I’ve had a Virgin Credit Card since it first came out, this review will help you use yours better
Be smart and use the 0% interest on balance transfers to your new Virgin Credit Card for the first six months to pay off your credit card balance without incurring even more interest fees on it.
NOTE: Virgin Credit Cards stopped being issued any more as of April 3, 2008. Existing Virgin Credit Cards were taken over by Westpac who moved people with Virgin Credit Cards onto a similar Westpac credit card by June 2009 but didn’t add an annual fee.
From July 2010 new Virgin Creditcards will be released under a new 10-year exclusive profit-sharing deal which allows Citibank to sell financial services in Australia using the “Virgin” brand and provide funding, infrastructure and banking networks.
Australians owe far more on their credit cards than 10 years ago – $3000+ vs $946. We have outstanding credit card debt of $41 billion and about $30 billion attracts interest.
Even if you assign a conservative annual interest rate of 12 per cent to that debt, consumers hand over a whopping $3.6 billion in interest.
However this doesn’t mean that credit cards are inherently “evil”. If you’re smart you can beat the banks by :
- Moving your current credit card balance to a card with 0% p.a. interest on balance transfers for the first 6 months so you can pay it off without the debt growing further.
- Closing your existing credit card account and changing to a credit card with no annual fee
- Choosing a low rate credit card with no annual fee and a free rewards program
- Paying your card off in full the day before the payment is due. This way you basically get a free short-term loan by using the bank’s money for the interest free period (typically upto 55 days)
The perfect credit card for this scenario is the Virgin Mastercard which I personally use and which features (as at Sept 2007):
- 0% interest on balance transfers to your new Virgin Credit Card for the first six months
- No annual fee…ever! Why pay a fee every year for the privilege of having a credit card?
- Low ongoing interest rate, currently 12.99% p.a (at Sept 2007)
- Up to 55 interest free days on purchases
- Customer Care Team available 24/7 on the phone – speak to a human, not a machine
- Automatic free membership to Mates RatesTM instant discounts
- No application fee or joining fee
- It’s a MasterCard, meaning it’s accepted at over 30 million locations worldwide
Some people have asked me if Virgin Money Australia offers debit cards or savings accounts – they do not offer these products at present.