Best 0% Intro APR Credit Cards of 2019

Zero interest credit cards offer a 0% introductory APR period, allowing you to lower your monthly debt obligation on big purchases and/or balance transfers. Today's market is full of credit cards that offer introductory periods of up to 21 months interest-free. Below, our experts have compiled recommendations for the best 0% interest credit cards from our partners and advice on how to make the most of these offers.

These are the best 0% interest credit cards of 2019:

Bankrate.com is an independent, advertising-supported comparison service. The offers that appear on this site are from companies from which Bankrate.com receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site, including, for example, the order in which they may appear within listing categories. Other factors, such as our own proprietary website rules and the likelihood of applicants' credit approval also impact how and where products appear on this site. Bankrate.com does not include the entire universe of available financial or credit offers.

Editorial disclosure: All reviews are prepared by Bankrate.com 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.

Best for long 0% APR offer on purchases

Wells Fargo Platinum Visa® Card Image

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.

Apply Now On Wells Fargo's secure website

Wells Fargo Platinum Visa® Card

Annual Fee:
$0
Purchase Intro APR:
0% for 18 months
Balance Transfer Intro APR:
0% for 18 months
Regular APR:
17.74%-27.24% (Variable)

Card Details

  • 0% Intro APR for 18 months on purchases and balance transfers (fees apply), then a 17.74%-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® Credit Card
  • Easy access to your FICO® Credit Score with Wells Fargo Online®
  • Zero Liability protection for promptly reported unauthorized transactions
  • Convenient tools to help create a budget and manage your spending with My Money Map
  • $0 Annual Fee
  • Select "Apply Now" to learn more about the product features, terms, and conditions
Terms and Restrictions Apply

Best for 0% APR period and unlimited cash back

Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card Image

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.

Apply Now On Capital One's secure website

Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card

Rewards Rate:
Earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase, every day
Welcome Offer:
$150 after you spend $500 on purchases within 3 months from account opening
Annual Fee:
$0
Purchase Intro APR:
0% intro on purchases for 15 months
Balance Transfer Intro APR:
0% intro on balance transfers for 15 months
Regular APR:
16.24% - 26.24% (Variable)

Card Details

  • One-time $150 cash bonus after you spend $500 on purchases within 3 months from account opening
  • Earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase, every day
  • No rotating categories or sign-ups needed to earn cash rewards; plus, cash back won't expire for the life of the account and there's no limit to how much you can earn
  • 0% intro APR on purchases for 15 months; 16.24%-26.24% variable APR after that
  • 0% intro APR on balance transfers for 15 months; 16.24%-26.24% variable APR after that; 3% fee on the amounts transferred within the first 15 months
  • Pay no annual fee or foreign transaction fees
Terms and Restrictions Apply

Best for flat rate cash back

Chase Freedom Unlimited® Image

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.

Apply Now On Chase's secure website

Chase Freedom Unlimited®

Rewards Rate:
Unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase — it's automatic!
Welcome Offer:
Earn a $150 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening
Annual Fee:
$0
Purchase Intro APR:
0% Intro APR on Purchases for 15 months
Balance Transfer Intro APR:
0% Intro APR on Balance Transfers for 15 months
Regular APR:
17.24% - 25.99% Variable

Card Details

  • 0% Intro APR for 15 months from account opening on purchases and balance transfers, then a variable APR of 17.24-25.99%. Balance transfer fee is 3% of the amount transferred, $5 minimum
  • Unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase - it's automatic
  • Earn a $150 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening
  • No minimum to redeem for cash back
  • Cash Back rewards do not expire as long as your account is open
  • Free credit score, updated weekly with Credit Journey℠
  • No annual fee
Terms and Restrictions Apply

Best for rotating category cash back

Discover it® Cash Back Image

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.

