In this guide

  • Our verdict
  • Details
    • Product details
    • Eligibility
    • Fees
  • Frequently asked questions
  • Your reviews

Wave Credit Card review

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Wave Credit Card Mastercard
3.0
★★★★★
Finder score
3.8
★★★★★
Representative example:
When you spend £1,200 at a purchase rate of 39.9% (variable) p.a., your representative rate is 39.9% APR (variable).
Minimum credit limit
£100
Interest-free each billing period
Up to 56 days
Account fee
£0

Our verdict

This card is no longer available, but you can use our review to find alternatives.

If you’re looking for an easy and instant everyday credit card with no annual fees, Wave is offering just that. Adding a new ripple into the challenger credit card market, Chetwood Financial has released its first credit card with digital native customers in mind.

The Wave credit card is a good option to help you build your credit score, with no annual account fees and a 3-day grace period for late payments, the Wave card allows you the ability to take control of your finances and tweak payments in the app.

You don’t have to have a perfect credit score to be able to apply for the Wave credit card (no idea what your credit score is? Check yours for free with Finder), but the downside is the relatively high interest rate on purchases. If you’re someone who doesn’t think they will be able to keep on top of payments, you might be better suited to another card. However, if you’re a tech savvy shopper, this slick new credit card might be a great option for you.

Pros

  • Check your eligibility and quickly receive an offer without impacting your credit score
  • A fair credit limit with the option to increase it to £1,750
  • You don’t need a perfect credit score to get approved
  • 3 day grace period for late payments
  • A feature-rich mobile app that has secure access via biometric login. Available on both iOS and Android.
  • Easily link your card to Apple Pay or Google Pay
  • No annual fees

Cons

  • A relatively high interest rate on purchases (39.9%). Higher than most credit cards
  • 3% fee on both non-sterling transactions and cash withdrawals. Flat fee of £5 on cash withdrawals.
  • Unable to add additional card holders to your account
  • No introductory offer for new customers
  • Minimum annual income requirement of £12,000

In this guide

  • Our verdict
  • Details
    • Product details
    • Eligibility
    • Fees
  • Frequently asked questions
  • Your reviews

The Wave Credit Card has been discontinued and is no longer available. However, this information has been kept for historical purposes. You can use this page to compare similar cards from other issuers.

Details

Product details

Issuer Chetwood Financial Limited
Network Mastercard
Representative APR 39.9%
Annual/monthly fees £0
Purchases 39.9%
Purchases interest-free period Up to 56 days
Cash advances 39.9%
Minimum credit limit £100
Maximum credit limit Subject to status: £1,750
Incentive
Potential costs 3.0 ★★★★★
Doing its job 2.0 ★★★★★
Extras 4.0 ★★★★★
Overall Finder score 3.0 ★★★★★

Eligibility

Minimum Age 21
Availability Available to new customers
Additional Criteria You must be employed, self-employed or retired with a pension. You must have an existing credit history with good credit and be able to afford the card and monthly repayments.

Fees

Annual/monthly fees £0
Foreign usage charge (EU) 3%
Foreign usage charge (rest of world) 3%
Cash advance fee 0%
Late payment fee £12
Duplicate statement fee £0
Exceeding limit fee £0
Additional card fee £0
Additional card fee note You can only have one card holder.
Dormancy fee £0

The Wave Credit Card is issued on the Mastercard network so it's accepted at more than 50 million merchant locations across more than 210 countries and territories.

What is Wave and how does it work?

Wave is a new digital credit card from digital bank Chetwood Financial. Wave is a credit card with a mobile app that allows you to control transactions, repayments and security on your phone.

In recent years, challenger credit cards like Wave have been popping up more frequently. Many, like Wave, target people with “non-standard” credit (i.e. a less than perfect record). If you’re not sure what your credit record looks like, you can find out for free through Finder or others.

Wave uses a mobile app that you can download onto your IOS or Android smartphone.

Wave app features

App features:

  • Real-time spending alerts. Track your spending with real-time spending alerts or take control of your money with opting in or out of increasing your credit limit.
  • Repayment calculator. To help you understand how repayments affect the interest on your account.
  • Repayment notifications. Simply adapt your plan through the app when you need to make use of that three day grace period.
  • App security. You can set up a secure fingerprint or face ID login so that only you have access to your Wave credit card. The Wave app also has instant card freezing and unfreezing capabilities in case of loss or theft.
  • Support. You can speak to Wave’s UK-based support team with the Live Chat feature or ping them an email.

What benefits can I get with a Wave credit card?

