Getting a 0% APR credit card can be a great way to make large purchases interest-free, as long as you pay off the balance by the end of the introductory 0% APR period. With the right 0% credit card, you can finance a major purchase or consolidate debt without accruing interest charges for 12 months or longer.
But not all 0% APR credit cards are created equal. Some have shorter 0% intro periods or charge balance transfer fees. Others have restrictive conditions or don’t offer a true 0% interest rate.
This comprehensive guide compares the top 0% APR credit cards on the market today. We evaluated over 50 cards based on the length of 0% intro APR offers, balance transfer fees, foreign transaction fees, credit required, and other features.
Below are the 10 best 0% interest credit cards for consumers looking to make interest-free purchases or transfer a balance.
How We Chose the Best 0% APR Credit Cards
There are several key factors we considered when picking the top 0% APR credit cards:
- Length of 0% intro APR – The longer the interest-free period, the more time you have to pay off a balance. The best 0% cards provide 12 months or more.
- Balance transfer fees – The best balance transfer cards offer a lengthy 0% term with no balance transfer fees. Cards that charge 3-5% fees are less ideal.
- True 0% interest – Some cards only waive interest on certain transactions, not purchases. The best 0% cards offer 0% on all new purchases.
- Credit required – We looked for 0% cards available to those with good credit (690+) or excellent credit (740+). Options for fair credit (630+) are noted.
- Foreign transaction fees – The best credit cards do not charge extra fees on international purchases.
- Card benefits – Additional perks like rewards, cash back, sign-up bonuses, and purchase protections are a plus.
Using these criteria, we selected the top 10 best 0% interest credit cards across various categories and credit profiles.
The 10 Best 0% APR Credit Cards
1. Wells Fargo ReflectSM Card – Best for No Interest Charges
The Wells Fargo Reflect card stands out for its 18-month 0% intro APR period, cell phone protection, and no annual fee. New cardholders enjoy:
- 0% APR for 18 months on purchases and qualifying balance transfers made in the first 120 days.
- No balance transfer fees when completed within 120 days of account opening.
- Cell phone protection covers damaged and stolen devices up to $600 per claim ($50 deductible) when you pay your cell bill with the card.
- No annual fee or foreign transaction fees.
- Good for debt consolidation, large purchases, wedding costs, home renovations.
The Reflect card requires good to excellent credit (690+ credit score). There are no rewards, but this card can save you a lot in interest and give you peace of mind on cell phone replacements.
Apply for the Wells Fargo Reflect Card here.
2. Citi Simplicity® Card – Best 0% Interest on Balance Transfers
The Citi Simplicity card provides 21 months of 0% intro APR interest on balance transfers (made within 4 months) and purchases. Features include:
- 0% for 21 months on balance transfers and purchases.
- No late fees or penalty rates. Ever.
- No annual fee.
- Balance transfer fee of only 3% (minimum $5).
- Good for debt consolidation, large purchases, financing home projects.
This straightforward card from Citi requires good to excellent credit (720+ score) for approval. It does not offer rewards, but the long 0% interest period can save you a lot as you pay down debt.
Apply for the Citi Simplicity Card here.
3. Chase Freedom Unlimited® – Best for Purchases
The Chase Freedom Unlimited has no annual fee and provides 0% intro APR on purchases for 15 months (from account opening). Other key features:
- Earn 5% cash back on travel booked through Chase Ultimate Rewards, 3% back on dining and drugstores, and 1.5% back on other purchases.
- 0% APR for 15 months on purchases made in the first 3 months.
- Good for new purchases like furniture, electronics, car repairs, or medical bills. Cash back can offset some costs.
- $200 sign-up bonus after spending $500 in the first 3 months.
- Excellent credit (740+) required for approval.
With no balance transfer offer, this is best for 0% interest on new purchases. You can earn unlimited 1.5% cash back after the 15-month intro period ends.
Apply for the Chase Freedom Unlimited Card here.
