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Money Transfers

Shift cash from a card to your bank account at 0%

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Helen S

Updated May 2018

A 0% money transfer allows you to shift cash from the card to your bank account to clear your overdraft or give yourself a 0% cash loan for up to 36 months. Here's how it works + all the best deals...

The seven golden rules

Please read the following so you're not caught out...

  • Don't withdraw the cash, ask the card firm to do the transfer

    If you take the money out as cash, you're charged interest and probably a one-off fee, even if you pay it off in full. If you ask the card firm to do it, you get the special deal.

    Quick question

    What are the best ways to use a money transfer?

  • Borrow as little as possible and only if you NEED to

    Money transfers usually mean new borrowing – which can be dangerous. So, ensure it's planned, budgeted for and affordable. The best way to handle these debts is to treat them like a loan.

    Once you've done the transfer divide the debt by the number of 0% months and pay that amount each month so you clear the card before interest kicks in. It's best to set up a direct debit or standing order to do it.

    Quick question

    What can I do if I can't pay off my debt within the 0% period?

  • Repay AT LEAST the monthly minimum (preferably more) or you may lose the cheap rate

    Set up a direct debit for at least the minimum repayment as soon as you are accepted. Even though you pay 0% interest, you still need to make repayments. If you miss one, you may lose your 0% deal and get a £12 charge.

    Quick question

    How much should I aim to pay?

  • Don't spend or withdraw cash - it's not usually at the cheap rate

    Banks must put repayments towards the most expensive debt first. So spending on a money transfer card isn't as bad as it was, as repayments first clear the spending, but it can still cost, as you only avoid interest if you pay off the FULL balance, including transfers and purchases.

    Quick questions

    If I need to spend, what's the best option?

    Why do I pay interest on my cash withdrawal if I've paid it off in full?

    Does withdrawing cash on a credit card affect my credit score?

  • Use our eligibility calculator before applying for a speedy check of which cards you're most likely to get - and protect your credit score

    Usually, the only way to know if you'll be accepted is to apply, but each application marks your credit file. But our money transfer eligibility calculator quickly shows your odds of getting almost every top card so you can find the one most likely to accept you, minimising applications.

    Quick questions

    How does the eligibility calculator work?

    Will credit scoring affect the deal I get and my credit limit?

  • Or join our Credit Club for a full credit health check, including free your Experian Credit Report, Affordability Score and Credit Hit Rate

    The new MSE Credit Club is a game-changer. For years the credit market has been shrouded in mystery but our revolutionary tool brings together the key components to give you the full picture, and crucially, what it means for your acceptance chances and how to boost your creditworthiness.

    A credit score alone isn't enough to borrow, as there are other factors at play (it's why many with perfect scores still get rejected). Credit Club shows your Free Experian Credit Report and Credit Score, your Affordability Score, you Credit Hit Rate and much more.

  • You won't always get the headline deal even if you're accepted for the card

    There's a catch to watch out for. Some card firms give those with lesser credit histories fewer months at 0% than advertised. You could, say, apply for a 30-month 0% deal, be accepted but given 20 months at 0% – sometimes with a higher fee or APR.

    We highlight cards that do this by putting 'up to' before their headline offers below.

    Quick questions

    Is there any way to know what deal I will get before I apply?

    Why do lenders give some applicants worse deals?

Best 0% money transfer credit cards

It's best to go for the card with lowest fee in the time you're sure you can repay it. If unsure, play safe and go long.

mbna

Lowest money transfer fee of the super-long cards, but you could get fewer 0% months

MBNA* up to 32 MONTHS 0%, 2.99% FEE (23.9% interest after)

This MBNA* card offers up to 32 months at 0% on money transfers with a lower fee than the cards below. You could be accepted for the card and offered fewer months which wouldn't make it as good a deal - but if our eligibility calculator shows you as pre-approved, you'll get the full 32 months at 0%.

Need-to-knows
  • You must do your money transfer within 60 days of opening the card to get the 0% period and lower fee. Transfers made after this will pay 23.9% interest and a 5% fee.
  • In addition, this card offers 0% balance transfers for up to 24 months, but with a fee of 3.45% – not great, so don't use the card for this.
  • Poorer credit scorers might get fewer months at 0% instead of the full 32 – try the eligibility calculator to see if you're pre-approved for the headline deal.
  • You'll pay interest on any remaining money transfer balance at a rate of 23.9% after the 0% period is over.
  • Always pay at least the minimum monthly repayments or you'll lose the 0% deal.
  • Don't spend/withdraw cash on this card. It usually isn't at the cheap rate and cash withdrawals hit your credit file.
Eligibility Calculator
(MSE's free tool)
APPLY*
(at lender site)

Protect your credit score and check chances of getting card

Stats box
  • Money transfer length & fee: up to 32 months 0%, 2.99% fee
  • Annual interest rate on money transfers after the 0%: 23.9%
  • Representative variable APR on spending: 19.9% (Official APR Example)
  • Card issuer: Visa
  • Min income: N/A
  • Min repayment: Greater of 1% of balance plus interest or £25
  • Any restrictions? Must transfer within 60 days to get 0%
virgin money

Longest 0% money transfer card, but high fee and you could get fewer months

Tesco Bank up to 36 MONTHS 0%, 3.94% FEE (20.6% interest after)

This Tesco Bank card offers the longest 0% money transfer period of any card, though it has a higher fee than the MBNA card above. You could be accepted for the card and offered less time at 0% which wouldn't make it as good a deal.

