Mastercard Credit Cards

A Mastercard credit card offers you global acceptance, shopping protection and access to exclusive offers.

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Name Product Purchase rate Interest-free period Annual fee Balance transfer rate
Citi Clear Card - Balance Transfer Offer
14.99% p.a.
Up to 55 days on purchases
$49 annual fee for the first year ($99 p.a. thereafter)
0% p.a. for 28 months
Offers 0% p.a. on balance transfers for 28 months with no balance transfer fee and a discounted $49 first-year annual fee.
Qantas Premier Platinum
19.99% p.a.
Up to 55 days on purchases
$225 annual fee for the first year ($299 p.a. thereafter)
0% p.a. for 18 months with 1% balance transfer fee
Earn 80,000 bonus Qantas Points when you spend $4,000 in the first 3 months, 80 bonus Status Credits on eligible spend and a reduced first-year annual fee.
Westpac Low Rate Card
13.74% p.a.
Up to 55 days on purchases
$0 annual fee for the first year ($59 p.a. thereafter)
0% p.a. for 28 months with 1% balance transfer fee
Save with a $0 annual fee for the first year, plus, a 0% interest rate on balance transfers for 28 months.
humm90 Mastercard - Balance Transfer Offer
23.99% p.a.
Up to 110 days on purchases
$99
0% p.a. for 36 months
Get 0% interest on balance transfers for 36 months, with no balance transfer fee. Plus, up to 110 days interest free on purchases.
Westpac Low Rate Card - Cashback Offer
13.74% p.a.
Up to 55 days on purchases
$0 annual fee for the first year ($59 p.a. thereafter)
6.99% p.a. for 12 months
Get $400 cashback when you spend $4,000 on eligible purchases within the first 120 days. Plus, a $0 first-year annual fee.
Bankwest Zero Platinum Mastercard
14.99% p.a.
Up to 55 days on purchases
$0
0% p.a. for 26 months with 2% balance transfer fee
Get 0% p.a. on balance transfers for 26 months (with a 2% BT fee), ​an ongoing $0 annual fee and 0% foreign transaction fees.
Coles Rewards Mastercard
19.99% p.a.
Up to 55 days on purchases
$0 annual fee for the first year ($99 p.a. thereafter)
0% p.a. for 14 months
Get 40,000 bonus Flybuys Points or $200 off a Coles Supermarket shop, a $0 first-year annual fee and a 14-month balance transfer.
Bendigo Bank Low Rate Credit Card
0% p.a. for 12 months, reverts to 11.99% p.a.
Up to 55 days on purchases
$45
0% p.a. for 12 months with 2% balance transfer fee
Save with 0% p.a. interest on purchases and balance transfers for up to 12 months, with a one-time 2% balance transfer fee.
Citi Rewards Card - Balance Transfer Offer
21.49% p.a.
Up to 55 days on purchases
$49 annual fee for the first year ($149 p.a. thereafter)
0% p.a. for 30 months
Save with a $49 first-year annual fee and 0% on balance transfers for 30 months with no balance transfer fee.
Citi Clear Card - Cashback Offer
14.99% p.a.
Up to 55 days on purchases
$49 annual fee for the first year ($99 p.a. thereafter)
0% p.a. for 15 months
Get $250 cashback when you spend $3,000 in the first 90 days. Plus, a 0% balance transfer offer for 15 months.
Bankwest Breeze Classic Mastercard
0% p.a. for 15 months, reverts to 9.9% p.a.
Up to 55 days on purchases
$0 annual fee for the first year ($49 p.a. thereafter)
0% p.a. for 15 months
Save with 0% p.a. on purchases and balance transfers for 15 months (with no BT fee). Plus, a $0 first-year annual fee.
Westpac Altitude Platinum Card
20.49% p.a.
Up to 45 days on purchases
$49 annual fee for the first year ($150 p.a. thereafter)
0% p.a. for 22 months with 1% balance transfer fee
Get 130,000 bonus Altitude Points (worth $450 cashback) when you spend $3,000 in the first 90 days, a 0% balance transfer offer and a $49 discounted annual fee.
Citi Rewards Card - Points & Gift Card Offer
21.49% p.a.
Up to 55 days on purchases
$49 annual fee for the first year ($149 p.a. thereafter)
0% p.a. for 15 months
Receive 90,000 bonus Citi reward Points (worth $400 in gift cards) and a $100 Coles eGift Card when you spend $3,000 in the first 90 days.
Bankwest Zero Mastercard
14.99% p.a.
Up to 55 days on purchases
$0
0% p.a. for 26 months with 2% balance transfer fee
Features an ongoing $0 annual fee and an introductory rate of 0% p.a. for 26 months on balance transfers (with a 2% BT fee).
Citi Premier Card
21.49% p.a.
Up to 55 days on purchases
$150 annual fee for the first year ($300 p.a. thereafter)
0% p.a. for 6 months
Enjoy 130,000 bonus points (worth $450 in eGift cards) when you spend $4,000 within the first 90 days. Plus, a first-year annual fee discount.
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Many Australian banks and lenders issue Mastercard credit cards and you'll see its logo on the front of them. By itself, Mastercard does not issue credit cards. Instead, it's the third-party payment processor that allows the card to be used.

