Best Low Interest Credit Cards of 2019

Low interest credit cards keep big purchases from putting big dents in your budget. Making payments over time without accruing a ton of interest is both strategic and convenient. Here are our recommendations for the best low interest credit cards from our partners, and our advice for maximizing their value.

Our Experts' Favorites: 2019's Best Low Interest Credit Cards

  1. Capital One® VentureOne® Rewards Credit Card: Best low APR card with travel rewards
  2. Discover it® Cash Back: Best for first-year rewards
  3. Citi Rewards+SM Card: Best for daily purchases
  4. Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card: Best for 15-month intro APR offer
  5. Discover it® Balance Transfer: Best balance transfer offer
  6. Citi® Double Cash Card: Best for flat-rate cash back
  7. Discover it® Miles: Best for basic travel rewards
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Recommended Credit Score

Good to Excellent (670 - 850)

A FICO score/credit score is used to represent the creditworthiness of a person and may be one indicator to the credit type you are eligible for. However, credit score alone does not guarantee or imply approval for any financial product.

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Citi Simplicity® Card - No Late Fees Ever

Annual Fee:
Purchase Intro APR:
0%* 12 months on Purchases*
Balance Transfer Intro APR:
0%* 21 months on Balance Transfers*
Regular APR:
16.74% - 26.74%* (Variable)

Card Details

  • No Late Fees, No Penalty Rate, and No Annual Fee... Ever
  • 0% Intro APR on balance transfers for 21 months from date of first transfer. All transfers must be completed in first 4 months. After that, the variable APR will be 16.74% - 26.74%, based on your creditworthiness
  • 0% Intro APR on purchases for 12 months from date of account opening. After that, the variable APR will be 16.74% - 26.74%, based on your creditworthiness
  • If you transfer a balance with this offer, after your 0% Intro purchase APR expires, both new purchases and unpaid purchase balances will automatically accrue interest until all balances, including your transferred balances, are paid in full
  • There is a balance transfer fee of either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater
  • The same great rate for all balances, after the introductory period
  • Save time when you call with fast, personal help, 24 hours a day — just say "representative"
  • Enjoy the convenience of setting up your own bill payment schedule on any available due date throughout the month
Terms and Restrictions Apply

Editorial disclosure: All reviews are prepared by staff. Opinions expressed therein are solely those of the reviewer and have not been reviewed or approved by any advertiser. The information, including card rates and fees, presented in the review is accurate as of the date of the review. Check the data at the top of this page and the bank’s website for the most current information.

Author: Bankrate Staff | Last Updated: April 15, 2019

Have questions for our credit cards editors? Feel free to send us an email, find us on Facebook, or Tweet us @Bankrate.

What you need to know about Low Interest cards

Just because credit card interest rates are rising, it doesn’t mean your stress levels have to rise with them. Low interest credit cards are tools to help you pay down debt, while not digging yourself into a large financial hole. And in some cases, the offer of a zero percent APR period over the first few months of your active account sweetens the deal. Here’s more about our top picks, where you can win with them and tips for navigating the low interest cards world.

In this article:

Criteria for low interest credit cards

Bankrate’s scoring methodology awards each card a score out of 100. For low interest cards, we highlighted the most important elements for the criteria: APR, introductory APR offer, annual fee, balance transfer offer as well as any extras and discounts.

  • APR: Split between “standard” and “penalty.” Standard APR can range from below 10% to above 20%. Penalty APR is the rate you would incur if you were late in making a payment. This can reach up to almost 30%. With low-interest at the top of mind, we pay particular attention to APR in all its forms.
  • 0% Introductory APR offer: This period can significantly help cardholders who are looking to use the card as a tool to pay down debt.
  • Annual fee: Is the card’s annual fee worth it? Do the card’s rewards justify the expense?
  • Balance transfer offer: For cardholders looking to consolidate debt from one lender to another, a favorable balance transfer offer is paramount. 

Recap: Our top low interest card picks for 2019

Card name Bankrate score Best for
Capital One® VentureOne® Rewards Credit Card 4.1 / 5 Low APR with travel rewards
Discover it® Cash Back 4.8 / 5 First year rewards
Citi Rewards+ Card 4.6 / 5 Daily spending
Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card 4.8 / 5 Flat-rate cash back
Discover it® Balance Transfer 4.4 / 5 Balance transfer offer
Citi® Double Cash Card 4.3 / 5 Flat-rate cash back
Wells Fargo Platinum Visa card (not currently available) 4.6 / 5 Purchase intro APR
Barclaycard Ring® Mastercard® 4.1 / 5 Low APR and minimal fees
Discover it® Miles 4.8 / 5 Basic travel rewards

Capital One® VentureOne® Rewards Credit Card

If you’re looking for a card with a low cost of ownership and easy-to-earn flexible rewards, look no further. The Capital One VentureOne Rewards Credit Card earns 1.25 miles on every dollar spent, and you can redeem those miles to book travel any way you like. If you’re planning to use the card to finance a large expense, you’ll save on interest while earning travel rewards, which can get you closer to your 2019 vacation goals.