Apply Now On Discover's secure website

Discover it® Cash Back

Rewards Rate:
Earn 5% cash back at different places each quarter like gas stations, grocery stores, restaurants, Amazon.com and more up to the quarterly maximum, each time you activate. Earn 1% unlimited cash back on all other purchases – automatically.
Welcome Offer:
Discover will match all the cash back you've earned at the end of your first year, automatically. There's no signing up. And no limit to how much is matched.
Annual Fee:
$0
Purchase Intro APR:
0% for 14 months
Balance Transfer Intro APR:
0% for 14 months
Regular APR:
14.24% - 25.24% Variable

Card Details

  • Intro Offer: Discover will match all the cash back you've earned at the end of your first year, automatically. There's no signing up. And no limit to how much is matched.
  • Earn 5% cash back at different places each quarter like gas stations, grocery stores, restaurants, Amazon.com and more up to the quarterly maximum, each time you activate.
  • Plus, earn unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases – automatically.
  • Redeem cash back any amount, any time. Rewards never expire.
  • Use your rewards at Amazon.com checkout.
  • Receive Free Social Security number alerts—Discover will monitor thousands of risky websites when you sign up.
  • No annual fee.

Best for everyday use

Citi Rewards+℠ Card Image

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.

Apply Now On Citi's secure website

Citi Rewards+℠ Card

Rewards Rate:
Earn 2X ThankYou® Points at Supermarkets and Gas Stations for the first $6,000 per year and then 1X Points thereafter Earn 1X Points on All Other Purchases.
Welcome Offer:
Earn 15,000 bonus points after you spend $1,000 in purchases with your card within 3 months of account opening; redeemable for $150 in gift cards at thankyou.com
Annual Fee:
$0
Purchase Intro APR:
0% intro for 12 months on Purchases
Balance Transfer Intro APR:
0% intro for 12 months on Balance Transfers
Regular APR:
15.74% - 25.74% (Variable)

Card Details

  • Introducing the New Citi Rewards+℠ Card - the only credit card that automatically rounds up to the nearest 10 points on every purchase - with no cap
  • Earn 15,000 bonus points after you spend $1,000 in purchases with your card within 3 months of account opening; redeemable for $150 in gift cards at thankyou.com
  • 0% Intro APR on balance transfers and purchases for 12 months. After that, the variable APR will be 15.74% - 25.74%, based on your creditworthiness.
  • Earn 2X ThankYou® Points at Supermarkets and Gas Stations for the first $6,000 per year and then 1X Points thereafter. Plus, earn 1X Points on All Other Purchases.
  • Get 10% Points Back for the first 100,000 ThankYou® Points you redeem per year
Terms and Restrictions Apply

Best for travel rewards

Capital One® VentureOne® Rewards Credit Card Image

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.

Apply Now On Capital One's secure website

Capital One® VentureOne® Rewards Credit Card

Rewards Rate:
Earn 10X miles on thousands of hotels; learn more at hotels.com/venture Earn 1.25X miles on every purchase, every day and pay no annual fee
Welcome Offer:
20,000 miles once you spend $1,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening
Annual Fee:
$0
Purchase Intro APR:
0% intro on purchases for 12 months
Balance Transfer Intro APR:
N/A
Regular APR:
14.24% - 24.24% (Variable)

Card Details

  • Enjoy a one-time bonus of 20,000 miles once you spend $1,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening, equal to $200 in travel
  • Earn 1.25X miles on every purchase, every day and pay no annual fee. Plus earn 10X miles on thousands of hotels, through January 2020; learn more at hotels.com/venture
  • Transfer your miles to over 12 leading travel loyalty programs
  • Fly any airline, stay at any hotel, anytime
  • Enjoy a low intro APR on purchases for 12 months; 14.24%-24.24% variable APR after that
  • Travel when you want with no blackout dates
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • Miles won't expire for the life of the account and there's no limit to how many you can earn
Terms and Restrictions Apply

Best for balance transfers

Citi Simplicity® Card - No Late Fees Ever Image

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.

Apply Now On Citi's secure website

Citi Simplicity® Card - No Late Fees Ever

Annual Fee:
$0*
Purchase Intro APR:
0%* 12 months on Purchases*
Balance Transfer Intro APR:
0%* 21 months on Balance Transfers*
Regular APR:
16.24% - 26.24%* (Variable)

Card Details

  • The only card with 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 16.24% - 26.24%, based on your creditworthiness
  • 0% Intro APR on purchases for 12 months from date of account opening. After that, the variable APR will be 16.24% - 26.24%, 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

Best for cash back on everyday spending

Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express Image

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.

