Credit Card in Germany

Best Credit Card in Germany

If you’re new to Germany and are looking for the Best Free Credit Card in Germany, it may seem like a difficult task. Because paying in cash is the most common method of payment in Germany. But owning a credit card will definitely benefit you, and it is a must-have in certain situations. Do not get fooled by your German bank and get an expensive credit card! This guide compares the best free credit cards and shows what aspects you need to consider.


  • No Annual Fee
  • Extensive Insurance Plans
  • Great for Travel
  • 24.79% Interest Rate
  • No Auto Repay


  • No Annual Fee
  • Discount on Rental Cars
  • Great For Students
  • 24,69 % Interest Rate
  • No Auto Repay


  • No Annual Fee
  • Auto Pay Feature
  • Points Collection
  • No Partial Payment
  • No Travel Insurance

What you must Know

Best Free Credit Cards for Expat in Germany

Credit cards can be incredibly useful for expats in Germany as, they offer convenience and flexibility when it comes to making purchases. You can use them for everyday expenses, online shopping, and even while traveling within and outside of Germany.

The Best Free Credit Cards In Germany Compared

Here is a quick comparision of the best free credit cards in Germany that I will cover in this guide

  1. TF Bank Mastercard Gold : Probably the Best Free Credit Card in Germany as it has many Cashback programs and Free Travel Insurance. Best option for Travellers!
  2. Advanzia Gebührenfrei Mastercard : Also very easy to get, with no identity verification requirement and almost 100% approval rate! Best for students who do not have a credit history in Germany.
  3. PAYBACK American Express : Earn point when shopping or getting Fuel for your car. Uses the less common American Express network but great for Shopping!
Advanzia Bank GebührenfreiTF Bank Master Card GoldAmerican Express Payback
No Annual Fee
Cash Withdrawal FeeNo fee
(but 24.69 %
interest fee after cash withdrawal)
No fee
(but 24.79
interest fee after cash withdrawal)
4% Cash withdrawal Fee
Annual Interest Rate24.69 %24.79%No Partial Payments
No Foreign Currency Fee2%
Travel Insurance
English Support?
Apple & Google Pay
Banking app in English
Best Free Credit Cards in Germany Comparison

Why Is it worth getting a credit card in Germany?

Getting a credit card in Germany can be worth it for several reasons:

1. Convenience

Credit cards are widely accepted in Germany and can be used to pay for purchases both online and offline. This can be especially convenient when traveling abroad or making purchases from international retailers.

2. Rewards and Perks

Some credit cards offer rewards programs, such as cashback or points that can be redeemed for travel or merchandise. Additionally, some credit cards offer additional perks such as travel insurance, purchase protection, or airport lounge access.

3. Emergency Funds

A credit card can serve as an emergency fund if unexpected expenses arise, such as car repairs or medical bills. However, it’s important to use credit responsibly and only charge what can be paid off in full each month to avoid high interest charges.

4. Online Shopping

Credit cards are a popular payment method for online shopping in Germany. Many online retailers only accept credit cards, so having one can make it easier to purchase goods and services online.

5. Travel Benefits

Some credit cards offer travel benefits, such as travel insurance, rental car insurance, and baggage protection. These benefits can provide peace of mind while traveling and may help save money on travel-related expenses.

It’s worth noting that credit cards in Germany typically come with high annual fees and interest rates, so it’s important to carefully consider whether the benefits outweigh the costs. It’s also important to use credit responsibly and pay off the balance in full each month to avoid accumulating debt.

Mastercard, Visa, American Express – which is better in Germany?

Due to its higher Merchant Fees, American Express isn’t widely accepted across Germany. Mastercard and Visa on the other hand have about the same popularity throughout Germany. So if you want to decide between Mastercard, Visa and American Express you can easily choose between Mastercard or Visa.

One thing I want to add is that as an Expat, we travel to our home countries quite often. That is why you should also keep this thing in mind when selecting a Free Credit Card in Germany. Some countries have a wider Mastercard acceptance compared to Visa and vice versa.

For this reason, you should always look at the German as well as your home country when selecting your Free Credit Card in Germany.

What Are The Best Free Credit Cards In Germany?

If you’re looking for the best free credit cards available in Germany this year, here are some of our top picks:

TF Bank Mastercard Gold

TF Bank Mastercard Gold Credit Card

The TF Bank Mastercard Gold is a totally free credit card with no annual fee. If you like to travel then this is probably the Best Free Credit Card in Germany for Frequent Travelers.

TF Bank Credit Card offers Travel insurance and other additional services.

TF Bank Mastercard Gold travel insurance includes:

  1. Foreign travel health insurance
  2. cancellation insurance
  3. Trip Interruption Insurance
  4. Baggage Insurance
  5. Flight and baggage delay insurance
  6. Personal liability insurance abroad
  7. Accident insurance

The comprehensive travel insurance package applies for you and their traveling family members. When booking your trip the automatic insurance protection takes effect if you pay at least 50% of the total trip price with the TF Mastercard Gold Credit Card.

