credit Cards for you.

      Cheers,

      Jonathan

  10. Default Gravatar
    morgieNovember 30, 2014

    I earn about R3000 a month.what credit card can I get.

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      ElizabethDecember 1, 2014Staff

      Hi Morgie,

      Thanks for your question.

      From the Australian credit cards available on finder.com.au, you’ll need to be earning a minimum income of about $15,000 AUD which is about R11731.16 a month. You might want to consider a prepaid card, but keep in mind you’ll only be able to load Australian dollars onto this.

      I hope this has helped.

      Thanks,

      Elizabeth

Credit Cards Comparison

Data indicated here is updated regularly
Name Product Purchase rate (p.a.) Balance transfer rate Annual fee
HSBC Platinum Credit Card - Balance Transfer Offer
19.99% p.a.
0% p.a. for 22 months
$129 p.a.
Save with a 22-month balance transfer offer. Plus, lounge passes, travel insurance and an annual fee refund when you spend an eligible $6k/year.
St.George Vertigo Classic
13.99% p.a.
0% p.a. for 18 months
$55 p.a.
Get 0% p.a. on balance transfers for up to 18 months with no balance transfer fee. Plus, a low annual fee and purchase rate. Ends 2 June 2020.
ANZ Frequent Flyer Black
20.24% p.a.
20.24% p.a.
$425 p.a.
Earn 120,000 bonus Qantas Points & $275 back when you spend $4,000 in the first 3 months. Plus, airport lounge passes. Ends 9 June 2020.
Westpac Low Rate Card
2019 Winner
Westpac Low Rate Card
13.74% p.a.
0% p.a. for 16 months
$59 p.a.
A no frills, low rate card offering 0% p.a. interest on balance transfers for the first 16 months, with no balance transfer fee.
loading

Compare up to 4 providers

* The credit card offers compared on this page are chosen from a range of credit cards finder.com.au has access to track details from and is not representative of all the products available in the market. Products are displayed in no particular order or ranking. The use of terms 'Best' and 'Top' are not product ratings and are subject to our disclaimer. You should consider seeking independent financial advice and consider your own personal financial circumstances when comparing cards.

Ask a question
Go to site