Apply Now On American Express's secure website

Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express

Rewards Rate:
3% cash back at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $6,000 per year in purchases, then 1%) 2% cash back at U.S. gas stations and at select U.S. department stores 1% back on other purchases
Welcome Offer:
$150 statement credit after you spend $1,000 in purchases on your new Card within the first 3 months.
Annual Fee:
$0
Purchase Intro APR:
0% on Purchases for 15 months
Balance Transfer Intro APR:
0% on Balance Transfers for 15 months
Regular APR:
15.24%-26.24% Variable

Card Details

  • Earn a $150 statement credit after you spend $1,000 in purchases on your new Card within the first 3 months.
  • 3% Cash Back at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $6,000 per year in purchases, then 1%).
  • 2% Cash Back at U.S. gas stations and at select U.S. department stores, 1% back on other purchases.
  • Low intro APR: 0% for 15 months on purchases and balance transfers, then a variable rate, currently 15.24% to 26.24%.
  • You spoke, we listened. Over 1.6 million more places in the U.S. started accepting American Express® Cards in 2018.
  • Cash back is received in the form of Reward Dollars that can be easily redeemed for statement credits, gift cards, and merchandise.
  • No annual fee.
  • Terms Apply.

Best for no annual fee

Barclaycard Ring® Mastercard® Image

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.

Apply Now On Barclays's secure website

Barclaycard Ring® Mastercard®

Annual Fee:
$0
Purchase Intro APR:
N/A
Balance Transfer Intro APR:
See Terms
Regular APR:
14.24% Variable

Card Details

  • Enjoy a 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
  • International Chip and PIN

Best for first late payment penalty forgiveness

HSBC Gold Mastercard® credit card Image

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.

Apply Now On HSBC's secure website

HSBC Gold Mastercard® credit card

Annual Fee:
$0
Purchase Intro APR:
0% Introductory APR on credit card purchases for the first 18 months from account opening
Balance Transfer Intro APR:
0% Introductory APR on balance transfers for the first 18 months from account opening
Regular APR:
Variable APR of 13.24%, 17.24% or 21.24% will apply after the Introductory Period

Card Details

  • 0% Intro APR on purchases and balance transfers for the first 18 months from account opening. Then a variable APR of 13.24%, 17.24% or 21.24% will apply.
  • No Penalty APR.
  • Late Fee Waiver.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees.
  • $0 Annual Fee.
  • $0 liability for unauthorized purchases.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees

Editorial disclosure: All reviews are prepared by Bankrate.com 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: March 21, 2019

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


According to a recent Experian survey, 51 percent of consumers surveyed said that high interest rates were the most significant concern of credit card use — with good reason. The average credit card balance in America is $6,354. If your card comes with an 18% variable APR and you only pay the minimum payment each month, it could take you years and thousands of dollars in interest payments to completely pay off your card.

This is where a 0% interest credit card can help. There are a lot of choices available, and the Bankrate team is here to walk you through how to choose the best credit card for you.

In this article:


Recap: Bankrate’s top picks for 0% intro APR credit cards

Card Name Best for Bankrate Review Score
Wells Fargo Platinum Visa® Card Long 0% APR offer on purchases 81/100
Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card Unlimited cash back 93/100
Chase Freedom Unlimited® Flat rate cash back 92/100
Discover it® Cash Back Rotating category cash back 93/100
Citi Rewards+SM Card Everyday use 92/100
Capital One® VentureOne® Rewards Credit Card Travel rewards 80/100
Citi Simplicity® Card Balance transfers 88/100
Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express Cash back on everyday spending 89/100
Barclaycard Ring® Mastercard® No annual fee 81/100
HSBC Gold Mastercard® credit card First late payment penalty forgiveness 83/100

Why you should trust Bankrate

Bankrate’s team of experts is focused on bringing you comprehensive, well informed financial guidance for every stage of your life. From mortgages to student loans, credit cards and more, you will find friendly and impartial advice with Bankrate. A 0% APR credit card can be a fantastic financial tool for 2019 when used appropriately, as it will allow you to save on interest expenses for the length of the promotional period. It’s important to have a good plan in place for how you want to use your card and pay it off before your 0% rate ends. When you make your plan, it could become apparent that the promotional period won’t be long enough to pay down what you owe, in that instance, it’s worth considering a personal loan.

Review criteria

A great zero interest card should enable you to achieve your 2019 financial goals by offering a long introductory 0% APR period, no annual fee, and a low regular variable APR rate. Our experts award each card a Bankrate score out of 100 by comparing a card’s offering against Bankrate’s proprietary scoring matrix. There’s no one-size-fits-all when it comes to credit cards so it’s important that you factor in all the variables of your unique situation to find the best card for you.

