Balance Transfer Credit Cards

A balance transfer credit card can save you money on interest charges and help you pay off your debt faster. See how much you could save and apply online.

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Compare balance transfer credit cards

A credit card balance transfer gives you a way to move the money you already owe to a new credit card that offers a low or 0% introductory interest rate for a set period of time. Used wisely, this could save you about $2,000 on a $5,000 debt.
$
% p.a.
Name Product Balance transfer rate Purchase rate Annual fee Amount saved
Kogan Money Black Card - Exclusive Offer
0% p.a. for 30 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.
Citi Clear Card - Balance Transfer Offer
0% p.a. for 36 months
14.99% p.a.
$99
Offers 0% p.a. on balance transfers for 36 months with no balance transfer fee. Plus, complimentary insurance covers.
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.
St.George Vertigo Card
0% p.a. for 32 months
0% p.a. for 6 months, reverts to 13.99% p.a.
$0 annual fee for the first year ($55 p.a. thereafter)
Get a 0% interest rate on balance transfers for 32 months (with no balance transfer fee) and a $0 annual fee for the first year.
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.
ANZ Low Rate
0% p.a. for 30 months
12.49% p.a.
$0 annual fee for the first year ($58 p.a. thereafter)
Now eligible for Cashrewards Max. 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.
Virgin Australia Velocity Flyer Card - Balance Transfer Offer
0% p.a. for 28 months
20.74% p.a.
$0 annual fee for the first year ($129 p.a. thereafter)
Get 0% p.a. on balance transfers for 28 months and a $0 annual fee in the first year.
Kogan Money Black Card
0% p.a. for 12 months
20.99% p.a.
$0
Up to $400 Kogan.com Credit: $100 on your first eligible spend in 30 days and $300 when you spend $1,500 in 90 days.
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 - Purchase and Balance Transfer Offer
0% p.a. for 14 months
0% p.a. for 14 months, reverts to 21.49% p.a.
$49 annual fee for the first year ($149 p.a. thereafter)
Save with 0% on purchases and balance transfers for 14 months with no balance transfer fee. Plus, $49 first-year annual fee.
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.
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.
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.
Citi Clear Card - Cashback Offer
0% p.a. for 15 months
14.99% p.a.
$49 annual fee for the first year ($99 p.a. thereafter)
Get $250 cashback when you spend $3,000 in the first 90 days. Plus, free wine when you dine and purchase insurance cover.
Bendigo Bank Low Rate Credit Card
0% p.a. for 12 months with 2% balance transfer fee
0% p.a. for 12 months, reverts to 11.99% p.a.
$45
Save with 0% p.a. interest on purchases and balance transfers for up to 12 months, with a one-time 2% balance transfer fee.
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What is a balance transfer credit card?

A balance transfer credit card offers you a low or 0% interest rate for an introductory period when you move your existing debt to the new credit card account. This introductory period gives you breathing room from interest charges and can allow you to pay off your debts faster (and for less). You can also use it for debt consolidation.

balance transfer credit cards

Most balance transfer credit cards let you move debt from existing credit cards or store cards. There are also a few that accept debt from personal loans. The actual balance transfer process is simple: when you apply for a balance transfer credit card, you need to include details of the existing account and the amount of money you want transferred. If your application and balance transfer are approved, then your new credit card provider will move the balance to your new account.

After the balance is transferred, you can pay it off without having to pay interest (or a very low rate of interest) for a set period of time. At the end of the introductory period, any remaining debt from your balance transfer will attract a higher, standard interest rate.

Example: A 0% balance transfer card vs. paying off your current card

To help you figure out whether a balance transfer card could save you money (and time), we've compared a common balance transfer offer with monthly repayments on a standard credit card. The current balance and interest rates we have used are based on Australian averages from February 2021. We assume that the annual fee on both cards is the same and no new purchases are being made.

