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Can you get the best credit card from a supermarket?

Supermarkets are beating high street banks to top the credit card tables

The number of supermarket credit cards has boomed in recent years, but can they offer you a better deal than high street banks?

Supermarkets such as Tesco, Sainsbury’s and Asda – as well as M&S Bank – have ramped up the number of financial products they offer with credit cards, savings, loans, insurance and mortgages now available from the same brand that sells you groceries.

Here we’ve taken a look at how supermarket credit cards stack up against high street banks, and what you need to know when you take out a supermarket financial product.

0% purchase credit cards

If you want to spread the cost of an expensive purchase over an extended time, a 0% purchase credit card is a great tool – and the longer the interest-free period, the more breathing room you’ll have.

Right now the longest-lasting interest-free purchase period is available from Sainsbury’s Bank with its Dual Offer Credit Card.

This deal offers a whopping 29 months at 0% interest on purchases, giving you over two years to spread the cost of your purchases.

The card also offers 750 points each time you spend £35 or more at Sainsbury’s in the first two months, up to a maximum of 7,500 points.

Here’s how the card stacks up to the competition.

Credit card 0% purchase period Representative APR
Sainsbury’s Bank Dual Offer Credit Card 29 months 19.9%
Tesco Bank Purchase Credit Card 28 months 18.9%
Post Office Money Platinum Credit Card 28 months 18.9%
Halifax 27-Month Purchase Offer Credit Card 27 months 19.9%
Barclaycard Platinum 27-Month Balance Transfer and Purchase Credit Card 27 months 19.9%

Source: Which? Money Compare

As you can see from the table, the longest-lasting 0% purchase deal from a high street bank is the Halifax 27-Month Purchase Offer Credit Card.

0% balance transfer credit cards

A 0% balance transfer credit allows you to shift existing credit card debt and freeze the interest while you pay it off. This can be especially useful if your current card charges high interest.

A long-lasting 0% balance transfer period can help you spread your repayments to clear your debt before the deal ends. Again, the longest-lasting 0% period can be found with a supermarket bank.

The Tesco Bank Clubcard Credit Card for Balance Transfers and Money Transfers offers 36 months 0% on balance transfers with a 2.69% fee.

The card also allows you to collect Tesco Clubcard points as you spend. You’ll get one point for every £4 you spend at Tesco and for every £8 you spend elsewhere.

It’s also worth mentioning that Tesco Bank is a Which? Recommended Provider. We award this status to providers that have a Which? customer score of at least 70% (Tesco Bank has one of 72%), has at least one top 10 card and does not charge a representative APR of more than 20% on its mainstream deals.

Credit card 0% balance transfer  period Balance transfer fee Representative APR
Tesco Bank Clubcard Credit Card for Balance Transfers and Money Transfers 36 months 2.69% 18.9%
Post Office Money Balance Transfer Credit Card 35 months 2.85% 18.9%
Lloyds Bank Platinum 35-Month Balance Transfer Credit Card 35 months 3% 19.9%
Halifax 34-Month Balance Transfer Credit Card 34 months 3% 19.9%

Source: Which? Money Compare

The best 0% balance transfer deal from a high street bank is the Lloyds Bank Platinum 35-Month Balance Transfer Credit Card which offers a shorter 0% period and a more expensive balance transfer fee.

Cashback and reward credit cards

If you want perks from your spending, a cashback or reward credit card could be the right option for you.

Unlike 0% purchase and 0% balance transfer credit cards, it’s hard to say which are the best, as that really depends on what you are going to get out of the deal.

But one of the top reward credit cards based on Which? customer score is the John Lewis and Waitrose Partnership Credit Card.

You can earn one point per £1 spent in store or online at John Lewis or Waitrose, or for every £2 spent elsewhere.

For every 500 points, you earn you’ll get a £5 voucher to spend at John Lewis or Waitrose.

New customers get 1,000 points (worth £10) when they spend or transfer £500 in their first 90 days with the account.

Is a supermarket credit card safe?

Credit cards provided by a supermarket bank or with supermarket branding come with the same vital consumer rights as any other credit card.

Purchases worth between £100 and £30,000 will be covered under Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act. This means if your goods aren’t delivered, are faulty or if the firm you purchased from goes bust, you won’t lose out and the credit card firm will refund what you spent.

Some, such as Tesco Bank, offer credit cards under their own banking licence. Others offer deals as a broker, so your actual lender might be a different company. Asda Money, for example, acts as a credit broker and its branded credit cards are provided by Creation Financial Services.

It’s a good idea to keep track of this, in case you have a complaint or if you want to move your balance between providers at a later date.

How to find the best credit card

You can use Which? Money Compare to shop around for the best deals on 0% purchase, 0% balance transfer, reward, cashback and travel credit cards.

If you can’t decide between providers you can also check out our credit card company reviews to find out what the firm is like for customer service and quality of products.

Please note that the information in the table(s) above is for information purposes only and does not constitute advice. Please refer to the particular terms and conditions of the credit card provider before committing to any financial products.

Which? Limited is an Introducer Appointed Representative of Which? Financial Services Limited, which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FRN 527029). Which? Mortgage Advisers and Which? Money Compare are trading names of Which? Financial Services Limited.

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