  • 0% Introductory APR Offer: Generally, for 0% interest cards, the longer the period without APR, the better.
  • Balance Transfer Offer: A good 0% interest credit card will also offer a low fee on transferred balances and a lengthy balance transfer period.
  • Regular Variable APR: Regular variable APR refers to the interest rate you incur on a credit card’s outstanding balance, after the introductory 0% APR period. Standard APR can range from below 10% to over 20%.

What is a 0% interest credit card, and how does it work?

If you carry a balance on your credit card, issuers will charge you a variable interest rate on your purchases until you pay off the card. With a zero interest credit card, you receive an introductory period free from interest (ranging anywhere from 6 to 21 months) on purchases or balance transfers.

There are two main uses for a 0% interest card: financing large purchases and consolidating debt.

Let’s say you’re planning a spring renovation for your home, and you want to charge all new kitchen appliances to a credit card. You can sign up for a credit card with a 12-month zero percent introductory offer and (depending on your credit limit) charge the $10,000 for those appliances on that card.

If you pay the balance off in full before the end of that 12-month promotional period, you won’t owe any additional interest charges. If you spent that same $10,000 on a card with an APR of 18% and took a year to pay off the balance, you’d tack another $1,001 in finance charges onto what you already owed.

Compare 0% intro APR to regular rate…

Balance APR Term Interest paid Monthly payment
$10,000 0% 12 months $0 $833.33
$10,000 18% 12 months $1001.60 $916.80

Similarly, you can consolidate $10,000 worth of debt with a card that offers a 12-month balance transfer offer. Rather than being charged hefty interest rates across multiple cards with differing balances, you’ll be charged a balance transfer fee (typically 3% – 5% of each transfer). By paying off that balance within the offer period, you could save in interest.

Compare 0% intro APR balance transfer offer to regular rate…

Balance APR Term Interest paid Balance transfer fee Monthly payment
$10,000 0% 12 months $0 3%=$300 $858.33
$10,000 18% 12 months $1001.60 N/A $916.80

Deeper analysis on our top 0% APR credit cards of 2019

Wells Fargo Platinum Visa® Card

The basics:
The introductory APR for the Wells Fargo Platinum Visa Card is one of the most competitive on the market: 0% APR for 18 months for both purchases and balance transfers (17.74%-27.24% variable thereafter). While you won’t earn rewards with this card, you will have access to Wells Fargo’s My Money Map, a personalized online budgeting and spend-tracking tool. If you’re looking for a way to finance a larger expense, this could be just the card you need.

Long-term value:
Once you’ve utilized the introductory offer, you should probably start looking for a rewards-focused credit card. That doesn’t mean the Wells Fargo Platinum Visa Card isn’t worth it — it can save you thousands in interest. However, you’ll find more long-term value by using this card to continue to build your score so you can get approved for a top-tier rewards credit card down the road.

Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card

The basics:
This card currently offers a 15-month introductory period for both balance transfers and new purchases (then 16.24% – 26.24% variable APR thereafter). Plus, you’ll earn 1.5% cash back on all purchases and a $150 bonus after spending $500 within the first 3 months of account opening. If you’re looking for a simple way to earn rewards while you save on interest with a 0% APR offer, you’ve found the right card.

Long-term value:
The rewards structure on this card is simple and straightforward. Let’s say you spend $1,200 on your Quicksilver each month. At the end of each year, you’ll have racked up over $200 in cash back rewards.

Chase Freedom Unlimited

The basics:
The Chase Freedom Unlimited is a good flat rate cash back option for those wanting flexibility in their rewards structure. The card comes with a solid rewards structure (1.5% cash back on every purchase) and a 15-month introductory 0% APR offer on purchases and balance transfers (then 17.24% – 25.99% variable APR) . You might find more lucrative rewards or a longer intro APR period with other cards, but you’ll be hard-pressed to find a credit card that offers the same kind of flexibility as the Freedom Unlimited. Need to finance a large purchase? This card can help you out. Want an uncomplicated way to earn cash back? The Freedom Unlimited is the card for you. Looking for a supplemental card to help you maximize Chase rewards in non-bonus categories? This card can do that, too.

