“…the prevalence and popularity of Islamic credit cards is also accompanied by customer complaints about the expensive costs charged by some Islamic banks that offer them. In fact; such credit cards have become even more expensive than the ones offered by conventional banks.” (Islamic Credit Cards Controversery in As sharq al Awsat 27th Aug 2008)
“…[Islamic] credit cards currently offered by banks entail usury and even resort to interest in some transactions.”
“…some Islamic banks offer credit card policies that are misleading and that resort to usury in their practices and that it causes great injustice to the customers and does not comply with Islamic religious provisions.”
“…most [Islamic] banks offering credit cards do so with the objective of acquiring interest – which is strictly and unequivocally prohibited by Islam.”
With these ‘facts’one can assume the nature of modern day’s Islamic credit cards. Either the concept of credit card is not fully transformed to a real Islamic concept or there are hidden traces of ‘Riba’ are there in most of Islamic credit cards or they are not comparable with conventional Visa or Master credit cards in terms of pricing, cost and benefits. It’s really a long way for Islamic banks to bring out true Islamic cards.
By Muhammad Ali Nadeem (Islamic Finance Net)