This is our review of the new Tesco Clubcard Plus credit card. Does it have anything new to offer?
Last November, Tesco launched its new subscription-based Clubcard Plus proposition. The idea is that, for a monthly fee of £7.99, you get a range of benefits on Tesco products.
Here is what you get for your money:
10% off two monthly shops, up to £200 each (INSTORE ONLY)
10% off F&F, Fred & Flo, Go Cook, Fox & Ivy, Tesco Pet and Carousel brands all year round
Double data on your Tesco mobile contract
Exclusive access to a Tesco Bank card with 0% foreign transaction fees
These are on top of the usual benefits you’d get from a ‘standard’ Clubcard, including points earning and spending.
The response to date from the public seems to have been muted, to say the least.
Whether these benefits are worth the £7.99 a month you are paying depends on your personal shopping habits. If you spend £100 on groceries every fortnight in a single shop, you would save £20 per month. That would mean, disregarding all the other benefits, that you were saving £12 a month.
The problem is that many of us are moving away from big weekly or monthly shops, choosing to nip around to the local shop more often to buy fresh produce. There is no simple answer, so you will have to work out yourself if you will save any money upgrading yourself to Clubcard Plus.
The inability to claim the discount on deliveries is also odd.
Is the Tesco Clubcard Plus credit card any good?
Whilst Clubcard Plus launched in November, the credit card only launched this month. It looks like this:
Here is a summary of the benefits:
No annual fee
No foreign exchange fees
0% interest on purchases for 12, 15 or 18 months depending on status
Earn 1 Clubcard point for every £8 you spend (1 per £4 in Tesco)
Representative interest rate on purchases 19.9% variable
There is NO sign-up bonus.
On the face of it, these benefits are not bad. The problem is this – they are nowhere good enough, on their own, to justify paying £7.99 per month for Clubcard Plus.
I would go further, in fact, and say that this credit card should play no part in your decision on whether to get Clubcard Plus or not.
The Clubcard earning rate on this card is the same as the rate on the free Tesco credit card. At 0.125 Clubcard points per £1, you would get 0.3 Avios or 0.312 Virgin Flying Club miles per £1. It’s not great, but the ability to use your vouchers for other Clubcard deals if you change your mind about Avios or Virgin miles is a strong plus point.
However, if you want a Tesco credit card, you can get the free one which has the same earning rate – there is no need to join Clubcard Plus.
Similarly, there are no shortage of free credit cards offering 0% foreign exchange fees.
There is one genuine benefit. As well as 0% FX fees, you will also earn Clubcard points on your foreign spend. This means that it is the only personal credit card which lets you earn Avios on foreign spend whilst paying 0% FX fees. The Avios rate is so low, however, that you could never justify the £7.99 fee just for this.
Tesco Clubcard Plus is a bit of a missed opportunity and, for Tesco, possibly a mistake.
If you spend £80 or more across no more than two in-store shopping trips per month, it makes sense to join – but does it make sense for Tesco to give you a big discount, whilst also alienating online customers?
For everyone else, the additional benefits – such as this credit card – are so weak that signing up makes no sense. This isn’t Amazon Prime, by a long way
If you have got Clubcard Plus already and spend a lot of money outside the UK, it may be worth adding this card in order to earn Avios whilst racking up 0% FX fees. Assuming you already have a 0% FX fees card without rewards, however, I doubt the benefits make it worth adding yet another card to your life. If you had £5,000 of foreign spend per year you would earn just 1,500 Avios, which is hardly worth the effort of applying.
You can apply for the card on the Tesco Bank website here.
PS. If you missed it, you should take a look at our recent article on 10 good reasons to get the standard Tesco Clubcard Mastercard credit card.