4. U.S. Bank Visa® Platinum Card – Best for Fair Credit
For consumers with fair or average credit, the U.S. Bank Visa Platinum card provides:
- 0% APR for 20 billing cycles on purchases and balance transfers made in the first 60 days
- No annual fee
- Credit access line from $300 to $2,000 based on your qualifications
- Good for building credit through on-time payments while saving on interest on purchases or transferred debt.
- Fair credit required – this card is available to those with a 640-679 credit score.
With responsible use, this card can help establish or rebuild credit. The 20 billing cycles of 0% intro APR provide ample time to pay off purchases or transferred balances interest-free.
Apply for the U.S. Bank Visa Platinum Card here.
5. Bank of America® Customized Cash Rewards credit card – Best Balance Transfer Card
The Bank of America Customized Cash card provides a 0% APR and no balance transfer fees during the 18 month intro period. Additional benefits:
- 0% intro APR for 18 billing cycles on purchases and balance transfers
- No balance transfer fees during the intro period
- 3% cash back in a category of your choice like gas, dining, travel, online shopping, etc.
- 2% cash back at grocery stores and wholesale clubs
- $200 online cash rewards bonus after spending $1,000 in the first 90 days
- No foreign transaction fees
This card requires good to excellent credit (740+ score). The generous 18 month 0% term for both purchases and balance transfers is hard to beat.
Apply for the Bank of America Customized Cash Card here.
6. Chase Freedom FlexSM – Best 0% Card with Rewards
The Chase Freedom Flex card offers both 0% intro APR and cash back rewards on purchases. Card highlights include:
- 0% APR for 15 months from account opening on purchases
- Earn 5% cash back on travel booked through Chase, 3% on dining and drugstores, and 1% on other purchases
- $200 sign-up bonus after spending $500 in the first 3 months
- 0% intro APR on balance transfers for 15 months with a 3% balance transfer fee
- No annual fee
This card requires good to excellent credit (690+ score). It combines the ability to earn unlimited cash back rewards with 15 months of 0% interest on new purchases.
Apply for the Chase Freedom Flex Card here.
7. Discover it® Balance Transfer – Best Balance Transfer Offer
Discover offers new cardholders 0% APR for 18 months on balance transfers (made within 45 days of account opening) and purchases. Other key advantages:
- 0% intro APR for 18 months on balance transfers and purchases
- No balance transfer fees
- 5% cashback on everyday purchases at different quarterly categories on up to $1,500 in combined purchases each quarter
- Unlimited 1% cash back on other purchases
- Cashback match – Discover will match all the cash back you’ve earned after your first year
- $50 statement credit for free after your first purchase within 3 months of account opening
This card requires good credit (680+ score). Take advantage of 18 months 0% interest to pay off debt or make a large purchase over time.
Apply for the Discover it Balance Transfer Card here.
8. Citi® Double Cash Card – Best for Flat-Rate Cash Back
While not specifically a 0% APR card, the Citi Double Cash card offers a true 0% interest rate on purchases and balance transfers for the first 15 months (transfers must be made in the first 4 months). Other highlights include:
- 0% intro APR for 15 months on purchases and balance transfers
- Earn 2% unlimited cash back – 1% when you buy plus 1% when you pay it off
- No annual fee
- Balance transfer fee of 3% (minimum $5)
After the intro period, there is a variable 13.99% – 23.99% APR. This card requires good to excellent credit (670+ score) for approval. If you pay your bill in full each month, you can earn an effective 2% cash back rate on all purchases long-term.
Apply for the Citi Double Cash Card here.
9. Chase Slate EdgeSM – Best for Bad Credit
For those rebuilding credit, the new Chase Slate Edge card offers:
- 0% intro APR for 15 months on purchases and balance transfers
- No balance transfer fees when completing transfers within 60 days of account opening
- No minimum balance and no annual fee
- Acceptable credit required – you may qualify with a credit score around 630.
This card can help establish credit through on-time payments while saving on interest charges. After 15 months, a variable 16.49% – 27.49% APR applies.
Apply for the Chase Slate Edge Card here.
