Money Magazine Cheapest & Best Credit Cards

Information verified correct on September 29th, 2016
Money Magazine Cheapest and Best Credit Cards

Every year, Money Magazine hosts The Best of the Best Awards to provide user’s with a list of the most competitive credit cards available in the market

Money magazine is considered one of the most reputable financial resources on the market. Each year, the magazine runs The Best of the Best Awards and rates credit cards (among other financial niches) based on their performance. These results are then used to create their latest classification about Australia’s most popular credit cards.

To help you stay informed about Money Magazine’s highest rated cards for 2010, we have compiled a list of the winning credit cards and detailed the relevant rates and fees so you can compare them against each other and your financial needs.

Australia’s top credit cards* for 2010

If you are in the market for a new credit card, or one that is cheaper than the one you currently own, the following information is going to help you sort the wheat from the chaff. The awards are separated into different categories, which should help narrow down your comparison.

  • Best Reward Credit Cards

In the Rewards Cards stakes Westpac has once again wiped the floor with not just one, but three spots in the top three bank* rewards credit cards. Their sets of Altitude Rewards Amex Cards are ranked as the top rewards credit cards* in the banking credit card category market right now. See how much they cost below.

How winners were ranked

The winning cards were ranked based on the amount of money required to spend in order to redeem three domestic and three international flights, then on annual fees and lastly on interest rates.

Top rated bank credit cards

RankInstitutionProductCredit CardInt RateAnnual FeeReward Rtn After Fees
1WestpacAltitude Platinum Plus AmexAltitude Platinum Amex19.99% p.a.$295 p.a.$320.81
2WestpacAltitude Rewards AmexAltitude Amex1% p.a. for 12 months (reverts to 20.24% p.a.)$100 p.a.$310.54
3WestpacAltitude Platinum Rewards AmexAltitude Platinum Amex1% p.a. for 12 months (reverts to 20.24% p.a.)$150 p.a.$260.54

Top rated non-bank cards*

As the non-bank rewards credit cards, the one standing out the most for its features was the American Express Blue Sky card because of the no annual fee which is very impressive for a reward card by itself.

When you look at the rewards return after fees, it’s no wonder why this card topped the category for this 2010.

2Credit UnionsSilver RewardsSilver MC17.99%$45$116.18
3American ExpressMembership Rewards ChoicesGold Choice19.99%$49$101.08
  • Best Frequent Flyer Products

If you’re a regular jet-setter who wants to earn points when you fly, this list could be useful for you. Simply compare your options in regards to their costs, features and the value you’ll be getting from each card.

How winners were ranked

This category was rated based on the funds you need to spend to earn three domestic flights and three international flights within a calendar year. As you can see below, these cards may be better left to big spenders and high-income earners.

Top rated bank credit cards*

RankInstitutionCardRateAnnual FeeInterest-free daysTotal Spend
1WestpacAltitude Platinum Plus19.99% p.a.$295 p.a.45$228,933
2EarthEarth-Qantas Amex20.24% p.a.$75 p.a.45$234,667
3NABQantas Platinum Amex0% p.a. for 15 months (reverts to 19.99% p.a.)$250 p.a.44$234,667

Top rated non-bank cards*

1American ExpressAscent Platinum19.99%$39555$206,400
2American ExpressQantas Amex Ultimate20.74% p.a.$450 p.a.44$234,667
3American ExpressQantas Amex Premium20.74% p.a.$249 p.a.44$281,600
  • Best Transactor Credit Cards

If you pay off your credit card debt in full each month then these cards are perfect for you. One of the most important things you need to consider is the number of interest-free days, the more interest-free days you get, the more time you have to pay off your debt. The non-bank cards and their maximum offer of 62 interest-free days trumped this category.

The next important aspect for credit card holders who pay off their balance in full each month is the annual fee. The less you pay for your card annually, the more money you end up saving.

The perk about both bank winners Bankwest and HSBC, and non-bank winner Latitude Financial Services’ MasterCard is the lack of annual fees. If you’re paying off your debt in full each month and there’s no annual fee, it costs you nothing to have the credit card.

