When things like travel insurance and appliance extended warranty cover take a higher priority than frequent flyer points, look to the Bankwest Qantas Gold MasterCard for a solid insurance package but which still earns some points every time you use it.
Certainly there are cheaper cards which earn more points for every dollar spent, but when looking at the big picture, the annual fee charged could well be less than you'd otherwise pay for a standalone travel insurance policy, ultimately saving you money.
Bankwest Qantas Gold credit card: fast facts
- Grade/tier: Gold
- Card type: MasterCard
- Loyalty program: Qantas Frequent Flyer
- Qantas Points earned per dollar spent: 0.5
- Points capping: Earn up to 66,667 Qantas Points each year
Fees, charges and interest: 3/5
- Annual fee: $150
- Additional/supplementary cardholder fee: $0
- Interest rate on purchases: 20.49% p.a.
- Interest-free days on purchases: Up to 55
- Interest rate on cash advances: 21.99% p.a.
- International transaction fee: 2.95%
- Minimum income requirement: None defined
- Minimum credit limit: $5,000
Earning points for free flights: 2/5
A modest welcome bonus of 4,000 points greets new Bankwest customers after applying and being approved for the card and simply making a regular purchase in the first two months.
That's not enough to actually fly anywhere or for a business class upgrade – a one-way boost from flexible economy to business class from Sydney to Melbourne needs 5,000 points – but combined with your regular spending it's a good start.
Thereafter, every $16,000 spent earns enough points for a one-way flight in economy on the same route, plus taxes and fees paid directly to Qantas when booking the journey.
Surprisingly though for a Qantas co-branded card, using it to buy Qantas flights or to pay for your Qantas Club membership doesn't attract any bonus points over and above the regular 0.5 points per $1 earning rate.
Airport lounge access: 0/5
Unlike the Gold-grade Qantas American Express Premium card, Bankwest's Qantas Gold MasterCard doesn't provide any inclusive airport lounge access or any opportunities to access pay-per-entry airport lounges not already afforded to the general public.
Free insurance coverage: 4/5
With Bankwest's Qantas Gold MasterCard awarding no more points per dollar than the bank's standard-level credit card and with a higher annual fee, the only 'point' of going for Gold is for the inclusive insurance cover, which is fortunately quite reasonable.
Cardholders receive overseas travel insurance on trips of three months or less when holding a return ticket before leaving Australia and spending at least A$500 on pre-paid travel costs for the journey, be it flights, hotels, further travel arrangements or 'any other prepaid overseas itinerary items'.
Added to that is 90-day purchase security cover which protects you against lost, stolen or damaged items bought with the card; 12-month extended warranty on selected appliances and a 'purchase price guarantee' for where a cheaper price is advertised shortly after selected purchases.
For just $50 more each year than what you'd pay for the basic Bankwest Qantas MasterCard, that's easily worth the upgrade for anybody travelling overseas and is likely on-par, if not cheaper, than what you'd pay for a separate travel insurance policy.
Bankwest Qantas Gold MasterCard: our verdict
With pure Gold-grade credit cards almost extinct from the Australian market, it's great to see Bankwest offering customers those added extras like travel insurance and extended warranty cover without having to front up for the higher cost of a Platinum or World card.
But of course, for cardholders keen on both travel insurance and earning a decent sum of frequent flyer points, this card pairs perfectly with the Qantas American Express Discovery card – earning one Qantas Point per dollar spent wherever AMEX is accepted.
That's twice as many points per dollar as the Bankwest Qantas Gold MasterCard yet without an annual fee or points cap, so combining the two costs you nothing extra and gives you more points where AMEX is accepted and still some points when relying on the MasterCard.
Otherwise, for the same fee levied by Bankwest, you could consolidate your plastic into a single Westpac Altitude Platinum account with insurances included, pairing a parity-earning AMEX card and a Visa delivering as many points as Bankwest, but with a low monthly cap of just 3,750 Qantas Points.
Also read: Woolworths Money Qantas Platinum Visa review
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