No Annual Fee Credit Cards

Updated 3 May 2021

You can save with a no annual fee credit card, either for an introductory period or for as long as you keep the card.

A lot of credit cards in Australia charge an annual fee, but you can get a credit card without one. Known as no annual fee credit cards, they help you save up to $100 a year (or more!) by charging no ongoing fees for using the card. What to know about no annual fee credit cards:
  • The no annual fee offer may be a permanent feature of the card or it might be a limited offer. If it’s a limited offer, you will be charged an annual fee from the second or third year.
  • No annual fee cards don’t usually offer perks such as rewards point.
  • You can also enjoy other benefits, such as 0% purchase rate or 0% balance transfer rates, with no annual fee cards.
We’ve found some no annual fee credit cards for you to compare below. If the annual fee is waived for only the first or second year, we’ve listed what it will be. Make sure you check what other fees and interest rates come with the card before you apply.
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513 reviews for 16 cards listed
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Virgin Money No Annual Fee Credit Card

16 reviews
$0 saved over 12 months

ANZ Low Rate Credit Card – 0% Balance Transfer

61 reviews
$0 saved over 30 months

Westpac Low Rate Credit Card

304 reviews
$0 saved over 28 months

Citi Simplicity Credit Card

8 reviews
$0 saved over 6 months

ANZ Rewards Black Credit Card

1 review
$0 saved over months

Coles No Annual Fee Mastercard

4 reviews
$0 saved over 6 months

ANZ Platinum Credit Card

32 reviews
$0 saved over months

ME Frank Credit Card

26 reviews
$0 saved over months

NAB Low Rate Credit Card

26 reviews
$0 saved over 26 months

NAB StraightUp Card

3 reviews
$0 saved over months

St.George No Annual Fee Credit Card

5 reviews
$0 saved over months

Qantas American Express Discovery Credit Card

2 reviews
$0 saved over months

American Express Velocity Escape Credit Card

10 reviews
$0 saved over months

BankSA No Annual Fee Credit Card

2 reviews
$0 saved over months

Bankwest Zero Credit Card

4 reviews
$0 saved over 26 months

Bankwest Zero Platinum Mastercard

9 reviews
$0 saved over 26 months

Is no annual fee right for you?

Whether a no annual fee card is right for you will usually depend on how you use it. No annual fee cards tend to be simple in nature, focusing on saving money over features. If you want a card that helps to keep costs down, that you can keep in your wallet without worrying about ongoing fees, a no annual fee card could be just what you need.

No Annual Fee Cards 101

A no annual fee card is a type of credit card that doesn’t charge an annual fee. By choosing a no annual fee card, you don’t have to worry about covering ongoing fees, meaning you can keep the card in your wallet for ‘free’ – as long as you clear your balance before it starts accruing interest.

You will find most credit cards in Australia charge an annual fee. How much you pay in annual fees usually depends on the type of credit card you have, and the features it offers. Rewards cards typically charge higher annual fees, as do prestige cards, such as platinum and black cards, as they tend to offer more in the way of features.

Basically, the annual fee you pay covers the cost of what your credit card provides. Which is why no annual fee cards are usually pretty simple. While you can find some no annual fee cards that offer rewards and extras, they typically don’t offer the same value in those extras as those found on cards with higher annual fees.

No annual fee cards can help lower ongoing costs, while helping to keep things simple. How do you know if a no annual fee card is right for you? Let’s take a look.

  • You want to save money. A no annual fee card lowers the ongoing costs of keeping a credit to zero (as long as you avoid interest as well).
  • You want a basic card. No annual fee cards tend to have fewer extras on offer, which means less small print to keep track of.
  • You don’t use your card that often. With a no annual fee card, you can use it when you need it, without paying an ongoing fee for the privilege.
  • You want a credit card for emergencies. A no annual fee card is there when you need it, helping you cover unexpected costs. And when you don’t need it, you’re not paying for it.

