gold platinum card

Gold vs platinum credit cards: Which is best?

Compare gold and platinum credit cards to decide which is the better option for you

While the most exclusive cards are so elusive that they can only be aspired to and not applied for, a more accessible range of premium credit cards remains within reach for most people: gold and platinum credit cards. Gold cards are a tier above standard cards, and platinum cards are a tier above gold.

These products are designed to offer greater perks such as higher credit limits, rewards and complimentary insurance. However, gold and platinum cards also typically charge higher fees for these perks.

plat-vs-gold

What’s the difference between gold and platinum credit cards?

Gold credit cards are considered one step up from standard options, while platinum credit cards are a step above gold. This means the benefits they offer will vary between gold and platinum status levels, as well as between individual cards. Here are some examples of differences you may find between the offerings of gold and platinum cards:

  • Complimentary extras. Complimentary extras may include travel and purchase insurances, concierge services and other travel perks like airport lounge access. Unlike platinum options, some gold cards may not offer domestic travel insurance or car rental insurance, nor personal concierge services for instance.
  • Complimentary insurance limits. Insurance coverage may vary between gold and platinum versions of the same card, with platinum cardholders enjoying higher cover limits or lower excess costs.
  • Reward points per $1. Platinum cardholders usually earn more rewards points per $1 spent than gold cardholders. As an example, a standard rewards card may offer 1 point per $1, while the gold version offers 1.5 points per $1 and the platinum offers 2 points per $1.
  • Reward point caps. If a reward credit card limits the amount of points you can earn per statement or year, then a platinum card will have one of the highest caps. For example, the CommBank Gold Awards has a point cap of 75,000 per year, while the CommBank Platinum Awards caps points at 150,000 per year.
  • Bonus point offers. Introductory bonus point offers may differ between gold and platinum products, with platinum cards typically offering more bonus points when you sign up.
  • Minimum credit limits. Platinum cards give higher minimum credit limits than gold cards, which can be a bonus if you spend a lot on credit and can responsibly manage your credit card payments.
  • Annual fees. Platinum cards charge higher annual fees than gold cards offered by the same provider. For example, the Suncorp Clear Options Gold offers rewards, purchase protection insurance and a guaranteed pricing scheme and has an annual fee of $120. In comparison, the Suncorp Clear Options Platinum offers these features, plus a higher reward earn rate and travel insurance covers. It also charges a higher annual fee of $129.
  • Minimum income requirements. Platinum cards also generally require successful card applicants to have higher income levels compared to gold cards. The Suncorp Clear Options Gold and Platinum cards, for instance, require holders to have minimum incomes of $30,000 and $35,000 respectively.
  • Credit history. While both cards require cardholders to have good credit history and credit ratings, platinum cards tend to have stricter requirements than gold cards.

How to compare gold and platinum credit cards

When choosing between a gold and platinum credit card, the decision boils down to your individual circumstances. To help you make your decision, these are some key questions to consider:

  • How often will I use my credit card? Your yearly average spending on the card can be a strong indicator of which card type will suit you better. If you are a low frequency card user, it would not be worthwhile to pay high fees for a platinum card that you won’t use much. On the other hand, if you spend a lot on your credit card, you’d want to watch out for monthly caps on earning rewards points, which could be lower on a gold card.
  • How much can I afford to pay for a credit card? Working out a budget for your credit card expenses can be helpful in determining whether you can better manage the cost of the annual fee for a gold or platinum card.
  • What additional features do I want? Thinking about what you actually want in a card, and which card features you’ll actually use, can also bring clarity. For instance, if you regularly travel abroad, it may be worth paying a high premium for platinum travel perks like international travel insurance and airport lounge access. However, if you only go overseas once every couple of years, these features are unlikely to offset the cost of the annual fee and a gold or classic card may be more suitable.
  • Can I meet the application requirements? This can also be an important determining factor, since it would hurt your credit score if your card application was turned down because you didn’t meet the stated eligibility requirements. Keep in mind that minimum income requirements are usually higher for platinum cards when compared to gold cards, and make sure you check these details during the comparison so you can apply for an appropriate card based on your circumstances.

