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In fact, it’s so serious about putting People First, the bank has adopted it as its credo. What does this mean? Aside from looking good on its logo, putting People First means providing customers with the products and services they need, while giving them great rates and superior service.
Does it deliver? As a customer-owned institution, Heritage Bank is well-placed to offer all of these things. As it’s able to focus on its customers instead of external shareholders, Heritage can offer plenty of benefits to its customers. Indeed, it’s been doing so for quite some time now. Having been around for more than 140 years, Heritage Bank is now the largest customer-owned bank in Australia. So, it must be doing something right.
What’s on offer then? Heritage offers a wide variety of financial products and services. However, we’re here to look at its credit cards. Heritage currently offers five credit cards, ranging from its starter card to its platinum option. Which one is right for you? Let’s look a little closer to find out.
Before we get into the details of each of Heritage Bank’s credit cards, it would be a good idea to dig deeper into what it means to be customer-owned.
Heritage is owned by its customers. But how does that differ from other banks? Unlike other banks, Heritage doesn’t have external shareholders to keep happy. Big banks, such as the Big Four, have to pay dividends to their external shareholders. To pay those dividends, they have to focus on profits.
As for customer-owned banks – they can still look to earn profits, obviously – but those profits can be reinvested back into the bank. That allows customer-owned banks to provide better rates and lower fees. They can also give more attention to the level of customer service they provide.
By choosing a card provided by a customer-owned institution, cardholders could save money on interest and in fees. Does that hold true for Heritage? Looking at Heritage’s ongoing interest rates and annual fees, you’d have to say yes, yes it does.
Thinking about getting your first credit card? Having a credit card can offer many of benefits. You can use it to build up your credit rating. This can allow you to apply for loans and other forms of credit later on down the line. And of course, you can use it to buy stuff now and pay it back later. Incidentally, by ‘later’, we mean at the end of your billing cycle, not next year.
Yes, getting a credit card can be exciting. But, it can also be somewhat daunting. With a credit card, you have a heap of money at your fingertips, tempting you to buy, buy, buy. When you first get a credit card, it can be so easy to overspend. Sometimes the notion of paying it all back doesn’t sink in until you get that first bill demanding money.
Many people don’t think about saving money with credit cards. They think about spending money. However, credit cards can be used to save money – as long as you choose the right card for you.
If you’re looking to keep costs down, there are two main things to think about when comparing credit cards. First is the annual fee. You will usually find cards with more features charge higher annual fees. If you want to save on annual fees, first think about whether you actually need all those features.
Heritage cards charge very reasonable annual fees overall. Only Heritage’s platinum card reaches past the hundred dollar mark. Check out Heritage’s cards for any introductory offers as well. You may find options that offer the first year annual fee free.
Interest is another biggie. Cardholders can pay out thousands of dollars in interest on their credit cards. There can be many reasons behind this. Perhaps they have the wrong card for their spending style. Or maybe they can’t afford to pay off their debt. Or it could be that they’re not paying attention to how much interest they are actually paying.
Choosing a low rate credit card can be a solution. For cardholders who retain a balance, it’s important to keep the interest they are paying as low as possible. For Heritage, its money-saving low interest card is in fact, its gold card.
The Heritage Gold Low Rate Credit Card has a low ongoing purchase rate – and no annual fee for the life of the card. When you think of gold cards, you think of features and extras. Not so much with this gold card. While it may offer a higher credit limit, it’s actually low on features. But, it can save you heaps of money. So, if that’s important, this could be the card for you.
Aside from its gold card. Heritage offers low interest rates across the board. Considering the fact that other providers’ cards can hit 23% p.a. on their purchase rate, Heritage is looking pretty good just now.
If you’re not looking for a starter card, or a gold or platinum option, a classic card can be the perfect choice. Classic cards usually offer standard features for an affordable price. They generally don’t have loads of bells and whistles, but they definitely do their job as a credit card.
And Heritage? Heritage offers a classic card that is actually a rewards card. The Heritage Bank Classic Credit Card has a relatively low annual fee and ongoing purchase rate.
