Credit cards for temporary residents

Want to get an Australian credit card as a temporary resident or immigrant? Compare your options and learn how to apply here.


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Flat lay of travel essentials including credit card, cash, passport and glasses.
Most major banks in Australia let you apply for a credit card when you are a temporary resident or a recent immigrant. But your options could vary depending on what type of visa you hold, your income and other individual details. You can use this guide to compare credit cards and learn more about applying when you're living in Australia as a temporary resident or immigrant.

Bankwest Credit Card Offer

Bankwest Zero Platinum Mastercard

$0 annual fee
0% foreign transaction fees

Eligibility criteria, terms and conditions, fees and charges apply

Bankwest Credit Card Offer

Save with a $0 annual fee, 0% foreign transaction fees and a balance transfer offer. Plus, complimentary overseas travel insurance.

  • Ongoing $0 annual fee
  • 17.99% p.a. purchase rate | 21.99% p.a. cash advance rate
  • 0% foreign transaction fees online and overseas
  • 2.99% on balance transfers for 9 months, reverts to 17.99% p.a.
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Compare Australian credit cards for temporary residents

Data indicated here is updated regularly
Name Product Purchase rate (p.a.) Balance transfer rate Annual fee
Bankwest Zero Platinum Mastercard
17.99% p.a.
2.99% p.a. for 9 months
$0 p.a.
Offers a $0 annual fee, 0% foreign transaction fees, complimentary international travel insurance and a balance transfer offer.
American Express Platinum Edge Credit Card
20.74% p.a.
$195 p.a.
Receive a yearly $200 Travel Credit and complimentary domestic and international travel insurance, plus up to 3 Membership Rewards Points / $1.
Bank of Melbourne Vertigo Classic
0% for 7 months, reverts to 13.99% p.a.
0% p.a. for 22 months with 1.5% balance transfer fee
$0 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($55 p.a. thereafter)
Save with 0% p.a. for 7 months on purchases, 0% p.a. interest for 22 months on balance transfers and a $0 annual fee for the first year.
David Jones American Express Platinum Card
20.74% p.a.
$295 p.a.
DJ's shoppers and Qantas travellers earn 30,000 bonus Membership Rewards Points or 15,000 Qantas Points on eligible spend.
BankSA Amplify Platinum
0% for 7 months, reverts to 19.74% p.a.
0% p.a. for 22 months with 1.5% balance transfer fee
$0 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($99 p.a. thereafter)
Save with a 0% p.a. interest rate for up to 22 months on balance transfers and up to 7 months on purchases. Plus a $0 first-year annual fee.
Bank of Melbourne Amplify Signature
19.74% p.a.
0% p.a. for 6 months
$139 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($279 p.a. thereafter)
Up to 200,000 bonus Amplify Points (130k in the first year & 70k in the second year) when you spend $12k/year for the first 2 years.
Westpac Altitude Platinum Card
20.49% p.a.
6.99% p.a. for 12 months
$150 p.a.
Earn 80,000 bonus Altitude Points when you spend $3,000 within 90 days. Plus, complimentary travel insurance covers.
St.George Vertigo Classic Rainbow
0% for 7 months, reverts to 13.99% p.a.
0% p.a. for 22 months with 1.5% balance transfer fee
$0 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($55 p.a. thereafter)
All the great low cost features of the Vertigo Visa with a rainbow design in support of the LGBT community.
BankSA No Annual Fee
20.74% p.a.
0% p.a. for 12 months with 1% balance transfer fee
$0 p.a.
Offers 0% p.a. on balance transfers for 12 months, up to 55 days interest-free on purchases and an ongoing $0 annual fee.

Compare up to 4 providers

Which banks offer credit cards to temporary residents?

The credit cards available to temporary residents in Australia varies between banks. It also depends on the type of visa that you hold. For example, the conditions and requirements for people holding a 457 working visa may differ from those that apply to someone with a 417 or 462 visa.

This table looks at the different Australian banks that offer credit cards to temporary residents, eligibility requirements and any specific cards that you can apply for.

