Support for Credit Card customers in short term difficulty following the COVID-19 payment break

If you’re worried about making your payments for up to a further three months only, a Payment Break Extension might help

What is a Payment Break Extension?

A Payment Break Extension delays your payments for a further three months.

    Can I apply for a Payment Break Extension?

    You’re eligible to apply if:

    • you’ve already had a COVID-19 payment break ending on or before 31 January 2021
    • your first statement requesting a payment is dated on or before 31 January 2021
    • you’re confident you’ll be able to start making your payments again after the extension

    You're not eligible to apply if:

    • you've already had a payment break extension
    • you’ve already missed more than one monthly payment since your initial payment break
    • your first statement requesting a payment is after 31 January 2021

    If you’re not eligible, please get in touch now on 0345 051 0785 so we can discuss how best to support you.

      Can I choose the length of my Payment Break Extension?

      We only offer Payment Break Extensions for a duration of three months, but you can still make payments towards your credit card during this time. You can do this in Online Banking or our Mobile App.

        Did you take a COVID-19 payment break on more than one Tesco Bank product or account?

        If you can now make payments for one account and need a Payment Break Extension on another, consider which account you should resume paying first.

        Take some time to compare what a Payment Break Extension will cost in interest charged, as well as any other factors which are important to you, such as the available credit on your credit card, or how quickly you pay off your loan.

        You could also request a Payment Break Extension on multiple accounts and still make payments towards these accounts during your break. To do this, you’ll need to submit a Payment Break Extension form for each account.

        If you’re struggling with what you owe on your accounts and feel you might need our help, please see the support we can offer for longer-term difficulty.

          When will my Payment Break Extension start and what happens next?

          We’ll aim to start this from the statement period in which you submit your application form and the two payments that follow.

          Once you’ve submitted your application, we’ll take care of everything to put your further payments on hold, including pausing your Direct Debit if you have one.

          However, if you pay by Direct Debit and your payment is due in the next three days or it has recently been returned unpaid, this payment will still be taken. If you’re unable to make this month’s payment, it may be too late for us to stop your Direct Debit - so you should contact your bank to request that they stop it before it’s taken.

          You can find the payment date of your Direct Debit on your statement.

            What if I’ve already missed a payment?

            If you submit your application form just after you've missed a payment and before you've had your new statement, we'll count the missed payment as the first in your Payment Break Extension. So, any Late Payment or Returned Item fees incurred will be refunded to you.

            If you've missed more than one monthly payment already, please get in touch now on 0345 051 0785 so we can discuss how best to support you.

              Will I still be charged interest?

              During your Payment Break Extension interest will continue to be charged on your credit card account balance meaning your overall balance will increase.

              This on top of the interest from your first payment break means your minimum repayments could be higher when your Payment Break Extension ends. If it then takes you longer to repay your balance, you could pay more overall for your borrowing.

              Here are some examples of how a Payment Break Extension might impact your credit card repayments.

                Here are some examples of how a Payment Break Extension might impact your credit card repayments:

                Credit card payment break

                Example 1: Outstanding balance £1800 at 19.9% per annum

                Example 2: Oustanding balance of £1800 at 26.9% per annum

                Minimum payment before COVID-19 payment break

                  £45.43

                    £54.09

                      Minimum payment after COVID-19 payment break

                        £46.70

                          £57.30

                            Minimum payment after payment break extension

                              £49.03

                                £60.65

                                  Increase in minimum payment (after COVID-19 payment break + payment break extension)

                                    £3.60

                                      £6.56

                                        The examples above are used for illustrative purposes only. Your minimum repayment amounts will depend on your individual circumstances and the minimum repayment terms for the specific credit card you hold.

                                        The examples assume you have no additional spending on your credit card during the payment break and that the total outstanding balance is interest bearing throughout (this means the rate of interest being charged is greater than 0%).

                                          Will I be charged any fees during this time?

                                          Whilst you'll still be charged interest on your account balance throughout your payment break, you will not be charged Late Payment, Over Limit or Returned Item fees.

                                            Will a Payment Break Extension impact my credit file?

                                            No, your Payment Break Extension will not be reported as a missed payment to credit reference agencies. But bear in mind, though your credit file will not be directly impacted, lenders may look at other information – such as bank statements – when assessing credit applications.

                                            You may receive letters from us notifying you of outstanding payments, for legal reasons we’re unable to stop these. Rest assured there is nothing you need to do about any ‘missed payments’ related specifically to your COVID-19 payment break or Payment Break Extension.

                                              Can I continue to use my card?

                                              When you're on a Payment Break Extension, your credit card account can be used as normal.

                                                Can I make any payments during this time?

                                                If you are able to make any payments towards your credit card during the Payment Break Extension, no matter how small, it’s worth doing so. It means you’ll pay less interest. You can make payments in Online Banking or our Mobile App.

                                                  What about my 0% interest period?

                                                  A Payment Break Extension will not change the terms of any 0% interest offer you currently have.

                                                  Due to the high number of requests we’re getting, it may take us some time to process your Payment Break Extension. This could mean you see that your 0% interest rate has been removed. Don’t worry, this is just temporary – we’ll reapply your 0% interest offer once your extension is set up. If any interest charges have been applied, we’ll remove them.

                                                    What happens after my Payment Break Extension?

                                                    When your Payment Break Extension is over, your account will go back to your previous payment method. If you have a Direct Debit set up, we’ll restart this for you.

                                                    If you cancelled your Direct Debit, we can’t restart it automatically. You need to set this up yourself before your next statement date. If you don’t do this in time, you may need to make a manual payment. It’s easy to set up and make changes to your Direct Debit securely using Online Banking or our Mobile Banking App.

                                                    Remember, when your payments resume, your minimum monthly repayment amount could be higher than before the break.

                                                      Is a Payment Break Extension right for me?

                                                      You should take a moment to consider whether a Payment Break Extension is the best option for you.

                                                      If you anticipate struggling with your payments for any longer than three more months or you simply aren’t sure, this may not be the right option for you and should consider our options to support longer term difficulty.

                                                        Alternatively, you might want to talk to someone else

                                                        You can also get expert support from:

                                                        StepChange are a national charity providing free, personal debt advice over the phone or online. To find out more, visit Stepchange or call them on 0800 138 1111.

                                                        Citizens Advice offer free, independent and confidential advice on a wide range of issues, including money matters. Call their Adviceline on 0344 411 1444 or visit Citizens Advice.

                                                        PayPlan are a trusted free debt advice provider. You can speak to one of their expert advisers on 0800 280 2816 or try their free online form.

                                                          Other things you might find helpful

                                                          Setting up Online Banking

                                                          Learn how to get set-up and about our features

                                                          Setting up on our Mobile App

                                                          Get started with our Mobile App and features we can offer

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