Mastercard Credit Card Comparison

There are lots of types of Mastercard credit cards including rewards, balance transfer, frequent flyer, low interest and more. Compare cards based on the features that are most important to you.

What are the benefits of using a Mastercard?

  • Global acceptance

Mastercard is accepted in hundreds of countries and millions of locations around the world. You can use your Mastercard wherever the Mastercard symbol is displayed, including at ATMs, EFTPOS terminals and online.

  • Mastercard PayPass

Mastercard PayPass is a contactless payment option that lets you tap to pay for purchases when you're at the shops. With PayPass, you just need to hold the card close to the card reader instead of inserting or swiping it to pay. You also won't need to to enter a PIN if your purchase is under $100 (or $200 during the coronavirus pandemic).

If your credit card issuer supports Apple Pay, Google Pay or another mobile wallet, you could also use your Mastercard credit card for contactless payments from your smartphone. Either way, your payments are kept safe through encrypted data and card reader technology, plus other security features on your card (which we cover in more detail below). Finder's guide to contactless payments has more details about how they work and how secure they are.

  • Mastercard Priceless Cities

Mastercard Priceless Cities gives you access to a variety of unique and exclusive offers on dining, shopping, entertainment, travelling and even golfing. These offers usually run for a limited time, so check out the Priceless Cities website for the latest deals you can use now.

  • Mastercard Travel & Lifestyle Services (World Mastercard benefit)

If you have a World Mastercard, you'll get access to this booking service that offers exclusive deals and perks such as complimentary breakfast, room upgrades and late check-out at partnered hotels. Plus, elite membership status with National Car Rental, Avis and Sixt. The Mastercard Travel & Lifestyle Services website has more details on current offers and how the service works.

What are the security features of a Mastercard credit card?

As well as security features offered by your bank or card issuer, some of the options you can get with a Mastercard include:

  • Zero Liability

Mastercard’s Zero Liability policy protects cardholders from unauthorised and fraudulent charges made using their cards. You can receive protection though this policy if you meet certain criteria, which include exercising due diligence in keeping your card safe, and reporting theft, loss, or unauthorised use as soon as you find out.

  • Mastercard SecureCode

SecureCode is designed to help protect your Mastercard credit card or debit card account from unauthorised transactions by providing an additional layer of security to online payments.

When your card is registered for SecureCode, any transaction you make with a participating merchant will require you to enter a unique code or password before the payment can be processed. You'll usually get the code via a text message to your phone. This helps verify that it is you making the purchase.

  • Emergency Services

You can contact Mastercard's 24/7 customer service team on 1800 120 113 within Australia. This service can help you with the reporting of lost or stolen cards, it can provide emergency replacement cards and cash advances, it can help you find the nearest Mastercard or Cirrus ATM, and it can provide information related to your account.

