A cardholder might have numerous reasons for choosing a particular credit card. Perhaps there is an attractive cash back rate, a tempting travel rewards program or the chance to consolidate debt with a 0 percent intro APR balance transfer offer. Offered by the third largest bank in the U.S., the *Wells Fargo Platinum card (This card is no longer available) may be the right solution for someone focused on consolidating debt.
Amanda Claypool, founder of Millionaire by Next Year, had this debt consolidation goal in mind when she chose the Wells Fargo Platinum card. Not only could she take advantage of the 0 percent intro APR balance transfer offer, she was able to use other card perks to improve her overall financial health.
Before we dive in, it should be noted the Wells Fargo Platinum card is no longer accepting new applications. However, if you’re a current cardholder, you may have forgotten about all the benefits you too can take advantage of. Or, maybe your financial situation is comparable to Amanda’s and you could adopt a similar plan with a different balance transfer card.
0% Intro APR for 18 months
The Wells Fargo Platinum card offers a 0 percent introductory APR on balance transfers and purchases for 18 months. While introductory APR and balance transfer offers are common among credit cards, the 18-month period is a more generous offer than many on the market. Both offers allow you to make a large purchase and pay over time, or transfer and pay down debt, without interest.
The balance transfer offer is one of the main reasons Claypool chose to add the Wells Fargo Platinum to her wallet. “The long 0 percent APR balance transfer window of the Platinum card allowed me to move some debt around as I entered into a major life transition,” she says. The card as a useful tool to consolidate consumer debt, she decided, and worth keeping around.
No annual fee
Another great feature of the Wells Fargo Platinum card is its lack of an annual fee. This makes it easier on the wallet since you don’t have to pay additional fees for simply owning the card.
However, there are other fees with this card to be aware of. For example, the balance transfer fee is 3 percent (minimum $5), and you must transfer balances within 120 days of account opening. After this time period is up, the balance transfer fee increases to 5 percent (minimum $5).
Easy to pair with other cards
One drawback to the Wells Fargo Platinum card is the lack of reward structure, such as cash back or travel rewards. If, however, you like the idea of a long 0 percent introductory offer, as Claypool did, then the Wells Fargo Platinum can easily be paired with another card that offers rewards on spending.
She paired the Wells Fargo Platinum card with the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card. She liked this pairing because she was able to earn travel rewards, a benefit she was unable to get through the Wells Fargo card.
But cardholders who are focused primarily on paying off debt should be careful not to take on another credit card unless it’s absolutely necessary.
Lesser-known (but equally useful) perks
The Wells Fargo Platinum card may not have exciting travel rewards or the cash back potential of other cards, but there are a few lesser-known benefits which could prove to be valuable.
The Wells Fargo Platinum card includes perks such as:
- Credit education resources and free FICO score monitoring
- Cellphone protection (worth up to $600) for eligible incidents
- Travel and emergency assistance services
- Auto rental collision damage waiver
- Roadside dispatch, which includes pay-per-use roadside assistance program
For Claypool, the free FICO score monitoring tool helped her save money over time, and she uses the benefit often. For example, she was able to negotiate more favorable terms for an auto loan simply by having easy access to her credit score. “Having all three [scores] handy gives you more negotiating power, especially if one of the scores is significantly higher than the others,” she says. “Wells Fargo makes this really easy.”
Other Wells Fargo cards to consider
Since the Wells Fargo Platinum card is no longer available, you may be interested in another Wells Fargo card that includes a long intro APR offer on balance transfers and purchases.
The Wells Fargo Reflect Card
The Wells Fargo Reflect℠ Card is another option within the Wells Fargo lineup. It’s similar to the Platinum card, except with this card, you’ll have the opportunity to extend the 0 percent intro offer for balance transfers and purchases from 18 months to 21 months, as long as minimum payments are made on time during the intro period, after that a variable APR of 13.74 percent to 25.74 percent applies. Like the Platinum, the Wells Fargo Reflect doesn’t include a rewards rate or welcome offer, but it does include other popular perks, such as no annual fee and up to $600 in cellphone protection for eligible incidents.
The Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card
The Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card is a great option to consider if you’re looking for both cash rewards and intro APR offers on balance transfers and purchases. With this card, you’ll get a 0 percent APR on purchases and balance transfers for 15 months, followed by an APR of 15.74 percent, 20.74 percent, or 25.74 percent. Also an unlimited 2 percent cash rewards on purchases and a welcome offer of $200 after spending $1,000 within three months of account opening.
The bottom line
The Wells Fargo Platinum card may not include travel rewards or cash back, but it does provide cardholders with other advantages, such as no annual fee, a great intro offer on balance transfers and purchases, free credit monitoring and cell phone protection.
If you already have the Wells Fargo Platinum, it certainly wouldn’t hurt to keep it in your wallet if you’re taking advantage of its limited benefits. But if you’re looking for a balance transfer card that offers more perks—such as cash back or travel rewards—be sure to take a look at other available options until you find a card that’s a better fit.
*The information about Wells Fargo Platinum card has been collected independently by Bankrate.com. The card details have not been reviewed or approved by the card issuer. The Wells Fargo Platinum card is no longer available.