No annual fee, balance transfer credit cards
Repay your existing credit card debt interest-free and save more money by shifting to a balance transfer credit card with $0 annual fee.
Are you burdened with high credit card fees and interest? Lower your costs and the time you need to make repayments while increasing your saving with a 0% balance transfer and no annual fee credit card. Take control of your expenses and compare your options using our guide.
How to use a 0% balance transfer to manage post-Christmas debt
What is a No Annual Fee 0% Balance Transfer credit card?
A balance transfer refers to the process by which you transfer an existing debt, that’s accruing higher interest, to a new credit card that charges a low or 0% p.a. interest on balance transfers for a promotional period (usually between 6 to 12 months). This rate reverts to the standard purchase or cash advance rate (which is typically between 13.45% and 20.95%) at the end of the introductory period. A no annual fee card, as the name suggests, is a card that doesn’t charge a regular yearly fee. Combine these features, and you have a low-fee card that allows cardholders to consolidate their debt while saving on fees. Compare your options, to determine whether this type of card will work for you.
What are the benefits of a no annual fee, 0% balance transfer card?
The benefits can include:
- Consolidation of debt at 0% p.a. interest. Customers can take control of their debt by transferring it to a card with a lower balance transfer rate to repay their debt without the burden of interest. Not only does this allow you to repay your debt faster, but can lead to dramatic savings.
- Competitive pricing. Competitive rates and interest can allow you to manage your finances with greater ease during the balance transfer period.
- Credit improvement. If you have debt spread across a number of cards, it can reduce your credit score. If you transfer the debt to a single card and reduce the overall amount, it could help repair your credit history.
What are the features of a no annual fee, 0% balance transfer card?
The main features of a no annual fee 0% balance transfer card are:
- Reward programs. While consolidating your debt is a big enough incentive for most customers, an added advantage of rewards program may make the card a must have. You can earn these reward points on eligible purchase.
- Complimentary travel insurance. Some cards offer complimentary travel insurance, which can be useful for customers who are planning an overseas trip.
- Interest-free days. Most of these cards provide interest-free periods on purchases, which means if used judiciously the expense of owning the card can be zero.
- Low or zero transaction fees. These cards may also provide very low or zero transaction fees on foreign transactions, which can be useful for customers dealing in foreign currency on a regular basis.
What should I be wary of when comparing a no annual fee, 0% balance transfer card?
- Limited no annual fee period. Many cards offer a lifetime of no annual fees, but some cards may only offer the no annual fee for an introductory period. Make sure you can afford the annual fee when it reverts to its usual rate if you plan on using the card for some time.
- Balance transfer fee. Some cards charge a balance transfer fee, which is usually a percentage of the total transferred amount. Customers who want absolute minimum fees and charges for a balance transfer should look for zero balance transfer fee cards.
- Balance transfer promotional period. These cards normally do not allow balance transfers to the maximum credit limit of the card. Most of these cards allow balance transfers up to 70-95% of the credit limit.
- A higher interest rate on purchases. This zero interest rate is only for balance transfers. If you make any new purchases, they attract a much higher interest rate. In this case, customers can transfer the balance to one card, and look for another card with a minimum interest rate on purchases to reduce their interest charges.
- Credit history. If you have a bad credit history, you may not receive approval for this type of card.
- Financial prudence. Customers using a balance transfer card usually want to reduce their interest burden and bring down their debt. Carefully plan your expenses during this time to ensure timely payback of the debt before the end of the 0% interest rate period.
How to apply for a no annual fee, 0% balance transfer credit card?Before applying, make sure you meet the eligibility requirements and organise the required documents:
The eligibility requirements will vary from card to card, but may include:
- Age. Are you aged 18 years or older?
- Residence Criteria. Are you a permanent New Zealand citizen or resident?
- Minimum income. You need to meet a minimum annual income to receive approval. The amount varies from card to card, but it typically sits between 30,000 to 40,000 dollars p.a.
- Existing bank. Can you transfer your current debt to your new card? Some reject transfers from other banks. See which banks you can transfer between here.
- Proof of identity. You need to provide identification, such as a driver’s licence or birth certificate.
- Balance details. If you want to conduct the balance transfer, you need to have the details of your current account and the amount you hope to transfer ready.
Balance transfer cards provide an ideal option to consolidate debt from different accounts and reduce the interest burden. They can provide much-needed breathing space, by offering 0% p.a. interest for an introductory period and no annual fees. Customers should compare the cards available in the table above and find the option that matches their needs and financial situation.Back to top
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