Dual Credit Cards

Information verified correct on April 28th, 2017

Learn how a Dual Credit card can help you earn more rewards points

The thinking behind dual credit cards, or companion credit cards, is that customers can benefit from having the best of both worlds. The wide acceptance of both Visa and MasterCard in millions of outlets around the world gives customers the freedom and convenience to pay for things anywhere they go.

Dual Credit Cards Comparison

Rates last updated April 28th, 2017
Purchase rate (p.a.) Balance transfer rate (p.a.) Annual fee
Commonwealth Bank Business Gold Awards Credit Card
A business credit card with a range of complimentary insurances and up to 2 Awards points per $1 spent on purchases.
20.74% p.a. 5.99% p.a. for 5 months $150 p.a. Go to site More info
Commonwealth Bank Business Awards Platinum Credit Card
Earn up to 3 Awards points per dollar spent and enjoy a range complimentary insurances.
20.74% p.a. 5.99% p.a. for 5 months $300 p.a. Go to site More info
Commonwealth Bank Business Awards Credit Card
Enjoy up to 1.5 Awards points for every dollar spent plus up to 55 days interest-free on purchases.
20.74% p.a. 5.99% p.a. for 5 months $100 p.a. Go to site More info

However, giving customers dual credit cards, such as an American Express card to go along with their Visa or MasterCard can also offer the kudos and privileges that comes along with this type of card.

Most big banks in Australia (specifically Westpac, NAB and Commonwealth Bank) all offer dual AMEX credit cards, but these companion cards are designed to make accumulating Reward Points much easier and quicker.

Rewards Program Credit Cards

How Dual Credit Cards Work

When you apply for a credit card from a lender offering dual credit cards, you receive your choice of a Visa or MasterCard, but you automatically receive an American Express card as part of the same approved credit limit.

Your credit card account is still only charged one fee, you can only access funds from the same credit limit and all your transactions are shown on the same statement. The benefit comes when you accumulate Reward Points.

Most lenders will offer bonus points for using your American Express card at places it's accepted, while you'll only earn a regular amount of points for using your Visa or MasterCard by comparison.

You might find that you'll earn 1.5 or even 2 points for every $1 you spend using your AMEX, while you might only earn 1 point for every $1 for using the other cards. This can seriously speed up the rate at which you accumulate your reward points.

Downsides to Dual Credit Cards

While the extra reward points might be tempting, there are some negative aspects to dual credit cards. Having an American Express card often costs more than other types of credit cards. Even though you're only charged one annual fee for having both cards, this fee is often higher.

You could also find that you're penalised if you carry an outstanding balance from month to month, as the APR (Annual percentage rate) is also higher than other comparable credit cards.

In order to negate these downsides, customers who regularly repay their outstanding balance down to zero each month before the statement due date can often benefit from offerings of up to 55 days interest free credit. This could mean they'll pay no interest at all while they're earning more reward points that could easily make up for the cost of the annual fee.

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2 Responses to Dual Credit Cards

  1. Default Gravatar
    Godwin | April 5, 2013

    what is a dual credit card?

    • Staff
      Jacob | April 5, 2013

      Hi Godwin. Thanks for your question. A dual credit card, also referred to as a companion credit card, is a credit card account that comes with both a linked Visa / MasterCard (MC) and an American Express (AMEX) Card. These accounts have the advantage of giving cardholders the opportunity to earn maximum points. So where Amex is accepted you use that card and get more points than if you used a Visa / MC. Where AMEX isn’t accepted you use your Visa / MC. Spending on either card is linked to the one credit account, there’s a shared credit limit between the cards, and the primary cardholder is responsible for spending on both cards. Hope this has helped. Jacob.

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