Long-term 0% balance transfer credit cards get even cheaper
Virgin Money has slashed the fee on two of its longer lasting 0% balance transfer credit cards.
The Virgin Money 40-month Balance Transfer Credit Card now charges a fee of 1.99% to shift debt, down from 2.49%.
Meanwhile the Virgin Money 32-Month Balance Transfer Credit Card now only charges an impressive 0.66% fee to move debt.
We take a look at how these stack up in our best buy tables.
Lowest fee vs longest 0% period: finding the right balance
Most balance transfer cards tend to fall into one of two categories: the first only offer a relatively short 0% period, but in return will charge you a tiny fee – or none at all!
For example, Halifax offers a 25-month balance transfer credit card with no balance transfer fee.
If you are certain that you can clear your debt within that two-year window, then one of these balance transfer credit cards are worth going for as they'll always be cheapest.
The second category of cards are those that offer the longest 0% balance transfer window, but you have to pay a hefty fee up front for the privilege: you can get 42 months interest-free with Sainsbury's Nectar only Long Balance Transfer Credit Card, but the fee is a whopping 4%.
However, in recent years we've seen a handful of lenders launching cards that sit somewhere between these two categories. The balance transfer offers are only a few months off the longest, but the fees are more manageable – usually below 1.5%
Below are some of the best low-fee cards around, ranked by longest 0% balance transfer offer but charging less than 1.5% in transfer fees.
0% period on balance transfers
Balance transfer fee
Fee paid on £2,000 transfer
Representative APR after 0% period ends
*Card comes with an annual fee of £36
It's worth pointing out that you'll need a good credit rating to qualify for most of these cards.
If you keep being turned down, don't carry on applying as you'll hurt your credit rating. Instead, try to make some cutbacks if you can and pay off more of your debts. Be sure to keep up your repayments and your credit rating will, in time, improve.
If you don't think you can keep up on moving your debt around, then a lifetime low-rate balance transfer credit card might suit you better.
Instead of remaining interest-free for a certain amount of time, these credit cards have a low APR applied to the balance from the start of the transfer that lasts as long as you take to pay it off. Some of the best cards in this category don't charge a transfer fee and those that do keep it very low.