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Best Credit Cards for Beginners in the Philippines: What to Select

Last updated: June 11, 2024
Written by: Digido Financial Writers Team | Reviewed by: Anna Kireeva

Key takeaways:

  • Credit cards are available to all Filipino citizens and permanent resident aliens.
  • To get a credit card, you must have a regular income of at least Php 15,000.
  • You can apply for a credit card online or by visiting a bank office.
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Best credit card for beginners Philippines

A credit card is an indispensable part of modern life. However, some Filipinos are wary of this banking product for fear of being held hostage to constant payments and ruining their credit rating. There is no need to be wary of a credit card, the main thing is to choose and use it correctly. In this article, we tell you which credit card is most suitable for beginners and help you choose the best one.

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How to Choose the Best Credit Cards for Beginners

You should not take the first credit card offered to you, especially if you have not yet had experience of interacting with them. Weigh the pros and cons, study the terms and conditions of the bank agreement and only then make a decision. Here’s something else you should consider before you become a credit card holder.

Minimum Payment

Firstly, let’s understand what is included in the concept of minimum payment. For the bank, it is the smallest amount that the client is obliged to pay each month. Paying this money regularly will allow you to maintain a good credit rating and avoid late fees. Almost all banks in the Philippines have a minimum monthly credit card payment of 3–10% of the amount borrowed.

This will allow you to calculate how much of your earnings will go towards paying off your debt. The lower the minimum payment amount, the more favorable it is. Take this into account when studying the terms and conditions of the agreement.

Fees and Additional Charges

There are two types of credit cards: with a service fee and free. Of course, the second option is much better, because it allows you to save on regular payments to the bank. However, sometimes in the terms and conditions of the agreement information about additional fees and commissions is written in very small print at the very bottom of the page. Learn it! The bank doesn’t want to cheat you, it just doesn’t want you to know about the additional fees.

Other types of additional fees can be credit card cash withdrawal fees, card-to-card transfer fees, and more. The more of these fees, the more expensive the card will cost you.

Low Annual Fee

Sometimes it happens like this: the credit card terms are very favorable for you, but the bank asks for money for annual maintenance. You should not refuse an attractive offer. Just make sure that the annual payment is not too high. To do this, compare the terms of your chosen banking product with others, at the same bank or another. If the annual service is inexpensive, get a card.

Low Credit Card Fees

We have already told you that banks charge fees for processing credit card payments: card-to-card transfers, cash withdrawals from ATMs, and more. Usually it is a small percentage of the amount used, but you don’t always want to part with it.

To pay less to the bank for servicing, look for a credit card that provides these services quite cheaply or even free of charge. Often financial organizations offer a free grace period for first-time users, so take advantage of this to reduce the cost of maintaining your credit card.

Credit card for beginners Philippines

Interest Rate

This is one of the most important parameters when choosing a card. Remember, when you borrow money from the bank, you have to pay it back with interest. The higher they are, the more expensive the loan will be. You will pay interest on the amount you take out of the credit card. Until you pay it off in full, you will be charged interest. For those who take a credit card for the first time, banks often offer favorable terms with low interest rates.

However, sometimes they are valid for a limited time (for example, for a year), and then they increase. When comparing conditions in different financial institutions, take this fact into account and do not be afraid to ask questions to bank employees. It is good for them to get you as a client, and it is great for you to get a low interest rate on the card.

Late Payment and Grace Period

If you are late with your monthly repayments, the bank will charge you an additional fee or fine. Their amount may vary from one financial organization to another. However, this is not the most unpleasant thing that a debtor can expect. Missing the deadline for payment will badly affect his credit rating. This means that in the future banks will refuse to lend him money or offer him money at inflated interest rates.

Remember this and never miss a mandatory payment. Credit cards have grace periods — this is the time that is given to repay the payment even after the deadline. The grace period and late payment fees are important terms and conditions that you should be aware of before applying for a credit card.

Rewards and Perks

Try to find a credit card that offers a rewards programme. These can be cashbacks for purchases, bonuses credited to the card, offers from the bank’s partners to purchase certain goods or pay for services. Choose what you use most often. For example, if you often fill up your car with petrol, choose a card that offers cashbacks or bonuses for paying with it at a petrol station.

Installment Payment Option

Sometimes banks allow their clients to pay for credit card purchases in installments without interest, i.e. in equal installments over several months. This is usually the way to pay for goods bought from the bank’s partner brands. Interest-free installments are very beneficial because they allow you not to overpay for the goods, but to pay only for their real value. We advise you to look for a card that offers this service.

