A credit card battle is breaking out on the high street. Shoppers can take advantage of current deals to secure interest-free loans, but the really savvy will buy everything they can on plastic, then pay off the balance entirely each month to rake in attractive cashback and shopping vouchers.
Credit cards from M&S and John Lewis pay £1 for every £100 spent in their stores and 0.5 per cent spent elsewhere, in the form of vouchers to be used either at M&S or John Lewis respectively.
American Express’s platinum cashback card is the most generous cash-payer, offering five per cent cashback on everything you buy for the first three months, up to £100. Then it falls to 1.25 per cent.
Capital One’s World Mastercard offers one per cent cashback on purchases, whilst MBNA’s Visa cashback card refunds 1.25 per cent of your supermarket and petrol purchases and 0.5 per cent of other spend.
It has also introduced an MBNA Amex cashback paying back 1.5 per cent of all spending at Sainsbury’s, Waitrose, Ocado, Tesco, Asda and Morrisons supermarkets, plus bills from petrol stations including BP, Shell, Esso, Texaco and supermarket forecourts, and 0.75 per cent on everything else.
Credit cards from Nectar and Play.com pay back one per cent for shopping on the High Street, or 2 per cent from purchases from Sainsbury’s or Play’s website respectively.
For those struggling with cash, a string of credit card deals offer lengthy interest-free balance transfers. Barclaycard allows borrowers to switch debt over without paying interest for 20 months. MBNA offers an 18-month deal. But there are fees of around 3 per cent for transferring the balance.