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- Capital One allows balance transfers from other credit card issuers but not between Capital One cards.
- Capital One balance transfers can be completed online by selecting a card, choosing an offer and providing the necessary transfer details.
- New card applicants can opt for a 0 percent intro APR offer and initiate a balance transfer during their application process.
- When managed responsibly, a balance transfer can positively impact your credit score. However, taking on additional debt before paying off your transferred balance may harm your credit score.
If you’re looking for an easy way to pay off credit card debt without paying interest, signing up for a balance transfer credit card is often a good idea. And if you’re interested in completing a balance transfer with Capital One, here’s how you can get started — along with some of the best balance transfer offers currently available from Capital One cards with balance transfer offers to consider.
How to do a Capital One balance transfer
There are two ways to do a Capital One balance transfer: using an existing card or a new card. Note that you can’t transfer a balance from one Capital One card to another Capital One card. You can only transfer a balance from another credit card issuer — like Discover or Citi — to a Capital One card. Also, your total balance plus fees can’t exceed your available credit limit.
How to do a balance transfer with an existing card
If you already have a Capital One credit card that’s eligible for a balance transfer, here’s how to complete a balance transfer online:
- Log in to your Capital One account.
- Locate and click on the credit card account you want to use for the balance transfer.
- Go to the drop-down menu and select “Transfer a balance.” You’ll then be taken to a screen that outlines your current balance transfer offer, including how much you’ll pay in interest (if any), whether you’ll be charged a balance transfer fee and any associated time limitations.
- Next to the balance transfer offer you’re interested in, click “Select Offer.”
- Then, you’ll see a screen that asks you to enter the name, account number and payment address of the other issuer, along with the amount of the transfer. Note that the amount of your transfer cannot exceed the amount you’re approved for in the offer.
How to do a balance transfer with a new card
Alternatively, if you’re interested in opening a new Capital One card with a 0 percent intro APR offer, you can also complete a balance transfer during the application process. After you’ve been approved for your desired card, you’ll be asked if you have any balances to transfer. You’ll then enter the same information mentioned above in step 5.
How long does it take to process a balance transfer with Capital One?
According to Capital One, balance transfers will be processed immediately once they’re approved, but it can take about 10 business days to process with the other issuer.
The balance on your original credit card will continue to accrue interest until the requested balance transfer is processed. So check the account from which you transferred the balance to see if any outstanding interest needs to be paid off once your balance transfer is finished. Note that it could take up to 30 days for the interest to appear on your account.
Likewise, unless the balance transfer process is completed before your next credit card payment is due, the card issuer will still expect payment from you — and it can penalize you with late fees if you miss it.
Best Capital One cards for a balance transfer
Credit card issuers frequently update their balance transfer offers, with many eliminating these offers throughout the year and then reinstating them later. Here are some of the best Capital One Cards with a 0 percent intro APR offer right now:
Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards Credit Card: Best for flat cash back
The Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards Credit Card offers an introductory 0 percent APR on purchases and balance transfers for 15 months, followed by a variable APR of 19.99 percent to 29.99 percent. There’s also a balance transfer fee of 3 percent for the first 15 months or at a promotional APR that Capital One may offer you at any other time and no fee for amounts transferred at the Transfer APR, which is on the lower end of the balance-transfer-fee range (typically 3 percent to 5 percent). The card also comes with some perks like no annual fee, an unlimited 1.5 percent cash back on all purchases and the chance to earn a $200 cash bonus after spending $500 within three months of account opening.
Capital One SavorOne Cash Rewards Credit Card: Best for bonus cash back
The Capital One SavorOne Cash Rewards Credit Card also includes a 0 percent intro APR on purchases and balance transfers for 15 months (followed by a 19.99 percent to 29.99 percent variable APR), along with a balance transfer fee of 3 percent for the first 15 months or at a promotional APR that Capital One may offer you at any other time and no fee for amounts transferred at the Transfer APR. This card also comes with a welcome bonus ($200 cash back after spending $500 within three months of account opening) and no annual fee.
The SavorOne earns 3 percent cash back on dining, entertainment, popular streaming services and grocery stores (excluding superstores like Walmart and Target), plus 1 percent back on all other purchases. You can also earn 5 percent cash back on hotel and rental car bookings through Capital One Travel and 8 percent cash back on Capital One Entertainment purchases.
Capital One VentureOne Rewards Credit Card: Best for beginner travel
Like the other Capital One cards mentioned, the Capital One VentureOne Rewards Credit Card also offers a 0 percent intro APR on purchases and balance transfers for 15 months (followed by a 19.99 percent to 29.99 percent variable APR). It also includes a balance transfer fee of 3 percent for the first 15 months or at a promotional APR that Capital One may offer you at any other time with no fee for amounts transferred at the Transfer APR and no annual fee.
Unlike the other Capital One cards mentioned (which are cash back cards), the VentureOne is an entry-level travel rewards card. It offers a flat 1.25X miles on all purchases and 5X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel. You’ll also be able to earn a welcome bonus of 20,000 miles (worth $200) once you spend $500 on purchases within the first three months of account opening.
Will a balance transfer hurt your credit score?
There are a few ways a balance transfer may hurt your credit score. Applying for a new credit card often results in a hard credit check, which can temporarily drop your credit score slightly. Once you open a new account, the average age of your accounts will drop, which can also have a negative impact.
If you decide to close your old credit card, that can also cause a drop in your credit score. But adding a top balance transfer credit card to your wallet and keeping your old account open could have a positive impact on your credit score. That’s because the addition of a new account could help to increase the amount of credit you have while decreasing your credit utilization ratio — which is the amount of credit you have available to use compared to the amount of credit you’re actually using.
To see an improvement in your credit score, you would have to transfer a balance to a credit card and begin to pay that balance off. You’d also have to maintain a low credit utilization ratio. Most experts suggest keeping a ratio of 30 percent or less. The lower you keep it, the better your credit score.
But if you open a balance transfer credit card, transfer a balance and charge new debt to your credit cards before paying that transferred balance off, your credit utilization ratio could get worse, and your credit score could go down. Likewise, your credit score is unlikely to improve if you never pay off your balance and keep transferring it from card to card.
Keep in mind that balance transfers, like most aspects of credit card management, are only worth it when used responsibly.
The bottom line
If you’re ready to pay down high-interest credit card debt, a balance transfer with Capital One may be the answer. The problem? Zero percent intro APR offers can be temporary, so be sure to check periodically for new offers or changes to existing offers.