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Lenders hike rates on 21 different credit cards as borrowing soars

Lenders hike rates on 21 different credit cards after borrowing soared 40% in 2019

Lenders hiked rates on 21 different credit cards last year.

It comes as Britain’s debt binge deepens — with figures last month showing credit card borrowing had surged by 40 per cent and the average family now owes £12,800 on credit cards, loans and car finance.

Credit card firms, including Barclaycard, Virgin Money, Halifax and Lloyds, all increased interest rates on purchases in 2019 — helping to bring the average rate to a record high of 25.1 per cent.

Rates hike: Figures last month show credit card borrowing surged by 40 per cent in 2019 with the average family now owing £12,800 on credit cards, loans and car finance

British Airways American Express Premium Plus has the highest rate, with a 76 per cent annual percentage rate, including a £195 admin fee.

Setting the fee aside, it is the equivalent of 22.9 per cent.

And the highest rate for a card without an admin fee is Vanquis Bank Origin Visa, which charges 59.9 per cent. This is a credit repair card, as it can help users rebuild their credit score.

The most costly standard card, with no fee or reward scheme, is the HSBC Classic Credit Card Visa, with a rate of 29.9 per cent.

Meanwhile, the number of interest-free balance transfer cards is at a record low. There are just 76 cards that allow customers to pay no interest for a limited period, down from 122 three years ago, according to data analysts Moneyfacts.

Rachel Springall at Moneyfacts says: ‘Credit card interest is on the rise and this is bad news for consumers.

‘They must be careful not to use credit cards as a crutch for their debt, and should seek help from a debt advice charity if struggling.’