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No Annual Fee Credit Card with Rewards

Information verified correct on December 11th, 2016

Let your spending reward you with travel benefits and improve your everyday lifestyle without the hefty annual fees. Compare and choose a rewards credit card with $0 annual fee.

Everybody loves a freebie. Especially when there are no strings attached, right? A no annual fee credit card with rewards is a worthwhile product for the cost conscious as well as big spenders.

Rewards credit cards with an annual fee only become beneficial when you spend big — this type of credit card will get you to your next destination without costing a fortune when you apply. Learn which rewards program is suitable for your needs and start earning points on your spending.

A comparison of no annual fee credit cards with rewards points

Rates last updated December 11th, 2016
Rewards Points per $ spent (AMEX) Rewards Points per $ spent (VISA/MC) Bonus Points Annual fee
American Express Essential Credit Card
Receive a $50 credit on eligible spend and get Smartphone screen insurance combined with a no annual fee for life card. Also enjoy a 0% p.a. balance transfer rate for 12 months.
1 $0 p.a. Go to site More info
HSBC Platinum Credit Card
Receive a full annual fee refund and save $149 if you meet the $6,000 spend requirement. Enjoy a balance transfer offer and platinum card benefits such as complimentary insurances and concierge services.
0 1 $149 p.a. Go to site More info
American Express Velocity Escape Card
Enjoy 7,500 bonus Velocity Points when you meet the minimum spend requirement and earn up to 2 points for every $1 you spend, together with a $0 annual fee.
1 0 7,500 bonus points $0 p.a. Go to site More info
American Express Qantas Discovery Card
Enjoy up to 7,500 bonus Qantas Frequent Flyer Points and 1 point per $1 spent, plus 0% p.a. on balance transfers for 12 months, all for a $0 annual fee.
1 0 7,500 bonus points $0 p.a. Go to site More info
ANZ Frequent Flyer Platinum
Get 50,000 bonus Qantas Points when you apply online, are approved and spend $2,500 on eligible purchases within the first 3 months. Enjoy a waived annual fee for the first year and earn up to 1.5 Qantas Points per dollar spent.
1.5 0.5 50,000 bonus points $0 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($295 p.a. thereafter) Go to site More info

finder.com.au's comparison of no annual fee rewards credit cards

If you don't want to pay an annual fee but still want to ear rewards, compare your options in the table below.

 Credit Card Bonus Points Points Earning
0.5
7,5001
7,5007,500

Secrets to keeping your credit card absolutely free

1. Pay your statements punctually – avoid late payment fees

2. Don't carry a balance – avoid interest charges

3. Keep within your credit limit – avoid over-limit surcharges

4. Don't withdraw cash – avoid cash advance fees.

Features and benefits of a good $0 annual fee rewards credit card

Obviously, you don’t need to worry about the annual fee — there isn’t one. Rewards credit cards almost always come with an annual fee. If your rewards or frequent flyer credit card has an annual fee, you need to use the card until the value of the rewards you get back is more than what you pay to own it.

  • Interest-free days. You must pay your balance off in full each month to get the most value from a no annual fee rewards credit card. These cards have high rates of interest. But they also offer interest-free days. You can avoid paying interest altogether if you only use the card to make purchases and you pay back what you spend when your statement arrives in the mail. And you’ll earn points on the eligible purchases you charge to the account.
  • The purchase rate of interest. If you don’t pay back what you spend on your rewards credit card, or you have a balance transfer promotion active on your no annual fee credit card with rewards, the purchase rate of interest will apply when you buy things with your card. If you think you might carry a balance from month to month, a no annual fee rewards credit card with a low purchase rate is a good option.
  • Beware of balance transfer offers. If you have an existing credit card debt that you would like to pay off under a special balance transfer promotion, you’re better off looking at a balance transfer credit card than a no annual fee credit card with rewards.In essence a rewards credit card is to earn points and it is designed to entice you to make purchases with bonus points and special offers. Making purchases while a balance is owing generally means your forfeit your interest-free days.
  • Special promotions.

You may find that your no fee rewards credit card also has a special promotion on purchases. This type of interest-free or low interest promotion lets you make large purchases or a number of small purchases, and you only have to pay back what your spend. You’re only required to make the minimum monthly repayment during the promotional period — nothing more. At the end of the promotional period, the ongoing interest rate on purchases will be charged. Make sure you pay back all purchases you’ve charged to the card before the end of the promotional period to avoid interest charges.

Another type of special promotion is a waived annual fee for a card that usually carries this fee. This promotion usually works with the card having a waived annual fee for the first year or by having the fee waived for qualifying customers. When considering these cards, take a look at the annual fee you'll be charged after the promotional period ends. Does the card still offer you value when you'll be paying for it each year? Think about how you'll be using it and the amount of rewards points you're likely to earn on it.

  • What can you use your points for?

What’s the point of earning points if there’s nothing you want from the loyalty program? Have a browse through the frequent flyer programs list of rewards and the destinations serviced by the airline. Can you see yourself using the points? Rewards programs associated with a bank or credit card provider generally give you more ways to redeem your points than frequent flyer programs. There’s a large selection of flight and non-flight rewards to choose from. But if there’s nothing that tickles your fancy, the prospect of earning points is becomes an unrewarding proposition.