    • No annual fee
    • Cardholders can transfer miles to multiple airline programs at generous transfer rates.
    • Use Capital One’s “Purchase Eraser” to receive a statement credit for travel booked anyway you choose.
    • Pay 0% APR during the first 12 months of your account (then 14.24% – 24.24% variable).

What’s an added benefit to paying low interest with this card?

The Capital One VentureOne has a pretty substantial welcome offer – 20,000 miles after you spend $1,000 in the first 3 months of your account. And paying zero percent interest over the first 12 months makes it easier to earn that bonus while paying down debt.

Discover it® Cash Back

The Discover it® Cash Back earns 5% cash back at different places each quarter like gas stations, grocery stores, and more up to the quarterly maximum each time you activate. Also, earn an unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases. Redeem your cash back any amount, any time because your rewards never expire.


    • Redeem for gift cards, donations, credit to your account, direct deposit into any account, payment at select retailers.
    • Your first late payment fee is waived.
    • There’s a 14-month 0% APR introductory interest rate on purchases and balance transfers. Following the intro period, the standard APR is a variable 14.24% to 25.24% based on your creditworthiness.

What’s an added benefit to paying low interest with this card?

In addition to earning a high cash back rate in certain areas, the Discover it® Cash Back allows you to maximize your rewards by matching your earnings at the end of the first year of membership. Adding in the lengthy zero percent intro APR easily positions this card to work in your favor.

Citi Rewards+SM Card

The Citi Rewards+ Card is a great no annual fee option for those looking to earn points for everyday spending. Get 2x points at supermarkets and gas stations (on up to $6,000 a year, then 1x) and 1x points on everything else. Plus, you’ll get a 15,000 ThankYou Point bonus when you spend $1,000 within the first three months of account opening. Other benefits include rental car insurance, trip cancellation protection and access to elite events through Citi Private Pass.


  • 0% intro APR for 15 months on balance transfers
  • 0% intro APR for 15 months on purchases
  • Regular APR of 15.49% – 25.49% variable
  • No annual fee

What’s an added benefit to paying low interest with this card?

The Citi Rewards+ is the only card that automatically rounds your points up to the nearest 10 points on every purchase, with no cap. Earning ThankYou points at that rate, while taking advantage of low intro APR makes this a solid option.

Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card

With a flat 1.5 percent rewards rate on all purchases, no annual fee and a $150 bonus after spending $500 in the first three months, this card is great for those looking for a straightforward option. You can redeem rewards for any amount with no rotating categories to manage.


  • Rewards don’t expire
  • No earning limits
  • $150 cash bonus when you spend $500 within the first three months of account opening
  • No foreign transaction fees

What’s an added benefit to paying low interest with this card?

In addition to having no annual fee, the Quicksilver has no foreign transaction fee. You’re free to spend outside of the U.S. without paying the additional percentage, and while taking advantage of some nice travel perks, including travel insurance, accident insurance and an extended warranty.

Discover it® Balance Transfer

This card helps you pay down debt while packing a big rewards punch. Earn five percent cash back in rotating categories like gas stations, grocery stores, restaurants, and more up to the quarterly maximum, each time you activate. Then earn unlimited one percent cash back on all other purchases, automatically.


  • There’s no annual fee
  • Rewards never expire
  • Get your free Credit Scorecard with your FICO® Credit Score, number of recent inquiries and more.
  • Get social security number alerts on dangerous websites.

What’s an added benefit to paying low interest with this card?

This Discover card’s ace in the hole is its Cashback Match welcome offer. Discover will match the total cash back you’ve earned at the end of your first year, automatically, with no signup required and no limit to how much is matched.

Citi® Double Cash Card

The Citi Double Cash Card offers some of the best value of any no annual fee cash-back card available today. Cardholders earn one percent cash back when they make a purchase and another one percent back when they pay for their purchase.


    • 18-month 0% introductory APR on balance transfers. After that, the variable APR will be 15.99% – 25.99% based on your creditworthiness.
    • Rewards can be redeemed in several ways—as a statement credit, a check or a gift card.

What’s an added benefit to paying low interest with this card?

With the Citi Double Cash being a flat rate cash back card, it’s set up nicely to pair with other rewards cards. Pairing would allow you to earn rewards while having plenty of runway to pay off your balance.

