Compare balance transfer & purchase credit cards
Whatever type of credit card you're looking for our Smart Search can help:
- We'll show you cards likely to say YES
- Searching WON'T harm your credit score
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Save money on balance transfers and retail purchases with MoneySupermarket's comparison of the best credit cards with 0% on balance transfers and 0% on purchases. Some of them even give you rewards as well! Nobody wants a wallet full of credit cards.
Balance transfer & purchases guide
Nobody wants a wallet full of credit cards. For a start, it can be tricky to manage, plus you could be more likely to run up debts.
Two cards in one
But what if you want your credit card to fulfil more than one function? You might want a purchase credit card to make a major purchase with. But you might also need a balance transfer card if you have built up other card debts over the years on which you are paying a high rate of interest.
For example, anyone with debts on a store card could be paying an annual percentage rate (APR) of about 30%. A switch to a cheaper balance transfer deal could wipe out this interest instantly for the stated period of time.
Some people take out two separate cards – one for balance transfers and one for purchases. But if you want to cut down on the weight in your wallet, several issuers offer a good deal on both balance transfer and purchases, all on one card.
For example, a number of balance transfer and purchase cards charge zero interest on both purchases and balance transfers for a limited period, which could be 12 months or more. And the cards can be a great way to cut the cost of credit and manage your debts.
Let’s say you pay for a £2,400 holiday with a card that charges zero interest for 12 months. If you set up a direct debit to pay £200 every month for a year, you will clear the debt by the time the 0% offer expires and pay no interest. In other words, the card works like an interest free loan.
At the same time, you can switch any debts you have on another card. And, again, so long as you clear the outstanding balance within the 0% period, you will pay no interest.
Watch out for fees though. Most 0% balance transfer cards charge a fee of between 2% and 3% of the outstanding balance to switch. A borrower with a debt of £2,000 could therefore pay a transfer fee of up to £60. But don’t let the fees put you off completely as you can still often make a saving by moving to a cheaper card.
You should also read the terms and conditions carefully as most cards do not offer the same deal on balance transfers and purchases. For example, your card might charge 0% on purchases for 12 months and 0% on balance transfers for nine months – and it can be confusing to juggle the two schedules. You might also be able to get a better deal if you opt for two separate cards.
Difficulty with debt
Most cards these days do not charge an annual fee, but there will almost certainly be penalties if you are late with a payment, miss a payment or breach your credit limit. If you think you are getting into difficulty with debt, seek advice immediately. A number of organisations offer free debt advice, including National Debtline and Step Change.
Compare credit cards
There are hundreds of credit card offers on the market, but MoneySupermarket’s free independent comparison service can quickly and easily find the best deal for you, whether you want a balance transfer card, a purchase card, or both.
Your personalised chance of approval
We've taken the details you gave, and used them to show you personalised scores to tell you the chance that your application for each card would be successful.
Why is this important?
Every time you apply for a credit card, a mark is left on your credit score. That means it's better get it right first time. Your scores help you understand which cards you have the strongest chance of getting.
The higher the score, the stronger chance you have of getting the card. If you see a very low score, you're probably better off choosing a different card.
- Consider a different card
- Not eligible
- Your chances are good
- You've been pre approved
If you see a high score, you can be fairly confident. The scores aren't a guarantee, as acceptance of your application is at the sole discretion of the card issuer, but they should help guide your choice.
If you see a pre-approved score it may be subject to you passing additional ID and fraud checks by the provider.
In some cases, we will not be able to display a score for a product because we do not have enough information about the card issuer’s acceptance criteria or we have not been able to match your details at the credit bureau.
We work closely with our partners to improve our eligibility scores for all products that are of interest to you.
Set up a direct debit
If you’ve got debt to pay off, the easiest way to manage it is by setting up a direct debit to make sure you pay it off before the end of the interest free period.
For example, if you transfer a balance of £2,400 to a card that charges zero interest on balance transfers for 24 months, you could set up a direct debit for £100 a month and you would be debt-free by the end of the 0% offer.
If you can’t pay off the debt before the 0% deal expires, you could try to switch to another balance transfer offer at the end of the term. If that fails, you will start to be charged interest at the card issuer’s standard rate.
Some people choose to clear the outstanding balance in a lump sum at the end of the 0% offer. That’s fine, as long as you remember to make the minimum payment on the card each month – if you don’t, you’ll incur penalty charges.
And remember to make a note of the date when the full amount is due.
Where to next?
What is a good credit score?
Will I be accepted for a credit card?
How long will it take to be accepted for a credit card?
Moneysupermarket is a credit broker – this means we’ll show you products offered by lenders. We never take a fee from customers for this broking service. Instead we are usually paid a fee by the lenders – though the size of that payment doesn’t affect how we show products to customers.