Credit cards » 0% purchases cards

0% purchase cards are fantastic pieces of plastic if you need help with your cash flow – or if you simply want to make purchases now, and pay for them later.

How does a 0% purchases card work?

With a 0% on purchases card, you do not have to pay any interest on new purchases you make on the card, for a set period.

Once this set period ends, you have to start paying interest, usually at around 16%.

0% on purchases and 0% on balance transfers

You may be tempted to take out a card that offers 0% on balance transfers, as well as 0% on purchases.

That way, you can transfer your existing debts to the card and pay 0% interest – right?

Unfortunately, if you choose to do this, you could fall into the credit card provider’s carefully-laid, expensive trap. If the 0% on purchases deal lasts for a shorter length of time than the 0% on balance transfers deal, you’ll eventually be forced to pay interest on your purchases – or transfer all your debts to another card.

So always check whether the 0% period lasts as long for purchases as it does for balance transfers. More often than not, the purchase period is shorter than the balance transfer period. You should avoid transferring a balance onto these cards and use them just for spending – or, alternatively, transfer a balance and avoid spending. Just don’t do both at once on the same card!

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