Platinum, Gold and Black Credit Card Offer

HSBC Platinum Credit Card

0% p.a. for 22 months
on balance transfers
with a one-time 2% balance transfer fee

Offer ends 30 June 2018

Eligibility criteria, terms and conditions, fees and charges apply

Platinum, Gold and Black Credit Card Offer

The HSBC Platinum Credit Card features a long-term balance transfer promotion, two yearly airport lounge passes and an annual fee refund each year you meet the spend requirement.

  • 0% p.a. on balance transfers for 22 months with a one-time 2% BT fee. Reverts to the cash advance rate (currently 21.99% p.a.)
  • Receive a complimentary LoungeKey membership with 2 airport lounge passes per year.
  • The $129 annual fee will be refunded each year when you spend $6,000 on eligible purchases.
  • Get a range of platinum features including complimentary overseas and domestic travel insurance and a 24/7 concierge service.
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Comparison of Gold and Platinum Credit Cards

Rates last updated February 22nd, 2018
Name Product Bonus Points Rewards Program Rewards Points per $ spent Purchase rate (p.a.) Annual fee Product Description
HSBC Platinum Credit Card
HSBC Rewards Plus


1
19.99% p.a.
$129 p.a.
Offers a 0% p.a. for 22 months balance transfer and an annual fee refund each year when you spend $6,000. Plus, complimentary travel insurance.
NAB Premium Card - Exclusive Offer
19.74% p.a.
$90 p.a.
Exclusive to finder.com.au, enjoy a 0% BT fee, 0% balance transfer offer for 25 months and seven complimentary insurance covers.
Qantas American Express Ultimate Card
100,000 bonus points
Qantas Frequent Flyer


1.5
20.74% p.a.
$450 p.a.
Take advantage of 100,000 bonus Qantas Points, a $450 Qantas Travel Credit each year and 2 yearly complimentary Qantas Club lounge invitations.
St.George Vertigo Platinum - Online Offer
12.74% p.a.
$99 p.a.
Platinum card benefits including complimentary insurance, plus 0% p.a. for 24 months on balance transfers (with no BT fee). Ends 28 February 2018.
Westpac Altitude Black - Altitude Qantas Online Offer
80,000 bonus points
Qantas Frequent Flyer


0.625
20.24% p.a.
$250 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($395 p.a. thereafter)
Earn 80,000 bonus Qantas Points when you meet the spend requirement, plus, a discounted first year annual fee. Ends on 28 March 2018.
American Express Platinum Edge Credit Card
50,000 bonus points
Membership Rewards


1
20.74% p.a.
$195 p.a.
Receive a bonus 50,000 Membership Rewards points, a yearly $200 Travel Credit and complimentary domestic and international travel insurance.
Woolworths Everyday Platinum Credit Card
Woolworths Rewards


1
19.99% p.a.
$0 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($49 p.a. thereafter)
Receive a $50 eGift Card when you meet the offer criteria, a 0% p.a. for 14 month balance transfer offer and a $0 first year annual fee.
Citi Rewards Platinum Credit Card
Citi Rewards Program


1
20.99% p.a.
$49 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($149 p.a. thereafter)
Earn reward Points per $1 spent, take advantage of a 0% p.a. for 26 month balance transfer offer, plus complimentary international travel insurance.
Bankwest Breeze Platinum Mastercard
12.99% p.a.
$99 p.a.
Receive a 0% p.a. interest rate on balance transfers for 24 months, complimentary travel insurance and 0% foreign transaction fees.
St.George Amplify Platinum
60,000 bonus points
Amplify Rewards


1
19.49% p.a.
$99 p.a.
Receive 60,000 bonus Amplify or Qantas Points when you spend $3,000 within 90 days and earn up to 1 Amplify point per $1 spent.
ANZ Frequent Flyer Platinum
65,000 bonus points
Qantas Frequent Flyer


