Tesco credit cards

How to choose the right Tesco credit card

It’s not just for groceries after all – see if a Tesco credit card could be right for you

Tesco has been offering financial services since 1997. When Tesco Bank was founded that year, it was a partnership between the Royal Bank of Scotland and the grocery chain, but since 2008 it’s been owned entirely by Tesco.

Tesco has come to be as big a player in the world of credit as it is on the high street – in the 2018/19 financial year, it lent out nearly £12.5bn to British consumers. But is a Tesco credit card right for you? We’ve got the lowdown on all the cards offered by the retail giant, so you can see if they meet your needs.

Tesco Bank is currently offering quite a few credit cards, each one designed to fit a different set of circumstances. So whether you want to get low interest rates on a big purchase, to build up your credit rating, or even to save money on your weekly shop, there should be an option that’s suitable for you.

Bear in mind that the APRs quoted in our offers are representative, and that you may be offered better or worse deals depending on your own credit rating.

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How do Tesco credit cards compare?

Tesco currently offers seven different credit cards, each designed to cater for separate needs. These are:

The Purchases Card: A purchase credit card offering 0% interest on purchases for the first 22 months, and 0% on balance transfers and money transfers for the first three months – although there’s still a fee of 2.9% for balance transfers and 3.95% for money transfers.

The Balance Transfer Card: A balance transfer card that gives you 0% interest on balance transfers and money transfers for up to 28 months. There’s still a fee on transfers, though, and you’ll need to start paying interest on purchases after the first 3 months.

The Money Transfer Card: This money transfer card offers you the same deal, but the fee for money transfers is cut down a shade to 3.94% for the first 28 months.

The All Round Card: This card comes in two versions – the 12-month and the 15-month. The 12-month All Round Card offers you 0% on purchases, balance transfers and money transfers for a year, and there are no fees on balance transfers. The 15-month version extends the interest-free period for an extra three months – but there’s a 1.49% fee on balance transfers.

The Foundation Card: This credit builder card offers you 0% interest on purchases for the first 56 days.

The Clubcard Plus Card: This rewards credit card offers 0% on purchases for 18 months, and also a suite of extra rewards if you’re a regular Tesco customer – including 10% off two shops a month (to a maximum discount of £40 a month) and 10% off all Tesco brands in-store or online. If you use Tesco Mobile, you’ll also double your monthly data allowance for no extra cost.

Tesco credit card features

Tesco credit cards also come with a few extra features that you might find useful:

  • No fees: All Tesco cards come without any monthly or annual fees – so that’s one expense you won’t have to worry about
  • Clubcard points: All Tesco credit cards earn you Clubcard points whenever you use them – you’ll get one point for every £8 you spend, but the rate doubles if you’re using the card at Tesco
  • Flexibility: Tesco credit cards allow you to add an additional card holder to the account
  • Online & mobile banking: You get access to the full suite of Tesco’s digital banking services, including the mobile banking app, as well as text and email alerts
  • Regulation: Tesco Bank is fully regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), and you’re protected under the Consumer Credit Act. So if something goes wrong on a purchase you make between £100 and £30,000, you’ll get a full refund

How do I pick the best Tesco credit card?

Tesco offers several cards to choose from, and the best one for you will depend on your circumstances and what you’d like to do with your card.

  • To cover an expensive purchase, go for the Purchases Card – you won’t have to pay any interest for nearly two years, which makes it one of the most competitive purchase cards on the market. Plus, you could earn hundreds of Clubcard points at the same time.
  • To build up your credit score, consider the Foundation Card. Its low credit limit will slowly increase as you make your repayments, and Tesco Bank also offers tools and advice to help you manage your debt, including free credit checks and alerts from TransUnion.
  • To pay off a debt, apply for the Balance Transfer Card. It offers you up to 28 months without having to pay interest on your debt – one of the longest 0% interest periods on the market.

Am I eligible for a Tesco credit card?

Tesco has a few eligibility criteria for each of its cards, although the offer you get will depend on your own circumstances, including your credit rating. Here’s what you need for a Tesco card:

  • You’re 18 or over
  • You’re a permanent resident of the UK
  • Your income is £5,000 or more a year

How likely am I to get accepted?

Your chances of being accepted for a Tesco credit card will depend on a range of factors – most of which come together to make up your credit score. You’ll get better rates if you have a history of responsible borrowing than you will if you’ve missed loan repayments or even defaulted in the past.

The best way to take control of your credit score is with MoneySuperMarket’s free Credit Monitor tool. You can use it to find out what your credit score is, and to work out simple ways to improve it. Once you have a better handle on your score, you should find it easier to get better deals on credit cards.

How long does it take to get a Tesco credit card?

It’s quick and easy to get a great credit card deal with MoneySuperMarket – just answer a few short questions so we can access your credit score, and you can see all the available deals within minutes.

Once you find a credit card you like, we’ll direct you to the provider, who will ask you to make a full application – which shouldn’t take much longer. Approval is usually automatic and quite quick, and your Tesco credit card and PIN should arrive in the post in around seven to 10 days.

Sometimes an application is flagged for a manual evaluation, which means a person is double-checking your eligibility, and which can take a few days extra.

How do I apply for a Tesco credit card?

MoneySuperMarket’s comparison tool is a great way to apply for a Tesco credit card. It’s simple: you give us a few details about yourself and your circumstances, and we scour our providers for the best deals available to you, including APR and credit limit. You then pick the one you like best.

We are free and independent, and offer exclusive deals you can't get anywhere else. Click here to get started.


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