Best Credit Cards in Germany

Best Credit Cards in Germany titlecard

Are you living in Germany and considering getting a credit card? Well, credit cards aren’t commonly used in Germany; hence, there aren’t many good options available. Germans prefer to spend money that they already have without going into debt.

Nevertheless, having a credit card at your disposal can be incredibly handy. So, if you decide to get a German credit card, we picked the best deals for you in this article.

The best credit cards in Germany are:

  1. Barclays Visa card
  2. American Express PAYBACK
  3. Advanzia Mastercard Gold
  4. TF Bank Mastercard Gold 
  5. Deutschland-Kreditkarte
  6. DKB Visa Card
  7. Targobank Classic

Most of these credit cards are free and provide great benefits. Yet, you might need to go through a credit check or have a regular income before getting one.

A credit card is a convenient addition to your wallet, especially when you need to buy something urgently. Moreover, they are widely accepted, compared to regular German bank cards, e.g., Girocard.

Credit cards are particularly useful for online shopping and traveling, and to serve as a security deposit. In this article, you will learn which credit cards offer the most benefits, which fees you can expect, and how to apply for one.

Best credit cards in Germany

If you are considering getting a credit card during your stay in Germany, you should consider whether it’s a good option or whether taking a small personal loan will be a better idea. Nonetheless, here are our pics:

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Generally, there are several credit card types in Germany, that include:

  • Charge credit card: this type of card collects the amount you spent during the month and charges you after 30 days, giving you interest-free monthly credit. American Express is one of those.
  • Revolving credit card: Revolving credit cards give you a credit line, and you can decide whether you pay back as a whole or in installments. These cards might charge high-interest rates. Barclays is one of the most popular revolving credit cards in Germany.
  • Prepaid credit card: Prepaid credit cards aren’t real credit cards; because you can not borrow money from the bank; you need to have a certain amount on balance. In contrast to debit cards, prepaid cards aren’t connected to your bank account. Revolut is one example that can be used as a prepaid card but also as a classic bank account.
  • Debit credit card: Debit credit cards are connected to your bank account and charge it immediately when you spend money. You can’t borrow money with a debit card and can only use funds that are on your account.

1. Barclays Visa card

Barclays VISA card is one of the most popular credit cards in Germany. It’s a free credit card that you can use in Germany and other countries at no cost. The main advantage of this card is that you can pay and withdraw money in any currency and in any country for free. 

You can get the Barclays Visa without opening a current account with Barclays Bank.

Highlights of Barclays card:

  • VISA credit card
  • No monthly fee
  • Free worldwide cash withdrawals 
  • Free worldwide payments
  • 0% interest rate for spending under 500 EUR; otherwise, the interest rate is 18.38%
  • No fees for transactions in foreign currencies
  • Online application via video legitimation or PostIdent

Things to keep in mind:

  • Free cash withdrawals apply to amounts from 50 EUR
  • For a successful application, a good credit score is required

Read a full review on Barclays credit card.

2. American Express PAYBACK

American Express PAYBACK card is a free credit card from one of the world’s renowned providers. The payback feature allows you to collect points while spending money in all stores except gas stations.

Highlights of American Express PAYBACK card:

  • AMEX credit card
  • No monthly fee
  • Collect payback points with any purchase
  • Get double payback points at partner stores
  • Payments are free within the EURO zone
  • Online application via video legitimation or PostIdent

How much is the payback? You can earn 1 Payback loyalty point for every 2 EUR spent. 100 Payback points are worth 1 EUR.

Things to keep in mind:

  • 2% fee for payments outside the EUR zone
  • 4% commission for cash withdrawals

Consequently, an AMEX PAYBACK card isn’t the best option if you need to withdraw money regularly.

Other credit cards from American Express include:

  • Standard
  • Blue
  • Platinum
  • Gold

Read out the summary on American Express credit cards in Germany.

Can a foreigner get a credit card in Germany?

3. Advanzia Mastercard Gold

Advanzia Mastercard Gold is the perfect credit card in Germany since it’s absolutely free.

Highlights of Advanzia Mastercard Gold:

  • Mastercard credit card
  • No monthly or annual fees
  • No fees for payments in foreign currency – worldwide free payments
  • Free cash withdrawals
  • Easy application process (no PostIdent required)
  • Approval with no credit history
  • Travel insurance included
  • Apple Pay & Google Pay
  • Travel insurances included
  • Zero interest rate for up to 7 weeks
  • 24/7 customer service

Things to keep in mind:

  • Interest rate of 19,44% per month on cash withdrawals
  • No automatic deduction of the monthly bill from a bank account.

Hence, it is not the best option to take out cash.

Read our full review of Advanzia Mastercard Gold credit card.

4. TF Bank Mastercard Gold 

TF Bank is an online international bank offering services in Germany. Their Mastercard credit card is easy to open and free of monthly fees. Moreover, it’s the only card on the list with complimentary travel insurance – an essential item for frequent travelers.

You can pay with the card worldwide free of charge. Furthermore, you don’t need to open an additional account at TF Bank. It will be billed from an already existing account at your home bank. Moreover, cardholders get a 5% cashback for travel bookings or rental cars.

Highlights of TF Mastercard:

  • No annual fee
  • No fees on payments in foreign currency
  • Travel insurance included
  • Approval with no credit history
  • Real credit card without a current account
  • Quick and easy online application
  • Interest-free repayment within 51 days

Things to keep in mind:

  • 22.96% interest rate on cash withdrawals

A TF Bank Mastercard is well suited for travel thanks to its free and comprehensive travel insurance. This card is a good choice for making payments in Germany and abroad, but taking out cash isn’t a good idea.

Yet, despite all the benefits, you don’t want to sign up for TF Mastercard if you plan to withdraw money frequently.

