If you’re reading this, chances are you have too much debt on one or more high-interest-rate credit cards and you’re looking to consolidate all or some of that debt onto a credit card with no balance transfer fee from American Express or another credit card with no balance transfer fee.
Here’s what you need to know about an American Express balance transfer.
This Article Will Cover
- What Options Do I Have For An American Express Balance Transfer?
- Is An American Express Balance Transfer A Good Choice?
- What Other No Balance Transfer Fee Credit Cards Should I Consider?
- How Does A Balance Transfer Work?
What Options Do I Have For An American Express Balance Transfer?
Amex EveryDay: $0 balance transfer fee. 0% on purchases and balance transfers for 15 months, but balance transfer must be requested in the first 60 days. 10,000 membership rewards points after spending $1,000 in first 3 months. 2x points on up to $6,000 in spending at supermarkets; 1% on everything else. No annual fee.
Beyond that, Amex offers three additional credit cards with a 0% introductory interest rate on balance transfers, though you will pay a fee, usually $5 or 3% of the amount of balance you transfer.
Blue Cash Everyday: 0% on purchases and balance transfers for 15 months. $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, up to $6,000 per year in purchases (then 1%). 2% cash back at U.S. gas stations & select U.S. department stores. 1% cash back on other purchases . No annual fee.
American Express Blue Business: 0% on purchases and balance transfers for 15 months. 2x points for every dollar spent on up to $50,000 in purchases per year. 1x point for every dollar spent on purchases thereafter. No annual fee.
Amex EveryDay Preferred: 0% on purchases and balance transfers for 12 months. 15,000 membership points after spending $1,000 in the first 3 months. 3% cash back on spending at supermarkets; 2% at gas stations; 1% on everything else. Annual Fee $95.
Amex EveryDay® Credit Card
- 2x Points at Supermarkets
- 1x Points on Dining
- 1x Points on Gas
- 1x Points on All Other Purchases
- 10,000 bonus points after you spend $1,000 within the first 3 months
- 20% more points if you use your card 20 or more times in a billing period
- 2.7% of each transaction in U.S. dollar
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Is An American Express Balance Transfer A Good Choice?
The real question to ask is: Do I want an American Express card?
Amex tends to be a bit more selective than other credit cards, which generally means you likely need a credit score of at least 700 to qualify. Moreover, Amex tends to carry a bit more prestige, if that’s important to you.
Also know that Amex typically won’t allow you to transfer more than $7,500, or 75% of whatever credit limit Amex offers you. So, if you’re looking to transfer more, you will likely need a high-credit-limit credit card or more than one balance transfer card.
You also cannot transfer debt from an existing American Express card onto a new Amex card. You can only transfer debt from credit cards issued by other companies, such as Visa, Mastercard and the like.
Finally, if you miss a monthly payment, you could lose your introductory rate, which means your remaining balance will be subject to your card’s prevailing interest rate.
What Other No Balance Transfer Fee Credit Cards Should I Consider?
If Amex prestige isn’t important to you, then there are other credit cards with no balance transfer fee to consider. Two of the better ones are:
Chase Slate: $0 balance transfer fee, within 60 days of opening account. 0% rate on purchases and balance transfer for 15 months. Not a rewards card. No annual fee.
Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards: 0% rate on balance transfer and purchases for 15 months. $150 cash bonus after spending $500 in the first 3 months, and an unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase. No annual fee, and no foreign transaction fees.
HSBC Cash Rewards: 0% rate on balance transfer and purchases for 15 months. $0 cash bonus after spending $10,000 in the first 12 months. 1.5% cash back on every purchase, plus a 10% anniversary cash back bonus on all cash rewards earned during the year. No annual fee, no foreign transaction fees.
Citi Double Cash Card: 0% Intro APR on Balance Transfers for 18 months. Earn 2% cash back on purchases: 1% when you buy plus 1% as you pay. No annual fee.
Chase Slate® Credit Card
- 3% foreign transaction fee
Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card
- 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
HSBC Cash Rewards Mastercard® credit card
- Earn unlimited 1.5% cash rewards on all purchases.
- Earn an Introductory 3% Cash Back on all purchases in the first 12 months from Account opening, up to the first $10,000 in purchases.
- 10% Anniversary Bonus on all Cash Rewards earned once a year.
- No Annual Fee.
- 0% Intro APR for 12 months on purchases and balance transfers, then a 15.24%, 19.24% or 25.24% variable APR.
- No Foreign Transaction Fees.
- $0 liability for unauthorized purchases.
- Terms Apply.
How Does A Balance Transfer Work?
Before you transfer the balance from one or more credit cards onto a new credit card, there are some things you need to be aware of.
Is There A Limit On Balance Transfers?
Amex, as noted previously, usually will limit a balance to $7,500 or 75% of the credit limit you are given. Chase Slate limits balance transfers to $15,000.
To find the limit for the balance transfer credit card you’re considering, check the “terms and conditions.”
What is the Best Credit Card for Balance Transfers?
Most of the previously mentioned that carry no balance transfer fee.
So, that would be the Amex EveryDay card or Chase Slate. If you’re going to transfer a balance, it makes sense to pay no fee as opposed to 3% or 5% of the balance you’re transferring, which is what most credit cards charge.
Just be aware that the Amex balance transfer offer is a temporary promotion that could go away at any time.
What Kind of Debt Can I Transfer?
Only credit-card debt. You cannot transfer debt from any other type of loan.
Is My Balance Transfer Amount Eligible For Cash Back Or Miles?
Nope. Don’t even ask your credit card company.
You will receive the sign up bonus if you meet whatever spending requirements are necessary, and you’ll earn rewards on all the spending you do on the card, but the balance you transfer is not eligible for any miles or cash back rewards.
How Long Does A Balance Transfer Take?
It depends on the credit card company. It might take seven days. It might take a month.
You should request all your balance transfers at the same time, assuming you are transferring balances from more than one credit card, and assuming those combined balances are within the credit limit you’ve been given on the new balance-transfer credit card.
Make A Plan To Pay Off Your Debt
This is the most important point. Pay off the debt you transfer within the introductory period.
If you simply make the minimum monthly payments, you will obviously benefit from the 0% interest rate, but if you haven’t paid off your balance – or haven’t paid it down substantially – you will suddenly be hit with prevailing interest rates on the remainder of your balance. Those rates are usually in the high teens to low-20% range, and that can mean sizeable monthly interest charges, depending on how much debt remains on your card after the introductory rate ends.
The Wrap Up
If you’re looking to transfer the balance of one or more credit cards onto a new credit card, then absolutely go for a credit card with no balance transfer fee. Depending on how much debt you’re transferring, a no balance transfer fee can save you hundreds of dollars.
But we want to know: What’s more important to you – credit cards with no balance transfer fee, or a card that offers a low balance transfer interest rate for a longer period of time, say 3 years or longer?
Let us know in the comments below.