The Best HSBC Credit Cards

Updated: 4th November, 2019.

If you already use or trust HSBC, there are a lot of good reasons to stick with that bank for a credit card. And if you’re not yet an HSBC customer, there are a lot of good reasons to consider a credit card from HSBC. On this page, we’ve gathered some of the top credit cards from HSBC, along with a closer look at why you might want a card from this banking giant… or why its cards might not be right for you.

Credit card offers from our affiliate partners appear first and are ordered from highest rating to lowest, followed by other top-rated offers. You can read more about our ratings and page sort here. Offers from affiliate partners are marked with *

We’ve reviewed the cards that make up the HSBC portfolio. Below you’ll find our analysis of the many perks and benefits on offer, as well as any fees and potential limitations.

Great for: Building credit
3.5 stars question mark
HSBC Student Credit Card

The HSBC Student Card offers students and apprentices a no-frills credit card that could help get them started on building their credit rating. With a very competitive APR and manageable credit limit, the card also offers cashback with selected Visa partners. To be eligible, you must have a HSBC student bank account and be enrolled in a qualifying course, or have proof of a confirmed apprenticeship.

Read full review >

CREDIT RATING req:

  • Poor/No credit
  • Fair/Average
  • Good/Excellent

HIGHLIGHTS

  • No annual fee
  • Manageable credit limit
  • Earn cashback with Visa offers

REPRESENTATIVE EXAMPLE

Representative rate 18.9% APR (variable)
Purchase rate 18.9% p.a. (variable)
Based on an assumed credit limit of £500

what we like

  • No annual fee
  • Manageable credit limit
  • Earn cashback with Visa offers
  • ANNUAL FEE:

    £0
  • REPRESENTATIVE APR:

    18.9%
  • INTRO OFFER:

    Earn cashback from your favourite shopping brands with Visa offers

KEY SCORES:

  • 2/5 Perks
  • 3/5Fees
  • 4/5APR

HIGHLIGHTS

  • No annual fee
  • Manageable credit limit
  • Earn cashback with Visa offers

REPRESENTATIVE EXAMPLE

Representative rate 18.9% APR (variable)
Purchase rate 18.9% p.a. (variable)
Based on an assumed credit limit of £500
Great for: 0% interest on purchases and balance transfers
3.5 stars question mark

HSBC’s Purchase Plus Credit Card is a consideration for those looking for a solid combination of 0% purchase and balance-transfer offer. The 18 months is shorter than some competitors, but that’s still gives you a solid 0% period. The balance-transfer offer comes with a 2.9% fee, which isn’t ideal, but you get 18 months of 0% interest there too. There is a rewards programme, Visa Offers, and a discount programme, HSBC’s home&away, but you have to search for offers relevant to you.

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CREDIT RATING req:

  • Poor/No credit
  • Fair/Average
  • Good/Excellent

HIGHLIGHTS

  • 0% interest on purchases made over the first 18 months
  • 0% interest for 18 months on balance transfers made in first 60 days
  • 2.9% balance-transfer fee applies
  • Discounts and rewards available with Visa Offers and HSBC's home&away
  • No annual fee

REPRESENTATIVE EXAMPLE

Representative rate 22.9% APR (variable)
Purchase rate 22.9% p.a. (variable)
Based on an assumed credit limit of £1,200

what we like

  • 0% interest on purchases made over the first 18 months
  • 0% interest for 18 months on balance transfers made in the first 60 days (but a 2.9% fee applies)
  • Discounts and rewards with Visa Offers and home&away
  • ANNUAL FEE:

    £0
  • REPRESENTATIVE APR:

    22.9%
  • INTRO OFFER:

    0% on purchases for 18 months

    0% for 18 months on balances transferred in first 60 days

KEY SCORES:

