Exclusive – Tesco Premium Credit Card launched this morning

I was on my way to Starbucks with my little ‘un an hour ago when I got a call from Tesco Bank telling me that the Premium Credit Card was now open for applications.

I am dashing off to Heathrow in a few minutes so a full review will have to wait until Monday.

You can check out the details here.  The representative APR is 56.5% variable, including the fee, assuming a £1200 credit limit.

I am interested in your thoughts.

Tesco Premium credit card

It is not as bad as we first thought, but it is still not great:

5,000 bonus points for spending £5,000 per year IN TESCO is very tough

The ‘£50 off a Club Europe flight’ voucher could be valuable but the code expires after two months

I haven’t looked at the small print of the travel insurance to see if it is comprehensive

The lack of a sign-up bonus means you might want to wait

I will ponder it over the weekend ….

There is one bit of good news though.  The British Airways £50 discount, and the various mentions of Avios and Flying Club miles on the card website, should put to rest any thoughts that Tesco Clubcard will be withdrawing from Avios.

(Want to earn more miles and points from credit cards?  Click here to visit our dedicated airline and hotel travel credit cards page or use the ‘Credit Cards Update’ link in the menu bar at the top of the page.)

Heathrow Express raises peak times fares by 10% - and how to save money instead
'Credit Cards' page updated for June 2016 - what are the best deals this month?
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  1. WillPS says:

    I wonder if there’s a reason that they’ve changed the wording from “Platinum” to “Premium” at the last minute?

  2. I spend a lot at tesco – groceries, gift cards, wine, tesco direct – probably £10-15k per annum. I think the card makes a lot of sense with this sort of spend, particularly as the MasterCard rate for places which don’t take Amex is pretty good.

    • Really? Going for £10K spend and making it look good (your Tesco points will be a fair bit lower than this because of the rounding down rule), you might target 10,000 points + 5,000 bonus = 15,000 Tesco points. (Just looking at your Premium card points, because you would earn your additional 10,000 ‘Clubcard points’ anyway).

      15,000 points on Premium card that have cost you a focused spend at Tesco (perhaps denying you savings elsewhere, but I’ll ignore that) & the £150 card fee, you get travel insurance included in that £150 which may carry a value for you but I’ll assume the insurance is a ‘nice to have’ but otherwise valueless.

      You pay £150, you get 15,000 Clubcard points = 36,000 Avios = £360 @ 1p (many would give a harsher valuation but we’ll stick with 1p).

      Your net ‘profit’ for focusing £10,000 of spend through Tesco Premium card is £360 minus £150 = +£210.

      If you had used your basic free [£1 = 1 MR point] Amex card instead, you’d have earned 10,000 MR points (=£100) so you might think you’re doing OK with the Tesco card. £110 better?

      However, by doing the simplest of churns, ie 2 x Gold cards (‘his & hers’) per annum, with the same spend to hit bonus targets, you’d have earned an extra 2x 9,000 (referrer) + 2x 22,000 MR points = 62,000 MR points (= £620).

      Suddenly the Tesco Premium card doesn’t look so good.

      Perhaps you are a big spender and could do the Tesco Premium card spend AND the churning. Fine.

      But maybe you have a 2 point Amex card (such as my BMI Diamond Club card or the Lloyds 2 point card [first 6 months]).

      My £10,000 spend in Tesco gets me 20,000 MR points (= £200) vs your £210 ‘profit’. Nothing in it.

      Except I am free to shop wherever I like (that takes Amex) and not ‘tied into’ spending £200 a week at Tesco.

      I guess the arguments could be made about the insurance having a real value etc, but – without a decent starting bonus (7,500-10,000 Tesco clubcard points) – the Premium card is a ‘miss’ for me, a complete non-starter given the spend you need to send Tesco’s way and what looks like fairly paltry rewards.

      • Genghis says:

        Good arguments Harry

      • Hard to argue with a genuine 3x, eg Eurotunnel.

        If there were a PFS (petrol/ diesel) near us, that would help change my mind – there isn’t.

        Main exclusions unfortunately include Paypoint:
        [7.Points will not be awarded for non-qualifying products, including tobacco or tobacco related products, lottery, stamps, prescription medicines, infant formulae milk, Tesco Gift Cards, saving stamps, in store concessions, Paypoint payments or for purchases of some Tesco Bank products. Other products may also be excluded from the scheme at the discretion of Tesco.]

        But most giftcards are allowed.