The difference between standard, gold and platinum credit cards

Information verified correct on April 26th, 2017

Whether you’re looking for no frills or platinum features, compare the difference between standard, gold and platinum credit cards to find the right card for you.

Standard, gold and platinum credit cards are designed with different types of users in mind. Standard credit cards (including low rate and low fee) cater to people who have trouble paying off their balance at the end of the month. Platinum credit cards with an annual fee are suited to people with a high annual spend. Gold credit cards come somewhere in between.

Each of these types of cards come with different features, costs and benefits, so it’s important to understand how they compare against one another. If you’re weighing up whether to go with a standard, gold or platinum card, use this guide to compare which type of credit card is best suited to your finances so you don’t get stuck with too much or too little bang for your buck.

standard-gold-platinum-cards

How do I know which one is for me? - Comparing standard, gold and platinum credit cards.

Think about how much you spend to discover which type of credit card is right for your budget.

Standard cardsGold cardsPlatinum cards
  • Infrequent spenders
  • Struggle to repay card balance at the end of the month
  • Don’t plan on using  extra features
  • Have a low annual income
  • May carry a balance some months
  • You don’t want to pay for a rewards program
  • You’re interested in a specific platinum feature
  • Have a medium-to-high annual income
  • Can repay balance in full each month
  • Have a high annual spend
  • Can meet a high minimum income requirement
  • Have a frequent flyer account
  • Have a high annual income

Standard cards

  • How much do they cost? Standard cards are an entry-level option and, when compared to gold and platinum, standard cards typically have lower costs. Annual fees for standard credit cards can range from around $25 to $150 and standard variable interest rates for standard cards could be as low as 10% p.a. or as high as 22% p.a. but are usually comparatively lower than more premium options.
  • What are the features? Common features include interest-free days on purchases and no liability fraud guarantees. Standard credit cards have the lowest minimum credit limit and lowest minimum income requirement.
  • What are the downsides? Little more than a way to make payments, standard credits are light on value-adding features such as rewards. For the few standard cards that do offer rewards, you can expect a lower number of points per $1 than more premium cards.

Compare low rate credit cards

Rates last updated April 26th, 2017
Purchase rate (p.a.) Balance transfer rate (p.a.) Annual fee Interest Free Period
HSBC Low Rate Credit Card
This card comes with a balance transfer offer, a low interest rate and up to 55 days interest-free on purchases.
13.25% p.a. 0% p.a. for 15 months with 2% balance transfer fee $55 p.a. Up to 55 days on purchases Go to site More info
NAB Low Rate Credit Card
A low rate card which offers 0% p.a. on balance transfers for the first 18 months combined with a low annual fee.
13.99% p.a. 0% p.a. for 18 months with 3% balance transfer fee $59 p.a. Up to 55 days on purchases Go to site More info
St.George Vertigo Visa
Introductory offer of 0% p.a. for 12 months on balance transfers and 0% p.a. for 6 months on purchases, plus a low annual fee.
0% p.a. for 6 months (reverts to 13.24% p.a.) 0% p.a. for 12 months $55 p.a. Up to 55 days on purchases Go to site More info
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.
14.99% p.a. 0% p.a. for 12 months with 1% balance transfer fee $0 p.a. Up to 55 days on purchases Go to site More info
ANZ Low Rate Platinum
Enjoy platinum benefits with exclusive discounts, complimentary travel insurance and personal concierge. Also repay your credit card debt interest-free with 0% p.a. for 16 months on balance transfers.
11.49% p.a. 0% p.a. for 16 months with 2% balance transfer fee $99 p.a. Up to 55 days on purchases Go to site More info
CUA Low Rate Credit Card
A low rate credit card which features a long-term balance transfer offer, a low ongoing interest rate on purchases and a waived annual fee for the first year.
11.99% p.a. 0% p.a. for 13 months $0 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($49 p.a. thereafter) Up to 55 days on purchases Go to site More info
NAB Low Rate Platinum Card
Offers a low introductory rate of 0% p.a. on balance transfers for 18 months plus enjoy premium benefits including international travel insurance.
13.99% p.a. 0% p.a. for 18 months with 3% balance transfer fee $100 p.a. Up to 55 days on purchases Go to site More info
Bendigo Bank Basic Black Credit Card
A basic credit card that features low interest rates, low annual fee and up to 44 interest-free days on purchases.
12.24% p.a. $45 p.a. Up to 44 days on purchases Go to site More info
ANZ Low Rate
Take advantage of 0% p.a. for 16 months on balance transfers and a low ongoing interest rate on purchases.
12.49% p.a. 0% p.a. for 16 months with 2% balance transfer fee $58 p.a. Up to 55 days on purchases Go to site More info
Bank of Melbourne Vertigo Platinum
A platinum card with a low balance transfer offer of 0% p.a. interest for 12 months and 0% p.a. for 6 months on purchases combined with complimentary insurance covers.
0% p.a. for 6 months (reverts to 12.74% p.a.) 0% p.a. for 12 months $99 p.a. Up to 55 days on purchases Go to site More info

Gold credit cards

  • How much do they cost? Gold credit cards are mid-way between standard and platinum credit cards with an annual fee to match, ranging from around $80 to $200. Interest rates can range from 12% p.a. to 22% p.a., with lower rates and perks such as rewards usually driving up the cost of the annual fee.
  • What are the features? More competitive promotional balance transfer or purchase offers alongside gold extras such as insurance and rewards.
  • What are the downsides? As gold credit cards make up a small portion of the market, there is little competition to drive deals from credit card providers.

