No Annual Fee Credit Cards
Great for emergencies and saving on card costs, you can enjoy a wide range of benefits with a $0 annual fee credit card.
0% p.a. for 18 months on balance transfers
charges a one-time 1.5% balance transfer fee
Offer ends 31 August 2020
Eligibility criteria, terms and conditions, fees and charges apply
Coles Credit Card Offer
Reward your spending with flybuys points and save with 0% interest on balance transfers for the first 18 months.
- Ongoing $0 annual fee | 19.99% p.a. purchase rate
- Earn flybuys point per $1 on eligible purchases
- Compatible with Apple Pay and Samsung Pay
- 0% p.a. for the first 18 months on balance transfers with a one-time 1.5% balance transfer fee
A no annual fee credit card is a card that charges a $0 annual fee on an ongoing basis or waives the first year annual fee. As well as helping you save money, some no annual fee credit cards offer a variety of other benefits including balance transfers, rewards and frequent flyer points. Use this guide to compare no annual fee credit cards and find out more about different features, benefits and costs so that you can get a low cost credit card to suit your needs.
Compare the Best* No Annual Fee Credit Cards in Australia
Compare these no annual fee credit cards
- Bankwest Zero Platinum Mastercard. Save with a $0 annual fee, 0% foreign transaction fees and complimentary insurance covers.
- ANZ Low Rate Card A no-frills card offering an introductory rate on balance transfers and a $0 first year annual fee.
- Qantas American Express Discovery Card. Offers no annual fee for life and earns Qantas Points per $1 spent with no points cap.
- Virgin No Annual Fee Credit Card. Pay no annual fee for the life of the card and enjoy up to 55 interest-free days on purchases.
A no annual fee credit card doesn’t charge you for yearly account maintenance. This could save you anywhere from $30 to $700 or more per year compared to credit cards that do charge an annual fee. But there can be trade-offs: credit cards with no annual fee for life may have higher interest rates or fewer perks than some other options.
What is the best no annual fee credit card?
There isn't one "best" no annual fee credit card, because everyone has different spending habits and goals that influence what card works for them. Comparing your options, the details of the no annual fee offer and other features of the card will help you find the right one for you.
Different types of no annual fee credit cards
Some no annual fee credit cards offer the basics, while others boast a range of additional features and benefits. This means you can compare credit cards that combine no annual fee with other features including introductory 0% interest rate offers, frequent flyer points, reward points and complimentary extras.
- $0 annual fee and 0% balance transfer credit cards
- No annual fee frequent flyer credit cards
- Reward credit cards with no annual fee
- Travel credit cards with no annual fees and no foreign transaction fees
Interest-free credit card spending hack
Most credit cards offer a number of interest-free days (such as up to 55) on purchases when you pay your account balance in full by the due date on your statement. This gives you a way to make interest-free purchases on an ongoing basis. If you're paying your account in full, taking advantage of interest-free days and paying no annual fees, you can keep your card costs to a minimum.
What should I consider before applying for a no annual fee credit card?
If you're interested in getting a credit card with no annual fee, ask yourself these questions to help compare your options:
- How often do you use your credit card? If you rarely use a credit card but still want one for unplanned expenses or emergencies, a no annual fee card will give you the line of credit that you need without burning a hole in your pocket when you're not using it. It can be a great option if you want a credit card for emergency purchases.
- Do you carry a balance? Some no annual fee credit cards charge high interest rates on purchases, so they're better suited to cardholders who pay their balance in full each statement period. If you do regularly carry a balance from month to month, you might want to consider a low interest credit card instead.
- Do you have existing debt? If you have existing debt, getting a no annual fee credit card could tempt you to spend more money than you can afford. Aim to pay off your current debts, or consider a balance transfer credit card to save money on interest charges.
- What credit card benefits do you want? No annual fee credit cards sometimes have fewer perks than other options. If you’re interested in features such as rewards programs and complimentary insurance, make sure you look at a range of cards and consider these factors as well as the annual fee so that you can find an option that suits all of your needs.
- Will you use the credit card after the $0 annual fee promotion ends? Many cards offer no annual fee for a promotional period, so you should consider whether you want to use the card once the introductory period ends. If the card doesn't have a competitive interest rate or extra features to outweigh the annual fee cost, you might want to cancel the card before the annual fee applies. Compare cards with a low or $0 annual fee for life if you want to skip the hassle altogether.
- What other credit card fees and charges will you pay? While a $0 annual fee can help you save on costs, it doesn't mean you'll pay no fees or get a free credit card. As well as interest rates, make sure you check for other credit card fees that could apply, such as foreign transaction fees, late payment fees and cash advance charges. This will help you find a card that's affordable based on how you want to use it.
Pros and cons of $0 annual fee credit cards
- Save money on credit card fees. The most obvious perk of these cards is that you won’t pay an annual fee. This could save you tens, hundreds or thousands of dollars over the life of the card.
