Top ethical credit cards

You might already have an ethical bank account, but can you also get an ethical credit card and how do you choose the best deal?

As more of us look to do our part to help protect the environment and society, an increasing number of people are turning to ethical banking. Many are also looking for an ethical credit card, so here’s what you need to know.

1 - 7 of 7
Name Product Finder Score Purchases Balance transfers Annual/monthly fees Representative APR Incentive Link
The Co-operative Bank 3 Year Fixed Rate Credit Card
3.5
★★★★★
8.9%
8.9%
(0% fee)
£0
8.9% APR (variable)
Representative example: When you spend £1,200 at a purchase rate of 8.9% (variable) p.a., your representative rate is 8.9% APR (variable).
The Co-operative Bank Members' Credit Card Visa
3.5
★★★★★
18.2%
18.2%
(0% fee)
£0
18.2% APR (variable)
1p earned for every £2 spent in The Co-operative Food stores (excluding in-store concessions) and 1p earned for every £3.33 spent anywhere else. Cashback will be added to your share of the Group profits and this will be paid to you twice a year.
Representative example: When you spend £1,200 at a purchase rate of 18.2% (variable) p.a., your representative rate is 18.2% APR (variable).
Metro Bank Personal Credit Card Mastercard
4.0
★★★★★
18.9%
N/A
£0
18.9% APR (variable)
Representative example: When you spend £1,200 at a purchase rate of 18.9% (variable) p.a., your representative rate is 18.9% APR (variable).
The Co-operative Bank Balance Transfer Credit Card Visa
4.1
★★★★★
0% for 4 months reverting to 20.6%
0% for 24 months
(3% (minimum £5) fee)
£0
20.6% APR (variable)
Representative example: When you spend £1,200 at a purchase rate of 20.6% (variable) p.a., your representative rate is 20.6% APR (variable).
Nationwide Member Credit Card All Rounder
4.6
★★★★★
0% for 15 months reverting to 24.9%
0% for 15 months
(1.5% fee)
£0
24.9% APR (variable)
Representative example: When you spend £1,200 at a purchase rate of 24.9% (variable) p.a., your representative rate is 24.9% APR (variable).
Nationwide Member Credit Card Balance Transfer
4.6
★★★★★
0% for 3 months reverting to 24.9%
0% for 18 months
(1.5% fee)
£0
24.9% APR (variable)
Representative example: When you spend £1,200 at a purchase rate of 24.9% (variable) p.a., your representative rate is 24.9% APR (variable).
Tymit Credit Card
4.0
★★★★★
0% for 3 months reverting to 29.9%
N/A
£0
29.9% APR (variable)
Representative Example: 29.9% (variable) based on a borrowing of £1200 over 12 months with no annual fee.
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Table: sorted by length of 0% purchases offer, promoted deals first

What is ethical banking?

Ethical banking is a way of managing your finances without supporting environmentally damaging activities and industries.

When you save using a bank, banks will invest your money in various industries to make more money. Sometimes banks will invest into industries which harm our planet including the oil, tobacco and weaponry industries.

Ethical banks, on the other hand, invest your money in socially and morally positive ways. For example, some of the ethical practices employed by banks could include supporting charity work, reducing fossil fuel emissions and investing in renewable energy to help tackle climate change.

How can credit cards be ethical?

Though the credit cards themseleves may not appear ethical, the card provider might be. Ethical providers may refuse to invest in industries or commodities that could be causing harm to society or the planet, instead they help to fund projects which support local communities or the environment.

However, while many ethical banks are focused on green initiatives, other ethical banks are primarily focused on transparency and top-notch customer service. So an ethical credit card could also be one with no hidden fees and fairer charges for the consumer.

How to find an ethical credit card

To find an ethical credit card, you’ll need to shop around and look for a provider that is working to have a positive impact on the environment or society.

Many ethical banks will clearly state on their website what they invest in, which should help guide your decision. However, the Good Shopping Guide also lists which banks and building societies are involved in ethical practices. Each provider is scored based on factors such as environmental issues, animal welfare, responsible lending and investment plus ethical accreditation.

Keep in mind that not all of these providers will offer credit cards, but many will, so it’s a good place to start. You can also search for your chosen bank on YourEthicalMoney.org, which will list your bank’s ethical credentials.

Our top picks for ethical and sustainable credit cards

Looking for a ethical purchase card? Or maybe an ethical balance transfer card? Below we have selected cards from ethical banks and rated which ones are the best based on the card type.

Best carbon neutral card

Finder's pick

Nationwide Member Credit Card All Rounder

15 months

0% interest on balance transfers

15 months

0% interest on purchases

24.9%

Representative APR

0%

Foreign transaction charge

Since 2020, Nationwide has been carbon neutral for their operational greenhouse gas emissions making it one of the few carbon neutral banks in the UK. The 'All Rounder' card has 0% purchase and balance transfer for 15 months with low revert rates once the intro period has ended. However, it's only available to existing customers.
  • 0% purchase for 15 months
  • 0% balance transfer for 15 months
  • Carbon neutral provider
  • Available to existing customers only
  • Balance transfer fee applies
  • Late payment fess may apply
Minimum income 5000
Availability Available to existing customers
Foreign usage charge (EU) 0%
Cash advance fee 24.9%
Representative example: When you spend £1,200 at a purchase rate of 24.9% (variable) p.a., your representative rate is 24.9% APR (variable).

