Tesco Foundation Credit Card review 2020

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Helping you to improve and rebuild your credit rating while earning you Tesco Clubcard points on day-to-day spending.

You say: ★★★★★We say: ★★★★★

Representative example: When you spend £1,200 at a purchase rate of 27.542% (variable) p.a., your representative rate is 27.5% APR (variable).

£100

Minimum credit limit

Up to 56 days

Interest-free each billing period

27.5%

Representative APR

£0

Account fee

Details

IssuerTesco Bank
NetworkMastercard
Annual/monthly fees£0
Balance transfers27.542%
Balance transfer fee3.99%
Purchases27.542%
Purchases interest-free periodUp to 56 days
Money transfers39.941%
Cash advances39.941%
Min credit limit£100
Max credit limitSubject to status
Additional cards available1
IncentiveCollect 1 Tesco Clubcard point per £4 spent (£4 minimum) in Tesco and 1 Clubcard point per £8 spent (£8 minimum) outside Tesco in each purchase transaction.  Must have available credit to collect Clubcard points. Clubcard points are turned into Clubcard vouchers every 3 months or sooner using Faster Vouchers. Clubcard vouchers can be used in Tesco or with Clubcard Reward Partners to get even more value on dining out, hotel stays and travel.

Expert review

Chris Lilly

Review by


Chris Lilly is a publisher at finder.com. He's a specialist in credit-based products including business and personal loans, mortgages and credit cards, and is passionate about helping UK consumers make informed decisions about their borrowing. In his spare time Chris likes forcing his kids to exercise more.

Expert review

If you’ve got poor credit and are hoping to improve it, the Tesco Foundation Card is one of just a handful of “credit building” cards on the market that lets you collect rewards while helping you to improve your credit score.

Technically any credit card, used correctly, can help improve your credit score, but this card offers a number of tools to help you protect and improve your it – like text/email alerts and visibility of your credit report and score – along with advice on some of the key factors affecting it.

Expect to start small with a low, manageable credit limit, but with the promise of regular optional credit limit increases if you manage your account well.

While perks are usually few and far between with this type of card, you’ll be able to collect Tesco Clubcard points on all your day-to-day spending – 1 point per £8 spent (and you’ll collect these at a higher rate when you shop at Tesco – 1 point per £4 spent).

The Tesco Bank Foundation Card is issued on the Mastercard network so it's accepted at nearly 53 million merchants across more than 210 countries and territories.

LOQBOX

Build your credit history while you save with LOQBOX

  • Choose what you want to save – from £20 to £200 a month
  • Build your credit history with the credit reference agencies
  • Leave with an improved credit history, plus all your savings
Promoted

Pros and cons

Pros

  • Applicants with low credit scores may be eligible
  • Customers report excellent customer service when dealing with Tesco Bank
  • Earn Clubcard points on day-to-day spending
  • No annual fee

Cons

  • Relatively high balance transfer fee
  • Relatively high money transfer fee
  • You may be offered an opening credit limit as low as £100

How does it compare with other credit builders?

Table: sorted by representative APR, promoted deals first
Data indicated here is updated daily
Name Product Annual/monthly fees Min credit limit Max credit limit Minimum income Rep. APR Incentive Link
TSB Classic Credit Card Mastercard
£0
£500
Not specified
Not specified
26.9%
Representative example: When you spend £1,200 at a purchase rate of 26.95% (variable) p.a., your representative rate is 26.9% APR (variable).
More Info
Tesco Bank Foundation Card
£0
£100
Subject to status
£5000
27.5%
Collect 1 Tesco Clubcard point per £4 spent (£4 minimum) in Tesco and 1 Clubcard point per £8 spent (£8 minimum) outside Tesco in each purchase transaction.  Must have available credit to collect Clubcard points. Clubcard points are turned into Clubcard vouchers every 3 months or sooner using Faster Vouchers. Clubcard vouchers can be used in Tesco or with Clubcard Reward Partners to get even more value on dining out, hotel stays and travel.
Representative example: When you spend £1,200 at a purchase rate of 27.542% (variable) p.a., your representative rate is 27.5% APR (variable).
More Info
Vanquis Bank Chrome Credit Card
£0
£250
Subject to status: £1,500
Not specified
29.5%
Representative example: When you spend £250 at a purchase rate of 29.5% (variable) p.a., your representative rate is 29.5% APR (variable).
More Info
Vanquis Bank Aquis Visa
£0
£250
Subject to status: £1,000
Not specified
29.8%
You could get a credit limit increase after your 5th statement and further increases every 5 months, up to £4,000.
Representative example: When you spend £1,000 at a purchase rate of 29.84% (variable) p.a., your representative rate is 29.8% APR (variable).
More Info
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Compare up to 4 providers

Approval for any credit card will depend on your status. The APR shown represents 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.

Repayment options

You can make manual repayments through Tesco Bank's app, by logging in to your online banking or over the phone (0345 300 4278). Alternatively you may wish to set up a direct debit.

A direct debit protects you from forgetting to make a repayment and damaging your credit score – making it harder and more expensive to borrow money in the future – and getting hit with a penalty fee (£12) as a result.

You can arrange a direct debit for repayments when you apply for the credit card. The table below shows the options available.

Choose from the following direct debit options for your monthly repayments:

Minimum amount Fixed amount Fixed percentage Full amount

How to apply

If you've compared cards and settled on the Tesco Bank Foundation Card, completing the secure online application form takes about 15 minutes. Before you apply, check that you meet the eligibility requirements and have the information and documents you'll need to make the process as straightforward as possible.

Frequently asked questions

What credit limit will I get with the Tesco Bank Foundation Card?

If Tesco Bank is able to offer you this deal, the offer will specify a personalised credit limit based on Tesco Bank's assessment of your situation. The minimum limit offered on this card is £100 and Tesco Bank does not specify a maximum. Once you've had the card for a while and shown Tesco Bank that you're reliable, you may wish to apply for a credit limit increase.

Can I withdraw cash using the Tesco Bank Foundation Card?

Although it's possible, withdrawing cash from a credit card account is generally not a good idea, as "cash-like transactions" (withdrawing cash at an ATM, getting cashback at the till, spending at a casino, buying currency, etc.) often incur steep fees and/or higher rates of interest.

The cash advance fee on the Tesco Bank Foundation Card is 3.99% (min. £3). For example, if you withdraw £50, you'll incur a fee of £3.00. Withdraw £250, and you'll incur a rather painful fee of £9.98.

The interest rate on this part of your balance will be 39.94%, which is 45% more than the standard purchases rate (chargeable from the day of the transaction – the card's usual "up to 56 days interest-free" grace period won't apply).

How much does it cost to use the Tesco Bank Foundation Card abroad?

Non-sterling transactions are subject to a 2.75% charge. For example, if you spend 200 euros (£177.37), it'll cost you around £4.88.

What is the minimum payment on the Tesco Bank Foundation Card?

Each month you must pay at least 1% of your balance at that point or £25.00 – whichever of the two figures is greater. So if you had, say, £2,450.00 outstanding, you'd pay £25.00, and if you had £10,000.00 outstanding, you'd pay £100.00.

Paying only the minimum required amount each month is generally not advisable as it tends to be a very expensive way to borrow money which can lead to persistent debt.

Can I transfer money from the Tesco Bank Foundation Card to a bank account?

Yes. That's what's known as a "money transfer" (rather than a "balance transfer") in credit card jargon. You can arrange this from your online banking or using Tesco Bank's app. This part of your card balance will incur interest of 39.941%. The fee for a money transfer is 3.99%.

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