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Compare credit card introductory offers and promotions
Find a card with an introductory offer that suits your needs.
You can take advantage of introductory offers to get more value from your new credit card by saving on fees, earning more points or getting cash back to your account. These offers are usually only available for a limited time and you’ll need to meet specific requirements to take advantage of the deal. Use this guide to compare current introductory offers and learn how to choose a credit card that works for you.
What's in this guide?
How can I get a promotional credit card offer
You usually have to meet specific requirements to be eligible for an introductory offer on a credit card. These conditions vary but usually include:
- Being a new customer. Introductory offers, such as bonus points, are usually reserved for new credit card customers. For example, if you have a card issued by American Express, you likely won’t be eligible for another Amex introductory offer.
- Applying within a specified date. Many promotional offers are only available to applicants who apply and are approved by a set date.
- Meeting the spend requirements. When a bonus points offer is available, you’ll often be required to meet a spend requirement by a set date to receive the points. For example, you may need to spend $3,000 in the first 90 days of card approval to earn your bonus points.
Before you apply for a card with an introductory offer, make sure you fully understand these terms and conditions to ensure you can get the full value from the offer.
Comparison of credit cards with introductory offers
Select your credit score below and click on Show cards to take a look at cards with welcome offers within your credit range.
There are numerous introductory offers available depending on what you want from a credit card. For example, if you want to save on card debt, you could look at balance transfer offers that give you a low or 0% introductory interest rate. Or, if you want rewards for your spending, you can compare cards that offer introductory bonus points. With so many different introductory credit card deals, we’ve summarized some of the most popular options you can compare.
0% balance transfer credit card offers
A 0% balance transfer credit card can be a useful tool to consolidate and repay debt without the cost of interest over a set length of time. Once the promotional offer ends, a standard revert rate applies and any remaining debts will begin to collect interest, often at the higher cash advance rate.
Interest-free balance transfers are only available for a limited time, so you’ll be required to apply and receive approval before the offer end date to take advantage of the promotional 0% interest rate. You can usually request the balance transfer and provide the details of your existing account when you apply.
Credit cards that offer 0% interest on purchases
You can save by paying a low or 0% introductory interest rate on your purchases. At the end of the introductory period, the promotional rate reverts to a standard interest rate that applies to any balance carried from these purchases.
Purchase rate offers can be useful if you have a lot of planned expenses coming up and want a flexible and affordable way to pay them off over time. To get the most out of low or 0% purchase rate deals, you should aim to pay off the new charges before the end of the introductory period.
Reduced or no annual fee credit card offers
This type of introductory offer waives or reduces the credit card’s annual fee for a promotional period — usually the first 12 months. Depending on the credit card, first-year annual fee promotions can save you up to hundreds of dollars. These introductory annual fee offers tend to change or refresh every year or so.
After the introductory period, the standard annual fee will be applied to the account. So, if you plan to use your credit card beyond the promotional period, you should pay attention to the standard annual fee when comparing credit cards.
Bonus reward point credit card offers
Many rewards credit cards include bonus points when you apply and are approved for the card. Depending on the offer, you could be able to get up to 100,000 bonus points.
Bonus points offers are usually only available when you apply by a certain date and meet the spend criteria. This means you may need to spend a certain amount within a specific period — such as $1,500 in the first three months — to collect the bonus points. As long as the spend requirement fits within your budget and doesn’t outweigh the value of your bonus points, it can be an easy way to boost your points balance as soon as you apply for the card.
Credit cards that offer bonus airline miles
Many airline credit cards also offer bonus points on sign up. If you’re applying for a cobranded airline card, you’ll receive miles associated with that airline. For example, the AAdvantage® Aviator® Red World Elite Mastercard® provides AAdvantage miles to your loyalty account. Again, these offers often have expiration dates and you’ll need to spend a minimum amount within a set period to qualify for the bonus points offer.
Cashback credit card offers
This type of introductory offer gives you cashback when you get a new credit card and meet the requirements. You usually need to spend a specific amount of money on the card before you can enjoy the cashback offer. For example, an offer might give you $200 cash back if you spend $500 in the first three months you have the card.
Some cashback offers also require you to spend the minimum amount in a specific way, such as by making contactless payments. This type of offer can give you extra value if you can manage these specific requirements.