0% Balance Transfer CardStandard Credit Card
Current balance$2,874$2,874
Interest rate0% p.a.17.00% p.a.
Period or term12 monthsOngoing
Balance transfer fee1.5%N/A
Monthly repayment$239.50$239.50
Time to pay off12 months14 months
Interest paid$0$298.42

In this example, a credit card balance transfer would save you $298.42 in interest and you'd pay off your debt 2 months faster – even while making the same monthly repayments and forking out for a balance transfer fee. You can use our credit card repayment calculator to figure out how much you could save and set your repayment goals.

What is the best balance transfer credit card?

There are lots of balance transfer credit card deals available in Australia and there isn't one that is the "best", but some will offer you better savings than others. To help you find a balance transfer card that suits you best, here's what you need to know:

  • Look for a long offer. The longer the offer term, the more time you'll have to pay off your debt for a low or 0% rate.
  • Watch out for the transfer fee. Some cards charge a balance transfer fee of 1% to 3% and that can eat into your potential savings.
  • Find a low rate. Most balance transfer credit cards in Australia offer 0% interest for the promotional period. Typically, the lower the rate, the more you'll save.
  • Take note of the revert rate. If you haven't paid off the balance transfer by the end of the promotional period, the higher revert interest rate will be charged on your leftover debt.
  • Check the eligibility. You can usually transfer a balance from Australian-issued cards or accounts, as long as they are from a different issuer. Some cards also allow you to transfer debts from personal loans and lines of credit held with other Australian financial institutions. See our guide to the banks you can and can't transfer between for more information.
  • Know your limits. On some cards you can only transfer up to a percentage of your approved credit limit. This can range from 70% to 100% of your available credit limit. If you apply to transfer more than your limit, the remaining amount will stay in your old account(s) and collect interest. You can see Finder's guide to balance transfer limits for more information.

How to do a balance transfer in 4 steps

compare balance transfer offers1. Compare balance transfer offers
Use the table above to compare offers and see how much you could save.
apply for a new balance transfer card2. Apply for a new card
Read the requirements, gather your documents and request the balance transfer during the application.
activate your new credit card3. Activate your new card
When you receive the card, activate it by phone or online (and start making repayments).
close your old credit card4. Close your old account
You are not required to close your old account, but it's usually a good idea to help you stay out of debt.

Quick tips for making the most of your balance transfer

  1. Make sure you can transfer enough of your balance. It doesn't have to be 100%, but if you have to split your balance, make sure you can manage both cards.
  2. Pay off the full balance before the end of the promotional period (auto-payments can help). This way you will avoid the higher revert interest rate.
  3. Don't spend on the new card. This way your repayments go towards your balance transfer and you won't add to your debt.

Pros and cons of balance transfer credit cards

Balance transfer credit cards can be a useful tool to help you pay off existing debt and clear your balance faster. However, there are some potential downsides to these offers.

Pros

  • Save on interest costs. You can transfer your existing balance to a new card and get a low or 0% interest rate for a while. This will almost always be lower than the interest rate you're currently paying and will save you money on interest charges.
  • Pay off debt faster. By not paying interest (or paying a much lower rate), you should be able to pay off your balance a lot faster because the amount won't be creeping up (or will be a lot less) month after month.
  • Simplify your payments. If you have a few debts, you can use a balance transfer card to combine them so you only have to keep track of one credit card bill. Not only will this help you manage your debt, it can also save you money on annual fees and other card costs.
  • Complimentary extras. If you want to use the card after you have paid off your balance, perks like travel insurance or rewards could help you get more value out of the card in the long run.

Cons

  • Balance transfer fee. This is a one-time fee that you may have to pay to move your balance over to the new card. These fees can range from 0% to 3% on your balance transfer amount, which could mean a fee of $300 on a $10,000 debt.
  • Revert rate. If you don't pay off your whole balance in full during the introductory period, this is the interest rate you'll pay on the remaining balance. Typically, it is higher than the purchase interest rate.
  • Balance transfer limits. Depending on the card and how much debt you want to transfer, you may not be able to move it all onto the new card. You could still be saving money, but you'll also have to manage your existing card.
  • Credit score impact. Every time you apply for a new credit card, an enquiry is recorded on your credit report. If you already have a weak credit score, this could decrease it further and you may not be approved.

