Can I transfer my credit card debt to another bank?

Protect your credit score. Before you apply for a balance transfer, learn which banks you can transfer your credit card debt to.

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Balance transfer credit cards allow you to move your debt from one card to another to save money on interest and fees. However, you can't do this between cards from the same bank or lender. So if you have an ANZ Frequent Flyer credit card with debt on it, you can't apply for a balance transfer to the ANZ Low Rate card, for example. Usually, you also can't transfer debts with different credit card companies that have financial ties to one another. For example, transferring from Virgin Money to Qantas Money is not allowed since they're both part of Citigroup.

Credit card balance transfer restrictions

This table will tell you which debts aren't eligible to be transferred to these major Australian banks and lenders.

Credit card brandBalance transfer brand restrictions
American ExpressIf you have an Amex, you can transfer balances from other non-American Express accounts.
ANZBalance transfers are not allowed between two accounts issued by ANZ. You can transfer debts from other Australian card issuers, so long as the balance doesn't exceed 95% of your approved credit limit.
Bank of MelbourneBalance transfer requests will not be accepted from another Bank of Melbourne, St.George or BankSA credit card. However, you can transfer balances from Westpac cards even though BankSA is a division of the Westpac Banking Corporation.
BOQYou can't transfer balances between two BOQ accounts. You also can't transfer balances from other Citi-issued credit facilities (including Citi, IMB and Suncorp Bank).
BankSABalance transfers are not allowed from BankSA, St.George or Bank of Melbourne credit cards as all of these banks are under the Westpac Banking Corporation. However, you can transfer balances from Westpac.
BankwestBalance transfers are not allowed from an existing Bankwest account to a new Bankwest account. While Bankwest is a division of CommBank, you can still request a balance transfer from a CommBank credit card to Bankwest.
CitiYou can't transfer balances from other Citi accounts or balances from other Citigroup accounts. This includes cards from Coles Mastercard, Suncorp Bank, IMB, Qantas Money and Virgin Money.
CommBankYou can't transfer balances from one CommBank account to another. As mentioned, balance transfers between CBA and Bankwest are permitted.
ColesYou may not request a balance transfer between Coles credit cards and other Citigroup credit cards.
IMBBalance transfers are not allowed between IMB or other Citigroup accounts. This includes cards from Citi, Suncorp Bank or Virgin Money.
JetstarIf you have a Jetstar credit card, you are unable to transfer balances from accounts issued by Jetstar Mastercard, Macquarie or Card Services.
Latitude FinancialBalance transfers will not be accepted from other Latitude Financial credit or loan accounts.
Macquarie BankBalance transfers are not allowed from any account issued by Macquarie Bank. This includes other Macquarie or Card Services accounts.
MyerBalance transfers are not permitted between any Macquarie Bank or Card Services account and your Myer account.
NABYou can't transfer a balance from one NAB account to another.
St.GeorgeYou can only transfer balances from non-St.George, Bank of Melbourne and BankSA Australian issued credit, charge or store cards. This means you can request a balance transfer from Westpac cards, even though St.George is a division of the Westpac Banking Corporation.
Suncorp BankIf you have a Suncorp credit card, you can't request a balance transfer from Suncorp or other Citigroup accounts. This includes cards from Citi, IMB and Virgin Money.
Virgin MoneyVirgin Money may refuse to process a balance transfer request when it is from another Virgin Money or Citigroup account. This includes cards from Citi, Suncorp Bank and IMB.
WestpacBalance transfers are only allowed from non-Westpac Australian issued credit, charge or store cards. While Westpac is affiliated with St.George, Bank of Melbourne and BankSA, you can request balance transfers from any of these brands to Westpac.
WoolworthsYou can't transfer balances from other Woolworths credit cards, Macquarie or Card Services accounts.

As you can see in the table, most major credit card issuers do not allow balance transfers between other credit card brands that they underwrite. For example, if you had debt on a Citi credit card, you could not get a balance transfer to a credit card from BOQ, IMB, Suncorp Bank or Virgin Money because they are also issued by Citigroup. Sometimes there are exceptions. For example, you can transfer balances between Bankwest and CommBank credit cards, even though the former is owned by the latter.

This is why it's important to check the card issuer or underwriter as well as taking time to read the balance transfer terms and conditions to ensure your eligibility before you apply.

What’s the difference between a credit card issuer and a credit card brand?

To understand this more clearly, let’s unravel the distinction between a credit card issuer and credit card brand. While credit cards could have branding for a bank, airline, store or even a supermarket (such as St.George, David Jones, Woolworths), these cards are issued by larger financial institutions.

For example, Qantas Money credit cards are issued by Citigroup, David Jones credit cards are issued by American Express and Woolworths credit cards are issued by Macquarie Bank. At the same time, these card issuers also offer their own brand of credit cards (such as Citi credit cards, Amex credit cards and Macquarie credit cards).

