Great Champagne 'highest Apr' Credit Card Hunt!



  • MSE_Martin
    MSE_Martin Posts: 8,272 Money Saving Expert
    First Post First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    It's interesting about the FSA. There has been much debate on a 'rate cap' so you can't charge above a certain amount.

    There are two problems with this

    1. Short term lending which provides crucial cash-flow (if done right) would be hit

    E.g. Borrow £200 for 2 weeks at the cost of £10. Sounds reasonable -but is actually substantially more than 100% APR

    2. Rebuild credit score

    Sometimes these cards can be useful for those rebuilding their credit scores. Get one of these hideous beasts (possibly the only card available to you), use it, but pay it off in full each month, and it will help your score.
    Martin Lewis, Money Saving Expert.
    Please note, answers don't constitute financial advice, it is based on generalised journalistic research. Always ensure any decision is made with regards to your own individual circumstance.
    Don't miss out on urgent MoneySaving, get my weekly e-mail at
    Debt-Free Wannabee Official Nerd Club: (Honorary) Members number 000
  • grumbler wrote:
    the only problem here is that borrower must have clear understanding of the deal from the very beginning.

    I'm not sure how to respond to this comment without offending some people, but I'll do my best!

    I recently spent several years living in an area of limited intelligence: a typical attitude was "What would I want to get a job for? Then I'll have to pay full rent."

    Provident were rife in this area. It's very common for them to lend money (at typically 70%), where a £100 cash loan will cost £3/week for 54 weeks. Moreover, the customer can have several "clubs" running at the same time, but at some stage, the collector will insist on putting all outstanding debt (being the balance of payments remaining) onto a new club attracting a new lot of credit charges. (eg £100, paid 27 weeks £81. £81 outstanding (remember, only £100 borrowed and payments made for over six months) put on new club so £81 means total repayments of £131.22 - FOR THAT CLUB, together with all the other mid-term arrangements.) These customers often only see the weekly amount to judge if they can afford to borrow.

    Another company is Family Finance and a subsidary/sister company Family Television. Family Television are the old slot TVs where the monthly loan repayment is collected in a slot on the side of the box and the collector empties the box once a month and refunds anything over the repayment: many families see this as a gift! Naturally, if viewing has been low (unlikely), the customer has to make up the difference.

    A typical APR is 45%. I asked some people what this meant and was told "I've no idea: I just know I get xx hours for a quid and I usually get some of it back."

    Once the loan is coming to the end of its term, the collectors start the tactics: "You've got used to this money going out now, is there anything else you need -a fridge or cooker perhaps? We can just put in on your TV slot for you." Many saw this as a free gift!

    I know the onus is on the customer to be careful of what they're getting into, but if maths isn't their forté ...
  • grumbler
    grumbler Posts: 58,629 Forumite
    Name Dropper First Post Photogenic First Anniversary
    ...if maths isn't their forté ...
    You do not need to be a great mathematician to multiply £3x54. Everybody can do this simple arithmetic if he/she wants to do this. If he/she does not want, it is his/her problem, but not the Financial Services Authority’s. I think that the terms given above as an example are quite fair. It is expensive and risky way of lending that involvs collectors.

    And no, I have nothing to do with Provident or some other financial company :)
    I am sorry that I led this thread away... :o
  • amateur_saver
    amateur_saver Posts: 1,047 Forumite
    First Post First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    Credit card with 70% interest rate

    A HIGH interest credit card aimed at low-income families has come under fire from politicians and debt campaigners.

    The Vanquis card, which can charge up to 70 per cent interest and was piloted in Scotland two years ago, was rolled out across the UK yesterday.

    The card targets individuals rejected by other lenders because of previous debt problems and trawls through the files of private credit rating agency Experian to identify prime customers. The card, run by a subsidiary of top doorstep lender Provident Financial, will charge a normal rate of 49.9 per cent, but for customers in the high-risk category, interest could shoot up to 69.9 per cent - the highest ever charged by a credit card company and 15 times the Bank of England base rate.

