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MBNA 0% Transfer and Purchase Credit Card review 2020
This dual-purpose card offers lengthy 0% deals on both purchases and balance transfers made in the first 60 days.
If you’re looking for a credit card to help spread the cost of an upcoming expenditure, but you already carry a balance, this “matched” card may be one of the most promising around.
You say: ★★★★★We say: ★★★★★
Doing its job: 4/5
In a nutshell:
0% interest on balance transfers
0% interest on purchases
0% interest on money transfers
|Balance transfers||0% for 18 months reverting to 20.93%|
|Balance transfer fee||2.99% for 2 months reverting to 5%|
|Purchases||0% for 18 months reverting to 20.93%|
|Purchases interest-free period||Up to 56 days|
|Money transfers||0% for 12 months reverting to 20.93%|
|Min credit limit||£0|
|Max credit limit||Not specified|
|Additional cards available||3|
|Incentive||Introductory 0% purchase offer only applies to purchases made within 60 days of opening.|
Chris Lilly is a publisher at finder.com. He's a specialist in credit-based products including business and personal loans, mortgages and credit cards, and is passionate about helping UK consumers make informed decisions about their borrowing. In his spare time Chris likes forcing his kids to exercise more.
MBNA cards are all about the table-topping longest 0% periods, and this card’s no exception – battling it out with the likes of Barclaycard and Santander for the best “matched” credit card title. Because these cards are all about minimising what you pay in interest, there aren’t any rewards/perks to be had – which is fair enough really, since those programmes usually come at a cost.
If you only plan to take advantage of one of the 0% introductory periods (purchases or balance transfers), however, then there are longer 0% offers out there on more specialised cards – from MBNA and others. Specifically, if you’re after a long balance transfer deal, you should start by looking at no-fee deals.
As with most balance transfer deals, there are a few important Dos and Don’ts to bear in mind.
Do work out how much you need to pay off each month to get debt-free before the end of the 0% period (just divide your balance by the number of months at 0%).
Don’t use your new card for cash advances (withdrawing cash from an ATM or getting cashback at a merchant), since there’s a fairly punishing 5% fee for the privilege. If you need cash, it’s cheaper to set-up a money transfer from the card to your current account – you can do this in the app. If you transfer money from the card within the first 60 days of having it, you’ll benefit from up to 12 months of 0% interest on that part of your balance too.
Pros and cons
- Balance transfers, money transfers (that's when you transfer funds from the card to another account) and purchases can all be interest-free with this deal.
- Despite being part of the same banking group as Halifax and Lloyds, balance transfers from these banks are allowed.
- You can do a lot in the very respectable mobile app – from freezing and unfreezing cards to arranging transfers.
- Looking for perks and rewards? Sorry – MBNA's all about making savings.
- Balance transfers and money transfers are both subject to an initial fee (see table above).
- After the first 60 days, any balance transfers, money transfers or purchases you make will be subject to interest.
- Cash advances will incur a whopping 5% fee.
How does it compare with other matched 0% deals?
With a double-barrelled 0% interest period on both balance transfers and purchases made in the first 60 days, the MBNA 0% credit card could be a good option for those who have a balance they need to move, while also planning large upcoming expenses.
You’ll then have 18 months of no interest in which to pay off your balance, which could offer much-needed breathing room, provided you make sure to transfer your balance, or make your large purchase, within the allotted 60 days.
While there’s cards with longer 0% balance transfer periods available, the bonus 0% on purchases could be a decisive sweetener for those who need it.
You can make manual repayments through MBNA Limited's app, by logging in to your online banking or over the phone (0345 606 2062). Alternatively you may wish to set up a direct debit.
A direct debit protects you from forgetting to make a repayment and either damaging your credit score, getting hit with a penalty fee (£12) or losing any promotional rates as a result.
You can arrange a direct debit for repayments when you apply for the credit card. The table below shows the options available.
Choose from the following direct debit options for your monthly repayments:
|Minimum amount||Fixed amount||Fixed percentage||Full amount|
How to apply
If you have compared cards and want to apply, completing the secure online application form takes about 15 minutes. Before you apply, MBNA requires you to use its “clever Check” eligibility tool, to see which cards you’d stand a strong chance of being approved for. This part of the process involves a “soft” credit check, and won’t hurt your credit score at all. If you then do then opt to apply for a card, MBNA will run a full, “hard” credit search, which has a small (but usually short-lived) negative effect on your credit score.
Frequently asked questions
How long does an MBNA balance transfer take?
If you're applying for the card today, you can request a transfer in the application process and MBNA states it'll go through within ten days. If you already have your card, you can arrange a transfer through your internet banking or in the app, and MBNA states it'll take one day to go through.
Any institutions that I can't transfer a balance to MBNA from?
Just MBNA. So even if you have an outstanding balance on a card held by another arm of the Lloyds group (Halifax, Lloyds, Bank of Scotland), you're fine.
How long does an MBNA money transfer take?
It's the same as a balance transfer: up to ten days if you're just applying, or if you already have the card, one day.
How quickly can I ask MBNA for a credit limit increase?
After six months. From then on, you can ask for further increases every six months. Any credit limit increases are at the discretion of MBNA, and you'll need to have used your card responsibly since you're had it in order for your request to be granted. That means having stayed within your current limit and having made all repayments on time.
Do I need to tell MBNA if I'm going to use the 0% Transfer and Purchase Credit Card overseas?
No, this is no longer necessary. Don't forget that if you do use your MBNA card abroad, a currency conversion fee of 2.95% will apply. MBNA cards tend to be a decent bet for balance transfer or purchase deals, but less so for travelling – you may wish to consider a dedicated card for that.
Can I choose my own PIN for the MBNA 0% Transfer and Purchase Credit Card?
You'll get issued one randomly by MBNA, but if you want to change it you can go to any cash machine attached to a high-street bank, select "PIN services" and then "Change PIN".