Planning on using a credit card this Christmas? Here are some of the perks that could make gift shopping a whole lot easier.
Most credit cards now come with a handful of complimentary extras that can add value to your account if you ever use them. But what you may not realise is that some of the lesser-known credit card perks can really come in handy around Christmastime.
Whether it’s getting gifts wrapped for you, fast-tracking online deliveries or even organising someone to go gift-shopping for you, here we look at the different credit card perks that you can use to your advantage during the Christmas period.
Credit card extras to take advantage of this Christmas
If you’ve ever looked at a pile of unwrapped Christmas presents and wished Santa’s helpers were nearby, then this is the perk for you. Currently, the range of David Jones store and credit cards offer this service for both in-store and online purchases made with the department store.
To take advantage of complimentary gift-wrapping, all you have to do is pay for your purchases with a David Jones American Express credit card or with the David Jones Storecard and request that your items be gift-wrapped. If you’re in-store, you’ll be guided through the process. If you’re shopping online, you can elect to have your purchases wrapped individually or in one package. Either way, your presents will be ready to sit under the Christmas tree when you get them home.
Complimentary or priority delivery
If you’re shopping for Christmas presents or groceries online, delivery will be one of the biggest concerns. As well as potentially adding to the cost of your shopping, there’s a risk that orders may not arrive on time via standard post.
Fortunately, some credit cards offer complimentary delivery or priority delivery for eligible purchases. We’ve outlined the different cards and options available in the table below.
|Credit card||Delivery benefit||Requirements|
|Coles credit cards||Free delivery for shopping at Coles Online||You must spend at least $100 at Coles Online using a Coles credit card.|
|David Jones American Express and David Jones Storecard||Complimentary standard delivery from David Jones||Available to any address within Australia. Excludes gift cards, hampers and fresh food, Gift Registry, Wine Club and large items.|
|David Jones American Express Platinum Card||Complimentary priority delivery||Purchase must be made in-store. Delivery available to any address within the metropolitan or regional area of the store in which your goods were purchased with the David Jones American Express Platinum Card. Goods must be under 25kg and no larger than 1m x 1m x 1.5m. Excludes gift cards, hampers and fresh food, Wine Club, Gift Registry purchases and large Items.|
Buy now, pay later offers
If you’re looking for extended interest-free terms on your purchases this Christmas, there is a select range of credit cards that could provide you with unique in-store finance options. These “buy now, pay later” offers can provide you with interest-free periods of between 3 and 60 months, and are available with the following credit card products:
- HSBC credit cards. All HSBC credit cards give you access to 0% p.a. finance options for purchases of furniture, kitchens, computers, TVs, home improvement and more at participating retailers. Notable retail partners include JB Hi-Fi, Forty Winks, Hardy Brothers and Wallace Bishop.
- David Jones cards. If you shop at DJs with a David Jones store or credit card, you can take advantage of “Flexible Payment Options” that provide extended interest-free periods. Depending on the offers available, you could get anywhere from 12-24 months interest-free on eligible purchases.
- Myer cards. If you have a Myer Card or a Myer Visa credit card, you’ll be eligible for three months “buy now, pay later” on all purchases made in-store at Myer. Simply ask for this option when you pay at the register. Note that this offer is only available for eligible customers and, if approved, interest will apply if a balance remains at the end of the interest-free period.
- Gem Visa. This credit card offers long interest-free offers with an extensive list of partner retailers that includes The Good Guys, JB Hi-Fi, Michael Hill, Goldmark, Prouds, and P&O Cruises.
- GO Mastercard. The GO Mastercard offers three types of interest-free payment plans with a variety of retailers, including Michael Hill Jeweller, Harvey Norman and JB Hi-Fi.
Depending on how much Christmas shopping you plan to do, these offers could provide an affordable way to buy presents or cover the cost of any home essentials you need to get at this time of year. Just remember to check the terms and conditions before opting for long-term finance so that you know exactly what the payment plan will involve.
Most premium Australian credit cards provide a complimentary personal concierge service, and it can be a huge blessing during the holiday season. This type of concierge acts as your own personal assistant, so at Christmas they could help with any (or all) of the following:
- Personalised gift suggestions for your loved ones
- Purchasing gifts on your behalf
- Organising gift delivery on your behalf
- Sourcing tickets to sold-out events
- Booking holidays or other experiences for you and your loved ones
To take advantage of a personal concierge service via your credit card, simply call the number provided through your credit card account and make a request.
Best price guarantees
With so many sales on around Christmas, you could easily save a few bucks by taking advantage of a complimentary credit card guaranteed pricing scheme. This service is designed to help you get the lowest price on eligible purchases made with your credit card by refunding the difference in cost if you buy an item and then see it elsewhere for cheaper.
For example, let’s say you used your credit card to buy your partner a FitBit for $250 from an electronics store in your local shopping centre. Two weeks later, you’re browsing in a different store at the shopping centre and see the exact same model of FitBit for $199. If your credit card had a best price guarantee, you could submit a claim and get the $51 difference credited to your account.
Other credit card shopping perks that could be useful at Christmas
Many credit cards offer a suite of purchase insurance covers that could be extra useful during the Christmas season. These include:
- Refund protection insurance. If you need to return gifts and have an issue with stores not honouring the refund, then this credit card perk will help ensure you get your money back.
- Purchase protection insurance. This complimentary extra protects eligible new purchases against theft, loss or accidental damage. While policies vary between providers, generally purchases are covered for up to 90 days from the date they are bought. As well as being useful for Christmas presents, purchase protection insurance could be great if you’ve gone away for the silly season and lose something you’ve bought for yourself.
- Extended warranty cover. This type of insurance extends the Australian manufacturer’s warrant on eligible items, usually by up to 12 months. It could save you buying warranty cover for any tech gifts you give over the Christmas period, although make sure you get copies of all the receipts in case you (or the recipient) needs to make a claim).
What else do I need to know about credit card extras during the Christmas season?
If you’re interested in taking advantage of credit card extras this silly season, some of the key details to keep in mind include:
- Spending requirements. If you’re planning on making use of one of these credit card perks this Christmas, make sure you double-check the spending requirements. In general, all of the complimentary credit card extras require you to use your card to activate them, and some have minimum spends. For example, with a Coles credit card you’ll be able to get free delivery for Coles Online orders, but only if you spend at least $100 per shop.
- Time limits. This is an important factor perks such as free delivery or personal concierge service requests during the Christmas season, because these benefits take time to be processed. For example, if you use your card to get free delivery for a purchase on 23 December, it may not arrive until after Christmas day. Similarly, concierges need time to complete any requests that you make, so it’s ideal to plan in advance if you want to use these types of perks during the silly season.
- Interest rates. As all of these perks require you to pay with plastic, make sure you take note of the standard variable purchase rate for your card and factor in any interest charges that will apply if you carry a balance.
- Annual fees. If you’re applying for a new credit card that offers some of these perks, be sure to consider the cost of the card. Depending on the card, these perks may not be worth the cost of the annual fee if you’re only going to use them during the Christmas season.
These credit card perks give you a way to get more value out of paying with plastic this Christmas but it’s still important to factor in the eligibility requirements and potential costs. So taking a moment to check what perks are available and how you can use them before you hit the stores will help ensure you get the most out of your card during the silly season and beyond.