Welcome bonuses and rewards points might get the headlines. Still, great interest rates make credit cards so valuable in the long run. Perhaps the best interest rate you can find is 0% – namely 0% introductory APR on purchases, balance transfers, or both. But what credit card provides the longest 0% intro APR period?
The Credit Cards with the Longest 0% Intro APR Periods
Here are the current longest 0% introductory APR periods on credit cards from the leading banks:
|Credit Card||Purchase Intro APR||Balance Transfer Intro APR|
Citi Simplicity® Card
|0% for 12 months on Purchases||0% for 21 months on Balance Transfers|
|0% for 21 months on purchases||0% for 21 months on Balance Transfers|
Chase Slate Edge
|0% for the first 18 months from account opening date||0% for the first 18 months from account opening date|
U.S. Bank Visa® Platinum Card
|0% for 18 months from account opening date||0% for 18 months on balances transferred within 60 days from account opening|
Wells Fargo Reflect Card
|0% for 18 months, potential extension of up to 3 months for meeting minimum requirements||0% for 18 months, potential extension of up to 3 months for meeting minimum requirements|
A common feature amongst credit cards that offer a lengthy 0% intro APR period is no annual fee. While several credit cards offer 0% APR and feature an annual fee, the very best 0% intro APR cards feature three things in common:
- Lengthy, introductory interest rate
- A lower-than-average APR once the intro period ends
- No annual fee
Additionally, many intro APR credit cards require a good or excellent credit score for good approval odds. This means you should expect to have a FICO credit score of at least 700 before applying for these types of credit cards.
What to Look for in a 0% APR Credit Card
Before applying for a 0% intro APR credit card, here’s what to look out for:
How long is the 0% APR period? Understanding exactly how long your interest-free period runs is vital to getting the right credit card for your needs. If you have a small balance to pay down, a card with six months interest-free is probably enough. The larger your balance, the longer the introductory APR you’ll need.
Remember that after the introductory 0% APR period ends for each card, the interest rate on any future balance transfers will be variable and based on your creditworthiness. See the terms for each card for more details.
What Transactions Apply?
Does the introductory period apply to balance transfers? Purchases? Does it apply to both? Before applying for a credit card, make sure you understand what is covered.
Does the card have an annual fee? Will you earn rewards on eligible purchases? Are there special features unique to the card (special redemption rate, discounts, elite Visa or Mastercard protections?
Other Types of Credit Cards with 0% Intro APR
While no annual fee and low APR cards are the most common types of 0% intro APR credit cards, other varieties of credit also offer introductory interest rates.
Many store cards also feature 0% APR – although these special rates are often special financing and not 0% APR. Special financing with store (or closed-loop credit cards) means you won’t pay interest on your purchase if you repay the borrowed amount before thr promotional period expires.
Rewards Credit Cards
Several rewards credit cards also provide lengthy 0% intro APR periods. For instance,15 months of 0% APR on balance transfers is a common feature with Barclays credit cards.
Besides its Simplicity Card and the Diamond Preferred Card, Citi offers two cash back rewards credit cards with lengthy intro APR periods. Both the Citi Custom Cash℠ Card and Citi® Double Cash Card provide 0% intro APR, though on what – and for how long – differs between the cards.
The Custom Cash Card comes with 0% intro APR for 15 months on purchases and balance transfers. These intro APR periods are on par with rival cards from Chase – namely the Freedom Flex and the Freedom Unlimited.
Beyond the introductory interest rates, the Custom Cash Card also earns 5% back on your highest spending category each billing period, with categories including dining, drugstores, fitness clubs, gas stations, grocery stores, home improvement stores, live entertainment, select travel, select streaming services, and select transit.
The Double Cash Card is Citi’s other cash back credit card. The Double Cash offers 0% intro APR for 18 months on balance transfers made within four months of account opening. That intro APR on transfers is one of the longest on the market today and an excellent addition to a versatile cash back credit card.
With everyday use the Double Cash earns 2% back on every purchase with unlimited 1% cash back when you buy, plus an additional 1% as you pay for those purchases. That earning rate is on par with the TD Double Up, WF active Cash, and the new Bread Cashback Amex.
JP Morgan Chase also features two rewards credit cards with lengthy intro APR periods. The Chase Freedom Flex World Elite Mastercard earns 5% cash back on rotating categories each quarter after activation, 5% back on travel booked through Ultimate Rewards, 3% back on dining and drugstore purchases, and 5% cash back on eligible gas station purchases on up to $6,000 spent in the first year.
The Flex also features a lengthy 0% APR period to match its impressive rewards. New accounts enjoy 15 months of no interest on both purchases and balance transfers.
The Freedom Unlimited Card is the bank’s other cash back credit card. The card earns an unlimited 1.5% cash back on all purchases, except extra enhanced categories that mirror the Flex. And, like the Freedom Flex, Freedom Unlimited cardholders enjoy 15 months of no interest on BTs and purchases.
The information related to Citi Custom Cash Card, Citi Diamond Preferred Card, Citi Simplicity Card, and Citi Double Cash Card has been collected by BestCards.com and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer or provider of this product or service.
Featured image by Sean McSherry/Burst
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