How the winners were ranked

The winners were ranked by interest-free days, then by a score for the annual fee and then the rates.

Top rated bank-issued credit cards*

Rank InstitutionProductInternational RateAnnual FeeInterest-Free Days
1BankwestZero MasterCard15.99%none55
1HSBCCredit Card15.99%none55
2NABLow Rate Visa Card10.99%$59 p.a.55
3WestpacLow Rate Visa/MC11.99%$59 p.a.55

Top rated non-bank cards*

1Latitude Financial ServicesColes MasterCard18.99%none62
2Savings &LNS CUVisa Care Card15.95%$2462
3Latitude Financial ServicesMyer Visa/Gold Card19.49%$3962
  • Cheapest Credit Cards

If you struggle to pay off your credit card in full each month, then this category is the one for you. A low-interest rate was a key consideration when picking out these cards.

How the winners were ranked

Winners were ranked on the total of revolving a $3,000 debt over 12 months, including interest and annual fee.

Top ranking bank credit cards*

RankInstitutionProductInt’RateAnn’FeeBal’TransferInt-Free DaysRew’ProgrAnnual Cost
1BankwestBreeze MasterCard8.99% p.a.$0 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($89 p.a. thereafter)Yes55Yes$358.70
3Bendigo BankBasic Black10.99%$45No44No$386.70

Top ranking non-banking cards*

1Satisfac CUVisa S1010.24%$10Yes55No$317.20
2Heritage BSVisa Gold NF10.75%noneNo0No$322.50
3Police CU SAExtralite10.99%noneYes44No$329.70
  • Cheapest Balance Transfer Credit Cards

Balance transfer cards are great tools to pay off credit card faster than with a traditional credit card. However, some of these cards are traps because of the way they work. You want the cheapest your money can buy and the list below is going to help you find the winner.

How the winners were ranked

The winning cards were ranked by the total cost of paying off a debt of $3,000 over three years.

Top ranking bank credit cards*

RankInstitutionProductTransfer RateIntro PeriodSTD RateAnnual FeeTotal Repaid
1BankwestBreeze MasterCard2.99% p.a. for 9 months8.99% p.a.$0 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($89 p.a. thereafter)$3502
2Macquarie BankJetstar MasterCard0% p.a. for 14 months14 months14.99% p.a.$29 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($59 p.a. thereafter)$3515
3BankwestZero MasterCard2.99% p.a. for 9 months17.99% p.a.none$3536

Top ranking non-bank cards*

1Credit UnionsSilver MC4.90%Life17.99%$45$3371
2Satisfac Credit UnionVisa S104.99%6 months10.24%$10$3445
3Credit UnionsGold MC STD4.90%Life17.99%$85$3463

Choose the right card for you

Although the winners of Money Magazine’s annual credit card could be a good benchmark to conduct your comparison against, make sure that your final decision comes down to your specific needs and financial situation. Remember, there’s no such thing as the perfect credit card, only the right credit card for you.

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Credit Cards Comparison

Rates last updated September 29th, 2016
Purchase rate (p.a.) Balance transfer rate (p.a.) Annual fee
Virgin Australia Velocity Flyer Card - Balance Transfer Offer
Enjoy a 0% p.a. balance transfer offer for 18 months and also earn 2 bonus Velocity Points in the first 3 months on everyday spend.
20.74% p.a. 0% p.a. for 18 months $64 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($129 p.a. thereafter) Go to site More info
ME Bank frank Credit Card
Enjoy a low and consistent interest rate on purchases and cash advances, combined with no annual fee.
11.99% p.a. $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.
19.99% p.a. 0% p.a. for 15 months $149 p.a. Go to site More info

* The credit card offers compared on this page are chosen from a range of credit cards has access to track details from and is not representative of all the products available in the market. Products are displayed in no particular order or ranking. The use of terms 'Best' and 'Top' are not product ratings and are subject to our disclaimer. You should consider seeking independent financial advice and consider your own personal financial circumstances when comparing cards.

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