10. Bank of America® Unlimited Cash Rewards Credit Card – No Cap on Earnings
The Bank of America Unlimited Cash Rewards card provides:
- 0% APR for 15 billing cycles on purchases and qualifying balance transfers
- Unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase – no cap on what you can earn
- $200 cash rewards bonus after spending $1,000 in the first 90 days
There is a 3% balance transfer fee (minimum $10) during the intro period. This straightforward cash back card requires excellent credit (740+ score).
Apply for the Bank of America Unlimited Cash Rewards Card here.
What to Look for in a 0% APR Credit Card
When searching for the best 0% credit card, keep these factors in mind:
Introductory 0% APR Length
- Cards with 0% intro periods 12 months or longer enable you to maximize interest savings on purchases or transferred balances.
- Choose a card with a 0% term that matches closely to when you expect to pay off the balance.
Balance Transfer Fee
- The best balance transfer cards offer a 0% intro APR with no balance transfer fees.
- If there is a fee, it typically ranges from 3-5% of the transferred amount. Compare cards to find the lowest fees.
Types of Transactions
- A true 0% APR card will provide a 0% rate on both new purchases and balance transfers.
- Some cards only offer 0% interest on balance transfers or specific transaction types.
Credit Card Rewards
- While not essential, look for a 0% card that also provides cash back, points or travel rewards on your spending.
- You can potentially earn a nice rewards bonus while paying no interest during the intro period.
Foreign Transaction Fees
- Cards that do NOT charge foreign transaction fees save you 3% on international purchases.
- This benefit is more valuable for frequent travelers but still nice to have.
Benefits of 0% APR Credit Cards
The major benefits of 0% APR credit cards include:
- Defer interest – Make purchases now and pay them off over time without incurring interest charges during the 0% intro period.
- Lower cost of financing – Borrow at lower interest rates by transferring balances from high APR cards onto a 0% card.
- Manage emergency expenses – Pay for unexpected bills and expenses while taking advantage of 0% intro APR.
- Consolidate credit card debt – Combine multiple balances onto a single card at a lower interest rate to aggressively pay down debt.
- Improve cash flow – A 0% intro period improves monthly cash flow by removing monthly interest charges.
- Simplify budgeting – With a 0% rate, more payment goes to paying down principal each month rather than interest.
- Purchase flexibility – Make large purchases for furniture, electronics, medical bills that would otherwise be unaffordable.
- Establish new credit – Responsible use of a 0% card helps build credit history and scores.
- Earn rewards – Some 0% cards offer cash back, points or miles that can offset purchases.
Who Should Get a 0% APR Credit Card?
A 0% intro APR credit card can benefit several types of consumers:
- First-time credit applicants – Those new to credit can use 0% cards to begin establishing positive payment history. Low credit limit cards require little starting credit.
- Credit builders – 0% cards help grow credit through on-time payments and lowering credit utilization below 30%.
- Home renovators – Financing home remodeling projects interest-free using a 0% card’s intro period.
- Wedding planners – Covering deposits, catering and other wedding costs without interest piling up.
- People with medical bills – Paying down health care debts over time by transferring high-interest balances to a 0% card.
- Debt consolidators – Combining multiple debts onto one card helps organize payments and pay down balances faster.
- Large purchase financing – Spreading payment for a large purchase over 12-18 month interest-free period.
- Bad credit rebuilders – Those reestablishing credit can qualify for some 0% cards and rebuild through timely payments.
- Credit card hackers – Savvy credit card users take advantage of lengthy 0% offers on purchases and transfers.
Finding the Right 0% APR Credit Card
With so many 0% credit cards available, it can be hard to determine which one is best for your needs. Follow this process when evaluating 0% cards:
Subscribe to our list
Don't worry, we don't spam
- Check your credit score – Know your score to find cards you are likely to qualify for. FICO scores below 640 will require options for bad credit or secured cards. Excellent credit (740+) unlocks the best 0% card offers.
- Determine your needs – Are you looking to finance a large purchase interest-free? Transfer and consolidate credit card debt? Or establish a new line of credit? Align your needs with the right card product and perks.