- Practical and cost-effective. A no annual fee credit card can be ideal for emergencies and when extra credit is required. This is because you can leave it in your wallet without worrying about it costing you when you're not using it.
- Promotional offers and deals. Some no annual fee credit cards come with promotional offers, frequent flyer programs and other perks that you’d regularly have to pay a yearly fee to access.
- Higher interest rates. No annual fee credit cards typically have higher ongoing interest rates on purchases than some other cards. This could add to your costs if you regularly carry a balance from month to month. If you do frequently carry a balance between statement periods, consider a card with both $0 annual fee and a competitive purchase interest rate.
- Fewer extra features. While some no annual fee cards do come with frequent flyer programs and other benefits, they usually have fewer features than cards with a higher annual fee.
- Temporary $0 annual fee. Unfortunately, not all of these cards offer no annual fee for the life of the card. If your card only has a $0 annual fee for a promotional period, make sure you know when the standard annual fee will apply and how much it is to avoid any surprise costs.
As there are many types of $0 annual fee credit cards on the market, it's important to consider your financial situation and how you intend to use the card. Then you can weigh up the type of $0 annual fee as well as the other features, benefits and costs to help you find a card that suits your needs.
Answers to the most popular questions about no annual fee credit cards
- Q: If I have a credit card with a promotional $0 annual fee offer, can I cancel the card before having to pay the annual fee?
A: This is possible as long as you don’t have a balance on the card and cancel it before the annual fee is applied. Contact your provider to confirm exactly when the credit card's annual fee is charged so you can arrange to cancel it before the annual fee applies.
- Q: When will the annual fee be charged if I get a credit card that offers no annual fee in the first year?
A: If you have a card with a promotional no annual fee offer, the annual fee will usually be charged 12 months after you were approved for the credit card. If you don't want to pay this fee, ask the provider what date it will be charged and cancel the account before then.
- Q: Is there any way to extend my credit card's annual fee waiver?
A: This depends on the credit card provider. For example, some providers may waive your credit card annual fee when you also take out a home loan package with them. Others may waive or refund your annual fee if you meet specific conditions, such as spending a set amount each year or being a student. Contact your provider to find out if there are any other ways you can continue to pay no annual fee on your credit card.
- Q: Is a no annual fee credit card a cheap credit card option?
A: A no annual fee credit card has the potential to save you hundreds of dollars on your yearly account costs, which can make it a cheaper option. If you always pay off your balance in full and can make use of interest-free days on purchases, then a no annual fee card could be very affordable. But if you carry a balance that attracts a high interest rate, the interest charges could make your credit card an expensive option. In this case, you might want to look at the potential savings you'd get from a card with a low interest rate (even if it has an annual fee). So, if you're looking for a cheap credit card, think about how you'll use it and then compare a few different options to find one that's affordable for you.
- Q: Is a no annual fee credit card free?
A: There is no such thing as a "free credit card" because there is always the potential cost of interest if you carry a balance. There could also be other credit card fees that may apply for certain transactions (such as cash advances or purchases made overseas). But if you have a no annual fee card and pay off your account balance in full by the due date on each statement, you won't be charged interest and use the card without paying fees or charges.
- Q: What costs would apply if I got a credit card with no annual fee and rewards?
A: This depends on the card and how you use it but some factors to consider include the interest rates, cash advance fee and foreign transaction fee. If you're comparing no annual fee credit cards with rewards, make sure you also look at full details of the annual fee – in most cases you only get a $0 annual fee in the first year before a higher, standard annual fee is charged.
- Q: Can I get a credit card with no annual fee for life and an ongoing low interest rate?
A: Generally, these features are offered on separate cards – except when one of the features is promotional. For example, a no annual fee credit card may offer an introductory low or 0% interest rate before reverting to a higher standard rate, while a low rate credit card could offer no annual fee in the first year before a standard yearly account fee applies. But you can compare no annual fee and low rate cards side-by-side to help you find one that is affordable for you.
- Q: I want a no annual fee credit card for travel. What other features should I consider?
A: To keep your travel costs down, you may want to consider a credit card with no annual fee and no overseas transaction fees or a card that offers complimentary travel insurance. Also, make sure that the card you're using is accepted wherever you're travelling and that it isn't restricted by economic sanctions.
- Q: Is there a business credit card with no annual fee?
A: While business credit cards can offer no annual fee promotions, most of them charge high annual fees as they come with a lot of extra features. But depending on your circumstances, you may be able to claim the annual fee as a tax deduction.
- Q: Can I get a no annual fee credit card if I have lots of debt or bad credit?
A: Having a bad credit rating can limit your chances of being approved and getting a credit card, regardless of whether or not there's an annual fee. You can use our bad credit rating credit card guide to see what type of credit alternatives are available for applicants with a negative credit history.
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Credit Cards Comparison
* 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.