Editorial Review

HSBC Gold Review: Breathing Room From Interest and Fees

You'll get a lengthy 0% intro APR period and a forgiving policy on late payments, but you won't get any rewards.

Sara RathnerNovember 18, 2019

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Our Take

3.5

NerdWallet rating 

The Bottom Line: It's a good pick if you're financing a large purchase or looking to transfer a high-interest balance. It can also save you money on fees in general.

HSBC Gold Mastercard

on HSBC's website

Rates & Fees
Annual Fee

$0

Regular APR

12.49% - 20.49%, Variable

Intro APR

0% Introductory APR on credit card purchases and balance transfers for the first 18 months from account opening.

Recommended Credit Score

Quick FactsView rates and fees

Annual Fee
$0
Annual Fee
$0
Intro APR
0% Introductory APR on credit card purchases and balance transfers for the first 18 months from account opening.

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • No annual fee

  • 0% Introductory APR on credit card purchases and balance transfers for the first 18 months from account opening, then a variable APR of 12.49% - 20.49% will apply

  • No foreign transaction fee

Cons
  • No rewards

Alternate Pick: 0% intro APR plus rewards

Discover it® Balance Transfer

Cash back on all purchases

This card offers 0% on Purchases for 6 months and 0% on Balance Transfers for 18 months, and then the ongoing APR of 13.49% - 24.49% Variable APR. Rewards: Earn 5% cash back in rotating categories that you activate, on up to $1,500 in purchases each quarter, and 1% on everything else. Bonus: Discover will match ALL the cash back you've earned at the end of your first year, automatically. There's no signing up. And no limit to how much is matched. Annual fee: $0.

Read our review

Compare to Other Cards

Annual Fee

$0

Annual Fee

$0

Annual Fee

$0

Regular APR

12.49% - 20.49%, Variable

Rates & Fees

Regular APR

15.74% - 25.74% Variable APR

Regular APR

16.24% - 26.24% Variable APR

Intro APR

0% Introductory APR on credit card purchases and balance transfers for the first 18 months from account opening.

Intro APR

0% on Purchases and Balance Transfers for 15 months

Intro APR

0% on Purchases for 12 months and 0% on Balance Transfers for 21 months

Recommended Credit Score
Recommended Credit Score
Recommended Credit Score

Full Review

If you're looking to finance a large purchase or are trying to eliminate existing debt while avoiding interest, the HSBC Gold Mastercard® credit card could fit the bill.

The $0-annual-fee card offers a lengthy 0% intro APR period on both purchases and balance transfers, along with a reasonable balance transfer fee.

You can find similar features in several other cards, but what helps set this card apart is its forgiving policy on late payments. There are limits to those terms, however, and anyone who's hoping to earn rewards will want to look elsewhere.

HSBC Gold Mastercard® credit card: Basics

Card type: Balance transfer/0%.

Annual fee: $0.

Sign-up bonus: None.

Rewards: None.

APR: 0% Introductory APR on credit card purchases and balance transfers for the first 18 months from account opening, then a variable APR of 12.49% - 20.49% will apply.

Balance transfer fee: 4% of the amount transferred or $10, whichever is greater.

Foreign transaction fee: None.

Other benefits: Mastercard benefits such as travel accident insurance and an auto rental collision waiver.

Why you might want the HSBC Gold Mastercard® credit card

Lengthy 0% introductory APR period: The HSBC Gold Mastercard® credit card is ideal for financing a large purchase or transferring a balance from a high-interest credit card. It offers 0% Introductory APR on credit card purchases and balance transfers for the first 18 months from account opening, then a variable APR of 12.49% - 20.49% will apply.

Late fee waiver and limits on other common fees: If you happen to miss the due date for your HSBC Gold Mastercard® credit card bill, you get one mulligan per year, thanks to the card's late fee waiver. The card also doesn't charge a penalty APR. (Still, make it a habit to pay your bills on time because your credit scores can take a hit if you're 30 days behind.) You'll also pay no annual fee, no foreign transaction fee, nor any fee to add an authorized user.

Travel perks: If you're on the road (or in the sky), the HSBC Gold Mastercard® credit card includes traveler-friendly benefits such as an auto rental collision damager waiver, travel accident insurance, and discounted airport meet-and-greet services.

Why you might want a different credit card

No rewards: The HSBC Gold Mastercard® credit card lacks any kind of rewards program, so your spending won't bring you any closer to cash back or discounted travel. By comparison, the $0-annual-fee Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card has an intro APR offer: 0% on Purchases and Balance Transfers for 15 months, and then the ongoing APR of 15.74% - 25.74% Variable APR — but it also earns 1.5% cash back on purchases. It charges a slightly lower fee of 3% per balance transferred. And it has a sign-up bonus: One-time $150 cash bonus after you spend $500 on purchases within 3 months from account opening.

You can find cards with lower balance transfer fees: The HSBC Gold Mastercard® credit card charges 4% of the amount of each transfer. That's not bad, but the U.S. Bank Visa® Platinum Card  charges 3% of each amount transferred. It offers 0% on Purchases and Balance Transfers for 18 billing cycles, and then the ongoing APR of 13.99% - 24.99% Variable APR. It has a $0 annual fee. You can also consider the Amex EveryDay® Credit Card, which has a $0 annual fee and a $0 balance transfer fee on transfers requested within 60 days from opening an account. True, the promotional APR period is slightly shorter. It offers an intro 0% Intro on Purchases and Balance Transfers for 15 months, and then the ongoing APR of 14.49% - 25.49% Variable APR. But unlike the HSBC Gold Mastercard® credit card, this card earns ongoing rewards.

Other cards are even more forgiving: If you're concerned that you may consistently forget to pay your credit card bill on time, a card like the Citi Simplicity® Card - No Late Fees Ever waives all late fees and offers an even longer promotional period on balance transfers. With this card, you’ll get a 0% on Balance Transfers for 21 months and 0% on Purchases for 12 months, and then the ongoing APR of 16.24% - 26.24% Variable APR. The card charges 5% of each amount transferred. It has a $0 annual fee.

Visit NerdWallet's roundup of best credit cards to see how these options compare with the competition.

Is the HSBC Gold Mastercard® credit card right for you?

The HSBC Gold Mastercard® credit card is a good pick if you're eyeing a large purchase and need a long interest-free runway to pay it off, or if you're looking to transfer a high-interest balance and need a lot of time to whittle it down sans interest. It can also save you money on fees in general.

But you can find cards that offer lower balance transfer fees, more forgiving terms, and even rewards.

To view rates and fees of the Amex EveryDay® Credit Card, please visit this page.

Information about the Amex EveryDay® Credit Card has been collected independently by NerdWallet and has not been provided or reviewed by the issuer of this card.