    Haven't been 'lucky' enough to get a leaflet tho'...

    i can direct you to the website for the champers.... I'm beginning to think Martin has a share in the stuff....he he he
    ** Getting back in the swing of saving again.... **

    :T :T :T :T :T
    Trying to find the best deals to save as much as we can..........
  • lswwong
    lswwong Posts: 407 Forumite
    Damn! About 2 months ago one of these Vanquis leaflets was dropped through my letter box, though it was not addressed to me personally: just said "The Occupier". I thought of sending it to Martin for his comments but have since binned it.
  • I'm hoping to win a prize for the best misplaced post....

    DVLA do a nice 49.3% APR - this is what you pay if you opt for getting 6 months Vehicle Excise Duty instead of the 12 months flavour. Unless you are borrowing on one of the cards in this thread then it's hard to see how you can sensibly go for the 6 month option.

    Lovingly yours
  • Clariman
    Clariman Posts: 1,484 Forumite
    First Post First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    grumbler wrote:
    You do not need to be a great mathematician to multiply £3x54. Everybody can do this simple arithmetic if he/she wants to do this. If he/she does not want, it is his/her problem, but not the Financial Services Authority?s.

    You don't need to be a great mathematician, but you certainly need a basic understanding of arithmetic, a large dose of common sense, and the ability to look beyond this week's household needs, in order to see what you are paying on a loan at 49%. It may surprise you, but there are plenty of people out there - people who don't inhabit financial discussion boards - who don't have these skills. There are people who genuinely struggle from week to week and rely on doorstep lenders. This makes them easy prey to unscrupulous lenders.

    I fully accept that there are business economics which means that higher rates are a way of managing risk, but there are people out there who really do need the protection of the FSA and i think the FSA should be doing a better job of that.

    Author of the first Stoozing FAQ on the Internet and Creator of the SOA & Snowball calculators at
  • Galstonian
    Galstonian Posts: 1,292 Forumite
    I'm not certain that regulation on maximum APRs by itself would help. I don't want to try and defend the interest rates but they are designed to cover risk and still deliver profit. If the FSA set an arbitrary limit on APRs we could easily find that it would allow pricing for risk but reduce potential profit to the point. If this were the case I think you'd find that less reputable (yes, there are less reputable lenders than Vanquis etc.) getting into the market and some customers being pushed into unregulated lending. This is not what anyone wants to see.

    If the FSA do anything to protect consumers it should include raising awareness amongst people who take out these kind of cards and loans rather than simply outlawing a product which they believe they need and will search for elsewhere.
    Its not as easy as simply saying "it shouldn't be allowed".

    Anyway, I have just allowed myself to be diverted on a tangent to the main thread and am now going to ask if anyone else wants to do the same that they please take it to the "Discussion Time" board. Obviously the power of being a board guide has gone to mey head, its one rule for me and another for everyone else... ;)
  • mandi
    mandi Posts: 11,932 Forumite
    First Anniversary Combo Breaker Stoptober Survivor
    Er Hello Posted this WARNING three weeks ago!! funny thing is ,,becuse i didnt reply... Vanquis have just today sent me a second application form!! oh yes.. they dont give in easily. In the meantime ive spoken to the FSA and apparently they dont regulate ... so they put me onto the OFT who sent me a LOAD OF BOLLOKs!! by e-mail

    Still Got the Letter as proof though!!!!

    DO I WIN??
  • Crown
    Crown Posts: 1,377 Forumite
    I also received a application for the Vanquis card in the post today. I nearly had a heart attack when I saw the APR lol.

    I am amazed that they can get away with it. I tore up the application and sent it back to them in the pre paid envelope ;)

    What concerns me the amount of people who will apply and get even more into debt as they are totally unaware of how the APR works.

    Disgusting. Crooks in Suits.
    Official DFW Nerd Club - Member no. 297 - Proud To Be Dealing With My Debts :D
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