The interest free period is the maximum number of days during which interest is not charged on new purchases. If your account has an interest free period for purchases, to be entitled to that interest free period, you need to pay off the “monthly payment balance” listed on your statement of account (not the full closing balance) by the relevant payment due date.
Purchase rate: 20.24% p.a.
Cash Advance rate: Not Applicable
Purchase rate: 20.49% p.a.
Cash Advance rate: 21.49% p.a.
Receive both rewards cards in one single application. Westpac Mastercard® issued and serviced by Westpac. AMEX Westpac Altitude Card issued & serviced by American Express.
You don’t need to restrict yourself to one rewards credit card when you can get a much better deal by having two. Westpac understands that their cardholders still want to have both an Amex card for high points earning plus a Mastercard for maximum acceptance. So you can still have the best of both worlds with the American Express Westpac Altitude Black Card Bundle (Altitude). It comes with a bonus points windfall, Westpac’s highest Altitude points earning rate, and heaps of perks to complement the travelling lifestyle.
One application, two cards, two accounts
What happens is that you can apply for two cards – an Amex card issued by American Express and a Mastercard from Westpac – with a single application. So there are two annual fees to pay: $250 for the Westpac Mastercard and $199 for the Amex card, a total of $449 per year.
That’s seriously pricey, but you do get a lot of points earning potential and a lot of perks in return. And there’s even better news. In the first year, you’ll get a $100 discount on the Amex card fee, bringing the cost of the card bundle down to only $349 in the first 12 months.
You can’t have the Amex card without also having the Mastercard. You’ll need to select Altitude points earning when you apply for the card bundle, rather than the Velocity or Qantas Points options.
Enormous bonus points, achievable spending targets
You might expect to have to jump through some pretty high hoops to get your hands on all of the 140,000 first-purchase bonus Westpac Altitude Rewards points available with this offer, but the spending targets are not all that dramatic for anyone considering this type of top-level rewards card.
Spend just $4,000 using the Mastercard in the first 90 days, and receive 100,000 bonus Altitude points.
Spend a further $3,000 in the first 90 days, using the Amex card, and get an extra 40,000 points.
If you can’t guarantee spending $7,000 in three months, let your Amex card stay in your wallet and concentrate on getting the 100,000 points with Mastercard. (It’s worth sacrificing the higher ongoing Amex points earning rate for a short while.) Then, if there’s still time left to hit the remaining $3,000 target, reverse the procedure and put the Mastercard away. You might consider bringing forward the date of a planned major purchase, which will effectively become less expensive if it helps you score bonus points.
Those 140,000 bonus points are worth around $667 in retail gift cards, potentially much more if exchanged for frequent flyer points.
Highly satisfying ongoing points earning
This is where the cards really start to earn their keep on a regular basis, especially in the case of the Amex card. The Altitude points earning rates are:
Amex card: 5.0 points per dollar spent in foreign currency (while overseas or online)
Amex card: 3.0 points per dollar spent in AUD, except
Amex card: 1.0 points per dollar spent with government bodies (e.g. ATO, Australia Post)
There is no cap or threshold on any of the points earned with the Amex card.
Mastercard: 6.0 points per dollar spent on the first $10,000 per calendar month on flights purchased in Australia directly with Qantas, Jetstar, Virgin Australia, Singapore Airlines and Emirates, then 1.25 points per $1 spent thereafter
Mastercard: 2.0 points per dollar spent at David Jones, Myer, THEICONIC, Uber and Uber Eats
Mastercard: 1.25 points per dollar spent on all other eligible purchases
(‘Eligible purchases’ exclude interest charges and account fees, BPAY payments, and all cash equivalents like balance transfers, cash advances and purchases of foreign currency and traveller’s cheques.)
There is no cap on any of the points earned with the Mastercard.
If you had a monthly card expenditure on standard AUD purchases of $3,000 (i.e. not with any of the bonus points program partners), of which $2,000 was incurred on the Amex card and $1,000 on the Mastercard, you would earn 7,250 points per month, 87,000 points per year. Those 87,000 points could be exchanged for about $415 worth of national retail e-Gift cards. That’s only $35 short of the annual fee, so if your annual card expenditure is likely to be in excess of $36,000, or partly in foreign currency, or directed towards some of the airline and retail partners offering higher points earning rates, you will be well ahead. That’s even before counting the value of attached complimentary benefits.
Other ways to spend Altitude points
Retail gift cards are not the only way to spend Altitude points. Some of the following options could deliver a higher value return per point, while others may result in a lower one:
Complimentary benefits add further value to the bundle
Although you will possibly recover the cards’ annual fees in the value of reward points redemptions, its complimentary benefits, potentially worth more than $1,600 per year, should not be underestimated. They include:
Unappealing interest rates
The interest rates for a high-end rewards card like this are unavoidably unpleasant: 20.49% p.a. for purchases on the Mastercard, 20.24% for purchases on the Amex card, and 21.49% p.a. for cash advances via the Mastercard only. Cardholders are more likely to be concerned by the number of interest-free days on purchases (45, not the more generous 55) than by interest rates they plan never to use.
Check out other prestige cards
If you’re looking for a card with a high rewards points earning rate which doesn’t stint on complimentary benefits, you may also want to consider the American Express Qantas Ultimate Credit Card and the Citi Prestige Card.
A distinctive offering for the discerning consumer
This is no ordinary card bundle: its annual fee makes that perfectly clear. It’s a card duo for regular travellers and astute bigger spenders who expect the cards in their wallet to more than earn their keep, over and over again.
|Cash advances||1.79%||21.49% p.a.|