BankEligible?What are the eligibility requirements?Available cards
American ExpressYesTo be eligible for an American Express credit card, you must:
  • Have a Business Long Stay Visa (subclass 457)
  • Minimum income requirements vary between cards but start from AU $35,000
  • Other eligibility requirements may be outlined for individual cards
ANZYesTo apply for an ANZ credit card as a non-resident, you will need:
  • Your passport
  • Your permanent/temporary resident visa or a working permit
  • Your employment agreement with at least six months remaining

ANZ also reserves the right to decline requests for credit at its own discretion based on non-resident status.

The entire range of personal ANZ credit cards
BankwestYesTemporary residents with a valid 457 visa can apply for any personal Bankwest credit card. You will need to provide:
  • A copy of your visa and the expiry date
  • Your passport (which needs to be cited in a Bankwest branch)
  • Your last two payslips

Other requirements may be outlined for individual cards or on a case-by-case basis.

The entire range of personal Bankwest credit cards
Bank of MelbourneYesTemporary residents with a 457 visa can apply for a Bank of Melbourne credit card if they meet the following requirements:
  • You must have a regular income
  • Your visa must have a minimum of two years before expiry at the time of applying

Bank of Melbourne may also find other temporary resident visas eligible on a case-by-case basis, so you may want to call them to discuss your circumstances directly.

The entire range of personal Bank of Melbourne credit cards
CitiNoYou can only apply for Citi credit cards if you are a permanent Australian resident or recent permanent resident (at least 12 months). Citi may assess credit card applications on a case-by-case basis, so you may want to call them to discuss your circumstances directly.N/A
CommBankYesCommBank lets you apply for a credit card before you come to Australia, providing you meet the following requirements:
  • You have applied for a Commonwealth Bank transaction account
  • You have established full time permanent employment in Australia with a confirmed Australian income of more than $50,000 per annum
  • You have an eligible visa (457, Permanent Resident, temporary business visas) or hold an Australian/NZ passport
HSBCYesHSBC will consider credit card applications from temporary residents providing you have:
  • A valid 457 working visa
  • An employment contract for at least two years
  • A minimum income of AUD$50,000 per year
The entire range of HSBC personal credit cards
NABYesNAB will consider your credit card application if you meet the following conditions:
  • You must have been working in Australia for a minimum of three months
  • You must have completed any probationary period at work
The entire range of NAB credit cards
St.GeorgeYesSt.George will consider credit card applications from temporary residents who meet the following conditions:
  • You have a St.George transaction account
  • You have a valid visa with at least two years before the expiration date
  • Valid sub-class visa numbers accepted by St.George are: 100, 103, 115, 119, 120, 121, 124, 132, 134, 136, 138, 143, 151, 155, 160, 161, 162, 163, 164, 165, 175, 176, 186, 187, 188, 189, 190, 405, 457, 475, 487, 489, 801, 835, 855, 856, 857, 858, 885, 886, 887, 888, 890, 892, 893
  • You must have confirmed employment in Australia with an Australian taxable income

Temporary residents can only apply for a St.George credit card in person at a branch or by calling Customer Service on 13 33 30.

The entire range of St.George credit cards
WestpacYesWestpac accepts temporary resident credit card applications providing you meet the following requirements:
  • You have a minimum fixed salary of AUD$50,000 p.a. OR a minimum deposit of AUD$250,000 in a Westpac account OR an ongoing source of income after arriving in Australia
  • You have an employee sponsored visa, Skilled Permanent or Skilled Independent Regional visa, Business Skills, Investor or Talent visa
  • You are moving to Australia within six to eight weeks of submitting your application
  • You have an Australian residential address (excludes hotels and hostels)

What are the eligibility requirements for getting a credit card as a temporary resident?