Perhaps not quite the same as a standard rewards card, with this card, you earn 1 point for every $1,300 spent on the card within a calendar month. You can also earn bonus points shopping at certain retailers, and you accumulate points on the anniversary of your membership each year.
The points you earn are collected within the Heritage Credits Rewards program. You can redeem your points for any number of items. From gift cards to kitchen appliances, jewellery to experiences, it’s all there for the taking.
The next step up from a classic card tends to be a gold card. As we said, most gold cards are designed to offer more features to entice cardholders. However, Heritage does things differently. Yes, Heritage offers the higher credit limit, like most gold cards do. But no, it doesn’t offer fancy features.
What this card is, is a money-saver. Again, most gold cards charge higher annual fees. Gold cardholders are happy to pay those higher fees because they get fancy features in return. With no fancy features on the table, this gold card is happy costing less.
And as you would expect with a name like that, this gold card also offers a low purchase rate. If you happen to retain a balance, this can help you save money while you work on paying your balance down.
Aside from that, there’s not much else to mention. You can enjoy access to Visa Entertainment extras, just as you do with the Classic card. Apart from that, it’s all in the money-saving.
Looking for a little prestige? Heritage has a premium option for customers looking for that little bit more. The Heritage Bank Platinum Credit Card offers a great range of features, plus a super high credit limit. Subject to approval, credit limits max out at $500,000.
And those features? First up is the personal concierge service. Available 24/7, your very own personal assistant can do pretty much anything. Whether it’s recommending a restaurant or booking theatre tickets, your concierge is just a phone call – or internet search – away.
Another perk is Visa Front Line Access. This gets you to the front of the queue when booking tickets – allowing you to buy tickets sometimes before even pre-sales are available.
Love travel? With this platinum card, you can enjoy global travel offers, Airport Meet & Assist, and insurance cover for travel overseas and within Australia. Travel insurances on offer include international travel insurance, interstate flight inconvenience insurance and transit accident insurance. Everyday purchases are covered too, with purchase cover, extended warranty and guaranteed pricing.
What about rewards? Just like the classic card, Heritage’s platinum offering is also a rewards card. It works in just the same manner as the classic card, except that the platinum card earns three points per $1000 spent in a calendar month.
It’s also worth noting that while the card’s annual fee is $125, this is waived when you spend $35,000 on your card.
Getting Down to Business
Want to ease business cashflow a little? Get rid of that petty cash and business chequebook, and instead, issue employees with their own credit card. Each card can have an individual spending limit, where spending can be tracked for easy accounting at the end of each month.
With the Heritage Bank Business Visa Credit Card, you can issue cards to all your employees. You can set monthly spend limits on each card, with multiple cards issued under one overall approved limit. You can also benefit from up to 40 days interest free, helping to keep costs down. It is worth pointing out though, that there is an annual fee of $45 for each card issued.
If you don’t like doing business with a bank without knowing its background, read on. Heritage Bank can trace its origins back to 1875. The Toowoomba Building Society, formed in 1875, and the Darling Downs Building Society, formed in 1897, merged in 1981 to form Heritage Building Society. Then finally, in 2011, Heritage officially became a bank.
Although it is customer-owned, Heritage Bank abides by all the same regulations as other banks. It is regulated by APRA and ASIC, and it is an Authorised Deposit-taking Institution. That means, your money is as safe there as it would be with any other institution with the same credentials.
What about those credit cards? As you’ve seen, Heritage covers all the bases with its credit cards.
If you want to earn rewards, the Heritage Bank Classic Card could be the one for you. If you want to save money, the Heritage Bank Gold Low Rate Card could get you there. If you want platinum perks, the Heritage Bank Platinum Card has perks a-plenty. Or if you want a business card, the Heritage Bank Business Card could be ideal.
Interested? If you like the sound of Heritage Bank, why not compare their cards? They may just have the perfect card for you.
Something you need to know? Ask our credit card expert a question.Ask a question