Grab your credit card, Black Friday beckons

A popular way to pay for online shopping at any time of the year, Aussies will have their credit cards at the ready as they look to snag a bargain during the Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales this weekend.

A shopping craze that originated in the US, Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales have since travelled across the Pacific and washed up on our shores, much to the delight of bargain hunters down under.

Discount hungry Aussies got a taste for online sales last week when Click Frenzy delivered 24 hours of retail mayhem featuring over 5000 sales from over 500 retailers, including Myer, Chemist Warehouse and Adidas.

“The appetite from Australian shoppers for these types of events is growing at a huge rate,” said Click Frenzy co-founder Grant Arnott.

RELATED: As ASIC eyes Afterpay, keep your credit card handy

We all love finding a hidden gem when shopping online, but if you’re reaching for a credit card to fund your splurge this weekend, there are a couple of things you should be aware of before you fill up your virtual basket.

Pesky foreign exchange fees

Black Friday may have originated in the US but nowadays it’s a global phenomenon and that means that you’re probably going to be perusing through a host of overseas sites, as well as Australian ones. The bad news when it comes to overseas online shopping is that the majority of credit card providers will charge you a foreign exchange fee to convert your currency on the fly.

The good news, however, is that not all do. According to the Mozo database, there are 14 credit cards from no less than 7 providers that don’t currently charge a foreign exchange commission including multiple Mozo Experts Choice Award Winner, 28 Degrees Platinum Mastercard. If your current card does have a foreign exchange fee, it is a good idea to keep that additional cost in mind according to Mozo Director, Kirsty Lamont.

“Make sure the amount you’re paying in foreign exchange fees or the cost of overseas shipping won’t offset the potential savings you’re making during these kinds of sales,” said Lamont.

Reap maximum rewards

Black Friday might be the perfect time to whip out your rewards card to earn some serious points for your purchases and some plastics, like the ANZ Rewards Travel Adventure Card, will waive the foreign exchange commission too.

But to reap maximum rewards, look into the different earn rates on your rewards. Not all cards earn the same amount of points and some will reward you with bonus rates for shopping at certain retailers or outlets. Another thing to keep in mind is that, by going via an online portal, such as Qantas’ Online Mall, you might be able to earn double the points on purchases from your rewards programs’ bonus partners.

While it might be easy to justify your purchases with a rewards card, Lamont says that Aussies need to be careful they don’t blow their budget and can pay off their purchases during the interest free period.

“Make sure you’re paying off your purchases before they start to rack up interest at the usually hefty rates. Any interest you do tally up will immediately undermine the value of your rewards points,” she said.

Need a new credit card in time for Black Friday? Check out our credit card comparison tool or take a look at our Experts Choice award winners, but be quick!

^See information about the Mozo Experts Choice Credit Card Awards

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