You can use the following list as a guide to the general conditions you should meet before applying for an Australian credit card as a temporary resident.

man holding card and typing on keyboard

  • Age. You must be at least 18 years of age to apply for a credit card in Australia.
  • Employment. You should have employment in Australia or proof of upcoming employment in Australia at the time of your application. You may also have to supply details of your most recent previous employer. It is recommended that you get official, written confirmation of your employment contract, including details of your salary to verify your situation.
  • Income and assets. You must have a regular, Australian taxable income to apply for a credit card. Minimum income conditions also apply for some cards. You may also be required to have a specific amount of Australian dollars in an Australian bank account.
  • Passport. You will have to supply your passport number and/or a certified copy of your passport for the application.
  • Visa status. You must have a valid, eligible visa. Depending on the credit card issuer, you may need to have a minimum amount of time left on the visa to apply (for example, two years before the visa expiry date).
  • Australian address. You must have a residential address in Australia to apply for a credit card.
  • Australian bank account. You must have applied or opened an Australian bank account to get a credit card.

It’s important to remember that credit card eligibility requirements depend on the bank (or issuer) and the credit card you apply for. But being prepared with all of these details will help you speed up the application process.

Can I transfer my existing credit card to an Australian one?

This is sometimes possible, if your credit card is issued by a company that offers "moving abroad'" transfers, such as American Express. Its Global Card Relationship service allows you to seamlessly apply for an Amex card in your new country by logging in to your existing account. To do this in Australia, you would need to choose a new Amex card, log into your current account and then apply using your Australian address and contact details. Your account history may be used as part of the application, and the existing account will remain open unless you close it.

As another example, Citibank offers a range of support options for existing customers around the world if they are moving (or have recently moved) to Australia. This includes setting up a bank account for you, although you may still need to wait until you are in Australia before applying for a credit card.

What else do I need to know before I apply for a credit card in Australia?

Credit card issuers may consider individuals with no permanent ties to Australia as a risk for any type of credit product. So, make sure you consider the following when choosing a bank and credit card to apply for:

  • Unexplained denials. Australian credit card issuers that offer credit cards to temporary residents reserve the right to decline applications without giving you a reason.
  • Reference checks. You may be asked to supply names and contact information for Australian residents who can confirm the details you provide on your application. This could include the person who you rent your home from, your employer or any other individual that you have financial obligations with.
  • Utility bills. Your Australian payment history with utility companies (such as phone or electricity companies) may also be reviewed to check for late payments or defaults. If you want to qualify for a credit card in Australia as a temporary resident, you should ensure that you have excellent financial history while you are here.
  • Low credit limits. As a temporary resident, you may be granted a credit card with a lower credit limit than you would normally expect. If you use the card regularly and make your repayments on time, you may be able to apply for a credit limit increase at a later date.

The credit card application requirements that you must meet as a temporary resident differ between different banks and providers. So, it's a good idea to discuss your individual circumstances with your chosen provider before you apply for a card. Taking this step will give you the most accurate information possible and increase your chances of approval for your chosen card.

What about my credit history?

Credit card issuers in Australia only consider your Australian credit history. This means if you have an excellent credit rating overseas (or a bad credit rating), it won't impact on your application for a credit card in Australia.

However, as a temporary resident you may not have many details on your Australian credit file, so it's important to make sure all the additional information you provide is as accurate as possible to help improve your changes of approval.

Establishing credit history as a recent immigrant in Australia

When you arrive in Australia, you will have to establish Australian credit history by opening and maintaining credit-based accounts. Some of the most common options include:

  • Setting up utility accounts. This includes electricity accounts, postpaid or contract phone plans, Internet accounts and other energy or telecommunications accounts. You can learn more and compare accounts with this guide.
  • Loans. This includes personal loans, car loans and home loans.
  • Credit cards. This includes both credit cards and charge cards (of which there are only a few in Australia).

It's also important to open an Australian bank account once you are settled in Australia. While the details of your account will only be available to your Australian bank, you may be able to provide statements to other lenders to show that you are managing your money responsibly. If you decide to apply for a credit card with the same institution that you bank with, your transactoin account details could also help improve your chances of approval.