0% balance transfer and 0% purchase rate credit card offers?

A 0% balance transfer and 0% purchase rate credit card allows you to save on both existing and future interest costs. You can move over balances you already owe and pay 0% interest, as well as make new purchases and not have to pay interest for an introductory period. Revert rates apply to any existing debt after the promotional period ends, so it's important to pay off both of the balances in full to avoid interest.

How to use these credit cards wisely

Your 0% balance transfer and 0% purchase rate credit card will be a huge boon during its initial offer period, but only if you make effective use of it. Keep in mind the main dos and don'ts when using this type of card:

The dos

  • Transfer your balance quickly. Many credit cards require you to request the balance transfer at the time of application to take advantage of the 0% offer. While others may allow you to request the balance transfer within the first 30 days, it's important to remember that the 0% period applies when the card is approved (not when you transfer the debt across).
  • Pay off your balance in full. If the introductory offer lasts for 6 months, then make sure you are budgeting to ensure that the balance on your 0% balance transfer and 0% purchase rate credit card is paid off in full before the offer period expires. You will be charged the revert interest rate on any unpaid balance, which could be higher than 20%. However, if you find that you won't make it by the cut-off date, it may be worth considering transferring the balance again to another similar card from a different bank.

The don'ts

  • Don't make this a habit. Making one 0% interest balance transfer after another to avoid paying interest will be noted in your credit history. Your credit score may drop due to regular credit applications and the assessors of your credit file may well read into your habits and reject your applications for any more credit.
  • Don't make any cash transactions. Cash transactions (such as ATM withdrawals and gambling transactions) aren't often included in 0% interest promotional offers, and when they are, they still carry very expensive cash advance fees.
  • Only paying the minimum repayments. Pay your credit card balance in full each month whenever possible. If you can't do that, then make sure you're at least paying the minimum monthly repayment to help you avoid late fees. Calculating your own minimum monthly balance repayment is as simple as looking at what the minimum repayment percentage is (usually 2-3%) and calculating this against your outstanding balance, interest included. You can also use an online credit card repayment calculator to work out what your minimum monthly repayments will be.

Frequently asked questions

How many times can you do a balance transfer?

There is no set maximum amount of times you can transfer a balance between credit cards. However, you should factor in any balance transfer fees, the enquiries on your credit report and your chance of being approved for new cards with different banks. Ideally, you should focus on paying it back in full and eliminating the need for multiple transfers.

What happens at the end of my balance transfer?

After the introductory period ends, the 0% interest rate ends too. If there's any debt left over that you haven't paid, it will start to be charged interest at the "revert rate". This is usually, though not always, the cash advance rate. The cash advance rate is higher than the purchase rate, so if you haven't paid off your balance in time, it could end up costing you more in interest than your old card. This is why it's so important to plan your repayments and pay off as much of your debt as possible during the introductory period

Do balance transfers hurt your credit?

A balance transfer does not inherently hurt your credit score. Whenever you apply for a new credit card, it does leave a hard enquiry on your credit report (and may decrease your score) but the balance transfer itself has no effect. That said, missing repayments on your credit card will hurt your credit score, so be sure to weigh up what's best for keeping your credit healthy.

Does 0% interest mean no payments?

No, even if you're paying no interest on your balance transfer debt, you still have to make at least the minimum repayment for each statement period. This is usually stated as "3% of outstanding balance or $30, whichever is greater". You can check the minimum payment requirements by looking at review page for individual cards or by looking at the key facts sheet that credit card providers must share with you before you apply.

What happens if I put purchases on a 0% balance transfer credit card?

Unless the card offers an interest-free period for the purchases, you'll be charged interest when you carry a balance transfer. Your repayments will also go towards the part of your balance that attracts the highest interest rate – which would be new purchases in this case. So, you'd need to make sure you could repay your purchases and the balance transfer debt. Otherwise, you'll be wasting your 0% balance transfer offer.

Can I use my balance transfer card to make new purchases?