0.75
19.99% p.a.
$0 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($295 p.a. thereafter)
Receive 65,000 bonus Qantas Points when you spend $2,500 on eligible purchases within the first 3 months. Plus, a $0 annual fee for the first year.
Bankwest Zero Platinum Mastercard
17.99% p.a.
$0 p.a.
Offers a $0 annual fee, 0% foreign transaction fees, complimentary international travel insurance and access to a 24/7 concierge service.
American Express Explorer Credit Card
100,000 bonus points
Membership Rewards Gateway


2
20.74% p.a.
$395 p.a.
Receive a yearly $400 Travel Credit, 100,000 bonus points and 2 entries per year to the American Express Lounge at Sydney International Airport.
Westpac 55 Day Platinum Credit Card
19.84% p.a.
$0 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($90 p.a. thereafter)
Receive a 20 month balance transfer offer, up to 55 days interest-free on purchases, a platinum concierge service and a $0 first year annual fee.
ANZ Low Rate Platinum
11.49% p.a.
$99 p.a.
Enjoy 0% p.a. on balance transfers for 15 months with no BT fee, combined with platinum card privileges and complimentary insurances.
Westpac Altitude Black - Online Offer
80,000 bonus points
Westpac Altitude Rewards


1.25
20.24% p.a.
$250 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($395 p.a. thereafter)
Earn 80,000 bonus Altitude Points when you meet the spend requirement, plus, a discounted first year annual fee. Ends on 28 March 2018.
Virgin Australia Velocity Flyer Card - 0% Interest Offer
Velocity Frequent Flyer


0.66
0% p.a. for 14 months (reverts to 20.74% p.a.)
$129 p.a.
Save with 0% p.a. on purchases for 14 months and 0% p.a. on balance transfers for 6 months. Offer ends on 28 February 2018.
Citi Platinum Credit Card - 100k Bonus Points
100,000 bonus points
Citi Rewards Program


1
20.99% p.a.
$49 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($149 p.a. thereafter)
Earn 100,000 reward Points, enjoy a long-term balance transfer offer, a discounted first year annual fee and complimentary travel insurance.
HSBC Platinum Qantas Credit Card
60,000 bonus points
Qantas Frequent Flyer


1
19.99% p.a.
$199 p.a.
Receive 60,000 bonus Qantas Points when you spend $3,000 within 3 months of card approval, plus enjoy complimentary travel insurance.
Bendigo Bank Low Rate Platinum Mastercard
11.99% p.a.
$89 p.a.
Offers premium features such as mobile phone and tablet insurance and purchase protections, plus, up to 55 days interest-free on purchases.

Compare up to 4 providers

Rates last updated February 22nd, 2018
Name Product Bonus Points Rewards Program Rewards Points per $ spent Purchase rate (p.a.) Annual fee Product Description
American Express Gold Business Card
10,000 bonus points
Membership Rewards Ascent


1
$169 p.a.
Take advantage of 10,000 bonus points, no pre-set spending limit, data that feeds to MYOB and up to 51 days interest-free on purchases.

Compare up to 4 providers

Choosing between a gold and platinum credit card

cba-through-magnifying-glass-shutterstock

Tim has been credit card shopping for a while and has narrowed his choices down to two. As a CommBank account holder, he’s now trying to decide between the CommBank Gold Awards and CommBank Platinum Awards credit cards. To decide between them, he considers the following:

  • Tim’s average monthly spending is approximately $15,000. The CommBank Gold card lets you earn up to 2 points per $1 spent up to $125,000 a year. The CommBank Platinum card lets you earn 2.5 points per $1 spent and imposes an earning cap on rewards points.
  • Tim’s budget for an annual fee is around $150. The CommBank Gold card charges an annual fee of $119 p.a., while the CommBank Platinum card charges an annual fee of $249.
  • Tim wants complimentary international travel insurance, purchase protection and extended warranty. While the CommBank Platinum card offers more comprehensive insurances including overseas emergency medical assistance, hospital expenses insurance, cover for travel delays, cancellation cover, personal liability cover, and rental vehicle excess cover, both cards check off the insurance items on Tim’s list.