Additionally the travel cancellation insurance can extend to up to three other passengers, as long as they are traveling together for the entire period.

In addition to the Travel Insurance you can also get Cashback when you use the TF Bank Mastercard Gold Credit Card meaning that You can save money when you shop with your credit card.

Read My Complete Guide to learn more about the Cashback offers from the TF Bank Mastercard Gold Credit Card.

TF Bank Mastercard Gold Benefits:

✅ Interest-free repayment in the payment period
✅ No annual fee and foreign currency fee
✅ Travel insurance and other additional services
✅ TF Bank app and mobile payment
✅ Payment via Google Pay and Apple Pay

TF Bank Mastercard Gold Drawbacks:

⛔ 22.96 percent interest on Cash withdrawals and Partial Payments
⛔ No Autopayment Feature
⛔ German Website and Customer Service

Advanzia Bank Gebührenfrei Mastercard Gold

Advanzia Bank Gebührenfrei Mastercard Gold Credit Card

Are you an employee or international student struggling to get your first credit card in Germany? Most banks won’t give you one without a credit history, but this is where The Gebührenfrei Mastercard GOLD Credit Card is here to save the day! 

You do not need any SCHUFA or prior credit history in Germany to apply for this Free Credit Card in Germany. This is a life saver for many Students and Internationals who do not have a credit history in Germany.

The biggest advantage of the fee-free Mastercard Gold is relatively obvious: you get the credit card completely free of charge. This means that you don’t pay an annual fee either in the first year or in the following years and can therefore keep the card completely free of charge, regardless of the use of the card.

Even if you never use this credit card, there are no costs. This is extremely valuable, especially because of the other advantages that the card offers, because it makes the Advanzia credit card a very good overall package, which more than pays for itself when travelling.

Read My Complete Guide to learn more about the Advanzia Bank Gebührenfrei Mastercard Gold.

Advanzia Bank Gebührenfrei Mastercard Gold Benefits

✅ Free credit card – permanently with no annual fee
✅ Free cash withdrawals possible
✅ Free payments worldwide – no foreign transaction fee
✅ Essential travel insurance included
✅ Free credit up to seven weeks

Advanzia Bank Gebührenfrei Mastercard Gold Drawbacks

⛔ High debit interest when using the partial payment function (22,89 %)
⛔ No automatic direct debit
⛔ Calculation of debit interest on cash withdrawals (22,89 %)
⛔ Small credit limit at the beginning

PAYBACK American Express Card

PAYBACK American Express Credit Card

The Payback American Express Credit Card is definitely suitable for everyday use, as it doesn’t cost anything to keep it. The Payback American Express is particularly interesting for everyday life for another reason as well – it is one of the most attractive credit cards in Germany for daily payments.

The reason for this is that the card gives Payback points for every payment, regardless of the retailer. For every two euros in sales, one Payback point is collected. With Payback partners, there are, of course, not only points for paying with the Payback credit card but also one point for every two euros you spend. The credit card acts as a means of payment and a Payback card in one, saving you from carrying an extra card.

Overall, with the Payback credit card, you receive one point for every euro you spend with partners. This is particularly attractive because Payback points can be converted into Miles & More miles at a 1:1 ratio.

This way, you indirectly collect valuable miles with every payment, which can be worth up to seven cents. In addition to earning points for every euro, you can also regularly secure an attractive bonus for applying for the card, bringing you closer to your next reward.

PAYBACK American Express Card Benefits

✅ Free credit card without restrictions
✅ Collect points / Miles & More miles with every payment
✅ Combination of payback card and credit card
✅ Amex Offers & Purchase Protection included

PAYBACK American Express Card Drawbacks

⛔️ 2% Foreign Currency Fees (For non Euro payments)
⛔️ 4% for withdrawing money from any ATM
⛔️ Low acceptance of American Express in Germany
⛔️ Points collection limits on Petrol Stations

The Best Free Credit Card in Germany

The obvious Winner in my opinion is the TF Bank Mastercard Gold, with its high acceptance rate with Expats, many Cashback options and Free Travel Insurance.

A close second is the Advanzia Bank Gebührenfrei Mastercard Gold. All you need is a registered address in Germany to apply for this credit card. This is probably the Best Free Credit Card for Students in Germany.

What is a Credit Card?

A credit card is like a supercharged payment card that opens up a world of possibilities. Once your application is given the green light, you’re ready to rock and roll! You can use it to withdraw cash, make payments, and book stuff wherever you go, from sun-soaked beaches to bustling cities.

Here’s the cool part: with a “real” credit card, you get a mini loan each month. You’re given a specific spending limit, and you have the flexibility to pay it off all at once or over a longer period of time. It’s like having a financial safety net that you can rely on.

