Q: Hey CreditCardGuru, I see a lot of cards with 0% on transfers and then others that give it for purchases. Which ones currently offer 0% on balance transfers AND purchases at the same time?
A: That’s an excellent question. One important thing to keep in mind is that for the few credit cards that do offer 0% on purchases and balance transfers, they usually give a much shorter offer on the purchases. For example a card may give 12 months on balance transfers and only 6 months on purchases… obviously still a great deal, but it’s just something you will want to keep in mind.
Which offers are best?
For a current listing of the best 0% offers, check out our listing of the best cards that give 0% on balance transfers and purchases (which is updated almost constantly)
Remember that you can’t transfer between cards with the same bank – i.e. you can’t transfer the balance from one Bank of America card to another and expect to get the 0%, unfortunately. This is why you will have to choose a new company to transfer to.
Last but not least, something else to consider is the rewards program. Before the credit card reform went into effect, it was dumb to make standard (non-promotional rate) purchases while you were carrying a 0% balance. Why? Because banks would apply your payments to the lowest rate balances first (as in, the 0% transfer) so you would always be slapped with interest on standard rate purchases no matter what.
Fortunately the reform changed that – now payments are applied to the higher rate balance first, so it now actually makes sense to use your credit card for purchases as long as you pay those charges in full each month. So when you are picking out a credit card the gives 0%, consider the reward programs too because you might as well get a card you will want to use in the long run.