Compare gold credit cards

Rates last updated April 26th, 2017
Rewards Points per $ spent (VISA/MC) Rewards Points per $ spent (AMEX) Bonus Points Annual fee
American Express Gold Business Card
Keep track of your business expenses with a dedicated business credit card. Your account details can be uploaded in to MYOB, Excel or Quicken to help with BAS reporting.
0 1 10,000 bonus points $169 p.a. Go to site More info
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.
1 2 $150 p.a. Go to site More info

Platinum credit cards

  • How much do they cost? The annual fee can be as high as $500 a year for platinum credit cards (or even $1,200 in the case of the American Express Platinum). They also usually have high rates of interest for purchases and cash advances.
  • What are the features? Platinum cards offer one of the highest rewards earn rates, comprehensive insurances for travel and purchases, airport lounge passes and a concierge service.
  • What are the downsides? High annual fees and the cost of high interest charges can sting if you don’t pay your balance off by the statement due date, or if you don’t earn enough rewards to justify these costs.

Compare platinum credit cards

Rates last updated April 26th, 2017
Rewards Points per $ spent (VISA/MC) Rewards Points per $ spent (AMEX) Bonus Points Annual fee
NAB Rewards Platinum Card
Enjoy 80,000 bonus points when you spend $2,500 on everyday purchases within 90 days from card approval. Benefit from $0 annual fee for the first year and a range of platinum features.
1 80,000 bonus points $0 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($195 p.a. thereafter) 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.
1 0 $149 p.a. Go to site More info
Virgin Australia Velocity Flyer Card - Balance Transfer Offer
Earn 2 Velocity Points on top of the standard earn rate per $1 spent within the first three months. Plus, save with a long-term balance transfer offer and a reduced annual fee in the first year.
0.66 0 $64 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($129 p.a. thereafter) Go to site More info
Citi Rewards Platinum Credit Card
Enjoy a long-term balance transfer offer and earn 1 Citi Reward Point per $1 spent on all eligible domestic and international spend.
1 0 $49 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($149 p.a. thereafter) Go to site More info
ANZ Platinum Credit Card - Exclusive Offer
Receive a low introductory offer of 0% p.a. on purchases for 3 months and 0% p.a. on balance transfers for 12 months. Also, enjoy an annual fee waiver in the first year.
0 0 $0 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($87 p.a. thereafter) Go to site More info
NAB Premium Card
Platinum credit card benefits including higher credit limits and travel insurance, plus a low interest rate on balance transfers.
0 0 $90 p.a. Go to site More info
Qantas American Express Ultimate Card
Enjoy 75,000 bonus Qantas Points when you meet the spend criteria plus 75 Bonus Status Credits when you book and fly back with Qantas. Earn up to 2.5 Qantas Points per $1 spent on eligible purchases.
1.5 75,000 bonus points $450 p.a. Go to site More info
HSBC Platinum Qantas Credit Card
Receive 60,000 bonus Qantas Points on eligible spend within 3 months. Enjoy access to premium benefits and complimentary insurance.
1 0 60,000 bonus points $199 p.a. Go to site More info
American Express Explorer Credit Card
Receive 100,000 Membership Rewards Bonus Points on eligible spend within the first 3 months of card membership. Also enjoy a $400 travel voucher and two complimentary airline passes per year.
2 100,000 bonus points $395 p.a. Go to site More info
St.George Vertigo Platinum
A platinum card with a balance transfer offer of 0% p.a. for 12 months and an introductory purchase offer of 0% p.a. for 6 months.
0 0 $99 p.a. Go to site More info

Other types of credit cards

As well as considering standard, gold and platinum cards, you may want to look at these options:

  • Black credit cards. A step up for platinum products, black credit cards provide elite features and benefits, with price points to match.
  • No annual fee credit cards. While standard, gold, platinum and black credit cards usually have very different annual fees, there are some cards that waive this cost (including platinum options). If you want to avoid paying ongoing fees for your credit card, you may want to focus your comparison on these options.
  • Low rate cards. While standard credit cards typically provide lower rates than their more premium counterparts, you can also find low rate credit cards that come with gold or platinum benefits. For example, St.George offers the standard St.George Vertigo Visa and the St.George Vertigo Platinum, while Bankwest has standard, gold and platinum options for its low rate Breeze credit card.
  • 0% interest credit cards. A wide range of standard, gold, platinum and black credit cards may offer a promotional 0% interest on balance transfers or 0% interest on purchases during the introductory period. Some cards may even offer both. If you’re looking to save money on credit costs in the short term, it could be worth considering this option.

Standard, gold and platinum credit cards have different price points and a range of different features. It’s even common to have a combination of cards to use for different purposes – a rewards credit card for everyday purchases and to pay off in full at the end of the month and a low rate credit card for big purchases. Get in touch using the form below if you have a question about the difference between standard, gold or platinum credit cards or need help with your comparison.

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4 Responses to The difference between standard, gold and platinum credit cards

  1. Default Gravatar
    haimen | February 9, 2014

    Do I have to pay fees for a platinum card?

    • Staff
      Marc | February 10, 2014

      Hi halmen,
      thanks for the question.

      In most cases a platinum card will come with an annual fee and a higher interest rate compared to regular cards, although this isn’t always the case. To compare platinum cards please view our page here.

      I hope this helps,
      Marc.

  2. Default Gravatar
    dulce | April 9, 2013

    What are some of the other benefits that a credit card can give you that isn’t monetary

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