What is a money transfer credit card?
A money transfer credit card allows you to shift cash from your 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.
- use an interest-free loan for cash-only purchases.
- take advantage of an interest-free period to pay off your balance.
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 28 months.
Say you held a 28-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 two years 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.
Find out more: 44 tips on paying off your debts
Best money transfer credit card deals
Which? Money Compare can help you compare credit cards that come with 0% money transfer deals. We’ve picked out some of the 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 the savings account provider before committing to any financial products.
|Credit card||0% money transfer period||0% money transfer fee||Cost of transferring £1,000||Representative APR|
|Tesco Bank Clubcard Credit Card for Balance and Money Transfers||28 months||3.94%||£39.40||19.9%|
|MBNA Long 0% Money Transfer Credit Card||24 months||2.99%||£29.90||22.9%|
|Virgin Money All Round Credit Card||23 months||4%||£40||21.9%|
|Virgin Money Balance Transfer Credit Card||20 months||4%||£40||21.9%|
Best credit card providers for 0% money transfer
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 29 credit card companies and scored them on deals and customer service.
The 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.
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.
Find out more: how to find the best credit card in 3 steps
0% money transfers: 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.