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Revealed: The best 0% balance transfers

Revealed: The best 0% balance transfers
Matt Browning
Written By:
Matt Browning

Christmas shoppers who covered the expensive period using plastic have a raft of options to transfer that debt onto an interest-free alternative.

While there are plenty of offers for credit card users to manage their festive spending, data analysis from Defaqto shows many providers are reducing the length of the offers available.

The longest 0% balance transfer is from Barclaycard. However, this 29-month offer which comes with a 3.45% fee, is four months fewer than this time last year and six months fewer than in 2022.

On average, the length of balance transfers has also gone down to 17 months – a drop from 19 months two years ago.

This plummets even deeper when considering offers that don’t require a fee, with an average offer falling from 22 months in 2023 to its current standing of just 14 months.

NatWest leads the way in that regard, with a 14-month balance rate offer on its Balance Transfer Credit Card, while Bank of Scotland boasts the top deal for fees under 2%. The lender offers the longest duration of 22 months for the transfer to be paid with a 1.99% introductory fee.

Length of introductory offer falls while fees rise

Meanwhile, the amount customers need to spend on fees has shot up.

The average balance transfer fee is now 2.76%, 0.33% more than two years ago, meaning those who need a longer period to pay off their balance will be hit hard.

For example, Barclaycard’s 3.45% fee over 29 months adds £82.80 for card holders, whereas the Bank of Scotland’s 1.99% fee over 22 months would set you back £47.76

With separate data from The Money Charity finding the average amount of debt held by UK adults is £2,400, every increase in fees can have a material effect depending on what deal customers take.

Credit card transfers can give consumers ‘breathing room’

Katie Brain, banking expert at Defaqto, said: “The past few years have been financially challenging for Brits, with additional pressures following spending over the festive period.

“Transferring any outstanding debts to a 0% balance transfer credit card can offer consumers some much-needed breathing room when it comes to managing this debt. However, you should always weigh up each option before committing to a new deal.”

Brain added: “Whilst balance transfer cards can help many get back or remain on track financially, be mindful of any monthly or annual fees which may apply to some cards which have a 0% balance transfer offer.

“Consider your individual situation, looking at both fees and offer length to see which is the best fit. Otherwise, you may end up paying more in the long run when your introductory deal comes to an end.”

Best 0% transfers with no fee

Provider Product Duration of Balance Rate (Months)
NatWest Balance Transfer Credit Card 14
Royal Bank of Scotland Balance Transfer Credit Card 14
Barclaycard Platinum Balance Transfer 12
Santander Everyday No Balance Transfer Fee Credit Card 12


Best 0% balance transfer with a fee of 2% or less

Provider Product Introductory Balance Transfer Fee (%) Duration of Balance Rate (Months)
Bank of Scotland Low Fee 0% Balance Transfer Credit Card 1.99% 22
Lloyds Bank Low Fee 0% Balance Transfer Credit Card 1.99% 22
MBNA Ltd Low Fee 0% Balance Transfer Credit Card 1.99% 22
Barclaycard Platinum Balance Transfer 1.99% 20
Virgin Money Balance Transfer Credit Card 2% 20


Best 0% balance transfers with a fee

Provider Product Introductory Balance Transfer Fee (%) Duration of Balance Rate (Months)
Barclaycard Platinum Balance Transfer 3.45% 29
M&S Bank Transfer Plus Credit Card 3.49% 28
HSBC Balance Transfer Credit Card 3.49% 27
MBNA Ltd Long Balance Transfer Credit Card 3.49% 27