Here are some more benefits you can get with a Wave credit card:

  • A Mastercard. Wave credit cards are issued on the Mastercard network. As one of the largest payment networks in the world, you can use Mastercard almost everywhere, both in the UK and overseas. View more benefits of Mastercards here.
  • A mobile app. Wave offer a feature-rich mobile app with the ability to make payments, update personal details, send spend alerts for purchases and instantly freeze/unfreeze the card in an emergency. Within the app, you can also benefit from the repayment calculator, that in just a few interactive steps, shows how repayments affect the interest on your account

How much does Wave cost?

Wave doesn’t have an annual account charge, however, you may be charged a fee depending on how you use your Wave credit card.

  • There is a £5 cash withdrawal fee (this also includes other “cash-like” transaction types such as travel money purchases or payments to a cryptocurrency exchange).
  • If you make a late repayment, after the three day grace period, you will be charged £12.

Foreign transaction fees

  • Using your card abroad (or making an online purchase with an overseas retailer) also entails a fee
  • Foreign transaction fee: 3% of the sterling value of the transaction.
  • Cash transaction fee (if you withdraw cash from an ATM abroad): £5

Other key features will include an up-to 56-days-long interest-free period if you pay off your bill on time every month and an 39.9% APR (Average Percentage Rate). Depending on your personal situation, you can get between £100 (or an initial minimum credit limit of £250) – £1,750 (subject to status).

Applying for a Wave credit card

According to the Wave website, applying for a Wave credit card takes a matter of minutes and you will know if you have been accepted instantly.

If you are a UK resident over the age of 21, employed (incl. self-employed) with a minimum income of 12000 or retired with a pension, you are eligible to apply for a Wave credit card. You must have an existing credit history with good credit and be able to afford the card and monthly repayments.

Like with most credit cards, when you apply Wave will be running a credit check, however you can check your eligibility through their website before you apply. Once you have received an offer for the card, Wave will ask for your mobile number to send you a link to download or you can apply directly through the Wave app (available on IOS and Android).

Wave customer reviews

In our 2023 customer satisfaction survey, Wave scored 3.5 out of 5 stars, with 80% of customers saying they’d recommend the brand to a friend.

Customers praised Wave’s overall service. Many customers also praised Wave’s online services and app. One commented: “Easy to use and good customer service”.

The Wave app has a score of 4.8 out of 5 stars on the App store from around 4,000 ratings. On the Google Play store, the app has a score of 4.8 out of 5 stars from around 1,570 ratings.

Bottom line

If you’re looking for a digital credit card with the quick and easy ability of managing your finances at the tip of your fingertips, the Wave credit card could be the card for you. However, if you’re someone who knows you won’t be able to repay the card back in full every month, with a relatively high interest rate on purchases, you might want to consider alternative credit cards with no annual fees and a lower APR.

Other credit builders

Table: sorted by representative APR, promoted deals first
Name Product Finder score Annual/monthly fees Initial credit limits Minimum income Representative APR Incentive Link
Additional account needed
HSBC Student Credit Card Visa
3.5
★★★★★
£0
Min. limit £250, max. limit £500.
Not specified
18.9%
Available alongside an HSBC Student Account (receive £100 and a 1-year subscription to Headspace when you open a new student account).
Representative example: When you spend £500 at a purchase rate of 18.9% (variable) p.a., your representative rate is 18.9% APR (variable).
Go to site
Barclaycard Forward Credit Card
4.0
★★★★★
£0
Min. limit £50, max. limit £1,200.
£3000
33.9%
Rate discounts: 3% interest rate reduction if you make all your repayments on time for the first year, and a further drop of up to 2% more if you continue to do so in the second year.
Representative example: When you spend £1,200 at a purchase rate of 33.9% (variable) p.a., your representative rate is 33.9% APR (variable).
Go to site
118 118 Money Guaranteed Rate Card
3.5
★★★★★
£0
Min. limit £500, max. limit not specified.
£8400
34%
Representative example: When you spend £1,200 at a purchase rate of 34% (variable) p.a., your representative rate is 34% APR (variable).
Check eligibility
Zable credit card
3.5
★★★★★
£0
Min. limit £200, max. limit £1,500.
£9,600
48.9%
Representative example: Representative 48.9% APR (variable). Based on assumed borrowing of £1200. Rate of interest 48.9% (variable) annual.
Check eligibility
Additional account needed
AIB Student Credit Card
4.0
★★★★★
£0
Min. limit £300, max. limit not specified.
Not specified
12.9%
Representative example: When you spend £1,200 at a purchase rate of 12.2% (variable) p.a., your representative rate is 12.9% APR (variable).
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Approval for any credit card depends on your status. The representative APRs shown represent the interest rate offered to most successful applicants. Depending on your personal circumstances, the APR you're offered may be higher, or you may not be offered credit at all. Fees and rates are subject to change without notice. It's always wise to check the terms of any deal before you borrow. Most of the data in Finder's comparison tables is provided by Moneyfacts.

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.

Frequently asked questions

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