Changes between credit card brands and issuers

Some credit card brands may change card issuers from time to time. This makes it important to check your current card issuer when you’re about to request a balance transfer. In some cases the previous issuer may still be affiliated with your account, which could affect your ability to balance transfer your debt to other associated credit card brands.

Why are balance transfers not allowed between cards by the same issuer?

This comes down to the structure of a balance transfer. This process lets you shift a debt from one creditor to another with the aim of refinancing your loan at a lower interest rate.

The actual transfer takes place when your new credit card issuer transfers the amount of your debt to the previous issuer, usually charging a transfer fee in the process. Since balance transfer offers are typically promotions to entice new customers, card issuers rarely allow existing customers the opportunity to refinance within their own umbrella of issued cards.

What happens if I apply for a balance transfer with the same credit card issuer?

If you apply for a balance transfer with the same provider, the impact will depend on the companies involved and your financial circumstances. Some possible results could include:

  • Your application may be declined. In most cases, the reason that your application gets denied usually has more to do with other factors including your credit score and credit history. Even if a balance transfer isn’t possible, you could still be approved for the card.
  • You could get a black mark on your credit history. If your application is denied, the credit inquiry potentially leaves a black mark on your credit report. However, it’s not terrible unless you repeatedly apply for credit and keep getting rejected. Learn more about good and bad credit ratings.
  • You could get an offer for the new card without the balance transfer. If your credit report is in good order, you will more likely receive an offer for the card, with a side note that your balance transfer request can’t be processed.

Most of the time, you can balance transfer between non-affiliated lending institutions, but it’s safer to check before applying just to make sure. Call your prospective card company, provide details of your current issuer and ask them if you can transfer your existing balance to them.

Comparison of balance transfer credit cards

$
% p.a.
Name Product Balance transfer rate Purchase rate Annual fee Amount saved
St.George Vertigo Card
0% p.a. for 30 months
13.99% p.a.
$0 annual fee for the first year ($55 p.a. thereafter)
Save with a 0% interest rate on balance transfers for 30 months (with no balance transfer fee) and a $0 annual fee for the first year.
Kogan Money Black Card - Exclusive Offer
0% p.a. for 22 months
20.99% p.a.
$0
Save with a $0 annual fee and a 0% introductory rate on balance transfers. Plus, earn $50 Kogan.com Credit and uncapped rewards points.
HSBC Platinum Credit Card
0% p.a. for 36 months
19.99% p.a.
$29 annual fee for the first year ($129 p.a. thereafter)
Save money with a 0% balance transfer rate for 36 months (with no BT fee), a first-year annual fee discount and free travel insurance.
NAB Low Rate Credit Card
0% p.a. for 32 months
12.99% p.a.
$0 annual fee for the first year ($59 p.a. thereafter)
Get a 0% interest rate on balance transfers for the first 32 months (with no BT fee). Plus, save with a $0 first-year annual fee.
Suncorp Clear Options Platinum Card - Exclusive Offer
0% p.a. for 24 months
20.74% p.a.
$64 annual fee for the first year ($129 p.a. thereafter)
Receive a 0% balance transfer rate for 24 months and a reduced first-year annual fee. Plus, 25,000 bonus Suncorp Credit Card Rewards Points.
Citi Clear Card - Exclusive Offer
0% p.a. for 28 months
14.99% p.a.
$49 annual fee for the first year ($99 p.a. thereafter)
Offers 0% p.a. on balance transfers for 28 months with no balance transfer fee and a discounted $49 first-year annual fee.
ANZ Low Rate
0% p.a. for 30 months
12.49% p.a.
$0 annual fee for the first year ($58 p.a. thereafter)
Save with 0% p.a. on balance transfers for 30 months (with no BT fee) and $0 first-year annual fee. Plus a 12.49% p.a. purchase interest rate.
Coles Rewards Mastercard
0% p.a. for 14 months
19.99% p.a.
$0 annual fee for the first year ($99 p.a. thereafter)
Get 40,000 bonus Flybuys Points or $200 off a Coles Supermarket shop, a $0 first-year annual fee and a 14-month balance transfer.
Westpac Low Rate Card
0% p.a. for 28 months with 1% balance transfer fee
13.74% p.a.
$0 annual fee for the first year ($59 p.a. thereafter)
Save with a $0 annual fee for the first year, plus, a 0% interest rate on balance transfers for 28 months.
Virgin Australia Velocity Flyer Card - Balance Transfer Offer
0% p.a. for 28 months
20.74% p.a.
$64 annual fee for the first year ($129 p.a. thereafter)
Get 0% p.a. on balance transfers for 28 months, a reduced 1st year annual fee & $129 Virgin Australia Gift Voucher yearly.
Bankwest Breeze Classic Mastercard
0% p.a. for 15 months
0% p.a. for 15 months, reverts to 9.9% p.a.
$0 annual fee for the first year ($49 p.a. thereafter)
Save with 0% p.a. on purchases and balance transfers for 15 months (with no BT fee). Plus, a $0 first-year annual fee.
Citi Rewards Card - Balance Transfer Offer
0% p.a. for 30 months
21.49% p.a.
$49 annual fee for the first year ($149 p.a. thereafter)
Save on interest with 0% p.a. on balance transfers for 30 months with no balance transfer fee. Plus, a $49 first-year annual fee.
Coles No Annual Fee Mastercard
0% p.a. for 12 months
19.99% p.a.
$0
Get $100 off a Coles Supermarket shop when you spend at least $1,500 in the first 60 days. Plus, a 0% balance transfer offer.
Great Southern Bank Low Rate Credit Card
0% p.a. for 25 months
11.99% p.a.
$0 annual fee for the first year ($49 p.a. thereafter)
Take advantage of a 0% p.a. balance transfer rate for 25 months, $0 first year annual fee, and a low variable 11.99% p.a. interest rate on purchases.
Citi Rewards Card - Points & Gift Card Offer
0% p.a. for 15 months
21.49% p.a.
$49 annual fee for the first year ($149 p.a. thereafter)
Receive 90,000 bonus Citi reward Points (worth $400 in gift cards) and a $100 Coles eGift Card when you spend $3,000 in the first 90 days.
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15 Responses