Wells Fargo Platinum Visa card (not currently available)

Offering one of the longest zero percent intro APR periods at 18 months on purchases and qualifying balance transfers (then 13.74% – 27.24% variable), this card main objective is to give you a serviceable option to pay down credit card debt. There is a 3 percent foreign transaction fee and 3 percent balance transfer fee (for transfers made within the first 120 days, then 5 percent, $5 minimum). And since it doesn’t offer a traditional rewards package, it comes with up to $600 worth of cell phone protection ($25 deductible).


    • 0% Intro APR for 18 months on purchases and balance transfers (fees apply), then a 13.74%-27.24% variable APR; balance transfers made within 120 days qualify for the intro rate and fee
    • Get up to $600 protection on your cell phone (subject to $25 deductible) against covered damage or theft when you pay your monthly cellular telephone bill with your Wells Fargo Platinum Visa card
    • There’s no annual fee

What’s the added benefit to paying low interest with this card?

This Wells Fargo card offers some useful features such as an auto rental collision damage waiver, travel accident insurance and other money management tools.

The information related to the Wells Fargo Platinum Visa Card has been collected by Bankrate and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer or provider of this product or service.

Barclaycard Ring® Mastercard®

This card offers a new zero percent intro APR for 15 months on balance transfers made within the first 45 days of account opening. A variable 14.24% APR kicks in after that. It also carries a charge of $5 or 2% of the transferred balance. But, if you make a balance transfer after 45 days of your account being open, the variable 14.24% APR will apply, but you won’t have to pay a balance transfer fee.


    • 0% intro APR for 15 months on balance transfers made within 45 days of account opening. After that, a variable 14.24% APR will apply.
    • Low 14.24% variable APR on purchases and cash advances
    • No annual fee
    • No foreign transaction fees
    • Rates and Fees

What’s an added benefit to paying low interest with this card?

Barclays just introduced a new feature which allows you to instantly secure your accounts by locking your cards with Barclays SecurHold(TM). Plus, you can set transaction limits and block certain purchase categories for any authorized users. Available only on the Barclays mobile app.

Discover it® Miles

What makes this card intriguing is that, like most Discover cards, the issuer will match your first-year earnings dollar for dollar. The Discover it® Miles card earns 1.5 miles for every dollar, which is a just-OK rate. But the first-year earnings work out to be 3 miles for every dollar, which puts it on a par with some of the best cash-back cards on the market.


    • There’s no annual fee, foreign transaction fees and the penalty fee of up to $39 is waived with the first late payment.
    • The intro APR is 0% on purchases for 14 months, and balance transfer intro is 10.99% for 14 months. After that, the standard variable APR of 14.24% to 25.24% will apply.
    • Rewards can be redeemed in any amount as cash back or a statement credit for travel purchases made in the last 180 days.

What’s the added benefit to paying low interest with this card?

The Discover it® Miles softens the blow of missing your first payment by forgiving it, outright. That’s right – no late penalty fee or hiked APR. While we recommend doing your best to make all payments on time, this benefit makes it easier for you to get into the groove of paying off your balance without looking over your shoulder.

Balance transfers to low interest credit cards

If you are carrying a lot of high-interest debt, shifting the balance to a card with a lower APR can save you money. But, it’s important to do the math before making the switch. Many cards that offer an introductory 0 percent APR will also charge a balance transfer fee. Typically, this fee ranges from 3%-5% of the amount being transferred.

In some cases, the cost of a balance transfer fee could outweigh the savings of shifting to a low interest card. For example, if you have a balance of $10,000 on a card, but you plan on paying this balance off over the course of a year, it may cost you less in interest than if you shift this balance to a card with a 0 percent introductory offer that has a 5 percent balance transfer fee, which will cost you $500 to move.

Is a low interest card right for me?

If you have a big life event coming up in 2019 – graduation, wedding, moving, etc. – a zero percent APR card can give you some financial breathing room to plan around. However, per usual, there are some drawbacks to consider as you’re making your decision. It’s also important to weigh the other available card options against low interest cards. Here are the pros and cons of low interest cards and other cards to consider:


  • Shifting a high-interest balance to a card with a lower rate can save you money.
  • Paying off large purchases over time
  • Paying off debt faster due to less money going towards finance charges


  • If you haven’t paid off your debt by the time the 0% promotional period ends, you could end up with a higher rate than before.
  • Having a card with low or no interest could tempt you to spend beyond your means.
  • Some cards will charge you a stiff penalty APR if you miss or make a late payment, so if you aren’t rigorous about paying your bill, you could lose the advantageous rate.

Other options to consider:

Charge cards

Charge cards are a good choice when you make large purchases that you can pay back at month’s end, because you will be approved (or rejected) at the counter, based on your spending, payment patterns and income, because there’s no prearranged credit limit.

Debit cards

These cards are connected directly to your financial institution, and require a bank account for you to make purchases. Unlike credit cards, debit cards don’t have credit limits and aren’t used to build credit.

