If your 2014 was a little too spendy and you’re ending the year in credit card debt, you may want to consider a balance transfer credit card. The Chase Slate® and Discover it® Balance Transfer are two fantastic options to help you pay down your debt in the new year. Here’s what you need to know in order to decide with balance transfer offer is best for you.
|At a glance|
|Chase Slate®||Discover it® Balance Transfer|
|Balance transfer fee||$0 for transfers made in the first 60 days||3%|
|0% APR period||0% on Purchases and Balance Transfers for 15 months, and then the ongoing APR of 16.49% - 25.24% Variable APR||0% on Purchases for 6 months and 0% on Balance Transfers for 18 months, and then the ongoing APR of 13.49% - 24.49% Variable APR|
|Rewards program||None||Cash back|
|Who would want each card?|
Chase Slate® vs. Discover it® Balance Transfer: The basics
The Chase Slate® has a generous 0% introductory APR offer: 0% on Purchases and Balance Transfers for 15 months, and then the ongoing APR of 16.49% - 25.24% Variable APR. The Discover it® Balance Transfer offers something similar: 0% on Purchases for 6 months and 0% on Balance Transfers for 18 months, and then the ongoing APR of 13.49% - 24.49% Variable APR. The biggest difference between the two cards is that the Chase Slate® charges no balance transfer fees in the first 60 days after you open the card, and the Discover it® Balance Transfer has a rewards program.
Even though the Discover it® Balance Transfer has a longer 0% interest rate period on balance transfers, the Chase Slate® may be better for larger transfers, since there’s no upfront fee as long as move your balance within the first 60 days.
Chase Slate® vs. Discover it® Balance Transfer: Rewards
The Chase Slate® doesn’t have a rewards program. The Discover it® Balance Transfer has rotating 5% bonus rewards categories and 1% back on everything else. Keep in mind though, you’ll only receive the 5% cash back on the following categories on up to $1,500 in spending per quarter.
|Discover bonus categories for 2018|
|Q1 2018 (Jan. 1 – March 31)||Gas stations and wholesale clubs|
|Q2 2018 (April 1 – June 30)||Grocery stores|
|Q3 2018 (July 1 – Sept. 30)||Restaurants|
|Q4 2018 (Oct. 1 – Dec. 31)||Amazon.com and wholesale clubs|
Rewards can be redeemed for statement credit or direct deposit to your bank account, in any amount, at any time. You can also pay for your Amazon purchases with points, or enjoy a higher points value when redeeming for gift cards.
Chase Slate® vs. Discover it® Balance Transfer: Fees
The Chase Slate® has an annual fee of $0, but its real coup is the balance transfer fee of $0 for balance transfers made in the first 60 days of account opening. After that, future transfers will have a 5% or $5 fee, whichever is higher.
The Discover it® Balance Transfer has an annual fee of $0 and a balance transfer fee of 3%. It boasts no foreign transaction fees, no late fee on the first late payment, no over-the-limit fee, and no penalty APR. If you’re going to miss a payment, this is a great card to miss it on.
Chase Slate® vs. Discover it® Balance Transfer: Additional perks
The Chase Slate® comes with Blueprint, an online program that helps you prioritize and pay down debt. In addition, the card offers price protection and purchase protection. Price protection reimburses you the difference in price if an item you purchase goes on sale within 90 days, up to $500 per item and $2,400 per year. Purchase protection reimburses you if your item is stolen or damaged within 120 days, up to $500 per item and $50,000 per account. It also extends manufacturers’ warranties on qualified items by an extra year.
The Discover it® Balance Transfer offers cardholders their free FICO score on monthly statements and online. But perhaps the best feature of the card is its access to the Discover Deals bonus mall. Depending on the retailer, you’ll receive discounts of 5-20% on your online shopping purchases. Even better, you can get these deals in store with the mobile app, which sets Discover Deals apart from the other issuers’ bonus malls.
The bottom line: Should I get the Chase Slate® or Discover it® Balance Transfer?
The Chase Slate® is best for balance transfers due to its $0 transfer fee. The Discover it® Balance Transfer is better for shopping, with its 5% bonus rewards categories and Discover Deals bonus mall. If you want a card to use for balance transfers, and also to use for daily use once the transferred balance is paid off, go with the Discover it® Balance Transfer.
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