These credit cards offer an introductory 0% p.a. interest rate on balance transfers, as well as a $0 annual fee that could apply for the first year or for life. Both of these features can help you save on credit card costs as you clear your existing debt.
Exclusive to finder.com.au - St.George Credit Card Offer
0% p.a. for 14 months on purchases
$0 first year annual fee
Offer ends 12 February 2020
Eligibility criteria, terms and conditions, fees and charges apply
Exclusive to finder.com.au - St.George Credit Card Offer
Save money on both new purchases and existing card debt with this exclusive Finder credit card offer for the St.George Vertigo.
- 0% p.a. for 14 months on purchases (reverts to 13.99% p.a.)
- 0% p.a. for 6 months on balance transfers (reverts to 21.49% p.a.)
- $0 annual fee for the first year ($55 p.a. thereafter)
- Additional cardholder at no extra cost
Compare balance transfer credit cards with $0 annual fees
Updated December 6th, 2019
How are $0 annual fee and 0% balance transfer cards different to other cards?
While a variety of credit cards offer introductory 0% p.a. interest rates on balance transfers, some of them also charge an annual fee. This cost is usually applied when the account is first open, then every year on that anniversary. If you get a balance transfer card that has an annual fee, this charge will usually accrue interest from the time it is added to your account.
This is because the annual fee is considered separate to the balance transfer and also won't be eligible for interest-free days (which don't typically apply to purchases while you have a balance transfer debt). So, a balance transfer credit card that offers no annual fee allows you to enjoy an introductory interest-free period for your debt without paying a yearly account-keeping fee.
What to consider when comparing $0 annual fee and 0% p.a. balance transfer credit cards
Some of the key details to consider before you apply for a balance transfer credit card that also offers no annual fee include:
- Annual fee waivers. Some cards charge no annual fee ever, while others only waive it as a promotional offer for the first year. In the latter case, you should know when the annual fee will kick in (for example, in the second year) and how much the annual fee will cost from then on. This is especially crucial if you have a card with 0% p.a. on balance transfers for more than 12 months.
- Balance transfer period. Promotional balance transfer offers typically vary from 0% p.a. for 6 months to 0% p.a. for 24 months (or sometimes even longer). So before you apply, make sure that the length of the interest-free offer gives you enough time to repay your entire balance before the introductory period ends. If you don't, the remaining balance will start collecting interest that could quickly add to your debt.
- Revert rate. The revert rate is usually the cash advance rate or purchase rate that applies to your credit card balance if you're unable to repay the entire debt before the introductory offer ends. You should pay attention to the revert rate if you're uncertain that you can clear your debt within this promotional period.
- Balance transfer fee. This is a one-time fee that you may have to pay to move your balance over to the new card. There are credit cards that don't have a balance transfer fee, but some cards charge up to 3% on your balance transfer amount, which could mean a fee of $300 on a $10,000 debt. The balance transfer fee is usually a small amount compared to the interest you will save, but you should still factor it in to your overall costs.
- Balance transfer limits. Some credit cards allow you to transfer debts up to 100% of your new credit card limit, while some may impose a balance transfer limit. For example, some cards only let you transfer a balance up to 80% or 90% of your approved card limit to the new credit card. This is important to consider when you're comparing products and when you're requesting a credit limit for any new card that you apply for.
Other features you might also want to look at include:
- Purchase rate. Any new purchases made on the card will attract the standard purchase interest rate. These will not be eligible for interest-free days and your card repayments will go towards your purchases first (rather than your balance transfer debt) if it's collecting a higher purchase rate.
- Cash advance rate. Cash advances, such as ATM withdrawals, usually incur a higher interest rate of around 20% p.a. to 22% p.a. Cash advances collect interest immediately and a cash advance fee, so you might want to avoid them if you’re trying to save on interest costs.
- Complimentary extras. If you plan to continue using the card after you have paid off your balance, perks such as complimentary travel insurance or rewards could help you get more value out of the card in the long run. However, these features may not be as important when your priority is to pay off debt.
Keep in mind that there is a wide range of credit card offers on the market that can provide value in different ways. This means you can compare a range of different options before choosing one that fits with your circumstances.
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