Also read: Best virtual credit cards in Germany.

5. Deutschland-Kreditkarte

Deutschland-Kreditkarte or Germany credit card is a free credit card made in cooperation with Hanseatic bank.

This card is perfect for everyone on a low budget since it has zero fees in all categories. Particularly, frequent travelers can benefit since withdrawing money is free of charge in all parts of the world. Also, a small credit limit of 2,500 EUR per month will keep your budget under control.

Highlights of Deutschland-Kreditkarte:

  • Free Visa credit card
  • Free payments in foreign currency – worldwide free payments
  • Free worldwide cash withdrawals
  • Don’t need to open a bank account
  • Up to 15% cashback
  • Credit limit to 2,500 in the first 6 months
  • Relatively low interest rate of 16,90%
  • 24/7 customer service
  • Open online and get a credit card in a mailbox

Bonuses for new customers:

  • No interest rate in the first 3 months
  • 5% travel discount
  • Up to 15% cashback with many partners
  • Flexible repayment options

6. DKB Visa Card

DKB credit card is one of the best travel credit cards out there. Yet, it’s also suitable for someone based in Germany. There are no fees for withdrawing cash worldwide, and payments are also free of charge across the globe.

Highlights of DKB Visa Card:

  • Fee of 2,49 EUR per month
  • Free cash withdrawal worldwide at all Visa ATMs
  • Free payments in foreign currency
  • Maximal credit line is 15,000 EUR
  • Interest rate is only 6,58%
  • Open account online
  • Convenient online banking
  • Up to 20% online cash-back

Things to keep in mind:

  • Only available together with a DKB current account
  • The minimum amount for free cash withdrawal at ATMs is 50 EUR.
  • Monthly deposit of 700 EUR improves the conditions of the card.

To get a DKB credit card, you need to sign up for their free bank account first. Hence, a visa credit card will accompany a normal debit card. Both of them are free.

Furthermore, so-called active customers receive some advantages when using the credit card. An active customer is anyone with a turnover of at least 700 EUR per month.

Non-active customers must pay foreign currency fees of 2,20% on payments made not in EUR, but cash withdrawals remain free of charge worldwide.

Consequently, this card will be convenient when traveling and withdrawing cash abroad.

7. Targobank Classic

Targobank is a stable bank headquartered in Düsseldorf, with more than 4 million customers in Germany. They have 350 branches in 200 German cities. Their selection of credit cards has some decent features. Firstly, cards range from free to 5 EUR per month mark.

Targobank Classic

Targobank’s Classic Visa credit card is a free card that you can apply for online. It provides free payments and cash withdrawals.

  • No monthly or annual fees
  • Free payments in EUR
  • 4 free cash withdrawals per month
  • Fee of 3,5% for cash withdrawals abroad
  • Low interest rate of 12,83%

Things to keep in mind:

  • Cash withdrawals are free only at Targobank ATMs
  • 1,85% fee for payments in non-EUR currencies

Targobank Gold

  • Annual fee of 59 EUR
  • Free payments in EUR
  • 1,85% fee for payments in other currencies
  • 4 free cash withdrawals per month
  • Free cash withdrawals abroad
  • 1,85% fee for cash withdrawals in non-EUR currencies
  • Low interest rate of 12,83%

Are you a student in Germany? Then these credit cards might suit you better.

How do we select the best credit cards in Germany?

Person typing credit card details to laptop

When choosing the best German credit cards, we paid attention to the following points:

Price – value – performance
Annual fee
Interest rate
Signup process (+ requirements for foreigners)
Cash withdrawal
Payments in foreign currency
Starting bonuses

Top prepaid credit cards in Germany

  • Revolut
  • Bunq easy Bank
Revolutbunq easy Bank
Annual fees in the 1-st year0€2,99€
Annual fees in the 2-nd year0€2,99€
Money transfersFreeFree
Payments in EURFreeFree
Payments in the non-EUR currenciesFreeFree
Cash withdraws worldwideFree0,99€

What is important when choosing a credit card in Germany?

In order not to fall into a financial trap, you need to be careful when selecting a credit card. Pay attention, especially to these elements:


Credit cards have a variety of fees, some of which might be hidden. Here are some of the common ones:

  • Annual fee
  • Fee for cash withdrawals
  • Foreign transaction fee
  • Interest for late repayments
  • Costs for replacement cards or additional card

Cash withdrawal fee

The fees for cash withdrawals vary significantly from provider to provider. Generally, credit cards aren’t the best for cash withdrawals; you should know it. Use your standard debit card instead.

The standard fee ranges between 2% – 5% of the amount withdrawn or at least 5 EUR per withdrawal. Nonetheless, many cards mentioned in this article provide cash withdrawals free of charge.

Foreign transaction fee

To make payments in the non-EURO zone, you often will need to pay an additional commission. The fee is usually between 1% – 2%. Cards with foreign currency fees aren’t suitable for frequent travelers.

Interest rate

As a credit card user, you need to be prepared to pay an interest rate on the amount you borrow from the card. But with some providers like TF Bank, you will have 51 days to pay the money back with zero interest. Free Mastercard Gold has interest-free repayment of up to 7 weeks.

Generally, you can see all various interest rates on the market – from 6% to 23%. They mainly depend on the bank.

Credit card limit

Banks grant a credit limit based on your personal creditworthiness. Most providers will check your credit score before approving the credit card application.

Credit limits can vary significantly from a couple of hundred EUR to 15,000 EUR, like in DKB bank.

If you have reached the credit card limit before the end of a billing period, usually 4 weeks, you can no longer use it for payments or to withdraw cash. Hence, budgeting is essential when your credit limit is low.

Moreover, you should compare all credit cards on the market because the conditions differ significantly.

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