Need-to-knows
  • Poorer credit scorers might get 30 or 24 months at 0% instead of the full 36.
  • You must do your money transfer within 90 days of opening the card account to get the 0% deal.
  • In addition, this card offers 0% balance transfers for up 36 months, with a fee of 2.69%.
  • You'll pay interest on any remaining money transfer balance at a rate of 20.6% after the 0% is over, though some poorer credit scorers will pay up to 29.2% APR.
  • Always pay at least the minimum monthly repayments or you'll lose the 0% deal.
  • Don't spend/withdraw cash on this card. It usually isn't at the cheap rate and cash withdrawals hit your credit file.
ELIGIBILITY CHECK NOT AVAILABLE
APPLY
(at lender site)

Protect your credit score and check chances of getting card

Stats box
  • Money transfer length & fee: up to 36 months 0%, 3.94% fee
  • Annual interest rate on money transfers after the 0%: 20.6%
  • Representative variable APR on spending: 18.9% (Official APR Example)
  • Card issuer: Mastercard
  • Min income: £5,000
  • Min repayment: Greater of 1% of balance plus interest or £25
  • Any restrictions? Must transfer within 90 days
virgin money

High fee but you'll definitely get the full 0% period if accepted

Virgin Money* 32 MONTHS 0%, 4% FEE (20.9% interest after)

This Virgin Money* card offers either fewer interest-free months or a higher fee than the cards above, but if you're accepted you'll definitely get the full 0% period, so it could be a better option if you want that certainty.

Need-to-knows
  • You must do your money transfer within 60 days of opening the card to get the 0% period and lower fee. Transfers made after this will pay 20.9% interest and a 5% fee.
  • In addition, this card offers 0% balance transfers for 32 months, with a fee of 0.6%.
  • You'll pay interest on any remaining money transfer balance at a rate of 20.9% after the 0% period is over.
  • Always pay at least the minimum monthly repayments or you'll lose the 0% deal.
  • Don't spend/withdraw cash on this card. It usually isn't at the cheap rate and cash withdrawals hit your credit file.
Eligibility Calculator
(MSE's free tool)
APPLY*
(at lender site)

Protect your credit score and check chances of getting card

Stats box
  • Money transfer length & fee: 32 months 0%, 4% fee
  • Annual interest rate on money transfers after the 0%: 20.9%
  • Representative variable APR on spending: 20.9% (Official APR Example)
  • Card issuer: Mastercard
  • Min income: £7,000
  • Min repayment: Greater of 1% of balance plus interest or £25
  • Any restrictions? Must transfer within 60 days

Best long-term, low-rate money transfer credit cards

If you may need longer than the 0% lengths above or you prefer a stable relationship rather than switching every few years when a 0% deal ends, a low-rate card could be for you - you sometimes get that rate for the life of the balance. These charge interest but at MUCH lower rates than standard interest charges.

MBNA 5

Low rate for four years, 0.5% fee

MBNA* 4.9% for 48 months, 0.5% fee

The MBNA* Low Rate card offers a low interest rate of 4.9% for four years, with a one-off fee of 0.5%, as long as you make your transfer within 60 days of account opening. If you can budget to pay it off within the low interest period, it's a good alternative to getting a loan for smaller amounts.

Need-to-knows
  • After your low rate ends, or for transfers made after 60 days, you'll pay a 0.99% fee and 8.9% interest a year on any debt.
  • Some poorer credit scorers getting this card may be given initial interest rates of 9.9%, jumping to 11.9% at the 48 months' end.
  • Always pay at least the minimum monthly repayments.
  • Don't withdraw cash on this card. It usually isn't at the cheap rate and cash withdrawals hit your credit file.
  • This card also offers balance transfers at 4.9% interest for up to four years, with a 0.5% fee.
Stats box
  • Money transfer rate & fee: 4.9% for 48 months then 8.9%, 0.5% fee
  • Representative variable APR on spending: 8.9% (Official APR Example)
  • Card issuer: Mastercard
  • Min income: £20,000
  • Min repayment: Greater of 1% of balance plus interest or £25
  • Any restrictions? None

Money transfers Q&A

  • I already have a lot of debt. Will this help me?

  • Why did it reject me? I've got a great credit score!

  • Does a lower interest rate mean I pay less each month?

  • What if the credit limit I get isn't high enough?

  • Can I use money transfers for stoozing?

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For all the latest deals, guides and loopholes - join the 12m who get it. Don't miss out