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Half-price transfer fee with Lloyds 21-month balance transfer card

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Lloyds is offering a 50% refund on transfer fees to new cardholders of its Platinum credit card, which comes with a 21-month 0% period.


Lloyds TSB is halving balance transfer fees for borrowers opening its Platinum credit card online.

The card offers 0% interest on balance transfers for a very respectable 21 months, and normally comes with a balance transfer fee of 3%. However, so long as you take out the card before 23rd February and transfer a balance before 23rd March, half of that transfer fee will be refunded.

Let’s take a look at how the improved Platinum card compares to the balance transfer cards offering the longest 0% periods.

Card

0% balance transfer period

Balance transfer fee

Fee paid on a £3,000 transfer

Barclaycard 24-Month Platinum

24 months

3.2%

£96

MBNA 23-Month Platinum

23 months

2.85%

£85.50

Barclaycard 23-Month Platinum

23 months

2.9%

£87

NatWest Platinum

23 months

2.9%

£87

RBS Platinum

23 months

2.9%

£87

Halifax 23-Month MasterCard

23 months

3%

£90

Tesco Clubcard credit card

22 months

2.9%

£87

Lloyds TSB Platinum

21 months

1.5%

£45

Halifax 21-Month MasterCard

21 months

3%

£90

Nationwide Visa

20 months

1.55%

£46.50

As you can see, there are a number of cards offering longer 0% periods on balance transfers, with one offering a full two years free of interest.

However, the Lloyds Platinum and the Nationwide Visa cards stand out, as they offer a significant 0% period and a much smaller balance transfer fee.

Low-fee balance transfer cards

In fact, those two cards compare very favourably with the balance transfer cards which base their whole appeal on only charging a small balance transfer fee. Below are some examples of these low-fee cards.

Card

0% balance transfer period

Balance transfer fee

Fee paid on a £3,000 transfer

Barclaycard Platinum Low BT Fee Visa

12 months

0.9%

£27

NatWest Platinum Low BT Fee

13 months

1%

£30

RBS Platinum Low BT Fee

13 months

1%

£30

Fluid Card

15 months

1.5%

£45

Bank of Scotland Platinum Online

18 months

1.5%

£45

So, comparing the Barclaycard low-fee card and the Lloyds Platinum, you can get an extra nine months free of interest for an additional £18 on the balance transfer fee. That strikes me as a pretty compelling deal.

Things to remember with balance transfer cards

Balance transfer cards can be a useful tool in battling existing credit card debt, as they give you breathing space free from interest. However, there are a number of important things to bear in mind.

First off, work out how long you will need to pay off that debt. Yes, the Lloyds card offers a far longer 0% period than the Barclaycard Low Fee card. But if you reckon you’ll clear that debt within a year, then there’s no point paying a larger transfer fee for a longer 0% period, as you won’t need it.

Similarly, remember that you can’t transfer debt between two cards from the same provider. So if you need to move debt away from your NatWest credit card, you won’t be able to move it onto another NatWest card (or an RBS card as they are part of the same banking group).

Finally, make sure you pay that debt off in full by the end of the 0% period, or you will end up throwing your money away on interest payments.

Do I need a 0% card?

If you have a large debt, it may work out cheaper to skip 0% cards altogether and go for the Barclaycard credit card which charges a rate of 4.9% for three years, but carries no transfer fee. Read Barclaycard launches 4.9% three-year balance transfer credit card for more.

More on credit cards:

The best 0% balance transfer credit cards

How to repair your credit rating

Credit card interest rates reach 18-month high

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