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I took out an Egg credit card about 2 years ago now. This came about from a recommendation from someone after I was looking for something cheaper than my expensive Barclaycard. After checking out the Egg website I had no doubts that this was the next credit card on my list. I say on my list as I am one of these people that won’t stick with a credit card once the introductory rates end. I like to switch from one to another to keep me from paying that horrible thing they call interest.
Any way there were many reasons for me choosing to go with Egg over other companies? The first being that even after the introductory rate had ended they still only charged 13.9% Apr, now at the time 2 years ago this was about the cheapest I could find. Please bear in mind this was 2 years ago and they now charge 14.9% but this is still very good but not the best APR on the market as I do know of cheaper ones at the minute.
The introductory offer was 0% APR for 6 months, I could live with that. So I applied for my Egg Credit card. The application was completed online and only took around 5 minutes. They ask pretty much the same sort of questions you would expect them to and this is pretty much the same for all companies that offer credit cards. For example your name, address, DOB, contact details, employment details and details of other cads you may have. If you do not wish to apply on line then you can do it over the phone by calling them instead.
Once you have done this they will set you up on their internet site with your own log on details and therefore will ask you for a password for this. You will receive details through the post of your credit card offer, but before this will give you an instant decision online and tell you your credit limit. So there is no waiting around, with the thoughts or have I or haven’t I?
If your credit limit has been set relatively low do not worry, they continuously review your limits and if they feel you deserve an increase they will give it to you. This could be maybe that when you applied you was only working part time and are now full time, or perhaps you had just moved into a new home and after time they will up this limit. Mine has stayed the same as it was set quite high to begin with and have not needed to go any where near it fortunately.
Once you have received the offer etc through the post you will need to read, date and sign the agreement and then send it back to them. Then and only then will they send out your card. This only takes a couple of days, in fact they will send you an email telling you your card is on its way.
Once you receive your card you will need to activate it before you can use it. This is purely a security measure and stops misuse of your card before you get it. Activating a card is easy! All you have to do is to call them and answer a few security questions and read them the card and security numbers direct from the card and they will then activate it. You can also do this via a link that is in the email telling you your card is on its way.
Once the card is activated, whether you do it online or over the phone, you will then be asked about any balance transfers. All you have to do is tell them the type of transfer it is, either loans, overdrafts or other credit cards. You then give them the account numbers and how much you wish to transfer (obviously this needs to be within your new credit cards credit limit). Once you have done this you have to do nothing else. Egg will take care of everything else, this process usually takes up to no more than 7 days and they will email you at every step of the way. Be careful that you do not miss any payments on your other card whilst the transfer is taking place, Egg will confirm when it has been paid.
When you set up your Egg card you give them your bank details of the current account that you wish them to set up your direct debit on to pay your bill. You can set this up to be variable amounts so that they take the minimum monthly payment each month. Or you can set it up to pay so much per month, but remember you must meet the minimum payment each month either way. Egg will then send you an email each time your statement is available to view online.
As you have just opened this account and the interest rate is currently 0% APR you obviously have no interest to pay for the first 6 months. Although at the end of this you will revert to their standard rate of 14.9%. However Egg is currently offering anniversary benefits every year in the month you opened your card. The current anniversary offer they have is that you can make a balance transfer during your anniversary month and receive 5 months 0% APR.
The full details of the rates they currently offer are:
Purchases: 0% until 1 May 2005 then 14.9% p.a Balance Transfers: 0% until 1 May 2005 then 14.9% p.a Cash Advances: 15.9% p.a
All of these rates are variable and can therefore change at any time, although Egg do have to give you notice of these changes in advance. Another great thing about the Egg card is that there is no annual fee to pay for the privilege of having an Egg card. However they do have the following charges (taken from their website):
Cash Withdrawals: 2% of amount with a minimum of £2 Copies of statements: £2 Late Payment Fee: £20 Returned Payment: £20 Over Your Credit Limit: £20
These charges are pretty much in line with other card companies that I have seen and used.
Some other benefits of having an Egg card include upto 20% Cashback at selected online retailers, although this does not apply often it is a very high cash back rate compared to other cards. For a full list of what cash back is available from which retailers you can find this on their website. However this does include £50 cashback if you buy one of their insurance policies with your card.
All purchases made on your Egg card over the value of £25 are covered during transit and this applies to all items upto £1000. You are even covered your self with their travel insurance if you pay for your fare on your Egg card.
Your account is completely managed online with 24/7 access to your account via their website. In this site you can also add all of your accounts from other organisations with the use of Egg Money Manager. With this all you do is put in your log in details into the Egg site and it saves them so that when you go into view your accounts you can view all of your accounts in one place. This includes bank accounts, credit cards, mortgages, loans and savings etc.
If however you wish to have your statement sent to you through the post then you can request this, however they charge £2 per statement. This account however is really only suitable for a person with PC and internet access as everything they send you is online and all your account information is online.
You will receive regular newsletters from Egg giving you all the information on their latest current offers. This is not just on their credit cards but on all their other services as well.
Egg offers you a great choice of products these days, not just credit cards. They now offer Savings Accounts, Insurance (car, life, house and travel, Loans, Mortgages, Egg pay (sending money) and Share Trading. As you can see from this list the product Egg offer is just growing and growing and they are all at very good rates.
They have also just launched a new credit card, the Egg Blue card. This is very similar to the Egg card itself and anyone with an Egg card is automatically qualified to receive a new blue card if you apply (if you have had the original card for over 6 months). One of the biggest advantages of the blue card is that you get 0.5% cashback on everything you buy. The APR is the same at 14.9% but is 0% on purchases until 1 April 2005 if you apply at the minute, but it does not have a 0% offer on balance transfers. Having looked through all the information on the new blue card other than what I have just said there is not really any major differences between the two cards.
You can obtain help from Egg in two ways, either by using their secure messaging on their website once you have logged in or over the phone. I have to say that I have spoken to them on many occasion either via messaging or over the phone and have always found that they cannot be more helpful, a great service each time.
Egg is certainly a company I would recommend to anyone if they are looking for any of the financial products they offer. Particularly their credit card as although I have transferred my balance else where in the mean time the Egg card is the only one I kept as usually I would close the others after making the transfer.
The actual company Egg was launched in 1998 and has grown in the financial world ever since and now has over 3.2 million customers (so just a few then). Although they are listed as their own company since June 2000 they are 79% owned by the Prudential.
For more information visit: www.egg.com or www.eggcard.com
Great review and I'm glad to see I'm not the only raving Egg at the moment. Full of lots of useful information. Money Manager is the handiest thing ever as it saves having to type in lots of passwords to check your balances with other bank accounts. Although I seem to be having problems with connection to First Direct.
chris1980 24.01.2005 16:52
Superb Andy, your review answers every question I would have about a credit card. Nice one, Chris