  • 3/5 Perks
  • 3/5Fees
  • 2/5APR

HIGHLIGHTS

  • 0% interest on purchases made over the first 18 months
  • 0% interest for 18 months on balance transfers made in first 60 days
  • 2.9% balance-transfer fee applies
  • Discounts and rewards available with Visa Offers and HSBC's home&away
  • No annual fee

REPRESENTATIVE EXAMPLE

Representative rate 22.9% APR (variable)
Purchase rate 22.9% p.a. (variable)
Based on an assumed credit limit of £1,200
Great for: Rewards on everyday spend
3.5 stars question mark

If you do meet the eligibility requirements, then the HSBC Rewards Credit Card has lots to offer. Not only do cardholders earn reward points on their spending, but the bank is also offering a 2,500 point welcome award and 0% on purchases and balance transfers for six months. And if that wasn’t enough, there is an option to ‘supercharge’ your rewards and earn 10 points per £1 at selected merchants.

Read full review >

CREDIT RATING req:

  • Poor/No credit
  • Fair/Average
  • Good/Excellent

HIGHLIGHTS

  • 1 point for every £5 of eligible spend
  • 0% on purchases for six months
  • 0% on balance transfers for six months
  • 2,500 points welcome award

REPRESENTATIVE EXAMPLE

Representative 21.9% APR variable
Purchase rate 21.9% variable for purchases
Credit limit Assumed credit limit of £1,200
Annual fee No annual fee

what we like

  • 1 point for every £5 of eligible spend
  • 0% on purchases for six months
  • 0% on balance transfers for six months
  • 2,500 points welcome award
  • ANNUAL FEE:

    £0
  • REPRESENTATIVE APR:

    21.9%
  • INTRO OFFER:

    2,500 points welcome award

KEY SCORES:

  • 3/5 Perks
  • 3/5Fees
  • 2/5APR

HIGHLIGHTS

  • 1 point for every £5 of eligible spend
  • 0% on purchases for six months
  • 0% on balance transfers for six months
  • 2,500 points welcome award

REPRESENTATIVE EXAMPLE

Representative 21.9% APR variable
Purchase rate 21.9% variable for purchases
Credit limit Assumed credit limit of £1,200
Annual fee No annual fee
Great for: Long balance transfer period
3 stars question mark

Take a look around and you’ll see balance-transfer offers declining. That makes the 25 months on HSBC’s Balance Transfer Card more impressive. There is a balance-transfer fee, but at 1.5%, it’s lower than the typical BT fee.

Read full review >

CREDIT RATING req:

  • Poor/No credit
  • Fair/Average
  • Good/Excellent

HIGHLIGHTS

  • 0% interest for 25 months on balance transfers made in first 60 days
  • 1.5% balance-transfer fee applies
  • 0% interest on purchases for the first 3 months
  • Cashback and rewards available through Visa Offers and HSBC home&away
  • No annual fee

REPRESENTATIVE EXAMPLE

Representative rate 21.9% APR (variable)
Purchase rate 21.9% p.a. (variable)
Based on an assumed credit limit of £1,200

what we like

  • 0% interest for 25 months on balance transfers made in first 60 days (1.5% fee applies)
  • 0% interest on purchases for the first 3 months
  • Cashback possible from Visa Offers programme
  • ANNUAL FEE:

    £0
  • REPRESENTATIVE APR:

    21.9%
  • INTRO OFFER:

    0% for 25 months on balances transferred in the first 60 days
    0% on purchases for 3 months

KEY SCORES:

  • 3/5 Perks
  • 3/5Fees
  • 2/5APR

HIGHLIGHTS

  • 0% interest for 25 months on balance transfers made in first 60 days
  • 1.5% balance-transfer fee applies
  • 0% interest on purchases for the first 3 months
  • Cashback and rewards available through Visa Offers and HSBC home&away
  • No annual fee

REPRESENTATIVE EXAMPLE

Representative rate 21.9% APR (variable)
Purchase rate 21.9% p.a. (variable)
Based on an assumed credit limit of £1,200

HSBC Credit Cards

HSBC is a brand known across the globe for its financial products and is one of the main high street banks in the UK. So it’s no surprise that its name frequently crops up on the credit card best buy tables.

