Update: The Saga credit card is no longer open to new applications.
The Saga Platinum credit card offers travel savings to people over 50 years of age, such as no fees on foreign transactions, 0% interest on cash (subject to conditions) and discounts on Saga holiday bookings. Saga gives cardholders an interest-free grace period on cash withdrawals, so long as the full balance is paid in full by the next payment due date. There is a 2% fee on cash withdrawals (£2 minimum).
Saga Platinum Credit Card Review
The Saga Platinum card can create good value for Over 50s travellers, in particular those who travel with Saga holidays. Using the card to book a Saga holiday, cardholders save 50% on the booking fee, paying 1% instead of the usual 2%. Purchasing goods or services aboard a Saga cruise with this card entitles you to a 5% discount. Also, many Saga resorts and hotels also offer discounts to cardholders.
Purchases made in another currency using the card will not incur any foreign transactions fees. Choose to pay in the local currency and Visa will handle the exchange rate for you. You'll only pay for the goods and services you buy, with no added fees.
Cash withdrawals from ATMs are treated differently, however. For these, you will incur a 2% fee (£2 minimum) for each transaction. In addition to withdrawal fees, you may incur interest charges—but by settling the balance in full by the payment date, you will not be charged any interest on ATM withdrawals (a grace period).
When taking out travel cash abroad, it makes most economic sense to withdraw at least £100 at a time due to the £2 minimum cash withdrawal fee. You can see how this works in the following table, which shows the cash fee across different cash withdrawal amounts:
|Non-Sterling Cash Withdrawal, equivalent to||Saga Platinum 2% Cash Withdrawal Fee (£2 min)|
Bottom Line: The Saga Platinum Credit Card offers a good selection of travel features to Over 50s, such as savings on Saga Holidays, no foreign transaction fees and a grace period on interest for cash withdrawals.
Saga Platinum Benefits & Features
|Saga Platinum Credit Card Features|
|Initial Credit Limit||£250 - £500|
|0% on Purchases||up to 9 months|
|0% on Balance Transfers||for 9 months from account opening (3% balance transfer fee)|
Who is Eligible for the Saga Platinum Card?
Saga is a company that provides products and services such as holidays, insurance, advice, credit cards, etc. to Over 50s in the UK. In order to take advantage of these features, you must meet the following criteria:
- You're 50 or over
- You have a regular income over £12,000 a year
- You have a good credit history (multiple credit cards may affect this)
- You have a permanent UK address and bank account (Including Channel Islands and Isle of Man)
What is the Best Card for Travel Money?
Most travel cards won’t charge fees for non-sterling purchases abroad, for example when you’re paying for dinner or in a shop with your credit card. Cash is another matter—most often you'll pay either a withdrawal fee or interest immediately on cash withdrawals, or both. In order to understand the charges involved, we calculated the interest and fees due from three travel cards, for £500 worth of cash withdrawals in a foreign currency. For the sake of simplicity, we assume the cash withdrawal balance is paid off in 30 days, by the next payment due date.
How Does the Saga Platinum Travel Credit Card Compare Against Other Credit Cards?
In order to decide if the Saga Platinum card is for you, it’s best to compare it against the closest competitors. Below we discuss the differences between the Saga Platinum card and some other travel credit cards, so you can decide which is best for you. As with most cards, you'll save money by getting online to pay back your cash withdrawals as soon as possible, even when you're away.
Saga Platinum Card vs Creation Everyday Card
The Creation Everyday Credit Card is arguably one of the best travel cards, since it charges no fees on cash withdrawals or transaction in a foreign currency plus it sports the lowest interest rate on cash withdrawals. This is important because cash transactions start accruing interest immediately. As with most cards, you'll save money by getting online to pay back your cash withdrawals as soon as possible, even when you're away.
Quick Takeaway: Since it doesn't charge a fee when you use an ATM abroad, the Creation Everyday card is likely to save you more money on overseas cash withdrawals than the Saga card. In addition, the interest rate for cash withdrawals is lower on the Creation card, which can make a difference if you won't pay off your balance right away. Unless you can find value in the Saga holiday discounts, the Creation card may be better for you. It all depends on your personal preferences.
Saga Platinum Card vs Barclaycard Platinum Travel Card
The Barclaycard Platinum Travel card is another solid card for use overseas, because it currently charges no fees on foreign ATM withdrawals or card transactions. However, keep in mind that its current promotion of no fees on foreign transactions ends in August 2022 (it was just extended from 2018 to 2022, so it may be extended again in 2022). The defining feature of the Barclaycard travel card is that you won't incur any interest on cash withdrawals IF you pay off your balance in full and on time.
Quick Takeaway: Both the Barclaycard and the Saga card can save you money by not charging interest on cash withdrawals, so long as you pay of your full balance by the time it's due. Saga is clearly a better option if you can take advantage of the Saga travel discounts.
Saga Platinum Card vs Halifax Clarity Card
The Halifax Clarity card is another of the best credit cards for use abroad, as it charges no fees on non-sterling ATM cash withdrawals and credit card transactions made overseas. The interest rate charged on cash withdrawals (important because ATM transactions start accruing interest right away on this card) is lower than average at 18.9%.
Quick Takeaway: Both the Saga Platinum card and the Halifax Clarity card are very good options if you're looking for a travel card to use overseas. The Saga Platinum does sport a lower interest rate on cash withdrawals, and the possibility of paying no interest at all on those withdrawals, but charges a fee each time you use the ATM. Would you rather have relief from paying a fee or paying interest on your cash withdrawals?