Yes but those purchases will collect the standard purchase interest rate. Even if your card has an introductory 0% rate on new purchases, you should concentrate on repaying your debt rather than making more purchases. It's also important to note that for many banks, interest-free days don't apply to purchases when you're carrying debt from a balance transfer.

What happens if I keep my old card open?

When you transfer an existing balance to a new card, it's your responsibility to contact your current credit card or loan provider and close the old account. If you don't, you could end up paying account costs for a card you're not using. Before you close the card, make sure the balance is completely transferred or paid in full and move any regular payments (such as direct debits) to another account.


Balance transfer credit cards can help you save on interest costs and get your debt under control. As there are so many different balance transfer cards on the market, there is no one best option that works for everyone. Instead, look at the size of your debt, what you can afford to pay each month and the card’s features to find a balance transfer card that works for you.

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27 Responses

    Default Gravatar
    sueOctober 21, 2019

    $0 credit card no fee lowerest interest rate

      Default Gravatar
      NikkiOctober 23, 2019

      Hi Sue,

      You may refer to page about low rate credit cards. There, you will find a table that compares the key features of each credit card including purchase rate, annual fee, interest-free periods, and balance transfer rate. This is an easy place to start your comparison and find a card that suits you.

    Default Gravatar
    DOctober 17, 2019

    Hi,

    I’ve narrowed my choice down to either St. George Vertigo Classic, BankSA Vertigo or Bank of Melbourne BT as they are all 0% pa for 18 months, with an annual fee of $55 per year which suits me. The purchase rate is different on each, however my question is this: “As long as I don’t purchase anything on any of these cards (I don’t usually on a BT because otherwise it never gets paid!) during the time I have it and also during the promotional period, I won’t get charged any purchase rate? So basically, only if I purchase?”

    Just trying to choose which of these 3 cards is best as I have no intention of buying anything once I’ve transferred my debt.

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      JeniOctober 19, 2019Staff

      Hi D,

      That’s correct. If you don’t make any purchases, you won’t be charged the purchase interest rate on anything. You can check our guide about managing purchases on a balance transfer card if you’d like more details.

    Default Gravatar
    sueAugust 2, 2019

    What are the hidden costs paying off a credit card this way. I have a $4500.00 balance on my credit card. About a quarter of what I pay goes on on charges, a payment of $45.50 plus goes in charges just to make the payment. I got into this card with the whole own it now and now with no interest on purchases. And when I got it I realized it was just a credit card, with huge interest on purchases. Silly me I guess. But how many people actually read the terms, they seem like a whole lot of words nobody has heard of .. I will be reading them with a magnifying glass from now on.

      Default Gravatar
      NikkiAugust 3, 2019

      Hi Sue,

      There aren’t really any hidden costs. But when it comes to interest on new purchases, a lot of cards don’t offer interest-free days when you have a balance transfer. This should be clearly disclosed by the bank. For now, if you can, you should focus on paying back that money as quickly as you can and then avoiding any new purchases on the card until the balance transfer is paid off.

    Default Gravatar
    KarmaJune 5, 2019

    Do you have to have good credit rating to transfer balance?

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      JhezJune 5, 2019Staff

      Hello Karma,

      Yes, you’ll usually need to have at least a good credit rating to be approved for a balance transfer credit card.

    Default Gravatar
    LizApril 24, 2019

    HI! I have a joint credit card with my ex husband. He is not making payments. We owe $23k on the card. Looking at doing a balance transfer. Will any banks allow a 100% balance transfer? How easy is it to transfer the balance? My credit score is not great due to missing some payments, will this be a factor in getting approved? Thanks, Liz.

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      MaiApril 25, 2019Staff

      Hi Liz,

      There are banks that will allow you to transfer the whole balance from your old card, but it may be tricky to transfer such a large amount if your credit score isn’t very good. Say the new card allows you to balance transfer 80% of the available credit limit, you’d need to be approved for a limit of at least of $28,750 to cover the full $23,000 balance from the old card.

      If you’re concerned about being approved, you should work to improve your credit score before you apply for another card. I would also suggest to get in touch with your current bank and see if there is anything they can do to help. All financial institutions have hardship policies and they may be willing to work with you.

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