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What is a balance transfer fee?

Learn more about the one-time fee you might pay when you move your debt to a new credit card.

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Balance transfers can be a useful way to consolidate existing debt without the high interest cost. While you'll save on interest with low balance transfer rates, it doesn't mean that balance transfers are cost-free. As well as the standard card fees, you might also have to pay a one-off balance transfer fee. This guide explains what this fee is and how you can confirm what you'll have to pay when you transfer your balance.

What is a balance transfer fee?

A balance transfer fee is a percentage-based fee charged when you transfer your existing credit card, store card, or personal loan debt onto a new credit card. The balance transfer fee is usually 1-3% of the entire balance transfer amount.

For example, if you are transferring $5,000 onto a new card and are charged a 2.5% balance transfer fee, the entire amount of the debt that will appear on the new card is $5,125 (the $5,000 existing debt and the $125 balance transfer fee). Unlike an annual fee, this fee is only charged once when you first move your balance.

Do I have to pay a balance transfer fee?

Not all balance transfer credit cards charge a balance transfer fee, so it's something worth considering when you're comparing your balance transfer options. If you're wondering if your new card will charge a balance transfer fee, you can check the product disclosure statement (PDS), the card review on finder or contact the card issuer to confirm the fee.

Compare credit cards without a balance transfer fee

Data indicated here is updated regularly
% p.a.
Name Product Balance transfer rate Purchase rate Annual fee Amount saved
HSBC Platinum Credit Card - Balance Transfer Offer
0% p.a. for 22 months
19.99% p.a.
Enjoy a 22-month balance transfer offer, travel insurance and an annual fee refund when you spend an eligible $6k/year.
Coles Low Rate Mastercard - Exclusive Offer
0% p.a. for 6 months
12.99% p.a.
Finder Exclusive. Ends 29 October 2020
Receive $100 off a Coles Supermarket shop when you make an eligible purchase within the first 30 days. Plus, a 0% balance transfer offer.
Citi Clear Card
0.9% p.a. for 15 months
0.9% for 15 months, reverts to 14.99% p.a.
Save with 0.9% p.a. for 15 months on purchases and balance transfers. Plus, complimentary purchase insurance cover.
Virgin Money No Annual Fee Credit Card
0% p.a. for 12 months
18.99% p.a.
Offers 0% p.a. for 12 months on balance transfers and up to 55 days interest-free on purchases, all for a $0 annual fee.
HSBC Platinum Qantas Credit Card
0% p.a. for 12 months
19.99% p.a.
Receive 20,000 bonus Qantas Points and a long-term balance transfer offer. Plus, complimentary travel insurance.
St.George Amplify Signature
0% p.a. for 6 months
19.74% p.a.
$139 annual fee for the first year ($279 p.a. thereafter)
Up to 200,000 bonus points (130k in the first year & 70k in the second year) when you spend $12k/year for the first 2 years.

Compare up to 4 providers

Balance transfer review and frequently asked questions

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2 Responses

  1. Default Gravatar
    RickyNovember 15, 2011

    Are you aware of any credit cards in the Australian market that currently charge a balance transfer fee? I’ve shopped around and I can’t find any at present…

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      JeremyNovember 17, 2011Staff

      Hi Ricky

      The HSBC Credit Card currently charges a 2% balance transfer fee.



Credit Cards Comparison

Data indicated here is updated regularly
Name Product Purchase rate Balance transfer rate Annual fee
Coles No Annual Fee Mastercard - Exclusive Offer
0% for 12 months, reverts to 19.99% p.a.
0% p.a. for 12 months
Finder Exclusive. Ends 29 October 2020
Save on new and existing interest charges with 0% interest on both balance transfers and purchases for the first 12 months.
ANZ Low Rate
12.49% p.a.
0% p.a. for 25 months with 1.5% balance transfer fee
$0 annual fee for the first year ($58 p.a. thereafter)
Save with 0% p.a on balance transfers for 25 months (with a 1.5% BT fee) and $0 first year annual fee. Plus a 12.49% p.a. purchase interest rate.
Qantas American Express Premium Card
20.74% p.a.
Enjoy 100,000 bonus Qantas Points, 50 bonus Status Credits and 2 complimentary Qantas Club lounge invitations per year.
Citi Rewards Card - $500 Voucher Offer
21.49% p.a.
0% p.a. for 12 months
$99 annual fee for the first year ($199 p.a. thereafter)
Get a $500 e-voucher to spend at Myer, JB Hi-Fi or Coles when you spend $3,000 in the first 90 days. Plus, earn points with the Citi Rewards Program.

Compare up to 4 providers

* The credit card offers compared on this page are chosen from a range of credit cards has access to track details from and is not representative of all the products available in the market. Products are displayed in no particular order or ranking. The use of terms 'Best' and 'Top' are not product ratings and are subject to our disclaimer. You should consider seeking independent financial advice and consider your own personal financial circumstances when comparing cards.

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