Advantages and disadvantages of getting a credit card as a temporary resident


  • Build your credit. If you plan to become a permanent resident, getting a credit card as a temporary resident will help you build your Australian credit history.
  • Flexible payments. An Australian credit card will allow you to make purchases in local stores using credit, which you can then pay off in full or over time.
  • Increased borrowing power. It may be easier to get approval for personal loans, including car loans, if you already have a credit card issued by an Australian bank.
  • Other types of credit. Once you have an Australian credit card, it could be easier to enter into other financial contracts, such as a mobile phone plan, or utilities for your residence.


  • Limited availability. Not all financial institutions offer credit cards to temporary residents, and those that do may not offer all of their products to you.
  • High rates and fees. To compensate for your residency status, you may find that you have to pay higher rates or fees for the privilege of having a credit card.
  • Income requirements. With no credit file to refer to, many banks have strict income requirements to help offset the risk of lending to you.
  • Credit history. If your application for an Australian credit card is declined, it may negatively affect your credit history here.

When you're looking at getting a credit card as a recent immigrant or temporary resident in Australia, remember that the application requirements and eligibility could be different to what's listed for permanent residents and Australian citizens. Make sure you compare cards based on their features and fees so that you can find one that suits your budget and needs while you're living in Australia.

Frequently asked questions

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55 Responses

  1. Default Gravatar
    JohnJuly 4, 2017

    When applying for a credit card, the question poised for residential status, Own home outright, mortgage, renter, boarder, living with parents are the only options. We live rent free in home held in trust. How do we answer this?

    • Default Gravatar
      JonathanJuly 5, 2017

      Hi John!

      That’s quite a tricky question you have! :)

      Usually boarders are those who are getting services from the owners or landlords such as cleaning services, food, etc. and can be “accessed” anytime, whereas renters are those who have exclusive possession in their place. Based on the data you shared, it is likely that you’re a renter, even if you don’t pay a rental income.

      You may need to verify the card issuers as well as the state law definition and see which one suits you.

      Hope this helps.


  2. Default Gravatar
    DeborahJanuary 7, 2017

    We are retiring and moving to Australia where our son and his family live. We are applying for the contributory parent visa. Since we are retiring we won’t have jobs in Australia. We wish to get a Visa credit card and have excellent credit. How do we apply for an Australian credit card and which one should we apply for? Can we apply in the US prior to arrival ?

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      MayJanuary 16, 2017Staff

      Hi Deborah,

      Thanks for your comment.

      Generally, you should be able to apply for a credit card once you arrive in Australia and have an Australian address. For a possible credit card that you can apply for, you may check first the guidelines outlined on this page on which cards are available to retired applicants. And to confirm which cards accept temporary residents, you should refer to the banks listed above.

      I would suggest that you contact the bank/credit card issuer first before you submit any application once you arrive so that you can discuss your chances of approval.


  3. Default Gravatar
    NelsonOctober 28, 2016


    I am a 19 years old full time international student at a university. Working part time with 573 visa. Just arrived melbourne 3 months ago . Am i eligible for any credit card or loan ?

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      MayOctober 28, 2016Staff

      Hi Nelson,

      Thank you for your question.

      The banks/credit card issuers that may accept applicants on a visa are listed above. Though please note that your approval may still be on a case-by-case basis depending on the bank’s assessment of your financial circumstance, type of visa, etc.

      It would be best to contact the bank first before you submit your application to discuss your chances of approval.


  4. Default Gravatar
    AllanOctober 5, 2016

    I have just arrived I Australia on a 489 visa ,I am in full time employment with a good income and I’m just wondering how I go about getting a credit card or if I can get credit for a car .

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      MayOctober 6, 2016Staff

      Hi Allan,

      Thank you for your inquiry.

      Whilst we are not sure if you’ll be approved for a credit card or not, you can discuss your chances of approval with a bank featured above. As for a car loan, this is usually restricted to PR and citizens, but you can find a guide on loans for non-residents on this page.


