Barclaycard launches longest-ever 0% balance transfer credit card
Barclaycard has dealt another blow to rivals in the balance transfer market by extending its 27-month 0% card by one month.
The new 28-month card is the longest ever 0% balance transfer card on offer. It has a fee of 3.5% on any loan transferred over.
Barclaycard has also ramped up the offering on its 26-month card - extending it by one month to 27 months. This card has a 2.99% fee and both changes secure the provider's place firmly at the top of the tables.
Barclaycard 0% deals
The two new Barclaycard deals are very attractive for borrowers who need a long time to pay off their debt. During the 0% period, borrowers won't have to pay any interest and can instead focus on paying off their debts.
What's more, both of these cards also offer 0% new purchase deals that will last for six months.
That said, Barclaycard's move isn't terribly surprising. Every time a rival provider improves its 0% offer, Barclaycard has reacted with a counter-offer that has almost always put it straight back at the top of the market.
It is now the only provider offering a 28-month balance transfer card. RBS, NatWest and Tesco all have 27-month cards but these cards all have higher fees.
Our comparison tables give a fuller view of the market but here I've listed the five balance transfer cards with the longest 0% periods:
Bear in mind that Barclaycard will only take on new customers. And the provider is also notorious for only accepting borrowers with an excellent credit score.
Compare the 0% balance transfer credit cards with the longest interest-free periods
Cards with lower fees
It's also worth bearing in mind that a 28-month 0% card isn't right for everyone. That's because you can pay much lower fees if you take out a card with a significantly shorter interest-free period.
Tesco, for example, only charges a 0.9% fee on its Tesco Clubcard Credit Card with Low Balance Transfer Fee. So, on a £2000 debt, you'd only have to pay an £18 fee.
Halifax and Lloyds TSB also offer low-fee cards at 1% which have 15 and 13-month 0% periods respectively.
So if you think you'll be able to pay off your credit card debt within a year, it makes much more sense to go for a low-fee card.
Compare the top balance transfer cards with low fees
How to use a balance transfer card
Balance transfer cards can be an excellent way of managing your debts and paying them off at a faster rate.
But they are only effective if used properly. That means you must make your minimum payment on time every month. If you don't do this, your 0% deal could be withdrawn, and you could also get a black mark on your credit score.
During the 0% period, it's also essential that you work to clear the debt on the card. High interest payments will kick in again if you haven't paid off all your debt during the 0% period, and you should be trying to avoid any further interest payments on your credit card debt.
Make money from your spending with a cashback credit card