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No Annual Fee Cards vs. Low Interest Credit Cards

When selecting a credit card, you need to consider how the features offered with them would work, in terms of saving you money.

You need to decide whether a card with a low interest rate or one with a minimal annual fee will be of more benefit to you. Working out which card is right for you usually comes down to your spending habits when using your card, so you need to weigh up the benefits of low interest vs no card fee credit cards.

Rates last updated July 28th, 2017
Name Product Purchase rate (p.a.) Balance transfer rate (p.a.) Annual fee Product Description
St.George Vertigo Visa
13.24% p.a.
0% p.a. for 14 months
$0 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($55 p.a. thereafter)
Receive up to 55 days interest-free on purchases and the ability to make contactless payments with Visa payWave technology.
American Express Essential®  Credit Card
14.99% p.a.
0% p.a. for 12 months with 1% balance transfer fee
$0 p.a.
Receive a $50 credit when you apply online, are approved and spend $750 on your new card within the first 3 months of card membership.
Citi Simplicity Card
19.99% p.a.
0% p.a. for 6 months
$0 p.a.
Earn 10% cashback on eligible purchases (capped at $50 per month) for the first 4 months from card approval.
ANZ Platinum Credit Card - Exclusive Offer
0% p.a. for 3 months (reverts to 19.74% p.a.)
0% p.a. for 12 months
$0 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($87 p.a. thereafter)
Pay 0% p.a. for 3 months on purchases and receive platinum perks including complimentary travel and purchase insurance.
Qantas American Express Discovery Card
20.74% p.a.
0% p.a. for 12 months with 1% balance transfer fee
$0 p.a.
Earn an uncapped 1 Qantas Frequent Flyer point per $1 spent, plus complimentary purchase insurance.
HSBC Platinum Credit Card
19.99% p.a.
0% p.a. for 22 months with 2% balance transfer fee
$99 p.a.
Earn 1 Reward Point per $1 of eligible spend and receive complimentary travel and purchase protection insurances.
BankSA Vertigo Visa
13.24% p.a.
0% p.a. for 18 months
$0 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($55 p.a. thereafter)
Get up to 55 days interest-free on purchases and be protected by 24/7 Falcon® Fraud service.
ANZ Rewards Platinum
18.79% p.a.
$0 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($95 p.a. thereafter)
Receive 50,000 bonus Reward Points when you spend $2,500 within the first 3 months from card approval.
Westpac 55 Day Platinum Credit Card
19.84% p.a.
0% p.a. for 18 months with 2% balance transfer fee
$0 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($90 p.a. thereafter)
Receive up to 55 days interest-free on purchases, platinum concierge service and extended complimentary insurance cover.
Woolworths Everyday Platinum Credit Card
19.99% p.a.
0% p.a. for 14 months
$0 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($49 p.a. thereafter)
Receive a $100 eGift Card when you apply by 30 September 2017 and make an eligible purchase by 31 October 2017.

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Learn more about No Annual Fee Credit Cards