Long-term value:
If you pair this card with Chase Ultimate Rewards credit cards, you can pool points for maximum redemption value. This isn’t a card you’ll want to ditch after the intro APR offer period has ended, especially since it charges no annual fee.

Discover it® Cash Back

The basics:
The Discover it® Cash Back is a rotating category cash back card that gets you 5% cash back in different areas each quarter, like gas stations and grocery stores, and an unlimited 1% cash back on everything else. You do have to enroll in the new categories each month and 5% cash back is reduced to 1% after you spend $1,500 each quarter. You’ll get a 14-month 0% APR introductory period for purchases and balance transfers (14.24% – 25.24% variable thereafter), and Discover matches all of the cash you’ve earned at the end of your first year.

Long-term value:
The intro APR offer isn’t as long as other top cards in this category, but the long-term value you can get from the Discover it® Cash Back makes the shorter offer period worth it for the consumer with a moderate balance. Long after you take advantage of the intro APR period, you can enroll in 5% cash back in different categories each quarter to help you maximize cash rewards (up to $1,500 in purchases quarterly).This is a card for the shopper who likes to time her purchases according to the card’s rotating schedule, not the consumer looking to set it and forget it.

Citi Rewards+SM Card

The basics:
The Citi Rewards+ Card is your match if you’re looking for a simple way to earn everyday rewards while taking advantage of a no interest card offer. Citi rounds up to the nearest 10 points on every purchase with this card, meaning a $2 coffee could earn you 10 points. Most cards offer either a strong intro APR offer or a competitive rewards structure. The fact that this card gives you both is hard to find in this category.

Long-term value:
The round-up feature with this card alone makes it a valuable card to add to your wallet. While this card offers a decent intro APR period for both purchases and balance transfers, Citi focuses this card on everyday spending rewards that will last well beyond the first 12 months.

Capital One® VentureOne® Rewards Credit Card

The basics:
Have a large travel-related expense coming up? You can finance your upcoming trip while earning travel rewards. The VentureOne card offers a low 12-month introductory 0% APR rate on purchases (14.24%-24.24% variable APR after that), plus 1.25x miles on every purchase and 10x miles on thousands of hotels (through January 2020; learn more at hotels.com/venture). This is the Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card’s sister credit card. It has a lesser rewards rate, but the card doesn’t charge an annual fee.

Long-term value:
The Venture travel rewards program is valuable, and you can rack up a lot of miles on everyday purchases by using this card — all for no annual fee. For even more perks, you can upgrade the VentureOne® to the higher-earning Venture® as you ramp up travel spending to offset the Venture’s annual fee of $95 (waived the first year).

Citi Simplicity Card

The basics:
The Citi Simplicity Card is the perfect option for consolidating debt. With a 0% APR period of 21 months on balance transfers (16.24% – 26.24% variable thereafter), you can save thousands of dollars by paying off debt without interest. This card also never charges a late fee, although you don’t want to make it a habit to pay late because of the impact on your credit files.

Long-term value:
If you’re looking for a credit card to use far beyond the intro APR period has ended, this is not the right card for you. However, this is one of the best cards on the market for balance transfers and paying down debt — which can help you boost your credit score if you’re sitting in the “good” range but want to apply for cards in the future that require “excellent” credit.

Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express

The basics:
The Blue Cash Everyday Card from American Express offers 0% APR on purchases and balance transfers for 15 months (then 15.24% – 26.24% variable). Additionally, the card comes with competitive cash back rates on everyday spending, like 3% back at U.S. supermarkets on up to $6,000 a year (1% after that), unlimited 2% back at U.S. gas stations and select U.S. department stores and 1% on everything else. Other cash back cards have a bit more flexibility when it comes to redemption options, but this is still a great option.

Long-term value:
The intro APR offer with this card is great, but the real value comes from its tiered rewards structure. By hitting the maximum spend for 3% cash back each year, you’ll earn $180 in rewards from that category alone.

Barclaycard Ring® Mastercard®

The basics:
The Barclaycard Ring® Mastercard® is a great tool for getting back on your feet financially. Looking to consolidate debt? This card gets you long 0% introductory APR for 15 months (14.24% variable APR thereafter) on balance transfers made within 45 days of account opening, and only a 2% balance transfer fee (which is lower than many of the top competitor cards). Have an unavoidable large expense coming up? You’ll have a low APR on purchases and cash advances so that you can stay on track with payments.

