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People outside the US: What are CCs like in your country?

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Established Member

Re: People outside the US: What are CCs like in your country?

Canadian banks have recently started to offer sign up bonuses; however, they are nothing like ours. Additionally, many cards carry annual fees and interest rates around 19% despite good credit. It has also only been within the last 10 years or so that Canadian banks moved away from gold cards and into Platinum/World/World Elite/Visa Infinite. Canadian credit cards up until the last 10 years or so were more like our cards were in the 1980s. In Canada, PLOCs are more common and carry very low (sub 6%) interest rates.

Also, it should be noted that Canada has its own debit network called Interac. Banks have only recently begun to issue Visa Debit/Debit MasterCard cards so that their customers can make international purchases using debit-though domestically they still use the cards as Interac.

Canadians spend a lot more on their housing than in the US which is the greatest source of Canadians' debt. Therefore, Canadians generally have much lower credit card debt than the US which is possibly why the banks do not worry as much about sign up bonuses, rewards and low APRs. 

Message 21 of 25
Regular Contributor

Re: People outside the US: What are CCs like in your country?

Somehow stumbled upon an article saying get 150k MR points when opening up a Platinum card!

Turns out, it is the Australian version.
Looking at the Australian Amex Plat card, though, it looks pretty solid with a quick glance.
2.25 MR back per Australian dollar spent (which is only ~.67 USD).

https://www.americanexpress.com/au/credit-cards/the-platinum-card/?ieep=02AF4103&AFFID=MS_DMG&source...
Message 22 of 25
Mega Contributor

Re: People outside the US: What are CCs like in your country?


@Rebuilt wrote:
Somehow stumbled upon an article saying get 150k MR points when opening up a Platinum card!

Turns out, it is the Australian version.
Looking at the Australian Amex Plat card, though, it looks pretty solid with a quick glance.
2.25 MR back per Australian dollar spent (which is only ~.67 USD).

https://www.americanexpress.com/au/credit-cards/the-platinum-card/?ieep=02AF4103&AFFID=MS_DMG&source...

Good find!  AF is high, about $1000, but with the earn rate of about 3.35MR per USD, that's good!  (No 5x airfare though)

Message 23 of 25
Senior Contributor

Re: People outside the US: What are CCs like in your country?


@longtimelurker wrote:

@Rebuilt wrote:
Somehow stumbled upon an article saying get 150k MR points when opening up a Platinum card!

Turns out, it is the Australian version.
Looking at the Australian Amex Plat card, though, it looks pretty solid with a quick glance.
2.25 MR back per Australian dollar spent (which is only ~.67 USD).

https://www.americanexpress.com/au/credit-cards/the-platinum-card/?ieep=02AF4103&AFFID=MS_DMG&source...

Good find!  AF is high, about $1000, but with the earn rate of about 3.35MR per USD, that's good!  (No 5x airfare though)


There was a 2016 law that limits the surcharges Australian merchants can impose. However, Amex-issued cards are exempt from the law (so surcharges can be high). I'm not sure if Amex itself restricts what merchants can charge.

 

https://www.accc.gov.au/consumers/prices-surcharges-receipts/credit-debit-prepaid-card-surcharges

CSR, CFU, BBP, CF, Discover, Costco, ED, Arrival, Schwab Platinum, IHG49, Hyatt75, Brilliant, Delta Platinum, Savor, BCP, Double Cash
May add 100k Platinum for a year then PC to Gold. May add BofA Premium. May add Virgin Atlantic. Likely to downgrade Savor, CSR, BCP.
Message 24 of 25
New Member

Re: People outside the US: What are CCs like in your country?

Great question, and it does show a few different sides of habits. In France (outside of Paris), a lot of people still write checks, although debit cards are increasingly popular. In France and Belgium, I had to pay about 30 Euros/year just to have a Visa/MC (with FTF, no perks, and terrible APR), because debit cards can't be used online. As I was leaving Belgium, the very first rewards card to hit the market was a Brussels Airlines/Lufthansa miles card with a high AF, low mileage earn, and few perks. Visa and MC were very widely accepted (Amex about 50%), however, even if smaller merchants/cafes still have a 15 Euro minimum to pay by card.

 

Now in central Africa, where a few regional African banks offer credit cards (Visa/MC) at reasonable rates, although cash remains king. Mobile payments are still popular and some merchants offer a 10% discount for using it. My grocery store accepts Visa and MC, which codes as grocery 75% of the time, and I've only found one French restaurant that accepts cc (they even take Amex!). I monitor my statements like a hawk, as do my banks, since I've reported where I'm living.

 

On the whole, although painting with a far too wide brush, it's nice to see that folks overseas don't generally spend themselves into CC debt like in the US. As a lifetime PIFer, I miss the perks/protections/points/miles, and hope that the spirit of banks competing for customers' business works itself overseas, but not the borrow-to-buy culture that often goes with it.

Message 25 of 25
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