Compare Nationwide cards

Best for tracking carbon footprint

Finder's pick

TSB Classic Credit Card Mastercard

30.9%

Representative APR

£0

Account fee

6 months

0% interest on balance transfers

6 months

0% interest on purchases

TSB is a partner of the Cogo app, which lets you track your spending's carbon footprint. Cogo uses open-banking to track your spending and you can download it via the Apple store or Google play. This card has 5 months 0% purchase and balance intro periods with low revert rates.
  • Low interest rates
  • 6 month 0% purchase period
  • 6 month 0% balance transfer period
  • Available to new customers
  • No interest-free days on purchases
  • Longer 0% intro periods on the market
Availability Available to new customers
Foreign usage charge (EU) 2.95%
Cash advance fee 30.95%
Representative example: When you spend £1,200 at a purchase rate of 30.95% (variable) p.a., your representative rate is 30.9% APR (variable).

Compare TSB cards

Best ethical purchase card

Finder's pick

NatWest Purchase & Balance Transfer Credit Card

19 months

0% interest on balance transfers

19 months

0% interest on purchases

24.9%

Representative APR

£0

Account fee

This versatile all-rounder from NatWest gives you a lengthy break from interest on both purchases and balance transfers. With no annual fee and a low reverting purchase rate, it can help keep purchases costs low. NatWest are green lenders meaning that they don't lend to industries which may cause harm to society or the environment. NatWest are also Cogo partners which lets you track your spending's carbon footprint.
  • Almost 2 years to spread the cost of purchases
  • No annual fee
  • Available to new customers
  • Customers report excellent customer service when dealing with NatWest
  • Almost 2 years of 0% interest to focus on reducing existing card debt
  • Minimum annual income requirement of £10000
  • Don't forget that balance transfer fee! If cutting the interest on existing card debt is your main reason for considering this card, check out no-fee deals first
Minimum income 10000
Availability Available to new customers
Foreign usage charge (EU) 2.75%
Cash advance fee 26.9%
Representative example: When you spend £1,200 at a purchase rate of 24.9% (variable) p.a., your representative rate is 24.9% APR (variable).

Compare purchase cards

Our top picks for ethical and sustainable providers

To give you a helping hand, we’ve outlined 4 of the top ethical credit cards below:

Tymit

Tymit works slightly differently to traditional credit cards as it lets you spread the cost of your card purchases over a number of instalments. Purchases that are not paid off in full at the end of the month can be split into 3, 6, 12 or 24 equal instalments, which can be managed via the app. Through doing this, Tymit says customers can say goodbye to the “minimum payment trap, confusing interest charges and hidden fees” that often apply to standard credit cards.

You’ll still pay interest on the purchase you put into instalments, but it’ll be easier to keep your debt under control. You also won’t be charged any foreign currency transaction fees when you use your card abroad. Read more in our review.

The Co-operative Bank

The Co-operative Bank offers 3 different credit cards. These include a balance transfer credit card, a 3-year fixed rate credit card offering a low rate of interest on both balance transfers and purchases for three years, plus a Members’ credit card that offers cashback.

The Co-operative Bank states that it is committed to ensuring its fees and charges are fair to its customers. It also seeks to support charities and organisations involved in the Social Enterprise sector, small businesses and organisations whose activities promote a healthy environment and businesses that promote animal welfare.

Note, however, that as of 2017, The Co-operative Group no longer holds a stake in the Co-operative Bank.

Nationwide

Nationwide is one of the UK’s established building societies. It is not listed on the stock market, which means it is not accountable to shareholders. Instead, it is accountable to its members (those who bank with it) who have a say in how it is run.

Nationwide’s credit card does not charge an annual fee and there are no fees for making purchases abroad either. Customers can choose between a balance transfer offer or an “all-rounder” offer that offers 0% on both purchases and balance transfers.

Metro Bank

Metro Bank aims to be a different kind of high-street bank, offering simpler products with no hidden charges. Opening hours are longer than most high-street banks and include weekends. There’s no need to book an appointment if you need help – simply walk into your nearest branch.

Metro Bank’s credit card comes with one low rate of 14.9% APR and no monthly fee. It also offers fee-free foreign transactions in Europe and, if you pop into a local branch to apply, the bank will print your credit card there and then so you can use it straight away.

Frequently asked questions

We show offers we can track - that's not every product on the market...yet. Unless we've said otherwise, products are in no particular order. The terms "best", "top", "cheap" (and variations of these) aren't ratings, though we always explain what's great about a product when we highlight it. This is subject to our terms of use. When you make major financial decisions, consider getting independent financial advice. Always consider your own circumstances when you compare products so you get what's right for you. Most of the data in Finder's comparison tables has the source: Moneyfacts Group PLC. In other cases, Finder has sourced data directly from providers.

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