  • Perks and extras.

Don’t expect bells and whistles with a no annual fee credit card with rewards. The more value adding features a credit card offers, the higher the annual fee. That being said, there are a couple of perks you need to consider when comparing these types of credit cards.

  • Some no annual fee credit cards with rewards also come with purchase insurance.
  • The card scheme may also offer extras. MasterCard account holders can get access to exclusive discounts at restaurants and hotels.A no annual fee rewards card can also offer bonus frequent flyer or rewards points as a sign up bonus. This is a sweetener from the credit card company that will give your rewards points balance a jump-start in the first year you have the card.
  • A no annual fee rewards card can also offer bonus frequent flyer or rewards points as a sign up bonus. This is a sweetener from the credit card company that will give your rewards points balance a jump-start in the first year you have the card.
  • Additional cardholders.

How many additional cardholders can you add to the account, and for how much? Usually, if a product has no annual fee, you can add supplementary cards to the account for no extra cost. By adding an additional cardholder to your account, you can earn points when the additional cardholder spends and grow your rewards points balance faster.

Types of no annual fee credit card with rewards

  • Airline rewards credit cards with no annual fee.

    These no annual fee credit cards reward you with frequent flyer points when you make an eligible purchase.

    You may need to become a member of the frequent flyer program before you can start earning points. Most frequent flyer programs are free to join; however, membership to the Qantas frequent flyer program will attract a joining fee.

  • Rewards credit cards with no annual fee

    Earn points with a credit card provider’s rewards program when you charge an eligible purchase to your credit card account. Whereas frequent flyer points must be used within the linked frequent flyer program, these cards give you a greater number of redemption options — you can choose to redeem your points for a number of flight and non-flight rewards

    You may also be able to transfer your rewards points to a frequent flyer program.

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Frequently asked questions about no annual fee rewards credit cards

What’s an eligible purchase?

To get rewarded with points when you spend on a rewards credit card with no annual fee, the transaction must be an eligible purchase. Think of an eligible purchase as your everyday type of purchase — buying the groceries, paying for petrol or buying dinner at a restaurant and so on.

You won’t earn points on cash transactions. For a specific list of transactions that are ineligible to earn points, you’ll need to have a look at the terms and conditions specific to the product you want to apply for. But to be general these types of transactions include balance transfers, cash withdrawals, business expenses, paying government charges, paying credit card fees and some BPAY transactions.

What’s the most competitive no annual fee travel rewards credit card?

Compare credit cards for travel if you plan on using a credit card when you go overseas. These cards also give you rewards points when you spend. And some give you more points per dollar spent when you make a purchase in a foreign currency — both when you’re shopping online and when you’re making a purchase over the counter in a foreign country. You can arrange the cards by the cost of their annual fee.

You may also want to compare travel cards. Although these cards don’t give you access to credit — you must load your own money on to the card before you can spend — they do let you hold multiple foreign currencies at a time. These cards do not have an annual fee (an initial load and / or reload fee may apply). And there are some cards that reward you with frequent flyer points when you spend.

What’s the ideal business credit card with rewards and no annual fee?

If you purchase business items and expenses using a consumer credit card, you may be ineligible to earn rewards points on the purchase. Business credit cards with rewards points allow you to purchase business items with your credit card and earn points. You can compare these credit cards by their annual fee by having a look at the comparison table on our business credit card comparison page.

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8 Responses to No Annual Fee Credit Card with Rewards

  1. Default Gravatar
    chris | February 9, 2015

    how much income do you have to earn for a credit card ???

    • Staff
      Jonathan | February 9, 2015

      Hi Chris, thanks for your inquiry!

      The minimum income requirements vary depending on the lender and type of credit card. You can see the income requirement by viewing the ‘Application Requirements’ tab on any credit card page.

      I hope this helps.

      Cheers,

      Jonathan

  2. Default Gravatar
    PAM | April 30, 2014

    Is Coles credit card for Australian use only or can it be used for overseas travel?

    • Staff
      Shirley | May 1, 2014

      Hi Pam,

      Thanks for your question.

      You can use the Coles credit card overseas, but you’ll be charged a currency conversion fee for all transactions done in a currency other than AUD.

      If you’re looking at travel money options, please see this page.

      Cheers,
      Shirley

  3. Default Gravatar
    fahad | September 10, 2013

    hi there,
    i’m after a no annual fee credit card with rewards programme attached to it. i’m after either visa or mastercard.
    could you point me in the right direction please?
    cheers,
    F.

    • Staff
      Jacob | September 10, 2013

      Hi Fahad.

      The page you’re on has the only three rewards cards with no annual fee – two are offered by American Express and one is offered by Coles.

      Thanks for your question.

      Jacob.

    • Default Gravatar
      Natakusuma | November 5, 2013

      Jacob,

      I am after a Visa credit card with rewards points. There doesn’t seem to have one does it?

      regards,

    • Staff
      Jacob | November 6, 2013

      Hi, Natakusuma.

      Thanks for your question.

      You can compare credit cards that offer rewards points on this page. You can use the check boxes to the left of the table to compare cards one on one or you can read a card’s review by clicking on the image or card name. I hope this helps.

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