Enjoy interest-free spending for up to 14 months with a credit card that offers you 0% p.a. on purchases.
Whether you're booking a holiday, buying furniture or getting ready for a big event, a 0% purchase rate credit card gives you a way to save on interest charges during the introductory period. Depending on the card you choose, you could get between 3 and 14 months interest-free on your purchases. As well as giving you some breathing room to pay off your balance, the 0% p.a. purchase rate could help you save on interest and avoid more debt.
Use this guide to compare 0% purchase credit cards and different types of offers you can choose from. You can also learn about common mistakes to avoid and find answers to frequently asked questions so that you can find a 0% purchase rate credit card that works for you.
0% p.a. for 14 months
Offer ends 30 April 2018
Eligibility criteria, terms and conditions, fees and charges apply
Virgin Money Credit Card Offer
Enjoy a 0% introductory rate on purchases and balance transfers, plus, earn Velocity Points on your everyday purchases.
- $129 p.a. annual fee.
- 20.74% p.a. on purchases
- Cash advance rate of 20.99% p.a.
- Up to 44 days interest free
- Minimum income requirement of $35,000 p.a.
Compare 0% Purchase Credit Card Offers
The best* interest-free credit cards - finder.com.au
Compare the features of these competitive 0% purchase credit cards below:
- Virgin Australia Velocity Flyer Card - 0% Interest Offer. Get 0% p.a. for 14 months on purchases and earn Velocity Points per $1 spent.
- NAB Low Rate Platinum Card. Enjoy 0% p.a. interest on purchases for 9 months on purchases, plus platinum perks.
- NAB Low Rate Business Card. A card designed especially for business spending. Enjoy 0% p.a. on purchases for the first 12 months and a $0 annual fee for the first year. Offers are valid until 17 June 2018.
What is a 0% purchase credit card?
A 0% purchase credit card offers you an interest-free period on purchases for a promotional period that starts when you first get the card. If you need to make a big-ticket purchase, have a lot of expenses coming up or just want to save on everyday spending, you could use a 0% purchase credit card to save on interest charges during the introductory period. Without the burden of interest, you could also find that you're able to pay off the balance faster. But at the end of the promotional period, the card's standard purchase rate will apply to any balance you're carrying from the purchases.
How is a 0% purchase credit card different from a regular credit card?
While a standard credit card typically has an interest rate between 13% p.a. and 22% p.a. for purchases, credit cards offering interest-free purchases charge 0% p.a. interest on all eligible purchases made during the promotional period.
How can I find the best* 0% purchase credit card?
There is no one best 0% interest credit card on the market, because each offer is designed to suit different spending habits and budgets. But you can find a 0% purchase credit card that works for you by comparing the following features:
- The 0% purchase rate introductory period. The introductory period for a 0% purchase rate offer can range from 3 to 14 months or more. When you're comparing credit cards, consider how much you're going to spend and divide it by the number of months in the promotional period. If you can repay that amount each month, you will clear the balance before the standard purchase rate applies. If you can't pay it all off before the end of the introductory 0% interest period, you might want to apply for a card with a longer introductory period or be prepared to pay some interest when the offer ends.
- Annual fee. Most 0% purchase credit cards charge an annual fee. To decide if the card is worth the cost, look at how much you'll save with the 0% interest offer and any other perks on the card. Ideally, the value of the interest savings and extra features should outweigh the cost of the annual fee. Alternatively, you could compare credit cards that have no annual fee.
- Standard purchase interest rate. If you can't pay your balance in full by the end of the introductory period, your remaining debt will be charged interest at the card's standard purchase rate. This varies between cards but is typically between 13% p.a. and 22% p.a. If you don't think you can repay the entire balance before the 0% purchase rate period ends, look for a card with a lower ongoing purchase rate. Otherwise, you could also consider transferring the debt to a card with a 0% balance transfer offer to continue paying off your debt without interest for a promotional period.
- Extra benefits. Does the card come with complimentary travel insurance? Do you want to earn rewards points on your purchases? Will your purchases be covered by purchase protection and extended warranty? Can you access a 24/7 concierge service? If you will be using the card for more than just the 0% offer, comparing these features can help set the cards apart.