Choosing the right card really comes down to how you will use it. As you compare the options on CreditCard.com.au, think about the following factors and how they may affect you:

  • Purchase Rate: If you know you will always clear your balance before it starts accruing interest, your card’s purchase rate shouldn’t matter too much. On the other hand, if you tend to carry a balance, look for a no annual fee card with a low purchase rate as well.
  • Features: No annual fee cards tend to be low on features, but you can still compare the options to see what’s on offer. TIP: If the card offers more features, you may find the purchase rate is higher.
  • Rewards: While rewards are rare on no annual fee cards, there are some options out there. You may find the earn rate is lower on cards with no annual fee, but you are essentially earning rewards for free, which could appeal to some users.

One of the biggest mistakes you can make with a no annual fee card is to carry a balance. No annual fee cards tend to charge more in interest, so carrying a balance can become costly. Always clear your balance each month to avoid interest accruing, and to really make the most of those annual fee savings.

While some cards charge no annual fee for the life of the card, other cards provide no annual fee offers. Here are the two types of no annual fee offers to keep an eye out for:

No Annual Fee Introductory Offer

Opting for this type of card, you will pay no annual fee over an introductory period (usually one year), and after that, you will pay the card’s standard annual fee. This type of offer can provide a great way to trial a card, trying out its features or rewards program for ‘free’. If you plan to keep the card in the long term, make sure you can afford the standard annual fee, and that it provides good value for what’s on offer.

No Annual Fee After Meeting A Minimum Spend

With this type of card, you pay no annual fee as long as you spend a certain amount on the card each year. As long as you can afford to spend this amount – and you pay it off each month before it starts accruing interest – this can provide an easy way to make use of the card’s features while saving on ongoing fees.

While no annual fee cards tend to be basic in nature, some can offer extras such as introductory offers. You may find some no annual fee cards offer deals on balance transfers, and on occasion, some may provide purchase offers.

Opting for a balance transfer offer on a no annual fee card could be very beneficial, helping you to save on annual fees, while you pay down more of your balance. Unlike rewards cards that encourage spending, no annual fee cards help you to focus on clearing your balance rather than adding to it.

As for purchase offers, while these may be uncommon, they can be an awesome find. Not only are you paying no annual fees, you are also paying nothing in interest over the introductory period.

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94 questions (showing the latest 10 Q&As)

Adam

Adam

17 March 2021
How much do you need to spend a month to make a rewards card more beneficial than a fee free card?
    Roland B Bleyer - CreditCard.com.au Founder

    Roland

    17 March 2021
    Hi Adam, this totally depends on the rewards you're looking at and the annual fee you're trying to outweigh. It's pretty simple to figure out, though: multiply the amount you spend per year by the earn rate, use the bank's reward guide to figure out what you could redeem for that amount of points, and make sure what you'd get is worth more than the annual fee you'd pay. Let's take the Coles Rewards Mastercard as an example. It charges a $99 annual fee, earns 2 Flybuys points per $1 spent and 2,000 points gets you $10 off your shop. In order for the rewards you earn to outweigh the annual fee, you'd need to spend at least $10,000 over the course of a year ($833 per month). I hope that helps.
sam

sam

28 November 2020
A card that has no annual fee and interest free period of more than 55 days
Frances hayes

Frances hayes

29 October 2020
Good afternoon, I just want a simple card that I can use to buy things in line with my own money. I don’t have a huge balance, never overspend and add to the account each month.!if the borders ever open I may relocate to Thailand. Frances
    Roland B Bleyer - CreditCard.com.au Founder

    Roland

    30 October 2020
    Hi Frances, I suggest with the potential of Thailand that you look at a no annual fee card with no foreign fees. https://www.creditcard.com.au/bankwest-zero-platinum-credit-card/. This card comes in 3 versions with the Platinum being the most premium. Though you just complete one application form and they allocate you either standard, gold or Platinum. Platinum has the bonus benefit of travel insurance.
Margaret

Margaret

11 August 2020
do I have to be earning money to get credit card. I have income from my superannuation pension but have assets
    Roland B Bleyer - CreditCard.com.au Founder

    Roland

    12 August 2020
    Hi Margaret, no annual fee cards can be harder for approval. Many banks will accept your super pension as income. Others will not. I would look at major banks. Additionally AMEX have some great no annual fee options. You just need to make sure that your super pension meets the minimum income requirements to apply.
Rashmin