  5. Default Gravatar
    ivanMarch 21, 2016

    What are my chances of getting approved a $12,000 credit card balance transfer as I’m holding a 457 Visa for 4 years and my income is $55,000 per year? It’s a MasterCard from CBA which credit limit is $15,000 and been offered to increase it up to $20,000 two months ago

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      SharonMarch 21, 2016Staff

      Hi Ivan, thanks for your inquiry.

      As a financial comparison service, we’re unable to confirm whether you’d receive approval or not.

      You might like to get in touch with the credit card issuer directly to discuss your eligibility, financial history, income and ability to repay to discuss your chances of approval before applying for the card. Please note that rejected applications will have a further negative impact on your account, so it’s wise to discuss your options or work on improving your score before you apply for a new card.

      I hope this helps,


  6. Default Gravatar
    MandiOctober 13, 2015

    I am a international student in Sydney can i apply for small loan or credit card just for $1000 to $2000 for my university feed. Thank you….

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      JonathanOctober 13, 2015Staff

      Hi Mandi, thanks for your inquiry!

      Most credit cards require Australian citizen or granted eligible visa (457, Permanent Resident, temporary business visa). You may like to consider personal loan options.



  7. Default Gravatar
    MichelleApril 19, 2015

    Hi my partner is currently on a bridging visa and works full time. Can he get a loan for a car or credit car for work purpose as he would claim it on his business? Thanks

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      JonathanApril 20, 2015Staff

      Hi Michelle, thanks for your inquiry!

      You may like to refer to the following link for more information on car loans. Please note that most loans require personal residency/ citizenship status, more information on car loans for non residents moving to Australia are available on this page.



  8. Default Gravatar
    GeorgeApril 13, 2015


    I am currently on 457 visa but I only have 11 months remaining towards the expiry(exp mar 2016). Just wondering, Is there any bank out there who can provide me a car loan or personal loan?

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      JonathanApril 14, 2015Staff

      Hi George, thanks for your inquiry!

      For more information on personal loans for migrants please see this page. We have summarised the types of loans available into car loans, secured personal loans, unsecured personal loans and payday loans.



  9. Default Gravatar
    MaryMarch 25, 2015

    Im on 820-801 visa, have a full time job. Will I be able to apply for a credit card? Thanks

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      ElizabethMarch 25, 2015Staff

      Hi Mary,

      Thanks for your question.

      As you can see from the page above there are a few providers who offer credit cards to temporary residents. Your best bet might be to click through to these providers pages (by clicking on their names above) and see the products they have available. You might have better luck applying for a low rate or low fee product. We indicate whether the card is available for temporary residents to apply on each of our credit card review pages. You can also call these providers directly to discuss your options.

      I hope this has helped.



  10. Default Gravatar
    LouiseMarch 10, 2015

    I need to get a loan or 0% credit card to pay of a credit card balance I have in the uk, how do I do this on a 457 visa?
    I cant apply for a loan or credit card back in the UK unless im able to fly home and go into a bank branch with my pass port as ID

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      JonathanMarch 10, 2015Staff

      Hi Louise, thanks for your inquiry!

      Unfortunately balance transfers are only applicable with Australian credit cards, balances from other countries are not supported.



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.
ANZ Low Rate
12.49% p.a.
0% p.a. for 22 months with 1.5% balance transfer fee
$0 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($58 p.a. thereafter)
Save with 0% p.a on balance transfers for 22 months (with a 1.5% BT fee) and $0 first year annual fee. Plus a 12.49% p.a. purchase interest rate.
Bankwest Zero Platinum Mastercard
17.99% p.a.
2.99% p.a. for 9 months
$0 p.a.
Offers a $0 annual fee, 0% foreign transaction fees, complimentary international travel insurance and a balance transfer offer.
ANZ Frequent Flyer Black
20.24% p.a.
20.24% p.a.
$425 p.a.
Earn 100,000 bonus Qantas Points, 75 bonus Status Credits and $150 back when you spend $3,000 in the first 3 months with this premium card.

Compare up to 4 providers

* The credit card offers compared on this page are chosen from a range of credit cards 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.

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