The truth

The simple truth and biggest benefit of a 0% balance transfer is - you can pay off your balance faster when you're not paying interest.

You could also save hundreds of pounds in interest charges by switching to a 0% balance transfer credit card.

Paying off your balance

If you can afford to repay a large amount of money each month, you can reduce the interest charged on your balance and clear your debt faster without switching.

However, a 0% balance transfer credit card could help you repay your debt quicker and cost you less overall.

19.9% APR credit card example

The table below shows how long it takes to repay different credit card balances based on an APR of 19.9%:

Balance 50 monthly repayments 100 monthly repayments 150 monthly repayments
500 1 year* 7 months* 5 months*
1,000 2 years, 2 months* 1 year* 9 months*
1,500 3 years, 6 months* 1 year, 7 months* 1 year*
2,000 5 years, 4 months* 2 years, 2 months* 1 year, 5 months*
2,500 8 years* 2 years, 9 months* 1 year, 9 months*
* Rounded up to the nearest month - the final payment will be smaller.

0% credit card example

If you have a 0% credit card, and therefore do not pay interest on your balance, the table below shows how long it takes to repay different balance amounts:

Balance 50 monthly repayments 100 monthly repayments 150 monthly repayments
500 10 months 5 months 3 months*
1,000 1 year, 8 months 10 months 7 months*
1,500 2 years, 6 months 1 year, 3 months 10 months
2,000 3 years, 2 months 1 year, 8 months 1 year, 2 months*
2,500 4 years 2 years, 1 month 1 year, 5 months*
* Rounded up to the nearest month - the final payment will be smaller.

Is it worth switching?

  • If you can only afford to repay a small amount each month: It will take you longer to pay off your balance, and you'll pay more interest too. Consider paying more each month or switching to a 0% balance transfer card.

Using a credit card with an 19.9% APR means it could take twice as long to repay a 2,500 balance compared to a 0% card, and you pay approximately 2,245 in interest*.

  • If you can afford to pay a large amount each month: You will repay your balance faster, but still get charged some interest. Compare the tables above, and switch to a 0% balance transfer card if it could help you repay your balance faster.

* Based on a 50 monthly repayment amount.

How to get the right deal

Compare as many credit cards as possible to find the best balance transfer deal for you.

Most cards will charge you a balance transfer fee, which is usually added to your balance, but some do not charge anything to transfer.

Here are some balance transfer credit cards available:

Q

How many balance transfer cards can you have?

A

If each application you make is accepted, there is no limit. The more cards you have, the higher the chance of your credit debt spiralling out of control.

Q

When should you avoid a balance transfer?

A

If you don't stand to save money on interest charges by transferring. Here are more reasons why you should avoid balance transfer cards.