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Credit cards with 0% intro APR periods can be valuable tools for consolidating debt and financing large purchases. Such cards typically offer introductory interest-free periods, on purchases, balance transfers or both, of up to 12 months. But there are cards that offer promotional periods, some as long as 18 months, that give you even more time before interest starts accruing.
With a long introductory 0% APR period, you have a prolonged amount of time to pay off a major purchase, interest-free. And by transferring high-interest credit card balances to a 0% card, you can whittle down what you owe quicker because your entire payment will go toward erasing debt rather than toward interest.
These card options offer lengthy interest-free periods.
Wells Fargo Reflect® Card
APR: 0% intro APR on Purchases for up to 21 months and 0% intro APR on Balance Transfers up to 21 months from account opening on qualifying balance transfers, and then the ongoing APR of 15.24%-27.24% Variable APR
The $0-annual-fee Wells Fargo Reflect® Card features one of the longest interest-free periods for purchases and balance transfers on the market. With good repayment habits, cardholders can get an almost two-year break from interest. Additionally, the card charges an intro balance transfer fee of 3% or $5 (whichever is greater) for transfers requested in the first 120 days of account opening. After that, cardholders will be charged up to 5% of each transfer amount, with a minimum of $5.
U.S. Bank Visa® Platinum Card
APR: 0% intro APR for 20 billing cycles on purchases and balance transfers, and then the ongoing APR of 16.74%-26.74% Variable APR
The U.S. Bank Visa® Platinum Card offers a long 0% intro APR period on both purchases and balance transfers, earning it NerdWallet's 2021 award for best 0% intro APR card. The card doesn't offer rewards, which means it won’t provide much long-term value beyond it's interest-free period. But if your focus is paying down debt, a lack of rewards might not be a serious demerit. Plus, it won't cost you anything to carry the card: the annual fee is $0.
Citi Simplicity® Card
APR: 0% Intro APR for 21 months on Balance Transfers and 12 months on Purchases, and then the ongoing APR of 16.99%-26.99% Variable APR.
Although you should always make your payments on time, this $0-annual-fee card won't penalize you for the occasional slip-up. It charges no late fees and has no penalty APR. It does, however, charge a balance transfer fee of $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater. This is on the higher end of what similar cards on the market charge, which can make transferring your balance more costly.
Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card
APR: 0% Intro APR for 21 months on Balance Transfers and 12 months on Purchases, and then the ongoing APR of 15.99%-25.99% Variable APR.
This card's 0% intro APR period is similar to what's offered by its sister Citi card (above). And it too charges a higher-than-typical balance transfer fee of $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater. The difference is that the Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card is much less forgiving, assessing fees and a penalty APR for paying late. For more information on how these cards differ, see our comparison story.
Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer
APR: 0% intro APR on Balance Transfers for 18 months, and then the ongoing APR of 16.24%-26.24% Variable APR.
The Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer gets so much attention for its phenomenal rewards rate — 1% cash back on all purchases, plus another 1% back when you pay them off — that it's easy to overlook its great introductory 0% APR period for balance transfers. It's among NerdWallet's top flat-rate cash-back cards, and you can't beat the $0 annual fee.
Chase Freedom Flex℠
APR: 0% intro APR for 15 months on purchases and balance transfers, and then the ongoing APR of 16.49%-25.24% Variable APR.
The Chase Freedom Flex℠ gives you 5% cash back on up to $1,500 in categories that change every quarter, 5% cash back on travel purchases through Chase, 3% back at restaurants and drugstores, and 1% on all other non-bonus-category purchases. There's an easy-to-claim sign-up bonus, too: Earn a $200 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening. All that for an annual fee of $0.
BankAmericard® credit card
APR: 0% intro APR on Purchases for 18 billing cycles and 0% intro APR on Balance Transfers for 18 billing cycles for any balance transfers made in the first 60 days, and then the ongoing APR of 15.24%-25.24% Variable APR.
The defining feature of the BankAmericard® credit card is its lengthy 0% APR period for both purchases and balance transfers. Although the card doesn't earn rewards or benefits beyond its interest-free window, it doesn't charge a penalty APR. This means that any late payments you make won’t cause you to pay a higher interest rate. The card does, however, charge a balance transfer fee of $10 or 3% of the amount of each transaction, whichever is greater.