Ulster Bank Longer Balance Transfer Credit Card review 2021

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Like its NatWest and RBS sister cards, this Ulster Bank deal offers a hard-to-beat 23-month 0% balance transfer period with a relatively low transfer fee.

Finder rating: ★★★★★

Representative example: When you spend £1,200 at a purchase rate of 21.9% (variable) p.a., your representative rate is 21.9% APR (variable).

23 months

0% interest on balance transfers

21.9%

Representative APR

£0

Account fee

3 months

0% interest on purchases

Details

IssuerUlster Bank
NetworkMastercard
Annual/monthly fees£0
Balance transfers0% for 23 months reverting to 21.9%
Balance transfer fee1.99%
Purchases0% for 3 months reverting to 21.9%
Purchases interest-free periodUp to 56 days
Money transfers26.9%
Cash advances26.9%
Min credit limit£400
Max credit limitNot specified
Additional cards available1
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Review by


Tom Stelzer is a writer for Finder specialising in personal finance, including loans and credit, as well as small business and business loans. He has previously worked as a freelance writer covering entertainment, culture and football for publications like FourFourTwo and Man of Many. He has a Master of Media Arts and Production and Bachelor of Communications in Journalism from the University of Technology Sydney.

Expert review

If you’re in the market for a balance transfer credit card and after the longest possible 0% transfer period, it’s hard to look past this Ulster Bank card.

With a best-in-class 23-month 0% balance transfer period, and 0% on purchases in the first 3 months, it’s a worthwhile card for anyone looking to transfer a balance and wanting as much time as possible to do so.

However, you’ll need to transfer your balance in the first 3 months to benefit from the 0% offer, and will only be able to transfer up to 95% of your total credit limit.

You’ll also be charged a balance transfer fee, which may you’ll need to keep in mind when comparing other balance transfer cards. You also won’t be able to transfer a balance from another NatWest or RBS card.

While the balance transfer period is the main attraction, the card also offers a competitive 21.9% representative APR, and no annual fee.

Ultimately, if you’re after the longest 0% balance transfer period you can find, the Ulster Bank Longer Balance Transfer card is as good as it gets. But for those looking to move a large balance, or who think they can pay off their balance in less than 23 months, it may be worth looking for a card that charges no transfer fees instead.

The Ulster Bank Longer Balance Transfer Credit Card is issued on the Mastercard network so it's accepted at nearly 53 million merchants across more than 210 countries and territories.

Pros and cons

Pros

  • Almost two years of 0% interest to focus on reducing existing card debt
  • Three months to spread the cost of purchases
  • No annual fee

Cons

  • Minimum annual income requirement of £10,000
  • Only available to existing customers

How does it compare?

Ulster Bank's card

Name Product Balance transfers Balance transfer fee Purchases Annual/monthly fees Rep. APR Incentive Link
Ulster Bank Longer Balance Transfer Credit Card Mastercard
0% for 23 months reverting to 21.9%
1.99%
0% for 3 months reverting to 21.9%
£0
21.9% (variable)
Representative example: When you spend £1,200 at a purchase rate of 21.9% (variable) p.a., your representative rate is 21.9% APR (variable).
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Other popular balance transfer deals

Table: sorted by length of 0% balance transfer offer, promoted deals first
Name Product Balance transfers Balance transfer fee Purchases Annual/monthly fees Rep. APR Incentive Link
M&S Bank Transfer Plus Mastercard
0% for 29 months reverting to 21.9%
2.75% (min. £5)
0% for 3 months reverting to 21.9%
£0
21.9% (variable)
Earn 1 point for every £1 spent at Marks and Spencer's and 1 point for every £5 spent elsewhere. 100 points = £1 reward voucher. Points will be converted into reward vouchers 4 times a year.
Representative example: When you spend £1,200 at a purchase rate of 21.9% (variable) p.a., your representative rate is 21.9% APR (variable).
Check eligibility
HSBC Balance Transfer Credit Card
0% for 29 months reverting to 21.9%
2.85% (min. £5)
0% for 3 months reverting to 21.9%
£0
21.9% (variable)
Discounts and exclusive offers for dining experiences, leisure activities and shopping available through HSBC Home and Away.
Representative example: When you spend £1,200 at a purchase rate of 21.9% (variable) p.a., your representative rate is 21.9% APR (variable).
Check eligibility
Santander All in One Credit Card
0% for 26 months reverting to 17.9%
0% for 26 months reverting to 3% (min. £5)
0% for 20 months reverting to 17.9%
£3 per month
23.7% (variable)
0.5% cashback after £1 of monthly spend. Cashback paid monthly into card account. Maximum spend for cashback purposes is limited to credit limit.
Representative example: When you spend £1,200 at a purchase rate of 17.9% (variable) p.a. with a fee of £3 per month, your representative rate is 23.7% APR (variable).
Check eligibility
M&S Bank Shopping Plus Credit Card
0% for 20 months reverting to 21.9%
2.9% (min. £5)
0% for 20 months reverting to 21.9%
£0
21.9% (variable)
Earn 1 point for every £1 spent at Marks and Spencer's and 1 point for every £5 spent elsewhere. 100 points = £1 reward voucher. Points will be converted into reward vouchers 4 times a year.
Representative example: When you spend £1,200 at a purchase rate of 21.9% (variable) p.a., your representative rate is 21.9% APR (variable).
Check eligibility
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Approval for any credit card will depend on your status. The APR shown represents the interest rate offered to most successful applicants. Depending on your personal circumstances the APR you're offered may be higher, or you may not be offered credit at all. Fees and rates are subject to change without notice. It's always wise to check the terms of any deal before you borrow.