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Virtual Card

Virtual cards have become hugely popular in recent times. To get a digital version of a physical credit card, you don’t need to go to the bank, just install the bank’s app. It is especially convenient to pay for online purchases with it. It cannot be stolen from your wallet or forgotten at an ATM. Those who are afraid that cybercriminals will get the money from the virtual card can install additional protection, for example, in the form of an SMS code that is sent to you every time you are about to make a payment.

Security Features

The safety of your money depends on how secure your credit card is when you use it. Banks offer different ways to secure the funds on your card. For example, you can set a limit on the amount over which you cannot transfer or withdraw money from the card. Another important security feature, which is now available for credit cards of Visa and Mastercard payment systems, is the zero liability policy. This means that if fraudsters make payments from your account, you will not be liable for them and will not pay for them. Study all the security conditions, check them with the bank employee and, if necessary, ask him/her to help you set them up.

Learn more: How to Apply for
a Credit Card Amnesty Program in the Philippines

10 Best Credit Cards for Beginners in the Philippines

Banks in the Philippines offer many different credit cards to their new customers. With so many different credit cards available, it’s easy for a newcomer to get confused. To prevent this from happening, here are the top ten credit cards that are great for newcomers.

1. Metrobank Titanium Mastercard

Metrobank Titanium Mastercard for beginners

This credit card will be a good choice for a newcomer. For every online and offline purchase, as well as every visit to a cafe or restaurant, the bank will award you 2 bonus points. You will get 1 point each when you spend Php 20. These points can be used to pay for goods and services at the bank’s partner companies.

Other terms and conditions of the Metrobank Titanium Mastercard Credit Card:

  • Annual interest rate — 3%.
  • Card Maintenance — Php 2,500.

You will have to pay Php 200 for each cash withdrawal from an ATM or bank branch. Those who miss the deadline for payment will face a Php 1,000 penalty.

Any Filipino citizen over the age of 18 can get the credit card. His monthly income must be at least Php 15,000 if he already has a credit card from any bank, or Php 29,166 if he is new. The income is required to be verified by a work certificate or ITR. A valid government-issued document with a photo and signature will also need to be submitted to the bank.

2. UnionBank Rewards Credit Card

UnionBank Rewards Credit Card for beginners

A great credit card for those who like to shop or often dine out at restaurants. After all, for every Php 30 spent, the bank will credit you 1 point, and for a dinner or a purchase in a shop – another 3 points. Detailed terms and conditions can be found on the UnionBank website or at a bank branch.

The annual maintenance of the card will cost Php 2,500. However, if you manage to apply before 30 June 2024, you will get free lifetime service.

There are other terms and conditions as well:

  • The annual interest rate for using money from the card is 3%.
  • For cash withdrawal, you will have to pay Php 200 for each transaction.
  • For late payment, the bank will impose a fine of Php 1,500.

Requirements to get the card:

  • Monthly income — minimum Php 15,000.
  • Age — 21 years and above.

You must also provide a valid signed and photo ID and proof of income.

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3. Petron BPI Card

Petron BPI Card for beginners

One of the main advantages of the card is a 3% fuel discount. And for newcomers to credit cards, the bank provides a free fuel voucher for Php 200. In addition, Petron BPI Card holders enjoy flexible installment payment terms at the financial institution’s partner shops.

In the first year, card maintenance is absolutely free, but from the second year onwards, you will have to pay Php 1,550 annually. The interest rate on the card is standard — 3%. Cash withdrawal is charged Php 200 for each transaction. For late payment, you will have to pay Php 850 or the minimum amount that was specified in the agreement.

Requirements to get the card:

  • Age — 21 years and above.
  • Income — from Php 15,000 per month.
  • Income proof document.
  • Valid ID card with signature and photo.

4. BPI Rewards Card

BPI Rewards Card for beginners

A credit card with lots of bonuses and benefits. For example, 1 point is awarded for every Php 35 spent. There are year-round discounts in the bank’s partner shops. If necessary, you can take advantage of a flexible installment payment system for up to 36 months.

Terms of use of the card:

  • Annual interest rate — 3%.
  • Card maintenance — first year free of charge, then Php 1550.
  • Cash withdrawal — Php 200 per transaction.
  • Overdue payment — minimum amount due, as per the agreement, or Php 850.

