Credit cards for retirees and pensioner applicants

Want to get a credit card when you're on a pension or retired? Compare your options here and learn how to apply.


There are a range of credit cards you can apply for when you’re on a pension or retired. However, you may need to meet some extra conditions and provide additional documentation before a credit card company approves your application.

This makes it essential to do your research before applying for a credit card as a pensioner or retiree. You can use this guide to learn about the New Zealand credit card providers that accept retired and pensioner applicants, as well as the documents you need to improve your chances of approval.

ProviderRetiree and pensioner application details
American Express
  • Retired applicants: You’ll need to provide your financial details (annual income excluding superannuation, total superannuation balance, accountant details to confirm income).
  • Pensioner applicants: Your annual income (excluding superannuation) and total superannuation balance are required. An external source (such as your accountant) is also required to confirm your financial details.
  • Retired applicants: Your income details (such as your most recent superannuation details) are required.
  • Pensioner applicants: Your income details (such as your most recent WINZ statement) required.
  • Retired applicants: If you are pre-approved, you will need to supply a superannuation income statement.
  • Pensioner applicants: Pension benefits are accepted as eligible income. You’ll need to provide evidence of your income such as your WINZ statement.
  • Retired applicants: As long as the minimum income requirement is met and you have a good credit rating, you are eligible to apply.
  • Pensioner applicants: Yes. You will need to supply an income statement from WINZ.
  • Retired applicants: Self-funded retirees are eligible to apply. Those on a government or age pension are also eligible. You’ll need to provide proof of your income such as your WINZ statement.
  • Pensioner applicants: The following pensions are accepted:
    • Disablement pension
    • Returned servicemen
    • Single parent
    • Unemployment pension
    • Other pension (contact Kiwibank to clarify whether your specific pension is covered)
  • You’ll need evidence of your income such as your WINZ statements.
Onecard Visa
  • Retired applicants: If you’re a self-funded retiree, you’ll need to provide a statement from your super fund as proof of your income.
  • Pensioner applicants: Applicants on a pension will need to provide a WINZ statement from the last 3 months.
  • Retirees and pensioners: You’ll need to provide any of the following options: annual superannuation statement, which includes an indexed pension amount, your most recent pension statement, 3 months of personal bank statements showing regular credit or cash deposits, your most recent self-managed superannuation tax returns less than 15 months old.

Mistakes to avoid when applying for a credit card

Not doing research on credit cards for retirees and pensioners

pensioners-apply-credit-cardWhen you apply for a credit card as a retiree or pensioner, you may need to meet specific eligibility requirements and submit a range of documents to support your application. Comparing credit cards and researching your options before you apply will help you make sure you meet these requirements and can increase your chances of approval.

If you’re unsure of what you need to provide for a specific credit card, you can read the relevant product disclosure statement (PDS) or contact the provider to confirm any queries you have before applying.

Bear in mind if the credit card company rejects your application, it will have a negative impact on your credit file, so doing this research will help maximise your chances of approval.

How to ensure your credit card application is approved?

Applying for several cards in a short period

If your provider rejects your previous credit card application, don’t immediately apply for another one. Instead, consider why your application wasn’t accepted. If you didn’t organise the necessary documents, confirm which ones you’re missing before applying again. If it was due to your credit history, you need to take some time to improve your credit score before applying again.

If you’re retired or on a pension, there are a variety of credit cards options to choose from. However, as you need to meet some extra terms and conditions, it’s essential to do your research and compare a range of credit cards for retirees and pensioners so you can apply for one that fits your circumstances and needs.

Pictures: Shutterstock

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