Long-term value:
You won’t earn any rewards with the Barclaycard Ring® Mastercard®, but that doesn’t mean this card won’t help you long-term. By using this card to pay off debt or finance larger expenses, you can save yourself thousands of dollars in the long run. Plus, there aren’t very many things that feel better than becoming debt-free.

HSBC Gold Mastercard® credit card

The basics:
Everyone makes mistakes, including forgetting the due date for your credit card bill every now and again. Luckily, the HSBC Gold Mastercard® credit card will forgive your first late payment penalty, so you can focus on paying off your balance instead of paying off additional fees. The card also offers an impressive 18-month introductory APR offer on new purchases and balance transfers (13.24%, 17.24% or 21.24% variable APR after).

Long-term value:
The regular APR (13.24%, 17.24% or 21.24% variable after the intro period ends) is one of the best regular APRs on our top zero-interest credit cards list. If you know you might end up carrying a balance at any time past the intro offer period, this is a great card to have on hand to save on interest compared to other credit cards.


How to use a 0% intro APR credit card?

Sometimes carrying a balance on your credit card is unavoidable. Large expenses pop up, cash gets tight throughout the year, other credit card debts pile up… life happens. Here are a few ways you can use a 0% intro APR credit card to stay on top of your financial goals.

Finance your 2019 summer vacation

It’s time to start planning this year’s summer getaways. Whether you’re a wannabe beach bum looking for some Vitamin D or a history nerd who wants to visit as many ancient ruins as possible — a 0% intro APR credit card can offer you a way to plan and pay for your dream vacation without the stress.

Check out the Capital One® VentureOne® if you want a travel card with a strong intro APR offer. You’ll earn 1.25x miles on every purchase (plus 10x miles on purchases at hotels.com/venture through January 2020) and a 20,000-mile welcome offer after spending $1,000 within the first 3 months of account opening.

New home = new furniture

So you’ve started off 2019 with a bang, and you’re all moved into a new house or apartment. Now comes the fun — and expensive — part: summoning your inner Joanna Gaines to decorate your new place. While most major furniture outlets offer some sort of financing, it’s rarely the most financially savvy decision. With a 0% APR credit card, you can pay off your furniture and decor interest-free. Plus, some credit cards offer an extended warranty on eligible purchases, which can be a lifesaver when buying more expensive pieces.

It can be tempting to apply for an Ikea or Home Depot credit card when outfitting your new home, but our recommendation is to choose a card with a lengthy intro APR period instead. The Wells Fargo Platinum Visa offers 18 months with 0% APR on purchases (then 17.74% – 27.24% variable APR), which gives you more time than average to pay off furniture, appliances and all of the throw pillows you could ever want.

Weddings and honeymoons

Weddings are getting more and more expensive. According to the Brides 2018 American Wedding Study, the cost of a typical wedding in the United States increased from around $27,000 in 2017 to almost $44,000 in 2018. While it’s always smart to save up for the big day and, ideally, start your marriage without credit card debt, for some people that’s just not realistic. Even if you do have a wedding fund ready to go, it could be helpful to have a 0% APR credit card available for last-minute and unplanned wedding expenses.

A credit card like the Capital One® Quicksilver® is a great option. You’ll earn 1.5% cash back on every purchase, and the card will give you a significant cushion before you have to start paying interest.

Getting out of debt and repairing your credit score

Everyone goes through seasons where life takes a toll on your finances. It can be due to a new baby (and all of the expenses that come with a new baby) or after an especially difficult tax season or a number of things in between. Balances can pile up across multiple cards, damaging your credit score and causing a lot of stress.

You can use an intro APR credit card with a strong balance transfer option such as the Citi Simplicity to consolidate debt and pay off your balance without compounding interest. Paying off your debt can also help drastically improve your credit score, which can help you get approved for new lines of credit with more favorable terms.

How to choose the right 0% APR credit card?

Which type of credit card you should get depends on what your long-term goals are for the card. Are you just wanting to consolidate debt? Is building your credit score your ultimate long-term goal? Do you want to be able to earn rewards long after the welcome offer for the card ends? The answers to these questions will determine which credit card is right for you.

If you’re looking for a debt consolidation tool, the length of the balance transfer offer and the balance transfer fee are the two features you should look out for. The more debt you want to pay off, the longer the intro APR period you’ll want. The Citi Simplicity and Wells Fargo Platinum Visa, for example, both offer a great intro period length to give you time to pay off debt.

