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All the advantages and disadvantages of the Hanseatic Bank GenialCard

The Hanseatic Bank GenialCard is a free credit card that is ideal for travel and everyday life. There is just as little charge for withdrawals as for foreign currencies - this is perhaps the best free credit card in Germany. We show you exactly why this is so on this page!

Hanseatic Bank GenialCard

  • Free Credit card - permanently with no annual fee
  • Free payments worldwide
  • Free cash withdrawals worldwide
  • Simple Billing via an existing current account
The best free credit card for everyone with full repayment flexibility

Unlike, for example, the DKB credit card or the Santander 1plus Visa Card, against which the GenialCard has to compete in a credit card comparison, the GenialCard is very little known in Germany. This is not only due to the services, but also to the fact that the card is issued by the lesser-known, but just as serious, Hanseatic Bank. This only offers two of its own credit cards, one of which is the GenialCard. Nevertheless, the Hanseatic Bank works with Apple Pay, which is very convenient. In our detailed test, we took a close look at the card and show you why the application is worthwhile for almost everyone!

Table of Contents

What advantages does the GenialCard offer?

The GenialCard of the Hanseatic Bank has one decisive advantage above all: It is a completely free credit card. This applies both in the first year and in all subsequent years. In contrast to the American Express Green Card, for example, you don't have to take a look at your sales from the second year on. A certain number of transactions is also not necessary. Rather, the credit card is actually completely free of charge without any restrictions.

Especially those who currently have a credit card at a branch bank rarely make a mistake with the GenialCard. Compared to standard cards from branch banks, you can expect comparable services, only without an annual fee. Of course, the Hanseatic Bank also advertises a few other additional services that we have put under the microscope for you. The following services are particularly emphasized:

  • free withdrawals at home and abroad
  • free payments in foreign currencies
  • no account change required
  • additional cashback from online retailers
  • additional cashback for booking a trip
  • no interest in the first three months (when using the installment option)

The fact that no account change is required speaks in favor of the GenialCard. This is also the case with many other free credit cards, so that this is not the only reason why you should generally opt for the credit card from Hanseatic Bank. The billing still works according to a simple pattern. You simply enter your bank account details, after applying for payment by direct debit, you can lean back and relax. The monthly loan amount is then automatically deducted from the saved checking account. Unfortunately, other attractive credit cards do not offer a comparable service.

Much more important, however, is that since September 2, 2019, all relevant fees for withdrawals and foreign currencies will no longer apply. Before that, the GenialCard was just one credit card among many, now it is one of the best on the German market. All withdrawals with the credit card are completely free of charge - whether in Germany or abroad. In addition, all payments in foreign currencies are free of charge. So you can easily pay and withdraw money worldwide without any fees - this is an invaluable advantage, especially if you travel frequently. In addition, almost no other free credit card in Germany offers such a combination.

What is also interesting about the free Hanseatic Bank GenialCard is the so-called world of advantages. This refers to the bank's cashback offers. On the one hand, there is up to 15 percent online cashback for purchases from various partners, and on the other hand you can look forward to 5 percent travel cashback for bookings via Urlaubsplus GmbH. This saves a little money, especially when shopping on the Internet, and booking through Urlaubsplus GmbH can sometimes be a good deal. Nevertheless, we advise you to compare them with other providers in both cases.

The last advantage of the GenialCard, the elimination of interest within the first three months, is less relevant. The reason for this is that we advise against the use of the otherwise significantly overpriced installment payment option. This comes with high interest rates and is actually equivalent to a loan. Instead, you should generally switch the repayment option to full payment. It doesn't hurt to take the first three interest-free months with you, but then you shouldn't forget to switch to the full payment.

Not to be forgotten is the advantage that you can easily link your Hanseatic Bank GenialCard with Apple Pay and thus pay for your purchases with your smartphone!

Overall, the package of advantages with the Hanseatic GenialCard is absolutely convincing, so that the credit card is worth a clear recommendation for this reason alone - the new conditions may even make the card the best free travel credit card in Germany!

What are the disadvantages of the GenialCard?

Real disadvantages can now hardly be recognized with the GenialCard. This is especially true because the previous fees have been eliminated and all payments worldwide are now free - as are any withdrawals. You can look forward to applying for a credit card that is really excellent in terms of fees, the disadvantages of which are now hardly worth mentioning.

It is now one of the best credit cards for withdrawals and there are no better alternatives for credit cards without foreign currency fees, so that the disadvantages that previously existed no longer exist. It is only important that you have the partial payment option in mind and that you normally do not use it. The interest for the partial payment with the GenialCard is 13.6 percent APR, which is significantly more expensive than most overdraft facilities. We therefore recommend that you switch the payment agreement to payment by direct debit after receiving the card in order to avoid additional costs.

However, this is the only disadvantage apart from the fact that the credit card, like most free cards, does not offer any insurance or other additional services. However, this can certainly be overlooked if you have the many other advantages of the card in mind - after all, there is hardly a card in Germany with a better service package.

Is the Hanseatic Bank GenialCard worth it?

Basically, you can't go wrong with a free credit card - this is especially true with the Hanseatic Bank GenialCard. Because the card, unlike the fee-free Mastercard Gold, has no real cost traps, you can look forward to a practical and free credit card in your wallet and can use it to pay ideally at home and abroad. Thanks to the elimination of the foreign currency and withdrawal fee, the credit card is now actually a perfect option for in principle everyone. There is simply no other credit card in Germany that offers comparable conditions.

