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Best balance transfer credit cards of 2022

We compared over 200 cards to find the best options for paying off your debt in 2022

We ranked the best balance transfer card picks for 2022 based on our research and placed them into six major categories. We considered factors such as the length of the intro APR period, balance transfer fees and rewards. Finder’s experts provide unbiased, trustworthy evaluations of all balance transfer credit cards and providers, not just those we partner with on the site.

Quick look: Best balance transfer cards

Best for ongoing rewards program

Chase Freedom Flex℠

Finder rating 4.7 / 5 ★★★★★

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The Chase Freedom Flex℠ combines a 15 months 0% intro APR on purchases and balance transfers with a lucrative mix of rotating and flat rate rewards categories. And given the value and flexibility of the Chase Ultimate Rewards program, the Chase Freedom Flex℠ should be one of your top choices if you're looking for value long after your balance transfer period ends.

Best for carrying a balance long term

Chase Slate Edge℠

Finder rating 4.6 / 5 ★★★★★

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The old Chase Slate returns from the dead as the Chase Slate Edge℠, bringing with it a few new features. Notably, the card allows you to lower your interest rate by up to 2% each year when you meet the requirements. You can get your APR as low as 9.74%, which is excellent if you need to carry a balance.
All information about this card has been collected independently by Finder.

Best for simple 0% intro APR on balance transfers and purchases

Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card

Finder rating 4.6 / 5 ★★★★★

The Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card is back to offering its market-leading 21 months intro APR on balance transfers. The Diamond Preferred is especially notable for having an intro APR on purchases as well, giving you some flexibility in how you wish to use your new card.

Best for cash back

Citi® Double Cash Card

Finder rating 3.8 / 5 ★★★★★

Though the Citi® Double Cash Card isn't the best flat-rate cash back card by our estimation — that goes to the Chase Freedom Flex — market changes have made it one of the better balance transfer card options available in 2021. That's because the card possesses not only a higher-than-average cashback rate at 2%, but a higher-than-average balance transfer period at 18 months — just behind the U.S. Bank Visa Platinum's 20 months.

Best for small purchases

Citi Rewards+® Card

Finder rating 4.1 / 5 ★★★★★

The Citi Rewards+® Card combines a solid 15 months intro APR on balance transfers with a unique rewards feature. On all purchases, Citi will round your points earned to the nearest 10 points. That measure once your balance transfer period is over, you have a great rewards card for racking up points on small purchases on your hands.

Best for a long 0% intro APR

U.S. Bank Visa® Platinum Card

Finder rating 4.8 / 5 ★★★★★

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After the Citi Diamond Preferred and Citi Simplicity lost their 21-month intro APRs, the U.S. Bank Visa® Platinum Card became the defacto choice for a balance transfer card with the longest intro APR period. It helps that the card is solid in other respects, including requiring no annual fee and perks like cell phone protection.

Best for cash back flexibility

U.S. Bank Cash+™ Visa Signature® Card

Finder rating 4.4 / 5 ★★★★★

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The U.S. Bank Cash+™ Visa Signature® Card is another great example of a rewards card that doubles as a more than solid balance transfer card. While the Citi Double Cash is still the king of cash back when it comes to such a card, the flexibility offered by the U.S. Bank Cash+™ Visa Signature® Card is an asset for targeted spending.

Best for foodies

U.S. Bank Altitude® Go Visa Signature® Card

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Not only is the U.S. Bank Altitude® Go Visa Signature® Card the new standard for foodies, boasting a 4x rate on dining (including delivery and bars), but it offers plenty of other perks as well, including an intro period on balance transfers. Couple that with no annual fee and you've got big value on dining rewards and saving in just one card.

Best for no balance transfer fee

Navy Federal Platinum Credit Card

The Navy Federal Platinum Credit Card is one of the few cards on the market right now that don't charge a balance transfer fee on transfers. In fact, the card is light on fees on the whole, requiring no annual fee, no cash advance fee, no foreign transaction fee and a low average APR. The tradeoff is you'll need to be a Navy Federal Credit Union member to obtain this card.

What’s changed in 2022

Many cards lost their balance transfer offers in 2020, with U.S. Bank remaining one of the few providers to leave their offers relatively untouched. As a result, U.S. Bank has taken several spots for 2022, including cashback flexibility, dining, and the longest intro APR period.

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Compare all balance transfer credit cards

See more balance transfer offers and save money on interest. The best balance transfer card for you will be the one with the lowest fees and enough time to pay down your consolidated debt.

5 steps to choose the best balance transfer card

To make the right credit card choice and save money, you’ll want to perform the following steps.