Repayment options

You can make manual repayments through Ulster Bank's app, by logging in to your online banking or over the phone (0800 046 6486). Alternatively, you may wish to set up a direct debit.

A direct debit protects you from forgetting to make a repayment and losing your promotional interest rate as a result (as well as damaging your credit score and incurring the late payment fee of £12).

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

Provided you already have a current account, savings account, credit card or mortgage with Ulster Bank, you can start by going to the bank's site and using its "Credit card eligibility checker". This runs a "soft" credit search to give you a clear idea as to whether or not you'd be approved for the deal (without hurting your credit score). If it's good news, you can proceed to the full application, which takes 5-10 minutes to complete.

Frequently asked questions

What credit limit will I get with the Ulster Bank Longer Balance Transfer Credit Card?

If Ulster Bank is able to offer you this deal, the offer will specify a personalised credit limit based on Ulster Bank's assessment of your situation. The minimum limit offered on this card is £400 and Ulster Bank does not specify a maximum. Once you've had the card for a while and shown Ulster Bank that you're reliable, you may wish to apply for a credit limit increase.

Can I withdraw cash using the Ulster Bank Longer Balance Transfer Credit Card?

Although it's possible, withdrawing cash from a credit card account is generally not a good idea, as "cash-like transactions" (withdrawing cash at an ATM, getting cashback at the till, spending at a casino, buying currency, etc.) often incur steep fees and/or higher rates of interest.

The cash advance fee on the Ulster Bank Longer Balance Transfer Credit Card is 3% (min. £3). For example, if you withdraw £50, you'll incur a fee of £3.00. Withdraw £250, and you'll incur a fee of £7.50.

The interest rate on this part of your balance will be 26.9%, which is 23% more than the standard purchases rate (chargeable from the day of the transaction – the card's usual "up to 56 days interest-free" grace period won't apply).

Can I transfer a balance from another Ulster Bank-branded card to the Ulster Bank Longer Balance Transfer Credit Card?

No. Ulster Bank doesn't accept balance transfers from credit cards issued through the NatWest group, which (as well as NatWest) includes Ulster Bank, RBS and Coutts.

What should I do with my old credit card after transferring the balance to the Ulster Bank Longer Balance Transfer Credit Card?

Transferring a balance doesn't automatically close your old account. In most cases, you'll want to close the old account(s) straightaway, especially if they have an annual/monthly fee or if you might be tempted to use them in the future. There is an argument that you should keep the old account open to help your credit score. That's because doing so keeps your "credit utilisation ratio" lower (that's a measure of how much credit you're using compared to what's available to you), and helps the average age of your credit accounts. However, unless you're just about to apply for a new mortgage, it's probably fair to say that most people would prefer to have no more bank accounts open than was truly necessary.

How much does it cost to use the Ulster Bank Longer Balance Transfer Credit Card abroad?

Non-sterling transactions are subject to a 2.75% charge. For example, if you spend 200 euros (£172.27), it'll cost you around £4.74.

Can I transfer money from the Ulster Bank Longer Balance Transfer Credit Card to a bank account?

Yes. That's what's known as a "money transfer" (rather than a "balance transfer") in credit card jargon. You can arrange this from your online banking or using Ulster Bank's app. This part of your card balance will incur interest of 26.9%. The fee for a money transfer is 3%.

Finder credit card ratings

★★★★★ — Excellent
★★★★★ — Good
★★★★★ — Average
★★★★★ — Subpar
★★★★★ — Poor

Our experts score balance transfer cards to determine their value against similar products on the market. We look at a number of important factors, like the length of the balance transfer offer, the balance transfer fee, any restrictions to making a transfer, plus the potential costs involved with running the card both in the short and longer term.

You can read more about our scoring criteria on our credit card methodology page.

We show offers we can track - that's not every product on the market...yet. Unless we've said otherwise, products are in no particular order. The terms "best", "top", "cheap" (and variations of these) aren't ratings, though we always explain what's great about a product when we highlight it. This is subject to our terms of use. When you make major financial decisions, consider getting independent financial advice. Always consider your own circumstances when you compare products so you get what's right for you.

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