Those who want to keep their card long after the intro period is over should look for a card that offers great rewards. The Wells Fargo Propel and Citi Rewards+ Card both come with generous rewards and long-term value that goes well beyond the intro APR offer.

How much can you save with a 0% intro APR offer?

0% APR offer period for new purchases Regular APR How much you’ll save in interest charges
Wells Fargo Platinum Visa 18 months 17.74%-27.24% (Variable) $687
Capital One Quicksilver 15 months 16.24% – 26.24% (Variable) $551
Chase Freedom Unlimited 15 months 17.24% – 25.99% (Variable) $545
Discover it® Cash Back 14 months 14.24% – 25.24% (Variable) $494
Citi Rewards+ 12 months 15.74% – 25.74% (Variable) $434
Capital One VentureOne 12 months 14.24% – 24.24% (Variable) $408
Citi Simplicity 15 months 16.24% – 26.24% (Variable) $443
Blue Cash Everyday 15 months 15.24% – 26.24% (Variable) $551
Barclaycard Ring Mastercard 15 months 14.24% (Variable) $303
HSBC Gold Mastercard credit card 18 months 13.24%, 17.24% or 21.24% (Variable) $530

Should you use your 0% APR credit card to finance large purchases?

Ideally, large purchases — both planned and unexpected — are paid for with money you’ve saved up over time. However, sometimes that’s just not possible. If you have to charge a larger purchase, a 0% APR credit card is typically a good choice. It allows you to spread out payments overtime without worrying about interest.

The downside to these credit cards is that the regular APR that takes effect after the intro offer period is over might be a little higher than your average rewards card. Make sure you have a plan for paying off your balance within the offer period, because those interest charges can add up quickly. Calculate how much you should be paying off each month by simply taking your intro APR purchase balance and dividing it by the length until your intro period ends.

So, if you charge $1,500 on a card that has a 15-month intro period for new purchases, you need to pay $100 a month at minimum. It’s actually probably a good idea to plan to pay just a little extra each month so that you get the balance paid off a month or so early.

When a 0% APR credit card might not be right for you

Sometimes, a 0% intro APR card isn’t the best choice when looking at funding options. If you are looking to make a purchase you know you won’t be able to pay off within the offer period, it might be better to look at your personal loan options.

For example, it’s probably feasible for you to pay off plane tickets for an upcoming vacation or a new set of tires for your car over the course of a year to a year in and a half. Charging an entire home renovation or a large medical bill to a 0% APR credit card, on the other hand, might not be the best choice if you don’t have a realistic plan for paying off the charges within a year to a year and a half (depending on which card you apply for). Personal loans charge a much lower interest rate than credit cards, so even if you have to pay some money in interest, you’ll still be saving hundreds.

How does a 0% APR card affect your credit

Any time you apply for a new credit card, the credit card issuer will check your credit report to determine your creditworthiness. This is called a hard inquiry, and it can temporarily affect your credit score. Typically, as long as you aren’t applying for multiple lines of credit within a short period of time, there shouldn’t be any lasting negative effects to your credit score.

However, there are multiple ways a 0% APR card can affect your credit depending on how you use the card. If you’re using your card to consolidate debt, it can actually help boost your credit score over time. A large factor in determining your credit score is your credit utilization ratio. By consolidating and paying down credit card balances, you’re lowering that ratio.

Furthermore, if you use a 0% APR credit card to pay off a large purchase over time, you can boost your credit score just by showing lenders that you can consistently make on-time payments.

Does paying the minimum on a credit card hurt your credit?

When you carry a balance, you can opt to pay a minimum payment each month rather than the larger amount. While paying the minimum payment doesn’t directly hurt your credit score, it can have a snowball effect that does end up damaging your score.

Paying only the minimum payment each month means you most likely won’t pay off your balance within the designated intro offer period. That leads to interest charges and a longer pay-off timeline. Both of those things can mean your credit utilization ratio is increased, which can cause your credit score to drop.

Whenever possible, pay off the full amount of your credit card balance each month. When consolidating debt or financing a large purchase with a credit card, have a plan for paying off the full balance before the offer period ends. For example, if you are consolidating $3,000 in debt on a 15-month 0% APR card, you should aim to pay off at least $200 a month.

* 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.