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Best credit cards for 2017 Christmas shopping and January sales

What are the best credit cards for Christmas and January sales shopping this year? We look at the cards that reward you for spending or have an interest free period.


While there’s no such thing as a ‘best’ credit card (you should think about how you spend and consider your personal circumstances) we’ve taken a close look at the market and picked out what we think are some of 2017’s top performers.

With one of these credit cards you could enjoy:

  • Cashback – Get back a percentage of your spending as cash
  • 0% interest – Pay no interest on your purchases for over two years
  • Retail rewards – Earn vouchers and discounts at supermarkets

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Don’t forget, it’ll take around a week or two to get a credit card. So you will need to plan for this if you want one for Christmas shopping and the January sales.

Cashback cards

Cashback cards give you back a percentage of credit card spending as cash, which can be particularly beneficial when making large purchases (like Christmas shopping).

American Express – Highest initial cashback rate

This American Express credit card offers the highest initial rate of cashback – 5%. But this is only for the first three months and is capped at a maximum of £100 cashback.

After this, the cashback rate drops to 0.5% on “virtually all” purchases up to £5,000, and 1% if you spend more than this in year.

There’s no lengthy 0% period, so you need pay off the balance in full each month to avoid being charged an interest rate of 22.9%.

Note that you need to spend a minimum of £3,000 in a year to qualify for cashback.


Supermarket giant Asda offer a “cashback” credit card, which gives you an effective rate of 1% on all in-store, fuel and online purchases, and 0.5% on all purchases made elsewhere.

However, the cashback comes in the form of store vouchers that you can only use in Asda, so if this is where you do most of your shopping, it could be a nice way to get money back.

The card also has an interesting 0% offer, where you can enjoy 0% interest for six months on every purchase of £200 or more made at Asda’s clothing and home store,

0% purchases

With a 0% purchase card you could avoid paying interest on your card spending for over two years.

This can be a good way to spread the cost of Christmas, but be careful, you will need to at least meet the minimum monthly repayments or you could lose the 0% offer.

Sainbury’s – Longest 0% period

Sainsbury’s Bank are offering a table-topping 31 months 0% interest on new purchases, so you can effectively avoid paying anything for your card balance for almost three years.

All Sainsbury’s cards offer Nectar points, if this card isn’t the one for you, take a look at all of Sainbury’s credit cards here.

You can earn two Nectar points for every £1 you spend on Sainsbury’s shopping and fuel, and one Nectar point for every £5 you spend elsewhere. Sainsbury’s have a calculator to work out how much Nectar points you can earn and what they’re worth.

If you apply for the card before 28 December 2017, you can earn 1,000 bonus points each time you spend £35 or more on Sainsbury’s shopping with your credit card. You can get the bonus up to ten times in your first two months of having the card, so you can earn up to 10,000 points.

Aqua – 0% purchases on a credit builder card

If you have a limited credit history but still want to enjoy interest free spending, this Aqua credit building card offers 0% on purchases for the first 6 months.

It also gives you free access to your credit report (access to your full credit report and score usually costs around £15 a month). You will start off with a relatively low credit limit of £250-£1,200, but you can increase this later.

Retail reward points

Getting a rewards credit card that gives you loyalty points from a major supermarket or retailer can help take the sting out of doing the ‘big-shop’ to stock up on food for Christmas.

John Lewis

If you love shopping at high-end high-street favourite Waitrose and John Lewis, their Partnership Card could be for you.

The card offers one point for every £1 spent at John Lewis and Waitrose, or one point for every £2 if you spend on the card elsewhere; 100 points are worth £1 in John Lewis or Waitrose vouchers.

Though, it’s worth noting that with only nine months 0% interest on purchases (or 18 months 0% on balance transfers) there are much longer 0% periods available if you want a card that will help you avoid interest.


Another high-street favourite, Marks and Spencer (M&S) offer a credit card that gives reward points as you spend.

As a special offer you can get a £20 M&S reward voucher on your first spend and double reward points on all in-store purchases for the first 12 months of card ownership.

After that you’ll get one point per £1 spent in-store, and ongoing rate of one point per £5 spent elsewhere.

As a rough guide M&S state that 500 M&S reward points are worth £5 in store vouchers.

But similar to the John Lewis Partnership card it has relatively short 0% interest period for purchases, so another M&S credit card might be of interest if you’re looking to spread the cost of your shopping and still want M&S points.

Read more…

Compare credit cards

Compare all sorts of credit cards from 0% cards to rewards cards.

Compare credit cards