In the past, there was a lack of relevant services abroad, but the fee structure of the GenialCard is now even better than that of many other cards. Other free credit cards such as the Barclaycard Visa or the ICS Visa World Card also offer free withdrawals, but have other disadvantages. At the same time, unlike the Barclaycard Gold Visa or the Hanseatic Bank Gold Credit Card, it is also not a credit card with insurance benefits. But the lack of this does not make the GenialCard any less attractive, because the card is in principle suitable for everyone due to the elimination of any fees.

The GenialCard can of course also be worthwhile as a second card. For example, if you already have a premium credit card for travel, such as the American Express Platinum Card, a second credit card can make sense. Of course, this is especially true for a free credit card like the GenialCard, which you can ideally use as a back-up for an American Express credit card. In this way you avoid the problem of the sometimes not ideal acceptance of American Express and at the same time always have an alternative credit card in your wallet that does not incur any costs. Whether as a supplement or as a new credit card - the GenialCard has undoubtedly been a very good choice since the changeover in September 2019.

What alternatives are there to the GenialCard?

In addition to the GenialCard, there are a few other cards with similar benefits, but actually not quite on the same level as the Hanseatic Bank credit card. These are primarily these interesting alternatives:

Mastercard Gold free of charge

  • Permanent without annual fee
  • Golden Credit card
  • Worldwide free Payments
  • Essential travel insurance included
  • Permanent without annual fee
  • Worldwide free Cash withdrawals
  • Easy application without checking account
  • Simple billing and repayment

Santander 1plus Visa Card

  • Permanent without annual fee
  • Free Partner card
  • Four free cash withdrawals per month
  • 1% tank discount

All of the cards mentioned come without an additional checking account (so you don't have to change banks or open a new account). In addition, there is no annual fee for all credit cards and there are no conditions for this. However, the cards cannot keep up in all areas. The ICS Visa World Card only offers free withdrawals outside of Germany.

An attractive alternative might be the fee-free Mastercard Gold, which does not offer any free withdrawals but offers extensive insurance benefits. There is also no foreign currency fee with this card, but at the same time the card billing is quite complicated. The Santander credit card is similarly problematic, and there is no insurance. What is attractive about this card, however, is that there is no foreign currency fee and you can also rely on free withdrawals. In addition, you will even be reimbursed any machine fees incurred. However, billing is a problem that should not be overlooked.

If performance is more important to you than the annual fee, you can also consider one of the following credit cards:

Barclaycard Platinum Double

  • Without annual fee in the first year
  • Free Cash withdrawals worldwide
  • Free Payments worldwide
  • Best Insurance package

Eurowings Gold credit cards

  • 2,000 miles bonus
  • Free of charge worldwide pay & withdraw
  • Earn miles with every euro you spend
  • Important Travel insurance
  • Valuable benefits on flights with Eurowings

Miles & More Mastercard Gold

  • Promotion: 15,000 miles welcome bonus
  • Unlimited Miles validity
  • 1 mile per 2 euro turnover
  • Important Travel insurance

American Express Gold Card

  • Record bonus: 40,000 points Welcome bonus
  • Valuable points collect
  • Travel insuranceincluded
  • Free Additional card

The Barclaycard Platinum Double is not only our general recommendation as an all-rounder in the field of travel credit cards, the card is also free for the first year. So you can test it without any risk and find out whether the card is the right one for you! The Eurowings credit cards are similarly attractive and also offer the option of earning miles with purchases. As a credit card with insurance, the Platinum Double is even a tad better.

Other credit cards for earning miles, including the Miles and More Gold Credit Card and the American Express Gold Card, both of which offer insurance at the same time, may also be attractive. However, these cards have high fees for withdrawals and payments in foreign currencies, which is why the GenialCard is a perfect option as a supplement.

Conclusion on the Hanseatic Bank GenialCard

The Hanseatic Bank GenialCard is a free credit card that is now worthwhile for everyone and is also a real diamond for traveling. In addition, the new customer bonus is very attractive. As a travel credit card, the credit card is now completely convincing. Because there are no real cost traps, you won't go wrong with an application and you will even get the best travel credit card in Germany. The credit card can be particularly worthwhile as a second credit card or for all those who benefit from free withdrawals and payments in foreign currencies!

Frequently asked questions about the Hanseatic Bank GenialCard

Is the Hanseatic Bank GenialCard free of charge? +

Yes, the Hanseatic Bank GenialCard is a completely free credit card. This applies both in the first year and in all subsequent years, because you do not have to pay any annual fees for the credit card.

What is the advantages of the Hanseatic Bank GenialCard? +

The cashback offers of the bank are meant by the world of benefits. On the one hand, there is up to 15 percent online cashback for purchases from various partners, and on the other hand you can look forward to 5 percent travel cashback for bookings via Urlaubsplus GmbH. This saves a little money, especially when shopping on the Internet, and booking through Urlaubsplus GmbH can sometimes be a good deal. Nevertheless, we advise you to compare them with other providers in both cases.

Can you withdraw money free of charge with the GenialCard? +

All withdrawals with the GenialCard are now free of charge. This advantage applies at home and abroad. In addition, all payments in foreign currencies are free, which is why the GenialCard is sometimes a perfect travel credit card and clearly stands out from the competition in this area.

Hanseatic Bank GenialCard

  • Free Credit card - permanently with no annual fee
  • Free payments worldwide
  • Free cash withdrawals worldwide
  • Simple Billing via an existing current account
The best free credit card for everyone with full repayment flexibility