A 0% or low-interest credit card can be a lifesaver for people looking to pay down debt or finance a big purchase. Cards with the best 0% APR periods will save you the most on interest in the short term. Many options offer a year or more interest-free. If you tend to carry a balance most months, a card with a low ongoing interest rate will work to your advantage in the long run.

Card Best for ... APR offer Annual fee
Citi Simplicity® Card - No Late Fees Ever Long 0% intro APR 0% on Purchases and Balance Transfers for 18 months, and then the ongoing APR of 15.49% - 25.49% Variable APR $0
Chase Freedom® Sign-up bonus 0% on Purchases and Balance Transfers for 15 months, and then the ongoing APR of 16.49% - 25.24% Variable APR $0
Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer Rewards 0% on Balance Transfers for 18 months, and then the ongoing APR of 14.99% - 24.99% Variable APR $0
Discover it® - 18 Month Balance Transfer Offer Low fees 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 $0

Here are the best low interest credit cards:

Best for sign-up bonus

Chase Freedom®
Apply Now on Chase's secure site

Chase Freedom®

Apply Now on Chase's secure site

Best for rewards

Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer
Apply Now on Citibank's secure application

Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer

Apply Now on Citibank's secure application

Best for low fees

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
  • Annual fee: $0
  • Intro APR: 0% on Purchases for 6 months and 0% on Balance Transfers for 18 months
  • Ongoing APR: 13.49% - 24.49% Variable APR
  • What our experts like about it

Best for long 0% intro APR period

Citi Simplicity® Card - No Late Fees Ever
Apply Now on Citibank's secure application

Citi Simplicity® Card - No Late Fees Ever

Apply Now on Citibank's secure application

Not sure which card saves you the most?

Take a quick quiz and we'll find out.

Get started
Our pick for

Sign-up bonus

Benefits

The Chase Freedom® gives you a little of everything. In addition to a $0 annual fee and a long 0% APR period on purchases and balance transfers, it offers a nifty sign-up bonus. You get 5% cash back on up to $1,500 per quarter in spending on rotating bonus categories that include such things as gas stations, supermarkets and restaurants. All other spending earns 1% back.

The 5% balance-transfer fee is high and could be a burden if you’re trying to get out of debt. A $3,000 balance transfer would consume the sign-up bonus. And it can be a hassle to track bonus rewards categories and opt in to them every quarter.
Free money from a sign-up bonus is always nice, and the lengthy 0% APR period makes the Chase Freedom® a solid choice for financing a major purchase. It’s a poor option for balance transfers, though, because of its high fee.

Our pick for

Rewards

Benefits

Offering 1% cash back on every purchase and an additional 1% when you pay them off, the Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer provides easy rewards to go with its lengthy interest-free period on balance transfers and $0 annual fee. This is an excellent card that doesn’t require excellent credit: You can qualify with good credit.

Although the card offers a long 0% APR period to encourage balance transfers, it also comes with a 3% fee on transfers. There’s no sign-up bonus, and there’s a $25 minimum rewards redemption. Some cards have no minimum.
If you like to keep it simple while paying down transferred debt, the Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer gives you generous rewards and a lengthy no-interest period. Unlike some transfer cards, this one is a keeper long after the 0% period ends.

Our pick for

Low fees

Benefits

The Discover it® - 18 Month Balance Transfer Offer combines a lengthy 0% period on balance transfers with 5% cash-back rewards on rotating bonus categories (on up to $1,500 in spending per quarter) and 1% back on all other spending. There’s also an unusual bonus, which Discover describes as: “Discover will match ALL the cash back earned at the end of your first year, automatically.” No foreign transaction fee is unusual for this category. Discover won’t charge a fee for your first late payment or raise your APR for paying late.

The 3% balance-transfer fee will eat into interest savings during the introductory period, and the no-interest offer on new purchases is shorter than for other top cards. It can be a hassle to track bonus rewards categories and opt in to them every quarter.
The Discover it® - 18 Month Balance Transfer Offer has generous rewards and a lengthy interest-free period for balance transfers, although not as much for new purchases. However, the card allows you to earn rewards while creating breathing room to get out of debt.


Our pick for

Long 0% intro APR period


Benefits

The interest-free period on the Citi Simplicity® Card - No Late Fees Ever is nice and long: 0% on Purchases and Balance Transfers for 18 months, and then the ongoing APR of 15.49% - 25.49% Variable APR. Citi’s pledge to never charge fees or a penalty annual percentage rate on late payments is unusual and a nice break for the chronically forgetful.

The lengthy interest-free period comes at a cost for balance transfers: 5%, which adds up for big balances. The no-late-fee policy could encourage bad behavior that might eventually affect your credit scores. No rewards or sign-up bonus.
This card’s long 0% APR period means you’ll have more time to offset the balance-transfer fee in interest savings. Its lack of penalties for late payments can help by not adding to 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.