How can I compare Mastercard credit cards?

      • Fees. The fees you end up paying depend on the credit card issuer you choose to go with as well as the card you get. While a basic no-frills Mastercard might require you to pay little or no annual fees, you might have to pay a noticeably higher annual fee if you get a gold or platinum Mastercard.
      • Interest rate offers. As well as standard purchase or cash advance rates, you can also compare Mastercard products based on any promotional interest rates that can help you cut costs with 0% purchase and balance transfer offers.
      • Credit card issuer. Mastercard products are available through a variety of Australian credit card issuers. As they determine many of the features and fees that come with the card, it's important to consider which company issues the card when comparing your options.
      • Rewards. While Mastercard does not provide a rewards program, you can find several Mastercard credit cards linked to various rewards and frequent flyer programs. This is something you should consider if you're looking to earn points as you spend.
      • Complimentary insurance covers. Some Mastercard products offer complimentary insurance covers including transit accident insurance, interstate flight inconvenience insurance, international travel insurance, purchase cover insurance, and extended warranty insurance.

While Mastercard products offer a variety of benefits, it's important to compare the different products offered by Australian issuers to find the right card for you.

How does a Mastercard credit card transaction work?

When you buy something using a Mastercard, several processes happen in the time between the purchase being made and the transaction showing up in your account (or on your statement).

What you usually see as a customer is the payment terminal or online shopping cart. Behind the scenes, there are three key roles that play a part in the transaction process:

      1. Merchant bank/acquirer. This is the establishment that is licensed by Mastercard to accept consumer payments on behalf of the merchant. To process a Mastercard transaction, the merchant must establish a relationship with an acquirer.
      2. Card issuer. The issuer is the bank, credit union, government entity, savings and loan association or retailer that issues the Mastercard to the consumer.
      3. Technology and network provider. In this case, the provider is Mastercard.

When you pay with a Mastercard, you go through a process of Authorisation, Clearing and Settlement:

Authorisation

Clearing

Settlement

The following steps occur when a payment is being authorised. While it happens instantly, there is a lot of information exchanged within this process:

  1. The customer pays for their goods/services using a Mastercard credit card, debit card or prepaid card at a merchant EFTPOS (electronic funds transfer at point of sale) system.
  2. The Mastercard's security features are checked by the Mastercard authorisation system and securely sent for approval to the customer's bank.
  3. Approval is then sent by Mastercard to the merchant's bank and to the merchant.
Clearing is usually accomplished within one day and follows three steps:

  1. The Mastercard network receives the purchase information sent to them from the merchant's bank.
  2. The information is validated by the Mastercard clearing system, which then sends this purchase information over to the customer's bank.
  3. Data is then prepared for the cardholder's statement.
Settlement of the purchase usually occurs within two days:

  1. Payment is sent from the cardholder's bank to the Mastercard network.
  2. Payment is sent from the Mastercard network to the merchant's bank.
  3. The merchant is paid by the merchant's bank for the customer's transaction.

Does Mastercard charge any fees?

Mastercard does not charge cardholders a fee for using its network.

However, merchant banks/acquirers do pay a fee to card issuers for the benefit of being able to offer electronic payments. This fee is known as an "interchange" fee. This is then charged to the merchant in the form of a merchant discount rate.

While this fee is not charged to the consumer directly, some merchants may choose to offset this fee by applying a surcharge to your card transactions. While usually limited to 1% or 2% of the transaction amount, surcharges will vary depending on the nature of the transaction and the merchant in question.

Some banks or card providers may also charge you fees for using your credit or debit card. However, these fees are unrelated to Mastercard.

So, how does Mastercard make its money?

Mastercard makes money by charging fees to banks and other financial institutions that issue cards with the Mastercard brand. While many of these fees are relatively small, because of Mastercard's large global presence, they add up considerably. In fact, Mastercard's gross net revenue was US$16.9 billion for the 2019 financial year and this is expected to continue increasing.

