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If, like more than 30% of Australians, you do most of your shopping at Coles, you’d be mad not to give some serious consideration to the Coles Low Rate Mastercard. With a low minimum income requirement of $25,000 and credit limits starting at a manageable $2,000, this card is ideal as either a starter credit card or a permanent way to maximise your flybuys points. And if you do hit a bump in the road with your repayments, it has one of Australia’s lowest credit card purchase interest rates.
Low 12.99% p.a. purchase interest rate
Many credit cards have purchase interest rates of over 20% p.a. This is the interest rate you will pay on your previous month’s credit card purchases, and all future credit card purchases, if you are unable to pay the full balance of your account on or before the monthly payment due date. So it’s a pleasant surprise to find a credit card with a purchase interest rate as low as 12.99% p.a. It may not be as low as mortgage or even personal loan interest rates, but it can mean the difference between being able to get on top of your repayments or falling into long term debt.
Interest-bearing credit card debt, incurred when you miss or fall short of full monthly repayments, is best avoided. But if you think you may find yourself in temporary financial difficulties, it’s far better to have a Coles Low Rate Mastercard than a card which will add 20% p.a. or more to your debt, compounded daily.
Fairly standard domestic cash advance rate
The card’s low rate does not extend to the domestic cash advance rate, which is a credit-card-normal 19.99% p.a. This is the interest rate applicable to any cash you withdraw against your credit limit, at an ATM or a supermarket checkout for example, and it is applied from the date you take the cash advance until the date you repay it in full.
Earn extra flybuys points to add to standard points earned at Coles
Like most regular Coles shoppers, you probably know that you can already earn one flybuys point per dollar on your supermarket spending, no matter how you pay at the checkout – with cash or with any card. So why not bump up that points earning rate by 50%, just by paying with a Coles Low Rate Mastercard? You’ll get one flybuys point for every 2$ spent at Coles supermarkets using your card: that’s an extra 0.5 pts per $1 spent, bringing your total to a healthy 1.5 points per dollar.
You can earn flybuys points at lots of retailers, not just Coles. Flybuys is Australia’s most popular loyalty program and because membership is free you’re probably already collecting flybuys – without having to change your spending habits – at retailers like Kmart, Target, Coles Express, Liquorland and First Choice Liquor, as well as at other major organisations like Medibank, AGL, Budget and Adidas.
Since you can already collect flybuys at so many places when you shop, it makes sense to add to them by collecting not just 1.0, but 1.5 points per dollar, at Coles. You can earn as many points as you like, because the rate at which you can earn them is not capped.
Redeeming flybuys points
One of the most popular ways to redeem your flybuys points is by converting them into flybuys dollars. You can convert 2,000 flybuys points into ten flybuys dollars, which you can use to get a $10 discount off your bill next time you shop at a Coles, BI-LO, Liquorland and Kmart.
Alternatively, convert your flybuys points into Virgin Australia Velocity Frequent Flyer Points, or a gift card to spend at Coles, Kmart, Target, JB Hi-Fi and selected restaurants. Or redeem them for a range of merchandise, including home and garden, fashion, technology, travel, entertainment and lifestyle products.
Free delivery when you shop at Coles online
When cardholders spend $100 or more in a single order at Coles online (excluding any amounts spent on tobacco products) their order will be delivered absolutely free, unless they live in a particularly remote area. You can check if delivery to your area is available by visiting shop.coles.com.au.
Low annual fee
If it wasn’t so much of a mouthful, the card’s name really ought to be 'Coles Low Rate Low Fee Mastercard’, since you’ll pay only $58 p.a. a year in account-keeping fees. That’s a very reasonable fee for a rewards card because you are not paying for any other benefits, like 'free’ travel insurance or extended warranty insurance, that you may not be able to use. You can have up to 4 supplementary cardholders on your account – family members perhaps, who can help you to earn flybuys for an additional $10 per card p.a.
