[Update: Some offers mentioned below have expired. You can view the current offers from our partners here — Citi Simplicity, Citi Diamond Preferred, Discover it —18-month balance transfer, Chase Slate, and Citi Double Cash. Disclosure: Cards from our partners are mentioned below.]
No matter if you’re looking to pay down existing debt or just want a little extra time to pay off a big upcoming purchase, a credit card with an introductory 0% annual percentage rate (APR) can be a useful tool. Balance-transfer credit cards or cards touting promotional financing offers can help you avoid paying interest on a purchase or existing high-interest credit card debt that you just can’t pay off in full right away.
Of course, no matter what your goal might be, it’s important to have a plan in place. Balance transfers, specifically, tend to cost a fee (though there’s at least one exception you’ll see below.) Plus, you always want to make sure your balance is gone before the your introductory period is over or else interest will be imposed once again — and those charges can add up quickly. Plus, credit card debt can really hurt your credit score. (You can see where your credit stands by viewing your free credit report snapshot, updated every 14 days, on Credit.com.)
Still, there are several credit cards that can buy you some serious time to pay off your balance. In fact, there are cards that offer 0% interest on purchases, balance transfers or both well into 2018. Here are five you might want to consider.
1. Citi Simplicity Card
The Citi Simplicity Card (see full review here) is one of the few credit cards that offer an introductory 0% APR for a full 21 months on both purchases and balance transfers. That means people applying for the card around the start of the new year will have a no-interest period that extends through most of 2018. Once the introductory period is complete, the APR will shift to a variable 13.24% to 23.24%, depending on creditworthiness. There is a 3% balance transfer fee, but depending on the size of your balance, your interest savings could make it well worth it. (You’ll have to do a quick cost-benefit analysis.) There is also no annual fee, no late fees, and no penalty APR. No penalty APR means if you happen to be late on a payment, you won’t be penalized with a higher interest rate. (Full Disclosure: Citibank advertises on Credit.com, but that results in no preferential editorial treatment.)
2. Citi Diamond Preferred Card
Just like the Citi Simplicity Card, the Citi Diamond Preferred (see full review here) will provide cardholders with an introductory 0% APR on purchases and balance transfers for 21 months. Once the introductory APR period has ended, your APR will change to a variable 12.24% to 22.24%. If you are thinking about transferring a balance, it’s important to know that there is a 3% balance transfer fee. Additionally, this card comes with no annual fee.
3. Discover it
If you are looking for a credit card that will not only give you 0% interest well into 2018 and also let you earn rewards, then you might want to consider the Discover it (see full review here). With this card, you will receive an introductory 0% APR for 18 months on balance transfers and for 6 months on purchases. Once the introductory periods are over, the rate will become a variable 11.24% to 23.24%.
In addition to 18-months of no interest on balance transfers, you will also have the ability to earn plenty of cash back with the Discover it card. Each quarter, there are select categories where you can earn 5% cash back on up to $1,500 in purchases. Categories can include gas stations, grocery stores, department stores, and more. All purchases that don’t fall within the bonus categories earn 1% back. After the first 12 billing statements, Discover will match all cash back that was earned through that year. (Remember, it’s important to not let the rewards deter you from paying off your balance, since interest will effectively render your cash back moot anyway.) The card has no annual fee.
4. Chase Slate
One of the best ways to eliminate the worry of paying a balance transfer fee is to move your balance to the Chase Slate card (see full review here). Not only will you receive an introductory 0% APR for 15 months on purchases and balance transfers, but there won’t be a balance transfer fee when the transfer is made within the first 60 days. (After that, the fee is 5% and, once the introductory APR period is over, the standard APR will change to a variable 13.24% to 23.24%.) The combination of the long introductory APR period and no balance transfer fee provides a considerable amount of savings to the cardholder. The card carries no annual fee.
5. Citi Double Cash Card
The Citi Double Cash card (see full review here) is not typically known as a balance transfer card, but it’s actually a very strong option. It offers cardholders an introductory 0% APR for 18 months on balance transfers. Once the introductory period is over, the rate changes to a variable 13.24% to 23.24%. That’s the same APR you’ll pay on purchases from the onset. The balance transfer fee is 3%. The Citi Double Cash card also offers its cardholders the ability to earn cash back on new purchases. You earn 1% on every purchases that you make and another 1% back once you pay for those purchases. (Again, it’s a good idea to refrain from overspending just to earn rewards.) The card carries no annual fee.
At publishing time, the Citi Simplicity, Citi Diamond Preferred, Discover it —18-month balance transfer, Chase Slate, and Citi Double Cash credit cards are offered through Credit.com product pages, and Credit.com is compensated if our users apply and ultimately sign up for these cards. However, this relationship does not result in any preferential editorial treatment. This content is not provided by the card issuer(s). Any opinions expressed are those of Credit.com alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the issuer(s).
Note: It’s important to remember that interest rates, fees and terms for credit cards, loans and other financial products frequently change. As a result, rates, fees and terms for credit cards, loans and other financial products cited in these articles may have changed since the date of publication. Please be sure to verify current rates, fees and terms with credit card issuers, banks or other financial institutions directly.