Best 0% Balance Transfer Credit Cards

Here's where you can find credit cards that can give you excellent introductory interest rates for balance transfers and purchases. These cards can be a great option for those who can qualify. So if you've got good credit and would like to consider consolidating your debt or moving your balance to a card with more favorable terms, then consider our list of balance transfer cards with zero intro rates below. Most have no annual fee and a good number of them are also rewards cards. We also include how long the promotional period for the intro rate is expected to run, along with other noteworthy features.


Citi Simplicity® Card

See Terms for Citi Simplicity® Card

{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

jill September 26, 2009 at 7:26 am

I have never heard of a card that is 0% on balance transfers and new purchases. This is a good thing to help people out of debt if they don’t abuse it. Unfortunately, it could also be a real problem for someone who has trouble controlling their spending.

Jennifer September 27, 2009 at 8:49 am

I love the idea of this — in theory. It seems like a great idea to transfer credit card debt to a new low, or 0% APR card, but I’ve also seen so many people think they can just leave it there and never pay on it, like it’s a long term solution and now they have no debt, that I’m wary of even putting out there that this is an option. I know, everyone should know all their options and make the decisions for themselves, but I wish more people would plan things out long term.

James March 21, 2010 at 4:52 pm

Great article! I never knew that no interest balance transfer deals existed. One question though — do they determine your normal APR as soon as the account is opened, or after the promotional period? In other words do they determine the APR based on how much payment you sent during the promo period? Any negative effect just paying the minimum each month?

The Digerati Life March 21, 2010 at 5:23 pm

Thanks for your question! Actually, the credit card company, bank or issuer will assess your regular APR (which you’ll receive after the intro period) based on your credit report, credit score and overall relationship with them. So it DOES pay to maintain a good relationship with your card company. Paying only the minimum will be more expensive for you in the end, so I can’t recommend this approach in good conscience. In fact, I recommend that you always try to pay more than the minimum per month (I personally pay off my cards in full each month and don’t carry a credit card balance). Bottom line is that by being a good customer with a good payment record (no late payments, no skipped or missing payments), you’ll garner the best rates for your credit card.

One more thing to note: credit card companies are much more careful about whom they accept as customers these days. They’ll check your credit history and only those who are deemed credit-worthy will be able to qualify for top rated cards. The credit climate is a lot different now than it used to be some years ago when anyone with a pulse could receive a card (or was aggressively pursued by a card company).

Lowell April 29, 2010 at 6:37 am

Looking for a zero % credit card on balance tranfers for the life of the card. What I mean is that I want to transfer the balance fronm one to the zero card and NEVER pay any interest charges as long as I don’t purchase anything with it. Do they exist?

Silicon Valley Blogger April 29, 2010 at 12:16 pm

As far as I know there are no longer lifetime balance transfer cards. In the past, before the credit industry suffered the crisis, this was a product that still existed. Unfortunately, there are no longer cards like this due to tighter standards in the credit industry. Also, to qualify for the longer term balance transfer cards, you’ll need really good credit.

Charles January 24, 2011 at 11:06 am

I can’t imagine seeing a lifetime balance transfer card with all the new regulation and reduction in revenue for the credit card issuers. Amex just did some layoffs, etc. 0% balance transfer is already a great luxury, people should enjoy it while they can.

Cary Owen February 3, 2012 at 1:04 pm

I am interested in applying for a low interest rate credit card so can I request a balance transfer?

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The Benefits of a Zero Percent Balance Transfer Card

Credit cards with zero percent rates represent a type of short term loan that is fairly easier to get and therefore favored among those looking to optimize their debt situation or wish to receive a cash infusion. It's not unusual for people to use credit cards to finance smaller goals, such as a wedding, a vacation or an unexpected stay in the emergency room. In fact, there are a good number of people who use their cards as an emergency source of cash. But if their interest rates are not ideal, and you're already on the hook for a card loan, then it may make sense to keep your eye out for a balance transfer card with an attractive APR that can be used to refinance your existing balance. Balance transfer credit cards are most suitable for consumers who have good credit scores and who wish to get an attractive interest rate on the balances they carry. So if you're hoping to save money on your credit card debt payments, the following cards may be the appropriate tools for your goals.

Other reasons to get a balance transfer credit card? They're good for tiding you over in case you have an emergency. You may have a sudden need to access cash that you don't have available. Well, a card like this with a very low rate can provide you the liquidity you need -- just make sure you're able to pay off your debt before the special rate or offer period expires, to make the card worth its use. No doubt you'll experience great savings on your debt payments when you compare this to the interest you'd otherwise pay by using a regular credit card.

Balance Transfer Fee Cards: What To Look For

Here are a few questions to ask before signing up for a card. Make sure you do your due diligence before going ahead with your application.

  1. How long will your APR be good for?
  2. Will you pay a fee to transfer your balance?
  3. Are there penalties for late or missed payments?
  4. How does your credit card company apply your payments against your balance?

Here's one more important note about balance transfer cards: be careful about doing balance transfers between credit cards that are owned by the same bank. Requesting a balance transfer between two cards that are issued by the same institution may invariably result in the denial of your application, which can inadvertently reflect negatively on your credit rating. Since credit card applications involve inquiries against your credit, any rejection could be a mark against you.