Types of 0% purchase credit cards
There are several different types of interest-free purchase credit cards you can choose from. You can use this table to compare the additional benefits and features to determine which type of 0% purchase credit card offer is right for you.
|0% purchase offer type||Benefits|
|0% purchase offer||You can use these cards to make purchases and pay 0% interest for a specified introductory period, which will revert back to the standard purchase rate once the offer has ended. Extra benefits such as interest-free days, travel benefits and complimentary insurances may also be available.|
|0% purchases with frequent flyer programs||Make interest-free purchases during the introductory period and earn frequent flyer points for every dollar spent on your card for the life of the card.|
|0% purchases with balance transfer offers||This type of 0% p.a. credit card offer allows you to transfer and repay an existing credit card debt interest-free whilst also making purchases with zero interest. The lengths of the 0% promotional period usually varies between the balance transfer and purchase offer.|
|0% purchases with rewards benefits||Pay no interest on your purchases and earn rewards point for every dollar you spend. Unlike a frequent flyer card, these are connected to your credit card's rewards program and can be redeemed for flights, merchandise and cashback.|
What's the difference between interest-free days and 0% interest credit card offers?
Most credit cards offer cardholders interest-free days on purchases when they pay their balance in full by the due date each statement period. The length of the interest-free days varies between cards, but you can usually expect up to 44 or 55 days interest free. If your card offered up to 55 interest-free days and you paid your balance in full on the second day of the statement, you'd get 54 interest-free days. If you paid it off on the third day, you'd get 53 interest-free days and so on.
In comparison, credit cards with an introductory 0% interest rate on purchases give you a set amount of time to make purchases without paying any interest when you first get the card. You only have to make minimum payments during the promotional period. But a standard interest rate will apply to any balance remaining at the end of that period, so it's wise to pay as much as you can each statement period to clear the entire balance before the promotion ends.
5 common mistakes to avoid with 0% purchase credit cards
If you want to get the most out of a credit card's 0% interest period, watch out for these traps:
- Ignoring the revert rate. At the end of the promotional period, the 0% purchase rate will revert to the standard purchase rate (which usually sits between 13% and 22%). Check the standard purchase interest rate before applying for a credit card so you're aware of the potential costs if you don't pay off your purchases during the introductory period.
- Forgetting to make repayments. Even with an introductory 0% p.a. interest rate on your credit card, you still need to pay at least the minimum amount listed on each statement. This is usually 2% or 3% of the total balance or a dollar amount, such as $20 to $30. If you don't pay the minimum by the due date on your statement, you could be charged a late payment fee.
- Only making the minimum repayment. If you only pay the minimum amount each month, you won't repay the entire balance before the 0% interest offer finishes. Any balance remaining after that will be charged interest at the card's standard rate, making it harder to pay off the debt. To avoid this situation, aim to pay off all your purchases before the introductory period ends. If you're unable to repay your balance before the 0% purchase offer ends, a balance transfer might be the next step.
- Ineligible transactions. This type of 0% credit card interest rate offer only applies to eligible purchases. So if you use your card for balance transfers, cash advances, government payments or other cash-equivalent transactions, the card's standard interest rate will apply to these charges (unless a separate promotional offer applies).
- Not taking advantage of the entire offer period. The 0% purchase rate offer is available as soon as your credit card is approved, not from when you make your first purchase. So if you get a credit card with 0% p.a. on purchases for six months but you don't make a purchase or any repayments for the first month, you'll only have five more months of the interest-free period. If you have a big purchase in mind, make it as soon as possible and start making repayments immediately to get the maximum value out of the offer length.
Credit cards that offer an introductory 0% p.a. on purchases can be a great way to save money on purchases, but only for a limited time. When comparing these cards, pay attention to the length of the promotional period, what interest rate applies at the end of the introductory offer and any other card features and fees so that you can find one that suits your needs.
Frequently asked questions about 0% purchase credit card offers
If you want to know more about 0% purchase credit cards, here you'll find answers to some of the most common questions. You can also get in touch using the comment box below to leave your own question about 0% purchase credit cards.