But remember, it’s important to use your credit card wisely and avoid getting carried away. Paying off your balance regularly keeps you in control and helps you avoid unnecessary debt. So, grab that credit card and unlock a world of convenience and financial freedom. It’s time to make your money work for you!

Revolving Credit Cards in Germany

Revolving credit card is a “real” credit card. The special feature of the revolving credit card is the installment facility. This means that the credit can be paid off in installments.

If you use the installment option, you will have to pay high interest on the outstanding amount. In some cases, the interest rate is over 20%. Therefore, you should settle the outstanding amount directly if possible.

With some credit cards you can set the amount of the installments flexibly, so that a complete settlement by direct debit is also possible.

Some revolving credit cards can also be used for credit balances, so you can also avoid high interest rates. If neither of these is possible, you will have to settle the amount due yourself by bank transfer.

Why get a Credit Card in Germany?

The revolving credit card enjoys a high level of acceptance when a deposit is to be made. Therefore, it is suitable for booking rental cars. In addition, you are granted a credit. This way you can bridge financial bottlenecks.

The biggest disadvantage of revolving cards, however, is the very high debit interest. Compared to a classic instalment loan, the interest rate is much higher. Therefore, you should build up financial reserves so that you do not have to rely on a more expensive loan. This will also prevent you from getting into debt.

Credit card with or without a checking account?

When it comes to deciding between a credit card with or without a checking account, it all boils down to whether you need another account to manage. If you’re already rocking a great checking account that you love, then a credit card without a checking account is the way to go. It saves you the hassle of transferring money to yet another account because the credit card bill is taken care of straight from your current account.

Here’s another thing to consider: some credit cards that come with a checking account may require you to have a minimum income or salary to enjoy favorable terms and conditions. So, if you don’t want to deal with those requirements, a credit card without a checking account is your ticket to simplicity and freedom.

It’s all about finding the right fit for your financial needs. So, whether you opt for a credit card with or without a checking account, make sure it aligns with your preferences and makes your life easier. Let’s keep things simple and stress-free!

TF Bank Credit Card

Benefit from savings plans from €1, trading flat rate and interest + bonus* with the PRIME+ Broker.

  • Free Credit Card
  • 0€ Foreign Currency Fee
  • High Acceptance Rate
  • Amazing Insurance Package
  • Cashback

Advanzia Gebührenfrei

Invest with just €1. Build wealth with one app for stocks, ETFs, savings plans, crypto and derivatives.

  • Free Credit Card
  • 0€ Foreign Currency Fee
  • Best for Students with No Credit History
  • Great Insurance Package
  • Discount on Rental Cars

Our mission

Use Credit Carefully

Credit Cards do give you access to Instant cash, but using credit can lead to trouble if used irresponsibly. At pfg we want all expats in Germany to be responsible and learn to use credit resposibly.

Credit Amount
Interest Rate


Frequently Asked Questions

Get answers on the most frequently asked questions about Credit Cards in Germany

No, for everyday use, most Germans use debit cards or even cash.However, for rentals and booking holidays you usually need to show a credit card, so it is not uncommon to have a credit card just in case.

It does not really matter. Both Mastercard and Visa cards are widely accepted in Germany

Yes, Students can get credit cards as well as long as you have a good Schufa score. The credit line might be a bit lower than people with full time jobs, but it will increase over time. You can Also look into Advanzia Gebührenfrei Credit Card

The obvious Winner in my opinion is the TF Bank Mastercard Gold, with its high acceptance rate with Expats, many Cashback options and Free Travel Insurance.

It is fine to have more than one free credit cards in Germany if you are not planning to live on them. Interest rates on credit cards in Germany are quite high so always be careful

Yes Expats in Germany can get a credit card. If you have no Credit Score in Germany then most banks will reject your application but the Gebührenfrei Mastercard Gold does not need SCHUFA.

Both Mastercard and Visa cards are widely accepted in Germany while American Express has very limited acceptance in Germany

It can be very difficult to get a Credit Card in Germany if you have a Bad SCHUFA (Credit Score) or if you have no Credit Score in Germany. But some providers like the Gebührenfrei Mastercard Gold do not need SCHUFA.

In most cases you need a Valid ID Document, a German Address, and a European Bank Account to get a Credit Card in Germany

Yes you can get approved for a credit card without a job in Germany. For example Gebührenfrei Mastercard Gold does not have any job requirements for its application

Most Credit Card Providers in Germany send you an invoice at the start of the month which can be paid via bank transfer

Applying for multiple Credit Cards can have a negative effect on your SCHUFA Score. Additionally unused credit cards can also have a negative effect.

This article contains Affiliate links, I may earn a commission if you use the link and make an account at no additional cost to you

Disclaimer: None of the content in this article is meant to be considered as investment advice, as I am not a financial expert and am only sharing my experience. The information is based on my own research and is only accurate at the time of posting this article but may not be accurate at the time you are reading it.