0% Credit Card Balance Transfers

Updated 18 October 2020

0% credit card balance transfers are a great way to save money on interest payments during the intro period. You need to be mindful of when the balance transfer period finishes as it typically starts when your card is issued, not when you receive the card.

Note down what the balance transfer will revert to after the intro period expires. Many banks revert to the cash advance rate and can cause high interest problems if the balance transfer is not paid off in full during before it expires.

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Switching to 0% can make sense

Important points. Do not make purchases as no interest free days. You get no interest free days when you hold a balance on any credit card.

Put a plan in place to be credit card debt free. Make equal monthly payments to eliminate your credit card debt before the intro period expires.

What are 0 Balance Transfers?

0% balance transfer credit cards charge no interest for a certain period of time after sign-up. This means that if you have balances on your current store or credit cards, you can transfer them onto a 0% balance transfer card, and pay 0% interest on the transferred balance.

Introductory offers will vary depending on the credit card provider, so you may find a 0% balance transfer card with an introductory period lasting three months, or if you are lucky, you may find an offer that lasts over 12 months.

0% balance transfer cards are designed to help you pay off more of your credit card debt, while giving you a break from paying interest. At the end of the introductory period, any unpaid debt will revert to either the purchase rate or the cash advance rate, as determined by the credit card provider.

Choosing the Best 0 Balance Transfer Card

Choosing the best 0% balance transfer card usually comes down to finding a card with a long-running introductory period. While some 0% balance transfer cards have introductory periods that last just a few months, there are other offers that last up to a year, and sometimes longer.

Before you start looking for a 0% balance transfer card, you will need to think about how long it will take to pay off your outstanding balances. If you think you can pay off the debt quickly, then you can choose a credit card with a shorter introductory offer. If you need longer to pay off your debt, try to find a card that has a longer offer.

The next thing to think about is your credit limit. You will need to find a balance transfer card that accommodates the amount you need to transfer. If this is not possible, transfer as much of your credit card debt as possible, to take advantage of the lower interest rates.

If you plan on keeping the 0% balance transfer card after the introductory period, then you will need to assess the card for its suitability to your needs. Make sure the card is suitable in the long term, and find out how much is charged on purchase rates and annual fees.

Avoid the biggest mistakes

The biggest mistake you can make with a 0% balance transfer credit card is not paying off your debts before the introductory period ends. As the unpaid debt usually reverts to a much higher rate, you can end up paying out a lot in interest.

While it’s not always possible to pay off your transferred balance before the balance transfer offer ends, you should make it your top priority to pay off as much as possible to take advantage of the lower interest rates.

Before you apply for the card, find out exactly when the offer will end, and what will happen when it does. Find out the reversion rate, and how much you will pay in annual fees. Read the terms and conditions in full to make sure there are no catches to the offer.

After the account has been opened, set yourself reminders at regular intervals so you know how long you have left before the offer ends. This can work as an incentive to motivate you to pay off as much as possible each month. You should be able to keep track of your progress via online banking, or by reading your credit card statement.

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127 questions (showing the latest 10 Q&As)

Craig holmes

Craig holmes

31 August 2020
I tried to get $8000 for a car on Saturday. I had sufficient funds but increased my daily limit from $5000 to $10000. I can’t get the car as it is still pending. Why.
    Roland B Bleyer - CreditCard.com.au Founder

    Roland

    31 August 2020
    Hi Craig, you will need to reach out to your issuer directly in regards to this. Give them a call on their customer service. I am sure they will be able to work it out.
Sandra Robertson

Sandra Robertson

18 July 2020
How can i pay for a audio books on my phone with my Australia post gift card
    Roland B Bleyer - CreditCard.com.au Founder

    Roland

    20 July 2020
    Hi Sandra, I am not familar with Australia post gift cards. I do not think you can do this. Though I would reach out to Australia post customer service.
Kash

Kash

16 July 2020
Hi, In refrence to HSBC offer I would like to know if I get balance transfer of $10K (22month period) and spend $6K on shopping (to reduce the annual fees) Do I have to deposit all $16K within 7 months to avoid interest or only $6K and I'll still have 15months to deposit the BT amount?
    Roland B Bleyer - CreditCard.com.au Founder

    Roland

    20 July 2020
    Hi Kash, any payment goes off the highest interest bearing amount first. This would be the new purchases. To avoid interest I would pay off any new purchases on the day you make it. The balance transfer amount will not attract any interest until post the 22 month period.
Sandi

Sandi

13 July 2020
Hi there I have $5,500 owing with a limit of $10,000 with VirginMoney and would like to know who offers best rate with no B/T and no annual fees please and thanks in advance.
    Roland B Bleyer - CreditCard.com.au Founder

    Roland

    13 July 2020
    Hi Sandi, Virgin cards are issued through Citi. Therefore that eliminates all cards issued through them. No balance transfer or annual fees is very difficult. You will need to give up something. The HSBC Platinum is great with 0% for 22 months on balance transfer with no balance transfer fee. Though it still has the $129 annual fee. This though can be refunded if you spend 6k a year on it. Then you have offers like the St.George Vertigo which has a balance transfer fee. Though no annual fee first year and 0% on purchase offer as well. Let me know if neither of these offers suit.
Michelle

Michelle

21 March 2020
My partner has a 3 cards totalling $24.8k with a limit of $25k. We are looking for a long term balance transfer with either a0% or up to 2% BT fee. We wish to reduce as much as we can with paying $200 a week off with no interest to pay on top.
    Roland B Bleyer - CreditCard.com.au Founder

    Roland

    23 March 2020
    Hi Michelle, when you are that close to your limits on all cards it can be hard to get approved for a new 0% balance transfer. Negative credit reporting comes into play now when your balance hits 85% of your credit limit. Every financial situation is different. So hopefully you can still get approved. It is possible to transfer 3 cards into one balance transfer. Though you need to select a bank outside of the 3 cards you have. Let me know the cards you have and I can provide a suggestion.
Karen

Karen

18 March 2020
Hi, I would like to make a balance transfer of $5000 (limit $5000) from Commonwealth low interest credit card for as long as possible. What are your top 2 recommendations?
Anna

Anna

6 March 2020
Hi, I’d like to make a balance transfer - $15000 (limit $15000) from Commonwealth for 14-18 months. What banks would you recommend?
    Roland B Bleyer - CreditCard.com.au Founder

    Roland

    9 March 2020
    Hi Anna, when you are maxed out on your credit limit. This is not a good sign to the banks and may affect your approval. I would suggest you pay it down to at least 85% of your credit limit before applying for a balance transfer. There is negative credit reporting in place now. When you hit 85% of your limit this is reported and can make it harder to get approved. For a card, I think the St George Vertigo. Low annual fee plus 0% on balance transfer for 18 months with no balance transfer fee.
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