With exclusive features including rewards, travel perks and premium services, gold credit cards are a step up from standard options.
Why should you choose a Gold Credit Card?
Gold credit cards are a premium option that build on the features of standard credit cards by offering greater benefits. Some of the most popular gold credit card features include:
- Complimentary international travel insurance
- Purchase security cover
- Extended warranty insurance
- More reward points per NZD$1
- Higher reward points cap
- Concierge services
- Other travel benefits, such as airport lounge access
Gold credit cards also have higher minimum credit limits than standard credit cards, which can be convenient if you use credit a lot.
How to compare Gold Credit Cards – Differences in Gold credit card offers
The benefits of a gold credit card should be worth more than the costs associated with it. This is where comparing the features, costs and limitations of gold credit cards can come in handy. To help you determine which card is right for you, here are the factors that should come into your comparison:
- Purchase rate. This is the standard rate of interest applied to new purchases made on the card, so the lower it is the better.
- Cash advance rate. This rate is applied to transactions such as ATM withdrawals and there is usually less variation between cards (but even a fraction of a percentage could make a difference).
- Interest-free days on purchases. If you pay your balance in full every month, look for a card with a high number of interest free days, so you have more time to pay off purchases without being charged interest.
- Annual fees. Ongoing gold credit card annual fees range from $0 to $80, so make sure you check the price to save money on the card.
- Credit limits. Minimum credit limits for gold credit cards give you an idea of how much credit you will have access to and are usually around $4,000 to $5,000.
- Additional cardholders. Some gold credit cards charge extra for additional cardholders and others offer them free, so check this feature if you would like to have someone else linked to your account.
Special offers with Gold Credit Cards
Banks offer promotional benefits with credit card offers to sweeten the deal when you apply. We have broken these down into four key benefits.
Promotional interest rate offers
- 0% purchase offers. If you plan to spend a lot of money on your gold credit card when you first get it, this type of offer can help you avoid or reduce interest charges.
- Balance transfer offers. If you want to transfer debt from an existing credit card to a new gold credit card, look for balance transfer offers that have lower interest rates and a longer introductory period so you can save money on interest and pay off the debt faster.
- Bonus point offers. You can boost your reward points balance by getting a gold credit card that offers bonus points to new customers. Look at both the points offered and the requirements to receive them to find a good gold card option for you.
- Airpoints/reward points earnings rate. Reward programmes vary between gold credit card options and there are also different point rates depending on the type of card.
- Uncapped/capped reward points earnings. A point cap limits how many rewards you can earn in a month or year, but doesn’t always affect cardholders. You can work out if a capped or uncapped reward card is right for you by looking at your average monthly credit card spending and comparing it to the points you would earn; if you spend less than the cap then it should be fine.
Travel benefits and insurance
- Gold credit card insurance. The insurance offered on gold credit cards varies and could include international travel insurance; flight inconvenience insurance; purchase protection cover; extended warranties and refund protection. Although most gold credit cards include international travel insurance, make sure you check for particular types of coverage in the card’s features and read the specific details if it is an extra you want to use.
- Foreign transaction fees. There are three types of foreign transaction fees to look at when comparing gold credit cards:
- Overseas ATM Withdrawal Fee (typically charged by an overseas bank). Charged when you withdraw cash from an overseas ATM.
- Overseas Cash Advance Fee. Fee for withdrawing cash from your account when overseas.
- Foreign Currency Conversion Fee (MC). Charged when you make a purchase in a currency other than NZD either online or overseas.
Even a small variation in the charges applied by different gold credit cards could save you money when you are travelling.
More Gold card benefits
- Concierge service. This service can help you with travel plans, restaurant bookings, entertainment options and more.
- Global support. If you have issues when travelling, or lose your card, global support services can help you sort things out.
- Lounge passes. Some gold credit cards offer access to airport or airline lounges with complimentary passes, which can be great if you want a bit of luxury when you travel.
