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Credit Card Information for Seniors

If you have reached this far, then you already know how to use the internet to locate credit card information.

The problem with credit cards is that there's such a large amount of information out there it become a little daunting. You need to feel happy about your financial decisions. For this to be possible, you need to know how the various features of credit cards work. Only then can you know what the pitfalls may be, and which is the right card for you based on how you intend to use it. If you are interested in credit cards for seniors, here is a breakdown of the most important points to consider.

HSBC Low Rate Credit Card

0% p.a. for 15 months on balance transfers
with a one-time 2% balance transfer fee

Offer ends 30 November 2017

Eligibility criteria, terms and conditions, fees and charges apply

Credit Card For Seniors

The HSBC Low Rate Credit Card features a $55 annual fee for the life of the card and up to 55 days interest-free on purchases. This means it will cost seniors nothing to use this card provided they pay their balance in full each month. Access to discounts and benefits worldwide with HSBC's home&Away Privilege Program.

  • $55 p.a. annual fee.
  • 13.25% p.a. on purchases
  • 0.00% p.a. for 15 months with 2% BT fee on balance transfers
  • Cash advance rate of 21.99% p.a.
  • Up to 55 days interest free
  • Minimum income requirement of $20,000 p.a.
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Will you be paying your balance in full every month?

Are you looking for a credit card as a back-up source of funding, or because you are intending to use it as a way to finance purchases over time? Many cards offer interest-free periods on purchases, up to fifty-five days. That means provided you pay off your balance in full every month, you will not be charged any interest. These cards may have a slightly higher annual fee or higher rate of interest. If you know you will not be paying your balance off in full every month, then the interest-free period will be voided anyway and there is no point paying extra to get it.

Interest rates

This is one of the most important pieces of credit card information to look for. This will dictate how you are affected if you do not fully pay off your balance every month. Standard rates can vary from around 10% to 20%, so there is a big difference. There may be a trade-off with a low-interest rate card, such as a higher annual fee or a lesser rewards program. These need to be balanced so you are happy with the end result.

Introductory low-rates

These are usually aimed at anyone who wants to make a balance transfer from another credit card, but some cards offer an introductory offer on purchases, too. You must make sure you look at the credit card information relating to the interest rate that is normal for the card, so you do not get caught out with a much higher rate later on, if an unpaid balance still remains.
Comparison of Low Interest Rates Credit Cards

Reward schemes

These can be very beneficial provided they are free. Some schemes require that you pay an annual fee in addition to the card's regular annual fee. That may be around $100. For you to break even on this, you would be required to spend around $20,000 on your card. Credit card information of this sort will obviously not be advertised by the card issuer.
Comparison of Rewards Program Credit Cards

Credit cards for seniors checklist

Aside from the points above, there are a few other issues to look out for: Annual fees; other fees and penalties, e.g. late payment fees; availability of discounts or free benefits; type of card - i.e. Visa, Mastercard, American Express, etc. Some types are more widely accepted; minimum credit limit; cash advance rates and fees.
Comparison of Australian Credit Cards
Remember that, with a little research, you may be able to find a card that offers you the most competitive combination of all the above; it is not necessarily an either/or situation. A thorough check of the credit card information out there often pays dividends.

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4 Responses

  1. Default Gravatar
    RonJanuary 22, 2016

    Do you have travel insurance for seniors

    • Staff
      SallyJanuary 22, 2016Staff

      Hi Ron,

      Thanks for your question.

      If you’re looking for travel insurance for seniors, please see this travel insurance guide.

      However, if you’re looking for complimentary insurance with your credit card issuer, please let us know which credit card you’re using and we can confirm whether the card comes with complimentary insurance.

      I hope this has helped.

      Cheers,

      Sally

  2. Default Gravatar
    chrisSeptember 22, 2014

    i filled in the application and submitted it received an email requesting pay slips tax return and employment details – i am retired i don’t have an employer nor do i pay tax – how do i apply successfully to get a new credit card i am about to loose my current card it goes with the account it is attached to as that account is about to be closed – i want something with no annual fee as i presently have

    • Staff
      ShirleySeptember 23, 2014Staff

      Hi Chris,

      Thanks for your question.

      If you’ve claimed that you earn an income in your credit card application, then credit card issuers are expecting that you can supply proof of this.

      Please see this page for a comparison of no annual fee credit cards, you may want to opt for a card that has a small minimum income requirement so you meet the eligibility criteria.

      Cheers,
      Shirley

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