The bank is more than 150 years old and claims 39 million customers worldwide. For that reason, it’s not surprising that the HSBC brand is also one that many consumers around the world have come to trust. Here in the UK, HSBC’s credit cards end up on consumers’ radars since they often have cards that have among the longest interest-free offers available.

However, the bank also often keeps its best rewards for its existing customers, with some deals kept exclusive for its current-account customers. One of the bank’s stated aims is to build long-term relationships with customers, and one way of doing this is offering exclusive deals to those who already use its services. That’s not to say there aren’t good deals to be found if you are not already part of the HSBC family though.

What does HSBC do well?

One of the major perks of getting a credit card from HSBC is the reward programmes on offer: Visa Offers and HSBC’s home&away scheme.

Visa Offers is a cashback reward programme through which you can earn cashback by spending on your card with certain retailers. This isn’t as simple as using a cashback credit card, but it’s not rocket science either. To score these rewards, you can go online to find the relevant cashback offers based on where you spend with your card, and then make a qualifying purchase with the retailer. Meanwhile, the HSBC home&away reward programme provides discounts on major brands across the globe.

These programmes mean that even though you may be taking out that card because of the balance transfer or purchases offer, you could also be benefiting just from the fact it is an HSBC card.

While its individual offers are usually competitive, HSBC also scores points for additional support it can provide. You can manage your card online or through the mobile banking app, plus you can receive 24/7 worldwide assistance and an emergency cash advance if your card is lost or stolen. It also often allows you to take out an additional card for a partner or close family member for no extra charge. In short, sometimes it does pay to be with such an established financial provider.

Where does HSBC fall down?

HSBC is very much focused on those who have a good or excellent credit score, so if you are someone who has struggled with your credit score, then you are unlikely to find many HSBC cards which would meet your needs.

The other slight criticism of HSBC cards is that sometimes the best offers are on credit cards which are exclusive to HSBC current-account customers. For example, the HSBC Premier Credit Card offers a 0% introductory rate on purchases and a rewards programme where points can be redeemed for shopping vouchers and frequent flyer miles but you need to be an HSBC Premier account customer in order to qualify for the card. And while that could be seen as a problem if you’re not an HSBC current-account customer, it’s a nice advantage if you do have a current account with the bank.

What will you find in HSBC’s card portfolio?

Credit card offers are constantly changing and adjusting to the market. But brands often have areas where they focus their efforts on and offer their most competitive deals. In HSBC’s case, it tends to be most competitive with its balance transfer offers, often having cards with top-of-the-market introductory periods and lower balance transfer fees.

A balance transfer card allows you to transfer a balance from an existing credit card to a new card which charges no interest for an introductory period of time. It can be a useful financial tool to get out from underneath high interest rates and/or consolidate debt. A balance transfer fee is the amount the provider will charge you for moving a balance across. It is typically a percentage of the balance transfers, so a lower percentage is better, since that means you’ll pay less!

HSBC also often adds 0% purchases deals to its balance transfer cards. While it is not always at the top of the market for interest-free introductory periods on purchases, it tends to use these offers as an added bonus for existing balance transfer cards.

Finally, most of the credit card’s in HSBC’s portfolio do not have an annual fee, meaning the previously mentioned Visa Offers and HSBC home&away reward programme are just part of the bank’s offering. Some of its more exclusive cards carry a fee, but typically its standard offering does not impose any sort of annual charge.

How to apply

If you are already registered for online banking with HSBC, then you can apply through the site with a pre-filled application form and receive a decision instantaneously.

If you are new to HSBC, you can apply online (although if you are from the Channel Islands or Isle of Man you will need to visit your local branch). As part of the application you will need to provide some personal details including addresses for the past three years, date of birth and nationality, as well as information regarding your income and outgoings.

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