Convenience and security
The Coles Low Rate Mastercard comes with a host of inbuilt convenience and security features:
Probable cardholder profile for this card
Those likely to derive maximum benefit from the Coles Low Rate Mastercard will already be regular shoppers at Coles and its flybuys partner organisations. They don’t need to be high income earners, frequent flyers or big spenders to recognise the value in a straightforward loyalty discount, extra-long interest-free days, and a low purchase interest rate to make temporary financial difficulties more bearable.
It was sold to me as a no-fee credit card. But it turns out there are fees. To set up a direct debit you have to send a physical letter – yes, I’m not kidding. It took them nearly three months to process my direct debit request. Once they did, the delay on the direct debit meant that we had already paid it off for the month but they withdrew money anyway, so the account ended up in credit.
Day-to-day usage is fine, but their online services portal is extremely limited and any correspondence seems to require a physical letter. Bizarre!
We ended up closing the account after we bought a house. We called up and made a payment to close the account off, and were assured that we had closed the account, all was good. Two weeks later, another direct debit of over $1800 was taken from our account. This happened two days after our baby was born so we didn’t notice the extra repayment until two and a half months later, and then only when we went back through our old transactions with Pocketbook (great product btw). Coles Mastercard didn’t notify us that they had taken an extra $1800 and it was sitting in a closed account (not earning anything for us, I might add).
After finally getting past the automated voice and speaking to a human when we called up, we have been told we need to write yet another physical letter (paying for postage) to request a refund. It boils my blood that this can happen in this day and age. As far as I can tell, and from what I was told on the phone, this may happen to anyone who has direct debit set up with this card, and who wants to close their account. The backward nature of this operation has cost me time, effort and money. I would not recommend it.
There’s a great 18 months interest-free deal on purchases, with a low rate after the interest-free period finishes.
The card can be linked to flybuys to gain flybuys points for every purchase, and you can use rewards instantly.
The Coles MasterCard app gives you access to account information on the go. and is easy to use.
Very happy with my Coles MasterCard. I pay it out every month, pay no interest, and get reward points. They have customer protection, which I have claimed against a couple of times with no issues. It’s great if you’re buying a mobile phone outright as you know it will be cheaper in six to twelve months, so you can get the latest now, wait for the price drop, and claim back the difference later.
On the potentially negative side—which I avoid—is the relatively high interest rate, which is disgustingly high if you take a cash advance.
No complaints at all. Good service is given and the whole application process was completed online.
Interest rates are high, higher than most, but they give over 60 days interest free.
It has a balance transfer option which I didn’t need. There are no annual fees or transaction fees, and it gives flybuys points for members.
Is a good starting card with many benefits and without the hassle of the other cards. I would recommend it because of its its simple and user friendly services. Its a good card for anyone wanting a credit card with a reasonable credit limit.
The Coles MasterCard is amazing. They have great service and always help me with any problems. They have always been willing to extend or upgrade my credit limit in an emergency. Also their monthly fees are very good.
I would recommend the Coles MasterCard to my friends and family and I have done so in the last 6 months and I have had all 4 of them join up very fast. They are also happy with them.
My experience has been great so far. It’s easy to use in conjunction with flybuys and the customer service is excellent.
The card application was fast and i received the card within three days of my application. Overall, I would recommend this card, especially because of the low fees attached to it.
The Coles Low Rate MasterCard is a credit card well-suited to low income people, families, or pensioners. Having this credit card gives me peace of mind knowing that I could use it for an emergency. It has also helped us manage a couple of larger bills and boosted our savings for a holiday. Monthly repayments are affordable and easy to manage, though you have to watch the fees when you use a cash advance.
I have not had a credit card for more than twenty years and was surprised how easy it was to apply and be accepted.
I’ve had no problems with this card. It’s great value.
I used quite a bit of my balance in the first two days, and I received a call from the protection team to make sure that it was all legit. Customer service is great also, and extremely helpful.
I would recommend this MasterCard. There are also a lot of perks if you have flybuys.
I would say it’s a good service. Their zero interest promotion program is really good. I would say that it’s better than many.
I recommended this card to my friends and they are happy as well. I just want to say that it has saved me money. Overall, it’s a really good service.
|Cash advances||1.67%||19.99% p.a.|