Other introductory credit card offers
As well as the major introductory offers outlined above, some credit card companies may offer other more unique deals for new customers. These introductory offers could include:
- Gift cards. Similar to cashback deals, some credit cards offer complimentary gift cards to new customers, usually for an affiliated store or brand. To be eligible, you usually have to apply during the promotional period and may need to enter a promotional code online.
- Discounted purchases. Some credit cards may offer you a discount on specific transactions. For example, a frequent flyer credit card could offer 10% off flight bookings made with the affiliated airline during the promotional period.
Depending on the credit card, you may be able to take advantage of more than one of these offers at a time. For example, a card that offers a 0% balance transfer rate could also have a discounted annual fee for the first year, while a card with bonus points may also offer 0% interest on purchases during the honeymoon period.
How to compare credit card introductory offers
While introductory offers can sweeten the deal when you sign up for a credit card, you should also look at the card’s ongoing features. Here are some additional factors to consider.
- The promotional interest rate. Depending on the card, the promotional offer may have a low or 0% interest rate. Usually, the lower the interest rate, the more you’ll save on interest.
- The length of the introductory period. Promotional balance transfer and purchase rates applies as soon as your card is activated. It’s important to calculate how much you’ll need to pay each month to repay the entire balance before the promotional period ends.
- The promotional offer end date. These offers are only available for a limited time, so you’ll need to apply before the end date to take advantage of them. Check the terms and conditions to make sure any offers you want are still available before you apply.
- The ongoing interest rates. If you have a card with a low or 0% purchase or balance transfer deal, the standard interest rates will apply to any balances remaining at the end of the introductory period. These rates are generally much higher than those of the introductory offer.
- Standard annual fees. If you get a reduced or waived annual fee offer, make sure you check the standard annual fee so that you know how much you will have to pay after the first 12 months.
- Other fees and charges. As well as the annual fee, the card may come with other rates and fees such as balance transfer fees, cash advance fees, foreign transaction fees and late payment costs.
- Interest charges. If you have to meet a minimum spend to earn bonus points or redeem your introductory offer, remember that these purchases will collect interest.
Rewards and extras
- Spending requirements. Most cashback and bonus point offers require you to spend a minimum amount in an introductory period of a few months.
- Standard rewards points. As well as the bonus points, make sure the regular rewards program (including the earn rate and how you can redeem your rewards) suits your spending behaviors and rewards goals.
- Complimentary extras. Additional ongoing perks such as international travel insurance, extended warranties and concierge services can bring more value to the card that you choose. However, they can also attribute to higher annual fees.
Introductory offers have the potential to provide you with more value when you get a new credit card. While almost anyone can benefit from these deals, the value they provide really depends on your individual circumstances.
It’s also important to remember that this card’s benefits only last for a set amount of time before reverting to the standard features. So being aware of how credit card offers work and considering both the introductory offer and the ongoing card features means you can choose a card that offers you value now and in the future.
Mistakes to avoid with credit card intro offers
While credit card introductory offers can help you get more value from your card, there are some mistakes to avoid to ensure the card costs don’t outweigh the offer’s benefits. Some of the common mistakes cardholders make and how you can avoid them include:
- Ignoring the offer terms and conditions. Introductory offers have specific eligibility requirements you have to meet, so make sure you understand the fine print before you apply.
- Wasting the promotional offer time period. With a balance transfer or purchase rate offer, the promotional period will begin as soon as your application is approved. To avoid wasting the valuable offer, make sure you start consolidating your debt or paying off your purchases as soon as possible to take advantage of the full offer.
- Not looking at the card’s ongoing features. While introductory offers can give you short-term benefits, the standard features of a credit card determine its ongoing value. Always check these features before you apply for a credit card to decide if it’s worth it for you.
- Not checking the offer’s end date. For some offers, you must apply before the end of the promotional period. Regularly comparing credit cards can help you stay up-to-date with all the offers available when you’re considering a new card.
- Not using the card after the introductory period. If you decide you don’t want the card you applied for after getting an introductory offer, you could end up paying more credit card fees and adding to your debt. Make sure you consider this before you apply, choose an appropriate card, or cancel the account if you no longer want to use it.
Introductory credit card offers can be a terrific boon if used properly and should play a large part in how you make your final credit card decision. But if you want to see all available credit card offers on hand, compare credit cards to find one that’s right for you.
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