Credit Cards

There are loads of credit cards out there with different rewards, rates and repayment options. What’s the right one for you? Compare them all and see what suits you best.

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There are plenty of benefits of having a credit card, but if you don’t know how to get the best out of them, they can become an unwelcome burden. You can use credit cards just like you would use your debit card to buy the things you want.

But, when you’re spending with a credit card, you’re actually borrowing the money from a credit card provider.

By having a better understanding of how credit cards work, you can get the most out of your money, without giving it to your credit card provider.

When you’re looking for the best credit card, it can be tempting to look for cheap options. But it’s better to think about how you intend to use your credit card, because each type of credit card comes with different benefits depending on how you use it.

“No Joining Fee” is not always what it seems

Some credit card providers have started offering credit cards with no Joining or Establishment Fee.  While this sounds great, it’s not that simple. These fees have been replaced by the first Annual Fee being charged on your first statement after you make your first purchase.  Previously you would pay the establishment fee when you open the account, and then the first annual fee a year later.  So now you are still paying a fee on that first year, but with a new name and it is better aligned to your first actual use of the card.

Not all Rewards Cards are the same

We all know there are plenty of reward schemes out there like Airpoints, Cash Back, and provider specific rewards like Westpac Hotpoints.  So how do you choose the right one for you?  Firstly, pick the reward system you will get the most out of.  If you travel a lot then Airpoints may very well be the right pick.  Next check how much do you need to spend to get something back?  Not all Airpoints cards have the same spend for reward ratio so be careful to check this.  Lastly, its not just about the rewards, make sure you check the interest rate.  Nothing worse than spending to get rewards and having the finance provider charge more interest to make up for it. These types of cards are good for people who pay off their credit card balance monthly. That’s because you don’t pay interest, plus you can take advantage of the cashback offers or rewards points.

What does “Up to XX Days Interest Free” actually mean?

All credit cards have an interest free period on most purchases, this does not include cash withdrawals or “cash” purchases like money transfers or some gambling.  This interest free period can vary from card to card but is generally based on the day of your purchase versus when the statement is generated. 

For instance if you have a statement date of the 1st of March, with a due date of the 14th, and you make your purchase on or around the 1st of March, it will not accrue interest until after the 14th of April if you do not pay that purchase off.

Remember to stay interest free you must pay off the full amount owing each month, not just the minimum required payment.  If you leave a balance behind, you will start being charged interest on that portion.

Credit Cards vs Debit Cards – What’s the difference?

The simple answer is Debit Cards are attached to your bank account, so you are only spending money you already have.  Credit Cards are a pre-approved limit that you can “borrow” and must pay back. 

Both come in Visa and Mastercard versions and can be used online, in stores and overseas.  So, the only thing you need to consider is if you want to borrow or use your own money.

Quick Ways to Save on Interest

To avoid being charged interest you should try to pay your bill in full every month. This allows you to take advantage of the interest free period credit cards offer. Sometimes this isn’t possible, so how do you pay less interest? Don’t wait for your due date to make a payment. Interest is calculated daily on the remaining balance, so the sooner you pay your bill, the lower the balance on which interest is calculated. If you can, try to pay more than the minimum monthly payment as this will reduce your balance faster and, again, save you interest.

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Nomey is an independent comparison website, we are not a product issuer or credit provider. We may be compensated if you successfully apply for a product via our website.

Our loan providers offer fixed interest rates ranging from 5.03% to 29.95% per annum on 6 to 84 month terms and charge an establishment fee from $150 to $1000. Our providers may charge additional fees which will be disclosed on their site and should be reviewed before proceeding with any application.

We work hard to ensure the information displayed on our site is accurate. If you choose to apply for a product via our website, you will be dealing directly with the provider of that product and you should confirm the accuracy of any information with them. It is important that you read and understand any information provided by the product provider and if anything is unclear you should get independent advice before proceeding with the application.