When used responsibly, credit cards are one of your strongest financial tools. They’re a great way to afford new purchases or get out of debt, especially when you have a card with a long zero-interest introductory offer. A good credit card will give you at least 12 months of interest-free purchases and balance transfers, while the best ones offer as many as 20.
A generous intro offer can help you save significantly on high-interest credit card debt since more of your money goes toward the principal instead of interest. So if your goals for the new year include getting out of debt, a 0% APR credit card might be your best asset.
To help you get started, check out some of CNBC Select’s top choices for the best 0% APR credit cards for January 2021.
Longest Intro APR Period — 20 Months
US Bank Visa Platinum Card
The US Bank Visa Platinum Card may not offer a rewards program or welcome bonus, but it has the longest introductory period of any credit card. At the end of the 20 months, the regular APR kicks in at 13.99% to 23.99%, depending on your creditworthiness.
Balance transfers cost 3% of the amount you transfer or $5, depending on which is greater. There is no annual fee, though it does come with a 2% to 3% foreign transaction fee. You must have good to excellent credit to qualify.
Best Credit Cards With 18-Month Intro APR
Citi Simplicity Card
With the Citi Simplicity, the name tells you everything you need to know about this card. It has a shorter intro period than the US Bank Visa Platinum, but it’s more than enough time to pay off a considerable amount of existing debt.
This card doesn’t offer a rewards program or welcome bonus, but it also doesn’t charge an annual fee. The regular APR is 14.74% to 24.74% after the intro period, based on your creditworthiness. Balance transfers cost 5% or $5, depending on which is more. There’s also a 3% fee for foreign transactions, and you must have good or excellent credit.
Wells Fargo Platinum
Like the first two cards, the Wells Fargo Platinum also has no rewards program or welcome bonus, but it also has no annual fee, either. After the 18-month introductory period on balance transfers and new purchases ends, you pay 16.49% to 24.49% APR.
You only pay 3% or $5 on balance transfers for the first 120 days, then 5% afterward. This card has a 3% foreign transaction fee and is only available to applicants with good to excellent credit.
Best Credit Cards With 15-Month Intro APR
Amex EveryDay Credit Card
The Amex EveryDay card may not have the best intro-APR period, but 15 months is plenty of time to get your debt under control. After that, you pay 12.99% to 23.99% regular APR, depending on your credit.
Not only that, but it also offers a great rewards program that lets you earn double Membership Rewards on the first $6,000 you spend on groceries every year (then one point for every dollar after that). You can also get one point for every dollar on everything else.
You can also qualify for 10,000 Membership Rewards points when you spend $1,000 within three months of account opening. Best of all, there’s no annual fee to offset your rewards. You must have good to excellent credit to qualify for the Amex EveryDay card.
Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa
On top of a lengthy APR period, you can earn 1.5% cashback on all purchases with the Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa credit card. And when you use your card to make a minimum of $500 in new purchase within three months, you can get $150 cold hard cash — all without worrying about an annual fee.
After the 15-month intro period ends, the regular APR switches to 14.49% to 24.99% for both purchases and balance transfers. Like the Wells Fargo Platinum Card, this card charges 3% or $5 for balance transfers made in the first 120 days of opening an account, then 5% after that. In addition, there’s a 3% foreign transaction fee. This card is available to borrowers with good to excellent credit.
- White, Alexandria. “The Best 0% APR Credit Cards: Finance Debt or New Purchases Interest-Free for up to 20 Months.” CNBC, CNBC, 22 Dec. 2020, www.cnbc.com/select/best-zero-interest-credit-cards/.