What is a money transfer credit card?
A money transfer credit card allows you to shift cash from your credit card to your current account. You'll often be offered an interest-free period, during which you can try to repay the debt.
This type of credit card can help you:
- clear an expensive overdraft or payday loan debt.
- get an interest-free loan for cash-only purchases.
Money transfer credit cards can serve a fairly similar purpose to balance transfer credit cards, but the key difference is that balance transfer cards only allow you to shift debt between credit cards.
How 0% money transfer credit cards work
Your credit card provider may charge a one-off fee to transfer the money (typically around 4%) and will normally charge you interest on the balance, unless you get an offer with a 0% interest period.
The best money transfer credit card deals allow you to shift a balance for a fee, while the debt left on the card remains interest-free for as long as 19 months.
Say you held an 18-month 0% money transfer credit card with a limit of £2,000. You could request a money transfer of £1,000 into your bank account - at a typical 4% fee, you would owe £1,040 on your credit card and have £1,000 in your bank account to spend straight away. You'd have more than a year to clear the credit balance before interest was charged.
If your current account was overdrawn, and the fees were costing you £30 a month, you may be better off clearing it with a money transfer and making repayments on your credit card, especially if you can repay it before interest kicks in.
Before you apply for a money transfer credit card, make sure it's right for you. Essentially, you'll need to establish whether you can afford to pay off the debts before the 0% period is up or you risk hefty interest fees.
- Find out more: how to pay off your debts
Best 0% money transfer credit card deals
We’ve picked out some of the current market-leading offers below. The table is ordered by the length of the 0% period.
Please note that the information in this article is for information purposes only and does not constitute advice. Please refer to the particular terms & conditions of a credit card provider before committing to any financial products.
|Credit card||Introductory 0% money transfer period||Money transfer fee||Cost of moving £2,000||Representative APR|
Virgin Money 19-Month All Round Credit Card
|Representative example: assumed borrowing of £1,200 at an interest rate on purchases of 21.9% per annum variable, 21.9% APR representative variable. Credit subject to status. Terms apply.|
MBNA Limited Long 0% Money Transfer Credit Card
|Representative example: assumed borrowing of £1,200 at an interest rate on purchases of 21.93% per annum variable, 22.9% APR representative variable. Credit subject to status. Terms apply.|
Tesco Bank 15-Month All Round Credit Card
|Representative example: assumed borrowing of £1,200 at an interest rate on purchases of 20.94% per annum variable, 20.9% APR representative variable. Credit subject to status. Terms apply.|
Data correct as of 3 May 2022
Just make sure that you check the card's features, interest and terms carefully before you apply.
Best credit card providers for 0% money transfer deals
When comparing 0% money transfer deals, it’s hard to know what a provider is like to deal with, or how quickly issues are resolved.
To help you choose the right card for your circumstances, Which? has reviewed 26 credit card companies and scored them on deals and customer service.
Money transfer credit card golden rules
When you use a 0% money transfer credit card, there are some things you need to know and pitfalls to avoid. We’ve set out the golden rules below.
1. Only borrow what you need
The credit limit on your 0% money transfer deal is not a target. Remember to only borrow what you need to avoid falling into a debt spiral. If you're having debt troubles you should contact a charity like StepChange or National Debtline which can give you free guidance.
2. Make the minimum repayment each month
You need to make at least the minimum repayment on your money transfer card. If you don’t, the provider may take away the 0% money transfer promotional rate, so that interest will apply immediately. A missed payment could also be recorded on your credit report.
3. Don’t use at an ATM to withdraw cash
Withdrawing cash from an ATM on a credit card is a big no-no – even on a 0% money transfer credit card.
Cash withdrawals are classed differently from money transfers and will attract a higher rate of interest. Your 0% period for money transfers won't apply, so you'll start paying interest straight away on these transactions.
4. Have a plan to repay before interest kicks in
Make sure you have a plan for how to pay back your balance before the 0% period ends and you need to start paying interest. You can use our credit card repayment calculator to work out how much you'd need to pay off each month to clear the debt in time.0% money transfer credit card FAQs
Still have some questions about 0% money transfers? Check out if they’re covered below.
Can I take cash out from an ATM?
A 0% money transfer credit card shouldn’t be used to take cash out at an ATM, as this will count as a cash withdrawal rather than a money transfer.
Cash withdrawals typically attract much higher rates of interest compared to other types of transactions and can be recorded on your credit report and may be seen as a red flag to other potential lenders.
Will I be able to use my whole limit?
Your credit card provider will probably allow you to shift up to 90% of your credit limit into a bank or building society current account.
Will I get Section 75 protection on my purchases?
Making a money transfer to your current account and then using a debit card to pay for goods and services will mean you lose Section 75 protection provided by the Consumer Credit Act 1974 usually available on credit cards.
However, if you pay using a debit card, you will be able to use chargeback protection for your purchases.
Would a money transfer from a credit card affect my credit score?
Having a money transfer credit card could negatively impact your credit score if you don't use it sensibly - meaning you don't pay back the minimum monthly payments each month. Conversely, if you pay back the bill each month, you could boost your score, particularly if you pay more than what you owe. This should show lenders you're a responsible borrower.
How can I get a money transfer credit card?
You should be able to apply for a money transfer credit card on the website of the provider of your choice, in branch or over the phone. You'll need to do an eligibility check first, so be prepared to answer questions about your personal details and financial circumstances. You'll also need to provide proof of ID.