    Default Gravatar
    PaulMay 2, 2017

    How does know how much credit I can qualify or be approved for

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      DeeMay 3, 2017Staff

      Hi Paul,

      Thanks for your question.

      There is no definite way to determine what your credit limit might be, as credit card brands often follow their own unique policies when deciding your credit limit. There are certain factors that can affect our credit limit including your monthly income and your creditworthiness among others. You can refer to our credit card limit calculator to learn more.

      In addition, if you are making a balance transfer, the maximum amount that you can move to your new card depends on your approved and available credit limit.

      Cheers,
      Anndy

    Default Gravatar
    PVOJanuary 30, 2017

    If I do a balance transfer, is the old credit card closed? Can I keep the old card but not use it?

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      DeeJanuary 30, 2017Staff

      Hi PVO,

      Thanks for your question.

      When you transfer your balance from the old card to the new one, you have the option to retain or cancel the old card. Generally, it will be your personal choice.

      Cheers,
      Anndy

    Default Gravatar
    RobertDecember 29, 2016

    I would like a personal advice how I can get my credit card payments down as the way things are with my Bank I seem to be paying more interest charges than getting my total amount
    down not getting anywhere I have also stopped using any credit that I may have after paying the credit card that has been closed so no further credit usage allowed.
    Please advice as this will go on for ever.

    Thanking You,

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      DeeDecember 29, 2016Staff

      Hi RDR,

      Thanks for reaching out.

      You may want to read our guide on dealing credit card debts. It listed down the possible options for your situation.

      Cheers,
      Anndy

    Default Gravatar
    AlexAugust 7, 2016

    Who issues NAB cards and where does NAB sit, with regards who you can transfer between?

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      MayAugust 7, 2016Staff

      Hi Alex,

      Thanks for your question.

      NAB is one of Australia’s largest financial institutions and they issue the NAB credit cards.

      As for conducting a balance transfer, generally, you cannot transfer a balance from a credit card that is issued by the same institution. So, you are not able to transfer a balance between NAB credit cards, but you can do a balance transfer from a NAB card to any other credit card and vice versa, provided you meet the criteria and requirements of the card.

      I hope this has helped.

      Cheers,
      May

    Default Gravatar
    RowenaMarch 5, 2016

    Hi

    I have a Go Mastercard. As I understand it and please correct me if i am wrong. Is it not possible to transfer any balance to another Bank on an interest free balance transfer. Sorry if this is a dumb question.
    Regards Jo

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      SallyMarch 7, 2016Staff

      Hi Jo,

      Thanks for your question.

      There are many promotional 0% balance transfer offers available. You can compare some of these Balance Transfer Credit Cards.

      The terms and conditions of the balance transfer will depend on the card you have, the debt you carry, and the card you’re looking to transfer to.

      So long as the balance doesn’t exceed the balance transfer amount (which is usually a percentage of the approved credit limit) and you meet the eligibility requirements, you should have no trouble transferring a balance from your Go MasterCard to a new card.

      I hope this helps.

      Cheers,

      Sally

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      JonathanMarch 7, 2016Staff

      Hi Jo, thanks for your inquiry!

      You can transfer your balance to another bank/ credit card, excluding Latitude Financial Services credit cards since GO is a product of Latitude.

      Cheers,

      Jonathan

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