Rashmin

7 May 2020
Hi, being an international student I can't find any low fee credit card anywhere, can you please suggest some? thanks
Maryanne

Maryanne

28 April 2020
I want a credit card that get frequent flyer points but has a low annual fee or a free introductory one year period. Can you suggest one please?
Lesley

Lesley

24 April 2020
I am a senior receiving the Age Pension. I would like a simple (pref) no annual fee credit card with no frills for online purchases. I have an excellent credit rating, but low income. Is there a card suitable for me ?
    Roland B Bleyer - CreditCard.com.au Founder

    Roland

    27 April 2020
    Hi Lesley, no annual fee cards can be hard to get approval for. They typically require a higher minimum income. I would speak to your everyday bank and see if they can provide you with a card.
Nikki

Nikki

7 April 2020
Hi, I'm looking for a credit card that earns points with a low/no annual fee. I've seen a few that waive the annual fee for the first year. Is it possible to cancel these cards after the first year, or will I be locked in for a period of time? Thank you!
    Roland B Bleyer - CreditCard.com.au Founder

    Roland

    7 April 2020
    Hi Nikki, it is possible to cancel cards before the 2nd year annual fee is due without penalty. The right card for you will depend on how much you spend. I like the HSBC Platinum Qantas or the Qantas Premier Everyday for lower spenders. Though getting stronger bonus points can be a big shot in the points arm.
Ramesh

Ramesh

17 December 2019
Hi when you refer to “rewards” on credit cards what are they and how do you redeem them. What are the different types. I know qantas ff rewards, those are the only ones I know. Thanks.
    Roland B Bleyer - CreditCard.com.au Founder

    Roland

    18 December 2019
    Hi Ramesh, I think you need to explore the site more. There are a heap of reward programs. Most major banks have a custom program. Of the major airline rewards, its Velocity and Qantas here. Have a look at our Rewards credit card section. Then you can search for each program you want to understand. I prefer Qantas and Velocity direct card earning.
Greg

Greg

8 April 2019
Can u apply 4 a credit card on a disability pension
    Roland B Bleyer - CreditCard.com.au Founder

    Roland

    8 April 2019
    Hi Greg, this is possible. You need to find a credit card provider that will accept the disability pension as income. Then you need to at least meet all other minimum requirements to apply. Such as having good credit and not recently applying for multiple credit items. Have a look at the ANZ Low Rate. The disability pension is accepted as income and this card is generally one of the easier to get approved for.
michael

michael

14 March 2019
Any credit cards for age pension own home car etc
    Roland B Bleyer - CreditCard.com.au Founder

    Roland

    14 March 2019
    Hi Michael, they can be though you would need to meet the minimum requirements. How much income do you get each year? This is a critical component. Most no annual fee cards have a higher minimum income requirement.
Joe

Joe

20 February 2019
Hi, I want to get a no fee credit card with good reward points. please advice.
    Roland B Bleyer - CreditCard.com.au Founder

    Roland

    20 February 2019
    Hi Joe, Good rewards and no annual fee are a combination that is difficult to achieve. AMEX have 2 offerings which fit the bill: Qantas Discovery and Velocity Escape.
Bruce

Bruce

23 January 2019
Is there a card with no annual fee ....Qantas FF points....we use our card for everyday purchases ....direct debits and pay the balance owing in full every month...not interested in American Express due to fee charged by retailers
    Roland B Bleyer - CreditCard.com.au Founder

    Roland

    24 January 2019
    Hi Bruce, AMEX are the only no annual fee rewards card that earns Qantas points. Other than that you will need to pay an annual fee on the card. How much do you expect to spend a month on a card and I can provide some suggestions.
Marlene

Marlene

19 January 2019
Is there a no fee credit card with rewards and fee free days? I always pay balance at end month
    Roland B Bleyer - CreditCard.com.au Founder

    Roland

    21 January 2019
    Hi Marlene, have a look at the Qantas Discovery and Velocity Escape. These are the best no annual fee rewards cards. From there, based reward cards are around the $100 mark.
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