- Entertainment experiences:
- Kiwibank Mastercard Gold offers “Mastercard Gold Wednesdays” at participating Event Cinemas. $11 buys you an adult ticket, plus a junior popcorn and junior soft drink
Things to consider before applying for a Gold credit card
If you want to get a gold credit card, there are three important considerations that will help you find a card that works for you:
- How much you are spending per month.
The goal with choosing a gold credit card should be to redeem rewards that are worth more than the annual fee. The more you use a gold credit card (both for spending and the other perks) the greater the value you can get out of it. This value needs to be weighed against the cost of the annual fee, if you want to save more than you spend on your credit card.
For example, let’s say you have a gold reward credit card with a $100 annual fee. The goal is to earn enough reward points to get at least $100 value out of the reward programme (eg a $100 gift card).
So if you know you will spend an average of $2000 per month, and earn 1 point per $1, over a year you will get 24,000 reward points. You can then check the redemption catalogue or website for the card’s reward programme to make sure those points will get you at least $100 value in rewards so the annual fee is worth it.
- Are you using all the available benefits and does it suit your lifestyle?
When you are choosing a gold credit card, it is important to be realistic about what benefits you will and won’t use, so you can work out the value of the card for your individual lifestyle.
For example, if you get a card with travel insurance but never use it, this benefit is worthless to you. On the other hand, if you know you will use that travel insurance regularly, you may save hundreds of dollars buying insurance directly, which offsets the cost of the annual fee.
- Is the credit limit suitable for your current finances?
Gold credit cards have higher minimum credit limits than many standard options. While this feature is great if you use credit a lot, it can be risky in some circumstances.
In particular, people who struggle to pay off their balance in full every month, or those that have existing credit card debt can end up with an even bigger balance if they get a credit card with a higher credit limit. So, before applying for a gold credit card, think about how much access to credit you need and whether or not one of these cards will work for your circumstances.
What conditions do I need to meet to apply for a Gold Credit Card?
Gold credit cards have a range of requirements that need to be met before your application can be approved. These include:
- Age. You must be at least 18 years of age to get a gold credit card.
- Credit history. You need a good credit history that shows a sufficient income and ability to repay your bills on time to receive approval.
- Income. You must have a regular income to apply for a gold credit card. Some of these cards specify a minimum income amount, which typically ranges from $30,000 to $50,000.
- Employment. Most credit card issuers prefer full-time employment but there are exceptions. If you are self-employed, retired or on a pension but have a regular income, you could still be eligible for a gold credit card. Check the application requirements for each card you are interested in, and contact the issuer if you are unsure.
- Required documents: During the application process, you will need to supply a number of required documents, including:
- A copy of your driver’s licence, or another official document with your address (i.e. a utility bill)
- A copy of your passport
- Proof of employment/income, such as two payslips less than 60 days old, a letter of employment or your most recent tax statement from Inland Revenue
- Contact details for your employer or accountant
These documents can usually be attached to the application; submitted later via a secured web-form; or posted to the bank and are essential for the application to be fully processed.
How to apply
Apply for a gold credit card using these easy to follow steps.
- Look at the range of gold credit cards available and choose the one that best suits your needs.
- Click on the ‘Go to site’ button, which will send you to the bank’s secure application page.
- Read the eligibility criteria and application terms.
- Fill out the application with as much detail as possible and include supporting documentation when requested (see below).
- Submit the application. You should be notified of the initial outcome within a few minutes via the webpage or your email.
- If you receive conditional approval, follow the steps outlined by the bank to complete the application process.
How long will it take to receive the credit card?
The time it takes from having your credit card application approved to receiving the card varies depending on the bank or issuer. Most credit cards are received within 5to 10 business days from the time of application approval, but it is a good idea to check with the bank for a specific time frame as some can take up to 21 days.
Gold credit cards offer a greater range of complimentary extras and rewards than standard credit cards, as well as the prestige of being a more exclusive option. So if you want more value from using a credit card regularly; have good credit history and earn enough to meet minimum income requirements, there could be a gold credit card on the market that suits your needs.Back to top