Guiding consumers since 2009

The cheapest credit card

By Staff Writer
By Nicolette Dirk, finance writer,
Which bank offers the cheapest credit card when it comes to fees? How much  are you required to pay for supplementary cards. What will you pay for initiation fees? We surveyed the most affordable credits cards offered by Standard Bank, Nedbank, Absa, FNB and African Bank.
FNB’s Classic (Silver) Credit Card is  FNB’s most affordable credit card. However, you need to earn between R36 000 and R99 999 per annum in order to qualify for this card. You pay a monthly fee of R 24.50 and you will pay R11.66 in additional fees linked to the account. The initiation fee will cost you R135.
Interest rates are individualised and based on each customers banking profile but FNB charges interest rates within the range of 9% to 21% (the maximum rate allowed by the NCA on its credit cards).
Nedbank’s Gold credit card monthly fee is R20.50 but you don’t pay any supplementary card fees linked to the account. You do however pay R16 a month for the garage card linked to the account as well as R179 annually for the Nedbank Greenbacks Rewards program. You will pay R112 for the initiation fee.
Willie van Zyl, Absa’s head of card issuing, says their most affordable credit card - and the only one in the market without a monthly or annual service fee - is the Virgin Money Credit Card.

This credit card has no initiation fee and flat cash withdrawal fees. “This is an attractive and convenient product for customers that earn a minimum monthly income of R5000,” says Van Zyl.
Then there is their gold credit card where consumers, who earn a monthly income of R4000 or more, are eligible to apply. With the Gold Credit Card, customers get up to 57 days interest free when they pay their balance in full each month.

There are no transaction fees on purchases and there is the ability to add Absa Rewards and earn up to 1% cash back on purchases with their credit card. The Gold Credit Card has a monthly service fee of R21 and a once-off initiation fee of R135. 
Standard Bank
Standard Bank’s card, with the lowest transaction fee, is the Gold credit card It has a monthly service fee of R25 but should the customer hold the bundled transactional account, the R25 monthly service fee is waived on the credit card. When it comes to what you pay on interest, the bank says it’s dependent on the customers’ credit profile and the product.
African Bank
African Bank offers a portfolio of four cards which include: blue, silver, gold and platinum credit cards.  There is no minimum earning criteria required to qualify for any of the cards because the bank attributes a combination risk score made up of a credit score.
The fee which a customer pays on a monthly basis for the African Bank PlatinumPlus are a monthly service fee of R47.50 plus a R20 transaction bundle, for which the customer receives two debit orders, three ATM balance enquiries, two ATM cash withdrawals at any ATM plus one cash deposit per month. A monthly credit life insurance fee of R11 is charged and consumers pay 4.5% on the outstanding balance. 
Should you exceed the included bundle transactions, you will pay R3 for a balance enquiry, R11 for ATM cash withdrawal in excess of R100 plus 1.2% of the transaction value and R4.50 for amounts of less or equal to the R100. A further R3.70 is payable as a deposit fee plus 1.10% of transaction value for amounts over R250.|
Justmoney says:
African Bank’s credit card, when it comes to fees, is the most expensive when compared to the other major banks (see table below), while Virgin is the cheapest. However, with Virgin you pay cash withdrawal fees of R14 through any ATM and over the counter in branches it costs R44 to withdraw each time. 
When it comes to credit cards the best way of reducing the fees you pay is to use credit cards sparingly, if at all, and to only use it when swiping for purchases and not make any withdrawals, especially over the counter. If you have access to online banking make deposits and withdrawals online as much as possible as this will save you in fees. 
Find out if you are paying through the nose in fees by asking your bank how much you pay per swipe, withdrawal, deposits and to transact online. If you are pay more than the average ask your bank if there is a cheaper card you can switch to otherwise see what rival banks can offer you instead. 

Credit card

Card fee (Monthly)

Additional card fees per card linked to the account (Monthly)

Initiation fee

Interest rate

FNB Classic (Silver) Credit Card




Between 9% to 21%

Nedbank’s Gold credit card


No supplementary card fee linked to the account.



Absa Gold credit card


No supplementary card fee linked to the account.



Standard Bank’ Gold credit card


No supplementary card fee linked to the account.


Interest rate varies between 15,5% and 22,1%.

African Bank Platinum Plus


R20 transactional bundle fee.


From 16,5% per annum.





Between 14% and 18 % per annum


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