  1. Figure out how long you’ll need to pay off your debt. Intro periods for 0% APR typically reach as high as 18 to 21 months — for example, with the Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card. Some cards, such as the SunTrust Prime Rewards, have intro APRs higher than 0% but offer their promotional rates for very long periods.
  2. Take balance transfer fees into account. Some cards offer no balance transfer fees for either a promotional period or at all times. Keep in mind that some cards that never charge transfer fees come with less-attractive intro APRs or interest rates.
  3. Factor the card’s annual fee into your payments. Many balance transfer cards have no annual fees. If your card has an annual fee, consider how this will cut into your potential savings from a balance transfer.
  4. Look for a low revert APR. If you can’t pay off your card in full by the end of the intro period, it reverts to an APR rate that immediately applies to the balance you owe. APRs for these cards skew high, so consider whether you can pay down the full transferred balance before the intro expires.
  5. Look at the card’s rewards. If you want rewards, you may need to sacrifice the length of your card’s intro APR. Many balance transfer cards with rewards have intro periods only around 15 months.

Pros and cons

A balance transfer card is a terrific tool for saving on interest, but there are some tradeoffs to face for using one.

Pros

  • Save money on interest. Balance transfer cards can help you save money on interest that you already pay on your credit card debt.
  • Rewards. Most balance transfer cards also come with a rewards program. This gives your card value after the intro APR period ends.
  • No annual fee. Balance transfer cards typically come with a $0 annual fee, which helps you save even more money on fees.
  • May also come with intro APR on purchases. There are quite a few cards on the market that offer an intro APR on purchases in addition to balance transfers. This can help you further save on interest if you manage to pay off your balance transfer debt ahead of schedule.

Cons

  • Balance transfer fees. You have to pay a balance transfer fee of either 3% or 5% of the amount.
  • Poor travel rewards. Balance transfer cards that offer rewards are typically cashback cards. These are excellent for everyday purchases like gas, groceries and dining. But cards that offer travel rewards, rarely come with a 0% intro APR period on balance transfers.
  • May not be able to transfer your entire debt. You can make balance transfers up to the amount of your available credit limit. If your credit limit is lower than your debt, you won’t be able to transfer all of it.

A balance transfer card can save you money

A balance transfer is worth it when the money saved on interest outweighs any balance transfer fees.

Let’s say you owe $4,000 on a credit card with an interest rate of 19% and you intend to pay $300 each month. Instead, you move the debt to a balance transfer card with a 0% intro APR for 15 months and a 3% balance transfer fee. Although you would pay $120 in balance transfer fees, you would pay off the debt in just under 14 months and avoid paying any interest during this time.

If you kept the debt on the original card, you would pay $529 in interest. By moving the debt to the balance transfer card, you end up saving $405 dollars. In this case, the balance transfer card is clearly worth it.

4 options for repaying credit card debt

Here are four common options for tackling this kind of debt that help illustrate how they stack up.

Details of the original card
  • Credit card balance: $4,000
  • Original card int. rate: 19%
  • Monthly payment: $300
  • Cost in interest: $529
Cost in interestCost in transfer feesTotal costTime to pay off debtSavings
Balance transfer to card with 0% APR$0$120$12014 months$405
Pay off card faster: $515 monthly payment$303$0$3039 months$226
Debt consolidation loan at 5% APR$124$120$24414 months$285
Paying the minimum$5,740$0$5,74010+ years-$5,211

In this case, a balance transfer card is the best option. Although you’ll pay a balance transfer fee, you’ll save the most in interest over time.

You asked, we listened: Top 5 common questions

There can be a lot of fine print when it comes to balance transfers. Here are the five most common questions we receive on the subject.

  1. How much can I transfer? The minimum and maximum amount you can transfer during a balance transfer is typically determined by your card’s credit limit.
  2. What credit score do I need? Generally, you need a good credit score or better to qualify for a balance transfer card.
  3. What kinds of debt can I transfer? Aside from credit card debt, you can transfer nearly any type of monthly payment owed, such as student loans, auto loans and personal loans.
  4. What mistakes should I avoid in my application? Applying for a balance transfer card with your existing credit card issuer is one of the biggest mistakes you can make.
  5. What happens if I can’t pay off my balance in time? If you can’t pay your full balance in time, the revert APR will kick in and you’ll need to start paying that interest on future payments.

Bottom line

The best balance transfer card for you depends on your finances, debt repayment plan and how you spend. If none of the cards on our list of best picks feel like the right fit, compare more cards to find one that’s right for you.

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Our team evaluates credit cards to determine their value against similar cards on the market.

We rank card types — travel, cash back, business — on a set of factors that are most relevant to that type of card. We create these rankings to help you narrow down a credit card that best suits your spending and budget.

Learn the details of our methodology and scoring.

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