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How does the Post Office Classic credit card work?

The Post Office Classic is a credit card offered by the Post Office.

While not technically a credit builder card, it can be used like one, as people with less-than-perfect credit scores can also apply for it. However, if you have bad credit and get the Post Office Classic card, you will be offered a higher APR and a lower initial credit limit.

Also, the Post Office Classic card is a hybrid credit card, offering both regular and balance transfer features. This means you can transfer the balance from other credit cards and get some extra time to pay them off, during which you’ll have to pay no interest rate charges. This can be an extremely helpful way to get out of debt and improve your credit rating.

One thing to remember: the card is branded as “Post Office”, but the credit line actually comes from Capital One. The Post Office is listed as the credit broker on the account, while Capital One is the lender and issuer of all Post Office credit cards.

In other words, you might see Capital One on your credit report – but don’t worry. Your agreement is still with the Post Office; you don’t need to contact Capital One or do anything about it.

What is the interest rate for a Post Office Classic credit card?

The Post Office Classic credit card offers a variable interest rate ranging from 19.9% to 34.9%.

What you need to remember about the interest rate charged by the Classic credit card:

  • The actual APR depends on your situation. “Representative” means that at least half of the Post Office customers get offered an APR between 19.9% and 34.9%.
  • This APR is variable, meaning it can fluctuate based on market conditions, especially the Bank of England base interest rate. Expect your APR to increase if inflation keeps increasing, as the Bank of England might raise rates.
  • You might be eligible for 0% on purchases for up to 12 months. This depends on your credit history, and it’s not guaranteed.

What is the minimum payment for a post office classic credit card?

The minimum payment for a Post Office Classic credit card is 3% of the balance or £5.00, whichever is greater. Making this minimum payment each month is essential to avoid losing any promotional interest rates, such as the 0% offer on balance transfers and purchases.

However, making only the minimum payment won’t be enough to make the most of this credit card. The difference between your minimum payment and the remaining balance will still result in interest rate charges.

Paying just the minimum amount simply makes sure that you don’t break the agreement with the Post Office, which could result in two things:

  • Your card getting cancelled (which can hurt your credit score),
  • And the Post Office reporting your missed payments to the credit agencies (again, hurting your credit score).

How does the Post Office credit card balance transfer work?

The Post Office also offers a period of 0% interest on balance transfers. The length of this period depends on your situation and especially your existing credit history, but it can be up to 12 months.

After 12 months, the standard interest rate takes effect. This is why it’s important to only transfer a balance if you have a clear plan to pay it before the introductory period ends.

Also, remember that balance transfers on the Post Office Classic card will incur another 2.9% balance transfer fee.

Can I use the Post Office Classic credit card abroad?

Yes, but bear in mind that you might have to pay a 2.75% foreign exchange fee every time you shop abroad and another 3% cash withdrawal fee if you use an ATM in a foreign country.

The good news is that the Post Office also offers a Travel Card. This is a prepaid, reloadable, multi-currency card not linked to your bank account.

It has a few significant advantages over the Classic credit card when used abroad:

  • No foreign exchange or other charges when you spend money abroad;
  • It works with contactless POS machines, Apple Pay, and Google Pay;
  • And it comes with an easy-to-use Post Office Travel app.

If you’re new to the UK and go back and forth often, the Post Office Travel Card seems like a much better choice than spending on your Classic credit card. The only downside is that spending on the Travel card doesn’t help build your credit score.

What is the Post Office Classic card credit limit?

The Post Office Classic credit card offers a credit limit range of £200 to £8,000, depending on many factors, from your income and how much you can afford to repay to your credit history and score.

Unlike other credit cards, however, there is no scheduled credit limit increase. This means you’ll have to keep making payments on time and hope the algorithm automatically increases your credit limit.

Another option is to request a credit limit increase, but you should not do this too often. A credit limit increase request involves you going through a new hard credit check, which can temporarily lower your credit score and make it harder to get accepted for other cards or loans. It also stays on your credit file for up to two years.

What is the minimum credit score for a Post Office Classic card?

While no minimum credit score is required for a Post Office Classic card, you should remember that a higher credit score can get you a lower APR.

In other words, if your credit score is in the “Poor” band, expect your APR to be closer to the maximum of 34.9%. If, however, your credit score is in the “Good” or even “Excellent” band, expect to receive an APR closer to the minimum listed on the Post Office website (19.9%).

It might also be possible to get the Post Office Classic card if you’re new to the UK and don’t have much credit history yet.

First, use the Post Office’s eligibility tool, QuickCheck, to verify your eligibility. It’s free and will tell you if you can get the Post Office Classic card without running a hard check on your credit file.

How can the Post Office Classic credit card help me improve my credit score?

There are a couple of things that the Post Office Classic card can do for your credit score:

  • It can help you build a history of making timely debt repayments, which is the main factor in your credit score.
  • It can increase your credit limit, again improving your credit score.

One thing you should know here: the Post Office lets you add an extra cardholder to your credit card. This is someone you allow to use a second card on your account. Usually, they’ll be your spouse or family member.

However, just because they’re an extra cardholder doesn’t mean this can improve their credit score, too. You will still be responsible for all spending and payments on your account. This means the Post Office credit account will only appear in your credit history, not theirs.

If your family members need help building their credit score from scratch, we recommend you look into safer alternatives such as specialised credit-building apps.

One such app is Wollit. Unlike a credit card, Wollit reports a monthly fixed-fee subscription as a loan repayment to credit reference agencies. It also has a 100% acceptance rate so anyone can sign up, regardless of their credit history.

You can also use Wollit alongside or even instead of a credit-building card. This is because Wollit can help you build your credit history while keeping you safe from the unexpected fees or high-interest charges that credit-building cards come with.

More importantly, you’ll get a chance to improve your credit rating and become eligible for better and cheaper credit cards in the future, as well as loans and mortgages.

Wollit, no stress, no hassle - just a clear path to better credit

Terms apply. Results may vary. Improvements to your credit score are not guaranteed. Wollit Credit Builder plans are unregulated.

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Terms apply. Results may vary. Improvements to your credit score are not guaranteed. Wollit Credit Builder plans are unregulated.