Prepaid cards

These cards are not linked to a financial institution like debit cards, but they are similar in that they allow you to spend money you already have. Prepaid cards help you to establish some healthy spending habits, but they don’t have credit limits, and thus can’t help you build your credit score.

Which is better – low interest or 0% interest credit card?

When it comes to choosing a credit card that offers better terms than what you may currently have, it’s important to make the distinction between low interest cards and ones with an introductory zero percent offer. There are no credit cards that offer 0% interest forever, since they’re used to pay off a balance over time in exchange for accruing interest on the amount of debt you’re carrying. If you want a truly interest-free card in your wallet, you’d be better off with a charge card or debit card.

How to choose the right low interest card for your situation

If you carry a credit card balance, you are not alone: 38% of households in the U.S. have revolving credit card debt, according to the National Foundation for Credit Counseling’s 2018 Financial Literacy Survey. Reasons for falling into debt most often deal with a big life change, an unforeseen event or emergency.

Medical emergencies

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Consumer Price Index states that medical costs have risen 35% over the last decade, whereas income has only risen 20% in the same time period. That means medical bills are outpacing income rates, which makes it easier to fall into debt if you or a family member needs medical care.

  • Pro tip: You can frequently negotiate a lower cost for medical bills by talking to someone in accounting.

Job loss

The gap between unemployment and employment can be unpredictable, which means meeting your financial obligations during that time can be also. Credit cards are often an easy option — and sometimes the only choice. But this also means debt can quickly follow.

  • Pro tip: Many have found that establishing an emergency fund and drawing from that during the gap period can be a safer and more viable option.

Upcoming wedding

Weddings (especially destination weddings) can be a drain on your budget. You want to take advantage of everything the event has to offer – but depending on the details, things can get costly, quickly. And if you aren’t in a position to put a large enough sum of funds to the side in preparation, credit card debt can easily follow.

  • Pro tip: Funding your wedding experience with a credit union card may help, since they often offer the lowest rates on the market.

Purchasing new furniture

Whether you’re moving, renovating or finally replacing your college sofa, purchasing new furniture isn’t cheap. Even if you strategize by doing one room at a time, the costs (and credit card debt) add up.

  • Pro tip: Borrowing through the furniture company could be a helpful option, since the interest would not be deferred.

It’s important to choose the right low interest card that will help you to manage your debt and minimize the amount you owe. Consider not just the short-term benefits but how you’ll use the card in the years ahead. In situations like the ones above, low interest options such as the Citi Rewards + Card would make sense. It allows you to earn rewards on everyday spending, with no annual fees or high maintenance with rotating categories. You want to get value from making needed purchases without adding stress to what can already be a stressful situation.

How to get a credit card with a low interest rate

Most issuers offer cards with a variable APR range. If you qualify for the lower end of this range, and you carry a balance, then you will end up paying less interest. Generally, it is inadvisable to carry a balance on a credit card due to the high average interest rates but sometimes it can be unavoidable. If you plan to carry a balance or you are worried that you might, a low-interest card can save you money. To get the best rates you need to have a good or excellent credit score. The first step is to check your credit report, you can find out what your current score is and check for any issues or errors on your report. Improving your credit score takes time but it can be done with a sound strategy.

Some cards also offer introductory 0% interest rate periods for purchases, balance transfers or both. The length of time at 0 percent interest typically ranges from 12 months to as long as 21 months, after which the standard variable APR will apply.

Before choosing a card with low interest or a zero interest sign-up offer, take time to consider your spending habits. If you almost always carry a balance, you may be better off with a card that has a set low-interest rate than one at 0% that will likely jump up to double digits when the promotional period is over.

You can apply for a low interest credit card online and you’ll usually find out if you’re approved within minutes. But, if your credit is just fair or worse, you may not qualify for a credit card that offers advantageous rates.

How to save money with a low APR card

With four rate hikes in 2018, the current average variable APR on a credit card is over 17%. It’s clear that for anyone who typically carries a balance, there’s a big benefit to switching to a card with a lower APR.
Here’s the proof in plain numbers: If you have a balance of $10,000 on a card with an APR of 16%, over the course of a year if you leave that balance untouched, you’ll accrue an additional $1,600 in finance charges. But, shift that balance to a card with an introductory 15-month 0% offer and after a year, that same $10,000 balance won’t have racked up any finance charges, saving you $1,600.

More reviews and research

Still need to do more research? No worries, we have plenty of reviews and helpful content to help you make a decision. We have reviews on almost every major low interest credit card on the market. Check out those and other related review categories below.

* See the online application for details about terms and conditions for these offers. Every reasonable effort has been made to maintain accurate information. However all credit card information is presented without warranty. After you click on the offer you desire you will be directed to the credit card issuer's web site where you can review the terms and conditions for your selected offer.