Based on a rough projection of Tim’s monthly spending, his yearly expenditure will equal about $180,000. This exceeds the Gold card’s cap by $55,000, which based on the gold card’s 2 point earn rate is 110,000 points forgone. Based on the Platinum card’s 2.5 point earn rate, this represents 137,500 points.

Even though the Platinum card’s annual fee exceeds his budget by $99, Tim calculates the value of his forgone points and realises that they are worth more than $99. Based on the simple rate that converts 200 Commbank Awards points to $1 at Myer, Tim realises his 137,500 points are worth $687.50. This means the benefits of the card outweigh its cost, so Tim chooses the Platinum card.

What else should I consider when looking at gold and platinum credit cards?

Here are some other factors to consider when comparing gold and platinum cards:

  • Purchase rate. This is the interest rate charged on purchase transactions, which is very relevant if you habitually carry a balance on your credit card. If you always settle your monthly statement in full, this is not a real concern because you don’t incur interest fees on your purchases.
  • Introductory interest rates. As part of a sign-up promotion, cards sometimes offer introductory interest rates that are substantially lower than their regular rates. When it comes to balance transfer promotions especially, this could weigh attractively in its favour. Just remember to check how long the promotional rate is available and what it will revert to at the end of the honeymoon period.
  • Interest-free days. Most credit cards offer an interest-free period for purchases, which varies between 25 and 62 days per statement period. While interest-free days can help you avoid additional charges, they are only available if you pay your balance in full by the due date on each statement. Otherwise, interest will apply from the day you make a purchase.
  • Value of reward points. A little research and calculation should reveal how much a credit card’s rewards points are worth. Consider the earn rate of the card, as well as what rewards you can get and the annual fee to get an idea of the potential value. This will help you compare rewards programs across cards.
  • Application criteria. Keep in mind that submitting too many credit card applications in a short amount of time can have a negative impact on your credit rating. So researching a credit card’s eligibility requirements helps ensure that you only apply for one when you have a high chance of application success.

Ultimately, no credit card is perfect for everyone, but you might find one that will closely match your personal needs and spending habits. As such, platinum cards aren’t necessarily always better than gold cards, and gold cards don’t always offer more value than platinum ones. Remember to research and compare cards to find the option that best suits your needs.

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Credit Card Offers

Important Information*
American Express Velocity Escape Card
American Express Velocity Escape Card

Interest rate

20.74

Annual fee

0
NAB Premium Card - Exclusive Offer
NAB Premium Card - Exclusive Offer

Interest rate

19.74

Annual fee

90
St.George Vertigo Platinum - Online Offer
St.George Vertigo Platinum - Online Offer

Interest rate

12.74

Annual fee

99
Westpac Low Rate - Online Offer
Westpac Low Rate - Online Offer

Interest rate

13.49

Annual fee

59

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4 Responses

  1. Default Gravatar
    senjoNovember 23, 2014

    Which is better gold or platinum ?

    • Staff
      ElizabethNovember 24, 2014Staff

      Hi Senjo,

      Thanks for your question.

      As you can see from the page above there are benefits to both gold and platinum cards. Unfortunately, there’s no one easy answer to your question as it really depends on your own financial situation and credit card needs. You may want to review the benefits discussed on this page and see the ones that better appeal to you.

      I hope this has helped.

      Thanks,

      Elizabeth

  2. Default Gravatar
    morldkFebruary 4, 2014

    Yes I have one platinum card with w something. My credit is exemplary but my income
    e varies. Question; do banks require a current payslip or .will they
    accept my credit rating. my gripe is for being charged20% plus for new purchases. Are you able to offer options?
    Regards David
    PS. Written from cheap tab

    • Staff
      ShirleyFebruary 4, 2014Staff

      Hi Morldk,

      Thanks for your comment.

      Banks generally require your last 3 payslips and they will look at your credit history.

      You may want to have a look at our featured low interest rate credit cards.

      Cheers,
      Shirley

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