Rates last updated July 28th, 2017
Name Product Purchase rate (p.a.) Balance transfer rate (p.a.) Annual fee Product Description
St.George Vertigo Visa
13.24% p.a.
0% p.a. for 14 months
$0 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($55 p.a. thereafter)
Receive an annual fee discount in the first year and the ability to make contactless payments with Visa payWave technology.
NAB Low Rate Credit Card
13.99% p.a.
0% p.a. for 16 months with 2% balance transfer fee
$59 p.a.
Offers a low $500 minimum credit limit, special offers from Visa Entertainment and Tap and Pay capabilities.
St.George Vertigo Platinum
12.74% p.a.
0% p.a. for 20 months
$99 p.a.
Offers complimentary travel insurance, complimentary purchase insurance and access to a 24/7 personal concierge service.
Bendigo Bank Basic Black Credit Card
12.24% p.a.
$45 p.a.
Manage and secure your card with the free Bendigo Bank Protect+Pay app and add an additional cardholder for $0.
HSBC Low Rate Credit Card
13.25% p.a.
0% p.a. for 15 months with 2% balance transfer fee
$55 p.a.
Add additional cardholders for $0 and pay using Apple Pay. Also enjoy exclusive offers with the home&Away Privilege Program.
Bank of Melbourne Vertigo Platinum
12.74% p.a.
0% p.a. for 20 months
$99 p.a.
Get a range of complimentary insurance covers, access to a 24/7 concierge and the convenience of Visa payWave contactless technology.
ANZ Low Rate Platinum
11.49% p.a.
0% p.a. for 16 months with 2% balance transfer fee
$99 p.a.
Enjoy platinum benefits with exclusive discounts, complimentary travel and purchase insurances and a 24/7 personal concierge.
NAB Low Rate Platinum Card
13.99% p.a.
0% p.a. for 16 months with 2% balance transfer fee
$100 p.a.
Enjoy the protection of 7 complimentary insurances including overseas travel and purchase protection insurance.
ANZ Low Rate
12.49% p.a.
0% p.a. for 16 months with 2% balance transfer fee
$58 p.a.
With a low minimum credit limit of $1,000, this no frills card allows you to add up to 3 additional cardholders for $0 and has Mastercard PayPass.
BankSA Vertigo Visa
13.24% p.a.
0% p.a. for 18 months
$0 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($55 p.a. thereafter)
A no-frills Visa with the protection of a zero liability policy and the 24/7 Falcon® Fraud service. Plus, a discounted annual fee in the first year.
American Express Essential®  Credit Card
14.99% p.a.
0% p.a. for 12 months with 1% balance transfer fee
$0 p.a.
Receive a $50 credit when you apply online, are approved and spend $750 on your new card within the first 3 months of card membership.
Virgin Australia Velocity Flyer Card - 0% Interest Offer
0% p.a. for 12 months (reverts to 20.74% p.a.)
0% p.a. for 6 months
$129 p.a.
Until 31 July 2017, save with 0% p.a. on purchases for 12 months. Plus, up to 0.66 Velocity Points per $1 spent.
Westpac Low Rate Card - Online Only Balance Transfer Offer
13.49% p.a.
0% p.a. for 24 months with 2% balance transfer fee
$59 p.a.
Take advantage of 0% p.a. for 24 months on balance transfers with a 2% BT fee. Plus, the convenience of the Westpac mobile banking app.
Virgin Money Low Rate Credit Card
11.99% p.a.
0% p.a. for 12 months
$99 p.a.
Take advantage of the optional insurance coverage of CreditShield Edge. Plus, enjoy the convenience of contactless payments with Visa payWave.
CUA Low Rate Credit Card
11.99% p.a.
0% p.a. for 13 months
$0 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($49 p.a. thereafter)
Offer a low minimum credit limit of $500, the ability to use Apple Pay and Android Pay and a discounted annual fee for the first year.

Compare up to 4 providers

Learn more about Low Interest Credit Cards

People that struggle to make regular payments on the credit card, may find it more useful to have a low interest credit card. This means if you are taking longer to reduce the balance, your interest won't be excessively high. Another benefit of low interest cards is that they usually include an interest free period, which gives you a bit longer to pay for your purchase without worrying about accumulating interest.

When you need to make a larger than normal purchase, for example an item costing perhaps $2,000, that is beyond your budget to pay within the interest free period, you have the peace of mind in knowing the interest will be at a lower rate than other types of credit cards.

If you know that you aren't going to be able to pay your balance in full each month, it might be worthwhile considering the low annual fee card. These cards, although having the annual fee cost, do tend to offer a very low rate interest, so overall you would be making a saving if you are making your payments over a prolonged period of time.

No annual fee credit cards are a better alternative for people that enjoy the convenience of having a credit card, but either don't use it frequently or they are in a position to pay off their accounts in full each month. It's useful to know you have a credit card available if you want to do some online shopping or need to access some funds in a hurry or unexpectedly.

But there is no gain in having a low interest card, if you intend to pay your account by the due date. Consequently, it would be of more benefit for people in this position to have a no annual fee card, as they aren't getting the advantages of a low interest one. This is where the choice between a low interest vs no card fee, should be a no annual fee card.

Knowing you can access money in an emergency always gives peace of mind, and you don't have to worry about unforeseen costs catching you out. But, there is no point to having a card if you don't utilise the one which most benefits your circumstances.

The deciding factor on which card you should select will be whether you will have an ongoing balance each month or whether you will pay it in full. So based on that criteria it should simplify your selection of card between a low interest vs no card fee.

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