- Research top 0% cards – Consult our list of top-rated 0% cards above as a starting point. Compare their intro 0% terms on purchases and transfers, fees, and rewards opportunities.
- Read issuer fine print – Cardholder agreements contain important details including exact fees, 0% length for purchases vs transfers, penalties for missed payments, and other restrictions you need to know.
- Compare credit limits – If you plan to transfer existing balances, make sure your new card has a high enough limit to accommodate them.
- Consider other factors – Do you value no foreign transaction fees for overseas purchases? Prefer cards that offer travel protection or credits? Assess additional benefits that provide the most value.
- Apply for the best fit card – Only apply for a card that offers the features you need, reasonable credit limits given your income, and 0% terms well-matched to your payoff timeframe.
FAQ About 0% APR Credit Cards
What does 0% APR mean on a credit card?
0% APR means a 0% Annual Percentage Rate. Cards that offer a 0% intro APR provide a period where no interest is charged on purchases, balance transfers, or both. The 0% intro period typically lasts for 12 months or more.
How long do 0% interest credit cards last?
0% interest periods generally last for 12-21 months for most credit cards. Some special products provide 0% intro APR for up to 36 months, but 12-18 months is more common. Make sure to note the length of the 0% term so you can pay off balances before interest kicks in.
What is the catch with 0% APR cards?
Some key limitations to watch out for with 0% APR cards:
- The 0% rate only lasts for the introductory period, after which a standard purchase APR applies.
- The 0% offer may only apply to new purchases, not balance transfers.
- There is often a balance transfer fee of 3-5% to move debt from another card.
- The 0% offer generally requires paying on time and retaining good credit. Late or missed payments may trigger penalty APRs.
- Interest accrues during the 0% period, but is not charged. If you do not pay in full by the end of the promo period, all the deferred interest is charged.
- Low introductory credit limits may not accommodate large balance transfers.
- Cards with the longest 0% terms often require excellent credit to qualify.
- If the card has an annual fee, you may end up paying fees even if you close it after the 0% intro period.
So while 0% cards provide an interest-free grace period, you need to ensure you understand the terms and avoid pitfalls to maximize the benefits. Carefully manage these cards to maintain good standing.
Should I get a 0% APR card to build credit?
Yes, 0% APR credit cards can be a good way to build your credit from scratch or rebuild damaged credit, if used responsibly. Make sure to make at least the minimum payment on time each month during the 0% intro period to build positive payment history. Pay off as much of the balance as possible each month to keep credit utilization low. After 12 months of on-time payments, you should see your credit scores improve considerably.
Can I transfer a balance, make purchases, and get cash advances at 0%?
Most 0% credit cards offer the intro rate on balance transfers and purchases, but not cash advances. Cash advances typically accrue interest right away at a high variable APR of 25% or more. Avoid cash advances to maximize the 0% benefit. Also be aware that transfers and new purchases usually have different 0% intro period lengths, so check the fine print.
What credit score do I need for a 0% APR card?
To qualify for most 0% credit cards with the best terms, you will need good to excellent credit, which equates to a FICO score of 690 or higher. Applicants with lower credit scores below 650 will need to look for secured card options to build credit first before qualifying for 0% interest cards.
Can I pay off a 0% credit card early?
Yes, you can prepay a 0% credit card early with no penalty. Many consumers aim to pay off their 0% balance well before the intro period expires to avoid deferred interest charges. There is also no prepayment penalty if you pay off a 0% balance transfer early after consolidating other card debt onto the new card.
The Bottom Line
A 0% APR credit card can provide significant savings by letting you minimize interest charges on purchases or transferred balances, as long as you pay off the card in full by the end of the introductory period.
When comparing the top 0% credit cards, look for at least 12 months of 0% interest on all purchases and balance transfers, with no or low transfer fees. Also consider bonus perks like rewards on spending, intro cash bonuses, and foreign transaction fee waivers. Apply for a 0% card well-matched to your credit profile and goals to maximize benefits and avoid pitfalls.