Any Filipino over 21 years old with a minimum monthly income of Php 15,000 can get the card. A valid ID (such as passport or driver’s license) and proof of income must be presented to the bank.

5. BPI Edge Card

BPI Edge Card for beginners

For every Php 50 spent, the holder of this credit card will receive 1 bonus point. In addition, holders have access to various installment payment terms at the bank’s partner shops.

Card terms and conditions:

  • Interest rate — 3% per annum.
  • Maintenance — free of charge for the first year, then Php 110.
  • Cash withdrawal — Php 200 per transaction.
  • Late payment fee — minimum amount payable or Php 850 (the bank will charge the lower amount).

Bank customer requirements:

  • Income — from Php 15,000 per month.
  • Age — from 21 years old.
  • Income verification document.
  • Passport, driving license or other valid ID.

6. AUB Easy Mastercard

AUB Easy Mastercard for beginners

The card is convenient due to its flexible terms and conditions — its owner can set the minimum payment amount, payment date and frequency of payments himself. And for every Php 50 spent, he/she will receive 1 bonus point.

At the same time, the card will cost the bank’s client absolutely free of charge. It has no annual service fee. For late payment you will have to pay the minimum amount payable, Php 1000 (for monthly payment), Php 500 (for semi-annual payment) and Php 250 (for weekly payment).

It’s true that getting such a lucrative card is not easy. Here are the requirements for the borrower:

  • Income — from Php 50,000 per month.
  • Age — from 21 to 65 years old.
  • At least one year of permanent employment.
  • Income confirmation.
  • Identity document or labor certificate.
  • Email address.
  • Mobile phone number.

Learn more:
AUB Credit Card Online: Easy Application in 5 Steps
BDO Credit Card Guide: Types of Credit Cards and Application Requirements
What You Need to Know about RCBC Credit Cards

7. BDO ShopMore Mastercard

BDO ShopMore Mastercard for beginners

An excellent card for those who like to make purchases. At the first purchase, the cardholder will immediately receive 250 welcome bonuses. Thereafter, the bank will award 2 points for each purchase.

The card offers an interest-free installment programme in more than 20,000 shops across the country and for online purchases on the websites of the bank’s partners.

The card can be used free of charge for the first year, after which Php 150 will be charged monthly for maintenance. The interest rate on the card is 3% per annum. Cash withdrawals will cost Php 200 per transaction. For late payment, the bank will charge a fine equal to the minimum payment amount.

To become a cardholder, one must fulfill a number of requirements:

  • Age — between 21 and 65 years old.
  • An applicant must be a Filipino citizen or a foreigner permanently residing in the Philippines.
  • Minimum monthly income of Php 15,000.
  • Valid photo and signature ID.
  • Proof of income.

8. RCBC Flex Visa

RCBC Flex Visa for beginners

Cardholders can choose the categories of expenses for which they will be awarded increased points (transport, travel, clothing, food). Free installments on purchases for up to 36 months and free travel insurance are also available. Traveling enthusiasts will love that the card gives them free lounge access for business class passengers.

Any resident of the Philippines aged 21 to 65 years old with a minimum monthly income of Php 15,000 can get the RCBC Flex Visa. Bank representatives will also need to review the customer’s credentials and income statements.

Credit card terms and conditions:

  • Annual interest rate — 3%.
  • Cash withdrawal — Php 200.
  • Card maintenance — free for the first year, then Php 1500 per year.
  • Penalty for late payment — Php 850 or minimum payment amount.

9. EastWest Privilege Classic MasterCard

EastWest Privilege Classic MasterCard for beginners

Basic credit card for beginners. The bank will award 1 bonus point for every Php 100 spent. The cardholder can also take advantage of regular discounts and special offers in shopping centers with which the financial institution cooperates.

Card terms and conditions:

  • Service fee — Php 1500 per year.
  • Interest rate — 3% per annum.
  • Cash withdrawal — Php 200 per transaction.

The card is issued to any citizen of the Philippines over 21 years of age with an income of Php 15,000 per month. A valid government-issued ID, such as a driver’s license or passport, and proof of income must also be attached to the credit card application.

10. Chinabank World MasterCard

Chinabank World MasterCard for beginners

A great card for motorists. The card holder gets a 5% discount when refueling at any local petrol station. Those who love traveling will also like the card. Credit card holders have access to concierge services at more than 3,800 hotels around the world, as well as additional travel accident insurance. And for every Php 30 spent, the bank will award 1 bonus bank.

Any Filipino citizen or foreigner permanently residing and working in the country can get the card. His or her income must be at least Php 250,000 per year.

