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Topic # 114376 17-Feb-2013 21:43 Send private message

Since leaving National Bank (now ANZ), I have moved to Westpac for my regular credit card use. Westpac only offers AMEX + MasterCard.

I was at a shop today and was told that MasterCard fees is quite high... They are now charging 4% extra for MasterCard but none for Visa. They do not accept AMEX. If this is going to be the trend, I may need to start looking at other bank...

Article from Stuff today: Credit-card-surcharges-are-they-justified





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  Reply # 763914 17-Feb-2013 21:51 Send private message

I don't accept Amex at my shop either - visa and MasterCard are easy buy they make it difficult to accept Amex with a different merchant fee structure.

I'm not sure why they don't charge a fee for visa but do for mc - the fees are usually the same.

I would suggest that a lot of retailers don't accept Amex so stick with the other 2 if you can.



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  Reply # 763918 17-Feb-2013 22:01 Send private message

nitrotech: I don't accept Amex at my shop either - visa and MasterCard are easy buy they make it difficult to accept Amex with a different merchant fee structure.

I'm not sure why they don't charge a fee for visa but do for mc - the fees are usually the same.

I would suggest that a lot of retailers don't accept Amex so stick with the other 2 if you can.


Has MasterCard hike their fee recently? This shop has been offering credit card payment for so long and it is new for me today that they have to charge 4% extra for MasterCard purchase





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  Reply # 763919 17-Feb-2013 22:03 Send private message

Do these fees include visa debit/ mastercard debit cards?




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  Reply # 763921 17-Feb-2013 22:05 Send private message

westpac had the worst "points" scheme of all the banks last i looked. get a visa elsewhere - ANZ, BNZ, Kiwibank for example..




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  Reply # 763928 17-Feb-2013 22:18 Send private message

Regs: westpac had the worst "points" scheme of all the banks last i looked. get a visa elsewhere - ANZ, BNZ, Kiwibank for example..


You get 2 HotPoints per dollar when using AMEX or 1.5 for MasterCard. In fact their card has 5-star ratings

Other banks mostly offer AirPoints... I don't fly with Air Newzealand except for local flights which is rare. Always travel on Emirates and Singapore airlines.







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  Reply # 763939 17-Feb-2013 22:41 Send private message

Regs: westpac had the worst "points" scheme of all the banks last i looked. get a visa elsewhere - ANZ, BNZ, Kiwibank for example..


I'd tend to disagree, for the most part, 180 hotpoints = $1 worth of rewards (calculation backed roughly by vouchers, and some examples I decided on at random of actual merchandise with comparisons to Noel Leeming etc), with 180 hotpoints = $180 regular (Mastercard/Visa) spend or $120 AmEx spend (for the normal cards).

BNZ is 1 FlyBuys for every 50 spent (or 25 spent if you have their AmEx only plan) (1 FlyBuys is approximately a 6th of an Airpoint Dollar),  GlobalPlus is 1 Airpoints Dollar for every $150 Mastercard/Visa, or 100 for AmEx.

ASB is 1 'True Rewards Dollar' for every 150.

Kiwibank is 1 Airpoints Dollar per $150 spend

ANZ/NBNZ appears to be 1% cashback capped at a $30,000 spend (they don't exactly make it clear).

So on paper, it doesn't look great, but consider this; most places do accept AmEx at no extra cost, on average I earn at about a rate of 1.2-1.5 hotpoints per dollar over my total spend, far better than other options.  (Plus it's one credit card fee for the two cards).


For the OP, my trick with Westpac is, get the MasterCard/AmEx option, plus request a Visa Debit against your transaction account, if ANZ are bragging about the "power of 2" consider the "power of 3" :).

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  Reply # 763940 17-Feb-2013 22:41 Send private message

Regs: westpac had the worst "points" scheme of all the banks last i looked. get a visa elsewhere - ANZ, BNZ, Kiwibank for example..


Westpac definitely have Visa cards. I just tried to apply online for one on their website and it came up with Visa as an option. I'd suggest just asking at the branch or ring the call centre. They should be able to organise opening the new account and transferring any balance across.

As far as rewards schemes go, it's a matter of personal preference, but here's what independent reviewer Canstar says about them:

http://www.canstar.co.nz/images/star_ratings_reports/nz-credit-card-rewards-may-2012.pdf

Among the no flight awards schemes, Westpac seems to feature quite well. Both BNZ and Westpac have 3 products rated as 5 stars. The only other bank to receive a 5 star award in that category is the National Bank.

You can go for a Visa / Amex combination (which is what I have) to maximise your hotpoints earning potential, and as the last poster pointed out, there should only be one card fee

Cheers

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  Reply # 763942 17-Feb-2013 22:44 Send private message

4% sounds high. I have never seen a retailer charge different %'s for visa and mastercard. I would think they would get a better deal putting their transactions through paypal instead.



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  Reply # 763944 17-Feb-2013 22:57 Send private message

gabba:

You can go for a Visa / Amex combination (which is what I have) to maximise your hotpoints earning potential, and as the last poster pointed out, there should only be one card fee

Cheers


Interesting, I am not aware that you can request Visa (it was not in the form)

My current combination is AMEX (2 points) + MasterCard(1.5 points) + MasterCard SideCard(1.5 points) (one fee for 3 cards).








