Don’t Reward Yourself with These 6 Balance Transfer Cards

May 9, 2019

By Sherry Keyles

When you decide you want to eliminate your credit card debt, a balance transfer card is a great option. The 0% APR promotional offer helps you save money on interest and pay down your debt faster.

As you start sifting through the many balance transfer card offers, you may get overwhelmed in trying to decide what card to get. Before you get too far into your search, check your credit score. Most balance transfer credit cards require good to excellent credit.

What to Look for in a Balance Transfer Offer

When comparing offers, here are some of the main features you should consider before selecting a card:

A long balance transfer APR

Low balance transfer fee

Minimum credit score required

High enough credit limit

You will also want to look at the terms and conditions to understand what rules you must follow to meet the requirements for the 0% APR offer. Typically, this includes transferring the balance within 30 – 60 days after account opening. In addition, late or missed payments can also void the promotional offer.

Avoid Rewards and Purchases

One thing you should not be considering is rewards such as airline miles or cash back. Many balance transfer cards try to tempt cardholders to make purchases with a rewards program. Many offer bonus programs to make it even more enticing. However, it’s a good idea to ignore the temptation.

The reason you are getting a balance transfer credit card is because you have credit card debt. The last thing you need is to add more debt when you are supposed to be eliminating. Making new purchases will only extend your debt and make it harder to pay it off before the 0% APR period is over.

Balance Transfer Cards with No Rewards

While it may seem like every balance transfer card offers rewards, here are some without rewards for your consideration (from longest intro APR offer to shortest).

Citi Simplicity® Card

The Citi Simplicity card has the longest 0% APR promotional available today. The card uses the tagline “no fees ever”, referring to the card having no annual fee, no late fee and no penalty APR. However, the card does charge a balance transfer fee.

Intro APR Offer – 21 months from date of first transfer; transfers must be made within first four months of account opening to qualify for 0% APR offer

Balance Transfer Fee – 5% of transferred amount; $5 minimum

Regular APR - 16.24% - 26.24% Variable APR

Minimum Credit Score - Good

Other Benefits – No late fee, no penalty APR, no annual fee, free FICO score, flexible payment date, customer service available 24 hours a day

Need to Know: Cannot transfer balances from another Citi account, credit card applicants can’t apply for more than one Citi credit card every 8 days or more than two Citi credit cards every 65 days

U.S. Bank Visa® Platinum Card

The U.S. Bank Visa Platinum Card has the second longest 0% APR introductory period available today at 20 months.

Intro APR Offer – 0% on Balance Transfers for 20 months for balance transfers made in the first 60 days

Balance Transfer Fee – 3% of transferred amount; $5 minimum

Regular APR - 14.74%–25.74% Variable APR

Minimum Credit Score - Excellent

Other Benefits – No annual fee, no penalty APR, free VantageScore based on your TransUnion credit report, Choose payment due date

Need to Know – Cannot transfer a balance from another U.S. Bank account

BankAmericard® Credit Card

The BankAmericard Credit Card has a long introductory 0% APR offer of 18 billing cycles and does not charge a late penalty APR.

Intro APR Offer – 0% on Balance Transfers for 18 billing cycles for balance transfers made in the first 60 days

Balance Transfer Fee – 3% of transferred amount; $10 minimum

Regular APR - 15.24% - 25.24% Variable APR

Minimum Credit Score - Good

Other Benefits – No annual fee, free access to FICO score

Need to Know: Cannot transfer from another BankAmericard account

Wells Fargo Platinum Visa® Card

The Wells Fargo Platinum Visa® Card has an 18 month 0% APR promotional offer and a lower balance transfer fee (3%) for transfers made in first four months.

Intro APR Offer – 0% on Balance Transfers for 18 billing cycles for balance transfers made in the first 120 days

Balance Transfer Fee – For first 120 days: 3% of transferred amount, $5 minimum; After 120 days – 5% of transferred amount, $5 minimum.

Regular APR - 15.24% - 25.24% Variable APR

Minimum Credit Score - Good

Other Benefits – No annual fee, free access to FICO score, Convenient tools to help create a budget and manage your spending with My Money Map

Need to know – May not be eligible for balance transfer offer if you opened a Wells Fargo card with an offer in the past 15 months, Cannot transfer balance from another Wells Fargo account

Barclaycard Ring® Mastercard®

The Barclaycard Ring Mastercard® is a good card if you plan on making any balance transfer cards after the first several months. However, if you are only making a one-time transfer, you may be better off with another card. The Ring Mastercard has a very low regular APR which applies after the introductory APR offer expires and also on any balance transfers made after the first 45 days of account opening. The balance transfer fee is a low 2% for transfers posted in first 45 days; after 45 days, the balance transfer fee is waived.

Intro APR Offer – 0% on Balance Transfers for 15 months for balance transfers posted within 45 days of account opening

Balance Transfer Fee – For transfers posted within first 45 days of account opening: 2%, $5 minimum; Transfers posted after 45 days from account opening: 0

Regular APR - 14.24% variable APR (also applies on any balance transfers made after first 45 days of account opening)

Minimum Credit Score - Good

Other Benefits – No annual fee, free access to FICO score, Giveback™ loyalty program, Barclays Ring Community.

Need to know – Cannot transfer balance from another Barclaycard account

Chase Slate®

The Chase Slate® card is one of the best balance transfer cards. Not only does it have a 0% APR offer for 15 months but the balance transfer fee is waived for transfers made within first 60 days after account opening. The balance transfer offer is capped at your available credit limit or $15,000, whichever is lower.

Intro APR Offer – 0% on Balance Transfers for 15 months from account opening

Balance Transfer Fee –Introductory balance transfer fee: $0 for transfers posted within first 60 days of account opening: After 60 days: 5%, $5 minimum

Regular APR - 16.74%-25.49% variable APR

Minimum Credit Score - Good

Other Benefits – No annual fee, free access to FICO score, no penalty APR

Need to Know: Cannot transfer balances from a Chase account; balance transfers capped at your available credit limit or $15,000, whichever is lower

Bottom Line
While credit card rewards are enticing, remember why you are obtaining a balance transfer card – you are struggling to pay off your high-interest credit card debt. Making new purchases and earning rewards should be but on the back burner as you pay down your debt.


Related News

Avoid this Balance Transfer Mistake

Don’t Be Late – Avoid This Costly Balance Transfer Mistake

Balance transfer cards can be a lifesaver if you have credit card debt you are trying to pay off. With ...
Read More
Balance Transfer Fine Print

Read the Fine Print: Know Your Balance Transfer Card’s Terms and Conditions

If you are drowning in credit card debt, a balance transfer can help restore your financial health. By consolidating your ...
Read More
Balance Transfer Myths

Don’t Believe These 10 Balance Transfer Myths

If you are struggling with credit card debt, a balance transfer can help. Transferring your high-interest debt to a balance ...
Read More