Here are the best balance transfer credit cards:

Best for cost-effectiveness

BankAmericard® Credit Card
Apply Now on Bank of America's secure site

BankAmericard® Credit Card

Apply Now on Bank of America's secure site
  • Intro APR: 0% on Purchases for 15 billing cycles and 0% on Balance Transfers for 15 billing cycles for balance transfers made in the first 60 days
  • Ongoing APR: 13.49% - 23.49% Variable APR
  • Balance Transfer Fee: $0 Intro balance transfer fee for the first 60 days your account is open.  After that, the fee for future balance transfers is 3% (min. $10).
  • What our experts like about it

$0 intro transfer fee plus rewards

The Amex EveryDay® Credit Card from American Express
Apply Now on American Express's secure site

The Amex EveryDay® Credit Card from American Express

Apply Now on American Express's secure site

Best for long-term value

Discover it® - 18 Month Balance Transfer Offer
Apply Now on Discover's secure site

Discover it® - 18 Month Balance Transfer Offer

Apply Now on Discover's secure site

Best for average credit

Chase Slate®
Apply Now on Chase's secure site

Chase Slate®

Apply Now on Chase's secure site
  • 0% Intro Balance Transfer APR period: 15 Months
  • Ongoing APR: 16.24% - 24.99% Variable APR
  • Balance Transfer Fee: $0 Intro for the first 60 days, then $5 or 5%, whichever is greater
  • What our experts like about it

Best for long 0% intro APR period

Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card– 21 Month Balance Transfer Offer
Apply Now on Citibank's secure application

Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card– 21 Month Balance Transfer Offer

Apply Now on Citibank's secure application
  • 0% Intro Balance Transfer APR period: 21 Months
  • Ongoing APR: 14.49% - 24.49% Variable APR
  • Balance Transfer Fee: 5% of each balance transfer; $5 minimum.
  • What our experts like about it

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Our pick for

Cost effectiveness


Who it’s good for

Someone with good credit looking to pay off debt without interest or fees.

Benefits

This card comes with a trio of debt-busting features: a $0 annual fee and, for balance transfers made within the first 60 days of account opening, a $0 introductory transfer fee and a long 0% intro APR period. (After 60 days, the transfer fee is 3% or $10, whichever is greater.) That means you can pay down your debt without paying a penny in interest or fees. It also gives you access to your FICO score for free.

This card doesn’t earn rewards. Like other cards, it doesn’t allow same-issuer transfers. That means you can’t transfer debt from another Bank of America® product to this card.
The BankAmericard® credit card makes it easy to get out of debt without extra charges to slow your progress. If you’re looking to move your high-interest balances and you have good credit, it’s an excellent pick.


Our pick for

$0 intro transfer fee plus rewards

Who it’s good for

Someone looking for a cost-effective balance transfer card that also earns rewards.

Benefits

The Amex EveryDay® Credit Card from American Express was a somewhat lackluster rewards card until February 2018, when it introduced features that made it a top balance transfer option. Most notably, the card now offers an introductory $0 balance transfer fee for transfers requested in the first 60 days from account opening. The annual fee is $0, and you get an introductory APR of 0% on Purchases and Balance Transfers for 15 months, and then the ongoing APR of 14.49% - 25.49% Variable APR. Unlike with many balance-transfer cards, this card gives you an incentive to keep using it after your transferring days are over. It’s American Express’ only $0-annual-fee consumer card that earns Membership Rewards points.

Rewards are subpar: 2 points per dollar spent at U.S. supermarkets, on up to $6,000 per year in spending, and 1 point per dollar on other purchases. But keep in mind that cards with a $0 intro transfer fee usually don’t offer rewards at all.
With zeroes across the board for annual fee, intro transfer fee and intro APR period, The Amex EveryDay® Credit Card from American Express jumps to the head of the pack.


Our pick for

Long-term value


Who it’s good for

Someone who prefers to use one card for everything.

Benefits

Most balance-transfer cards don’t give you much of a reason to keep using them after the 0% period expires. The Discover it® - 18 Month Balance Transfer Offer is different because of its rewards program. It pays 5% cash back in rotating categories that you activate, on up to $1,500 in purchases each quarter, and 1% on everything else. In recent years, those categories have included such common merchants as gas stations, restaurants and Amazon.com. There’s also a new-cardholder bonus that gets bigger the more you use the card.

The 0% period on purchases is considerably shorter than that for balance transfers. That means that if you’re still carrying a balance when the 0% purchase APR runs out, you’ll have to pay interest on your purchases starting from the date of each transaction. That could add up quickly. (Learn more about how grace periods work.) The card also comes with a 3% balance transfer fee, and you can’t transfer balances from other Discover cards. Finally, having to activate the categories each quarter can be a hassle.
Get it for the long 0% APR period. Keep it for the rewards. However, if you plan to put a lot of purchases on the card while paying down your transferred balance, consider the alternative Discover card in the link at left; it has matching 0% APR periods for purchases and transfers.

Our pick for

Average credit


Who it’s good for

Those with average credit who want a cost-effective just-for-debt card.

Benefits

This card wins the balance-transfer triple crown. It offers a long 0% balance transfer APR, it has a $0 introductory fee for transfers made during the first 60 days of account opening, and it has an annual fee of $0. It comes with the Chase Slate Credit Dashboard, which lets you track your FICO score for free.

You can’t earn rewards on this card, nor can you transfer balances from other Chase cards or non-credit-card debt. You can’t transfer more than $15,000 in total, regardless of your limit. Its APR period, while good, isn’t the longest available.
The Chase Slate® keeps balance transfer costs to a minimum, which is all that really matters when you’re trying to get out of credit card debt.

Our pick for

Long 0% Intro APR period

  • Intro APR

    0% on Purchases for 12 months and 0% on Balance Transfers for 21 months

  • Regular APR

    14.49% - 24.49% Variable APR

  • Annual fee

    $0

  • Recommended credit score

Recommended credit score


Who it’s good for

Someone who needs extra time to pay down debt interest-free.

Benefits

This card gets the nod for its extra-long 0% balance transfer APR, $0 annual fee and free FICO score. Citi allows you to transfer any kind of debt to your card, including student loans and auto loans, as long as the account number is at least five digits long and doesn’t include any letters.

The card charges a balance transfer fee of 5% or $5, whichever is greater. You also can’t transfer balances from other Citi accounts, and you won’t earn rewards. The 0% APR period for purchases is significantly shorter than that for transfers.
The long 0% APR period on the Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card– 21 Month Balance Transfer Offer makes this a solid card if you need breathing room to pay off your debt.

Methodology

NerdWallet’s credit cards team selects the best cards in each category based on overall consumer value. Factors in our evaluation include fees, promotional and ongoing APRs, and sign-up bonuses; for rewards cards, we consider earning and redemption rates, redemption options and redemption difficulty. A single card is eligible to be chosen in multiple categories.

Updated April 3, 2018.

Claire Tsosie is a staff writer at NerdWallet, a personal finance website. Email: claire@nerdwallet.com. Twitter: @ideclaire7.