Mastercard typically charges the following fees:

      • Gross dollar volume fee. A fee based on the gross dollar volume (GDV) of account holder activity.
      • Domestic assessments. These are fees charged to cardholders' and merchants' financial institutions for domestic transactions.
      • Cross-border volume fees. These are fees charged to cardholders' and merchants' financial institutions for international transactions.
      • Transaction processing fees. These are fees charged to merchants' financial institutions for participating in the Mastercard network and for every transaction that's approved.

In most cases, the main relationship you'll have with Mastercard (as a shopper) is through your bank or credit card provider. All of these other processes will simply happen in the background.

What's the difference between Mastercard debit card and credit card payments?

The main difference between how debit and credit card transactions work is that money from a debit card is taken from your personal bank account, whereas money from a credit card is lent to you by a company.

As well as that, there is a difference in the way the payments are processed – but it depends on how you pay.

When you use a debit card, if you select "Cheque" or "Savings" when prompted, your payment will be processed by EFTPOS rather than Mastercard. When you use a credit card, the payment is always processed through the Mastercard system.

However, contactless payments, regardless of whether they are made with a credit card or a debit card, are processed through the credit card system (Mastercard).

History of Mastercard

Mastercard began operations in the late 1940s, at a time when a number of American banks gave their customers specially issued paper that they could use in the form of cash at local establishments. Mastercard issued its first batch of credit cards in California, to serve as direct competition to the Bank of America card that later went on to become Visa.

With time, a number of franchises evolved in several cities, and in 1966, one such group formed the Interbank Card Association (ICA). No single bank dominated the running of this organisation and member committees came into effect for this very purpose. ICA went on to become Mastercard in 1979.

History of Mastercard in Australia

By the late 1960s, ICA started spreading its wings outside the US, and its initial affiliations were with Banco Nacional in Mexico and the European Eurocard. Japanese members entered the picture in the same year. By the late 1970s, it had members from Japan and Africa. A further expansion in the 1980s saw it entering Asia, Latin America, and Australia.

As of now, Mastercard has over 30 offices around the world, with a particularly strong presence in the Asia-Pacific region. Its Australian headquarters is in North Sydney, NSW. The ‘big four’ banks all offer credit cards affiliated to Mastercard, as do a number of other smaller and regional banks.

Frequently asked questions

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51 Responses

    Default Gravatar
    bertgMarch 30, 2018

    I need to cancel my MasterCard and get an email confirming this, I note ,there is NO repeat NO email address for this .

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      JeniMarch 30, 2018Staff

      Hi Bertg

      Thank you for getting in touch with finder.
      For any card cancellation request, you must either call or visit the bank issuer of your MasterCard. You may ask them to send you the email about this request as well.

      I hope this helps.

      Have a great day!

      Cheers,
      Jeni

    Default Gravatar
    EliasDecember 26, 2017

    Hi I am looking for Platinum MC with rewards and no interest on balance transfer and no international transaction fee with complimentary Travel Insurance can you suggest few for me thanks

    Default Gravatar
    ZhiAugust 19, 2017

    I have a Westpac Earth platinum Master card. Does it come with free travel insurance?

      Default Gravatar
      ArnoldAugust 19, 2017

      Hi Zhi,

      Thanks for your inquiry.

      Yes, your Westpac Earth Platinum Card comes with complimentary travel insurance, but I’m afraid that the policy does not include cruise cover. Thankfully, you can compare travel insurance and find the right policy that comes with cruise cover. You might like to compare travel insurance options which include cover for cruises.

      Hope this information helped.

      Cheers,
      Arnold

    Default Gravatar
    BarbaraApril 12, 2017

    How do I find out if my Woolworths Rewards Card is connected to my Qantas Frequent Flyer account?

    Default Gravatar
    BobNovember 23, 2016

    Can you tell me if any master card have rewards or frequent flyer points please? I have 2 visa cards which both have rewards and woulike a MC to replace my Amex card.
    Thank you for your time with this email
    Regards Bob

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