Credit cards with the most & fewest fees

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Credit cards with the most & fewest fees
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Credit card issuers are piling on more and more outrageous fees — with the average card now carrying six different types of fees.

During the month of June, CreditCards.com analyzed the credit card terms for 100 of the most widely-held cards in the U.S. The survey found that while the average card carries six different fees, some cards — including two cards offered by First Premier Bank — charge account holders 12 fees!

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Common credit card fees

While credit card fees are nothing new, there are certain types you should expect to pay, and others that you need to look out for.

Read more: Tips for avoiding credit card debt in your 20s and 30s

Most cards charge for things like late payments — 99% of cards charge for this — and the most common amount is $38, the maximum allowed for consumer cards under federal law. Some other common fees include cash advance fees (charged by 98% of cards), balance transfer fees (charged by 89% of cards) and returned payment fees (charged by 81% of cards), according to the data compiled by CreditCards.com.

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‘Oddball’ fees to avoid

And then there are the ‘oddball’ fees — the outrageous things some cards charge for that should be free. Here are a few examples and the cards that carry them.

  • Account re-opening fee: Some American Express cards charge account holders for closing an account and then re-opening it again — a cost of $25 to give them your business again.
     
  • One-time processessing fee: This is a charge for simply using your card. The First Premier Bank Credit Card and First Premier Bank Secured MasterCard both charge this one-time fee of $95 — simply for you to start using your card.
     
  • Credit limit increase fee: If you’re paying your bills on time and you’re ready for a credit limit increase, First Premier will charge you an automatic $25 fee if/when you qualify and receieve an increased credit limit. The Credit One Visa Platinum card will charge you up to $49.
     
  • Statement hard-copy fee: If you want a hard copy of your monthly statement, some cards will now charge you for it — between $5 and $10.
     
  • Pay-by-phone fee: It’s exactly what it sounds like. If you need to make a payment by phone, some cards will charge you. The Meijer Platinum MasterCard charges $15 fee for this.

When it comes to choosing a card that’s right for you, make sure to read the fine print and understand exactly what you’re getting into — including any fees you should — and should not — expect.

Read more: Time to dump your American Express?

Cards with the most & fewest fees

According to CreditCards.com, here are the cards with the most and fewest fees.

Cards with the most fees: 

  • First Premier Bank Credit Card – 12 fees
  • First Premier Bank Secured MasterCard – 12 fees
  • Credit One Visa Platinum- 9 fees
  • Fifth Third Bank Platinum MasterCard – 9 fees
  • Navy Federal Credit Union Cash Rewards – 9 fees
  • Regions Visa Platinum Rewards card – 9 fees

Cards with the fewest fees: 

  • Spark Miles Select by Capital One – 3 fees
  • First Premier Bank Secured MasterCard – 12 fees
  • Capital One Spark Cash Select for Business – 3 fees
  • Spark Classic from Capital One – 3 fees
  • ExxonMobil SmartCard from Citi – 3 fees
  • PenFed Promise Visa Card – 0 fees

Click here for more tips on credit and debit cards.

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Alex Thomas Sadler About the author:
Alex is the Managing Editor of Clark.com and host of Common Cents, a series that makes money simple. By breaking down complicated concepts, Alex shows you how to better understand your money and make smarter decisions — so you can take control of your own life and future! Learn more here.
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