Is the HSBC Gold Mastercard worth it? | February 2018

Review: HSBC Gold Mastercard – February 2018

  • Get this card if… you want a simple card with an ideal 0% intro APR.
  • Pick something else if…you want rewards.
  • Recommended good to excellent credit score of 680 to 850.
Product NameHSBC Gold Mastercard®
Intro APR for Balance Transfer0% Intro APR for first 18 months from account opening (with whichever is greater: $10 or 4% balance transfer fee)
Balance Transfer Rate (not intro)12.24%, 16.24% or 20.24% variable
APR for Purchases ( Purchase Rate )12.24%, 16.24% or 20.24% variable
Annual fee$0
Cash Advance Rate26.24% variable
Card TypeMastercard
Interest Free Period
The interest-free period on purchases is the period or number of days you do not have to pay interest on your card purchases. You will be charged interest either from the day you make a purchase or from the statement date, unless you pay the closing balance in full by the due date (or within the interest-free period) on your statement.
Up to 25 days
Returned Payment Fee$25
Minimum Interest$1
Minimum Credit ScoreFair (660-699)
Minimum Age18 years of age
Annual fee$0
Returned Payment Fee$25
Late Payment Fee$37
Cash Advance Fee$10 or 4%, whichever is greater, will apply on each cash advance transaction

The basics

The HSBC Gold Mastercard is a no-frills, easy-to-use credit card. It doesn’t offer rewards, but it charges no annual fee. Perhaps best of all, it offers a formidable intro APR: 0% for the first 18 months from account opening on purchases and balance transfers.

You’ll find a few welcome perks, such as travel insurance and no foreign transaction fees. HSBC is also somewhat forgiving for late payments. Your first late fee each year is waived, and you won’t be assessed a penalty APR.

The perks

  • No annual fee or foreign transaction fees.
    Use the card as much or as little as you want without worrying about an annual fee. Also, use the card internationally without incurring fees.
  • INTRO APR: On purchases and balance transfers.
    Enjoy 0%APR on purchases and balance transfers for the first 18 months from account opening. After, you’ll receive an APR of 12.24%, 16.24% or 20.24% variable, depending on your creditworthiness.
  • Cardholder-friendly policies.
    HSBC waives one late fee each year. If you happen to pay late, you won’t receive a penalty rate. And pay nothing to add additional cards for authorized users.

You’ll also like …

  • Travel benefits. Get access to MasterAssist travel planning, roadside assistance, rental car insurance and travel accident insurance.
  • Shopping benefits. Enjoy extended warranties, purchase protection and price protection when shopping.

What to watch out for

  • Potentially high APR. Depending on your credit, you could see a purchase and balance transfer APR as high as 12.24%, 16.24% or 20.24% variable.
  • No grace period on balance transfers. HSBC offers an interest grace period for purchases only.
  • Higher APR for cash advances. Cash advances come with a 26.24% variable APR and no grace period on interest.
  • Other fees. The card has no annual or foreign transaction fees, but you’ll pay fees for balance transfers and cash advances.
  • Penalty fees. You’ll pay up to $37 for each late payment. For returned payments, you’ll pay up to $25.00 each.

What should I know before I apply?

To apply for the HSBC Gold Mastercard, you must be at least 18 years old.

Always consider your options and your financial situation before you apply for a credit card.

Information you’ll need

  • Full name and contact information
  • Residential status
  • Annual income and employment information
  • Social Security number, date of birth and mother’s maiden name

What credit score do I need?

You’ll have a better chance of approval for the HSBC Gold Mastercard if you apply with a good to excellent credit score of 680 or higher.

How to apply for the HSBC Gold Mastercard

1. Visit HSBC’s site and click Apply now.

HSBC Gold Mastercard step1

2. If you’re an HSBC customer, click Log on to apply. If you’re not, click Start your application.

HSBC Gold Mastercard step2

3. Complete the application with details like your name, contact details, annual income and Social Security number.

HSBC Gold Mastercard step3

How long will it take to be approved?

Typically, you can expect to hear back about your application within two weeks.

I got the card. Now what?

  • Make timely payments. Pay your card bill online at the HSBC website, where you can also enroll in autopay.
  • Avoid interest. After the close of each billing cycle, you have a grace period of 25 days to pay your purchase balance. If you do, you won’t pay interest.
  • Avoid fees. Late and returned payments come with hefty fees of up to $37. Balance transfers and cash advances also come with fees.
  • Customer service. If you have questions, contact HSBC customer service at 888-385-8916.

Bottom line

The HSBC Gold Mastercard doesn’t offer rewards, but it’s a solid card overall. It comes with no annual fee as well as an impressive 0% intro APR on purchases and balance transfers.

Frequently asked questions

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