How to Get a Credit Card for the First Time

You can apply for a credit card either in person at a bank branch or online on the financial institution’s website or mobile app.
When applying for a credit card, you must comply with the following requirements:

  1. Submit a completed application form. There you must provide your preferred credit card, your personal information, contact details, employment details, financial information (income amount). The application can be submitted either in printed form or electronically. It all depends on whether you get a credit card through an online application or at a bank branch.
  2. Show an identity document. You need to show it in person or scan it on the website or app. It must be a valid ID document with a photo, such as a passport or driving license.
  3. Proof of income. To do this, you will need to provide documents detailing your income — pay slips, bank statements and more. You can get them from your place of work or from the bank where you have a deposit.


It takes from a few minutes to a few days for the application to be considered. In any case, bank representatives will contact you to let you know whether you have been approved for a credit card or not.

Learn more:
Eastwest Credit Card Guide in the Philippines
How to Apply for BPI Credit Card
Metrobank Credit Card Overview: Choosing the Right Credit Card for your Needs

Requirements for Credit Card for Beginners in the Philippines

Those who get a credit card for the first time are subjected to a strict check by the bank. After all, such a person does not yet have a credit rating, by which the financial organization can get an idea of the future borrower.
In order for the bank to accurately approve your credit card application, you must meet a number of requirements:

  • Age. The future borrower must be between 21  and 65 years old.
  • Citizenship. To get a credit card, you must be a citizen of the Philippines. If you are a citizen of another country, you will only be issued a card if you have lived in the Philippines for at least two years.
  • Income. It is favorable for the bank to give a credit card to a person who has a regular source of income, i.e. has been working at the same place for a long time. The size of the salary also matters. Usually, the minimum requirement for the salary you receive is Php 15,000. But the higher your salary, the more desirable a client you will be to the bank.
  • Availability of deposit in the bank. If you have a bank account, it will be a positive thing for the financial institution. It will see that you are funding your account, which means that you will be able to pay your credit card debt without delay. It is optimal to have an account opened at least six months ago that has at least Php 20,000 in it.

If you meet all of the above requirements, you are guaranteed to get a credit card on suitable terms. But even if you don’t have something that matches, try applying for a credit card anyway. It may be preferable for the bank to have you as its client.

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Many Filipinos want a credit card to use as a safety net for everyday expenses. Fortunately, it is now easy to get one, even for first-time users, and attractive terms and conditions and additional cashback and bonuses help make owning a credit card worthwhile for the family budget.


  • What is the easiest credit card to get for beginners?
    There are many credit cards suitable for beginners, for example, Metrobank Titanium Mastercard, Petron BPI Card, AUB Easy Mastercard, and more. They have understandable service conditions, low interest rates, and minimum payments, which is usually important for inexperienced users.
  • How does a credit card differ from a debit card?
    A debit card is usually used for payroll or other payments (pensions, benefits). This is where your personal money is kept. A credit card is the bank's money that you can use, but you have to pay it back with interest.
  • If I have been refused a credit card from one bank, can I apply for another?
    Of course, you can apply to more than one bank until you get a credit card.
  • How to start a credit card for beginners?
    To start a credit card, you should apply to the selected bank and study its requirements to the cardholders. If you meet these requirements and find them acceptable to you, apply for the card in person at a bank branch or online on its website or mobile app.
  • How do I choose the right credit card?
    When choosing the best credit card, take into account a number of requirements, which we told you about in the article: the size of the interest rate, annual service fees, grace period and much more.
  • What happens if I miss a monthly credit card payment?
    You will have to pay a penalty or commission for late payment. Try to avoid this to avoid ruining your credit rating.
  • Where can I make a credit card payment?
    There are many ways to make a monthly payment: via mobile application, bank's website, ATM, in person at a bank branch. You will be told more about other ways by an employee of the bank where you got your credit card. You can also read about them in the terms and conditions of the agreement.
  • What is the minimum money in a credit card?
    The minimum payment on your card is usually calculated as either a fixed percentage of your card balance or the percentage plus the cost of interest and fees. Depending on the card issuer and the details of the agreement, either of these methods can be used to calculate your minimum payments.
Disclaimer and Editor’s note


Digido Financial Writers Team is a team of experts in the field of finance and credit, specializing in writing articles for Digido blogs.
Anna Kireeva
Author pages:
Anna is a marketing communications professional who specializes in digital marketing strategies and long-form content.
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