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  Reply # 763945 17-Feb-2013 22:59 Send private message

mattwnz: 4% sounds high. I have never seen a retailer charge different %'s for visa and mastercard. I would think they would get a better deal putting their transactions through paypal instead.


Exactly! First time I came across a retailer that charge MasterCard purchase but not for Visa!





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  Reply # 763946 17-Feb-2013 23:04 Send private message

you have to take account of the fees as well as the points earning ratio. when I added the fees for a supplementary card holder (i.e. one card for me, one for the wife) and took into account their foreign currency coversion fees (for online and overseas purchases), the Westpac cards did not stack up (even with the free mastercard+amex combo). their 'titanium' card was the -worst- value of any card I compared.

i'll admit that its been a bit over a year since I last did the comparison, so maybe they have improved their products now.




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  Reply # 763975 18-Feb-2013 08:34 Send private message

Interchange fees are typically identical (or pretty close) for Visa and Mastercard. Most banks advertise these, and a quick Google search shows Westpac list these on their website http://www.westpac.co.nz/business/payment-solutions/domestic-interchange-fees/

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  Reply # 764003 18-Feb-2013 10:12 Send private message

Haven't really looked at the Westpac cards, someone said it was around 1.5% though in terms of rewards.  In terms of airline cards the best I think is the GlobalPlus AMEX Gold, better than the GlobalPlus VISA Platinum.  Cheaper fee and higher point/dollar spent without the Plat perks and cos it is a BNZ card Gold cards don't give you insurance if the fare is too cheap like those grabaseat internationals.  Heard some people prefer the ANZ Plat VISA Airpoint card cos that is $80 for $1 AirNZ AP.  The GP Gold Amex is $66.  And - the VISA is better accepted. 

For me the big places do accept amex like supermarkets, petrol stations.  IME, my independent dentist doesn't, Whitcoulls needs a $10  purchase before.  AMP insurance doesn't either.  Some of the hairdressers don't or lil cafes.  None of the places have I been told abotu surcharges apart from AirNZ and some stores like Ascent which waives the direct debit discount. 

For me the best way to use Airpoints is to hunt for grabaseats (local and intl) so the points go even further.  You can also combine flybuys too.  If you're not interested in AP, maybe ANZ (former National Bank) Gold Thoroughbred Card for its 1% cash back if that is still available via ANZ, so you can do anything you want with it or simply going with a Kiwibank Zero CC which doesn't have any annual fees.  My hesitation with Hotpoints is that like Flybuys the points for rewards are not necessarily market rates.  So a $100 value reward doesn't cost 2x the points as a $50 reward.  These programs just becomes a big game.  Obviously not as big as the States though or generous.  Haven't looked at the AMEX programs itself like the cards you get direct off AMEX, the annual fee is higher and you need to pay annually to enrol into the AMEX Rewards programme. 

Since I am not in Auckland or Christchurch, it means whatever airline I travel with I can use my points for a free flight to connect to my intl flight. 


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  Reply # 764056 18-Feb-2013 11:30 Send private message

I used to have an amex platinum credit card. The rewards were the best by far ($100 voucher for every $7500 spent), but then totally negated by the high card fees. I didn't pay fees for the last three years I had it because they waived them every time I rang to cancel the card - until the last time when they simply cancelled the card :)

The reason I stick with the BNZ card over the ANZ card is because the BNZ refunds my card fees if I spend over a threshold, and I don't see that option with the ANZ card. That's worth more than the slightly higher AP earning ratio on the ANZ card.

the old "National Bank Cash Back" visa used to be the best for people who spent < $30K per annum. Not sure if the ANZ version works as well. After that, the kiwibank "no fee" mastercard was best (no rewards points, but also no fees)

To get $100 rewards back on a credit card, you need to spend between $7500 and $14000. If you spend < $30000 per annum, you will be lucky to net more than about $30 when deducting the fees from the rewards.

A "Gold" or "Platinum" card can stack up in value if you can make use of the travel insurance. If you don't use the insurance then they probably don't net you much in rewards either (unless you get your fees waived).




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  Reply # 764057 18-Feb-2013 11:30 Send private message

Link

Need to spend quite a bit just to get back the $100 annual fee, haha. Unless they spend lots that is.

I've seen that at least the BNZ cards the Gold that is, bit more limited in the fineprint and they have insurance excess that unless you were needing day surgery at least, you're probably just gonna pay it yourself, haha. BNZ Plat cards do insure you with cheap grabaseat fares, not their Gold cards thou but I understand only one or two bank does this to their Gold clients.  I think they sent out a info pamphlet that pre existing conditions are no longer covered and has to be disclosed to the bank ....

The 1% cash back thingie.  1% back so ... for the $100 annual fee it needs $10,000 spending.  $20k spend will get you back $100 cash for the year.  Yeah apart from the basic insurance I just don't them that substantial. 

Cannot get the cash back on standard cards but the general fee is around $35-40 PA.  Just under $5,000 spending going by the 1% standard.  So those CC without annual fees could be ideal for those who don't put much on the card.

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