HSBC Balance Transfer Card

By: Kate Anderson | Updated: 8th March, 2019.

While other cards are reducing their balance transfer offer, HSBC has come out with one of the longest 0% interest periods on the market. The HSBC Balance Transfer Credit Card offers 28 months interest free on balance transfers plus a host of other goodies and is a tempting option for anyone looking for a balance transfer card.

Great for: Really long balance transfer period
4 stars question mark

Take a look around and you’ll see balance-transfer offers declining. That makes the 28 months on HSBC’s Balance Transfer Card more impressive. There is a balance-transfer fee, but at 1.4%, it’s lower than the typical BT fee.

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CREDIT RATING req:

  • Poor/No credit
  • Fair/Average
  • Good/Excellent

HIGHLIGHTS

  • 0% interest for 28 months on balance transfers made in first 60 days
  • 1.4% balance-transfer fee applies
  • 0% interest on purchases for the first 3 months
  • Cashback and rewards available through Visa Offers and HSBC home&away
  • No annual fee

REPRESENTATIVE EXAMPLE

Representative rate 21.9% APR (variable)
Purchase rate 21.9% p.a. (variable)
Based on an assumed credit limit of £1,200

what we like

  • 0% interest for 28 months on balance transfers made in first 60 days (1.4% fee applies)
  • 0% interest on purchases for the first 3 months
  • Cashback possible from Visa Offers programme
  • ANNUAL FEE:

    £0
  • REPRESENTATIVE APR:

    21.9%
  • INTRO OFFER:

    0% for 28 months on balances transferred in the first 60 days
    0% on purchases for 3 months

KEY SCORES:

  • 4/5 Perks
  • 4/5Fees
  • 1/5APR

HIGHLIGHTS

  • 0% interest for 28 months on balance transfers made in first 60 days
  • 1.4% balance-transfer fee applies
  • 0% interest on purchases for the first 3 months
  • Cashback and rewards available through Visa Offers and HSBC home&away
  • No annual fee

REPRESENTATIVE EXAMPLE

Representative rate 21.9% APR (variable)
Purchase rate 21.9% p.a. (variable)
Based on an assumed credit limit of £1,200

The HSBC Balance Transfer Credit Card bottom line

This card is right up at the top end of the market, offering 0% on balance transfers for 28 months. Transfers carry a below-average fee of 1.4%, and you can receive a cashback bonus when you take out the card. Added to that other perks such as ongoing cashback rewards, discounts and 0% on purchases for three months, and this card is a very competitive option.

Credit Rating Requirement: Good/Excellent

What I like about the HSBC Balance Transfer Credit Card

There is a lot to like about the HSBC Balance Transfer Credit Card. The balance transfer offer itself stands out, but there are also other little extras that help to sweeten the deal.

  • 0% introductory balance transfer offer – HSBC is offering one of the longest interest-free balance transfer periods on the market with this card. Cardholders will have 28 months at 0% interest on any balances they transfer within the first 60 days, giving them just under three years to clear their debt.
  • Balance transfer fee – The card does carry a balance transfer fee, but it is below average at 1.4% (or a minimum of £5). For example, if you were to transfer a balance of £500, the charge with the HSBC Balance Transfer Card would equate to £7. With a typical balance transfer fee of around 3%, the fee would be £15. This fee applies to any transfers made within the first 60 days. It’s worth noting the fee on transfers made outside this window will be set by HSBC.
  • 0% introductory period on purchases – In addition to its interest-free balance transfer offer, the HSBC Balance Transfer Credit Card has 0% interest on purchases for three months. Compared with the long balance transfer introductory period this is nothing to write home about, but it is an added element to the card’s overall offer.
  • Ongoing benefits – Being under the HSBC umbrella has its benefits, and in this case these include opportunities for ongoing cashback rewards and discounts at some of the most well-known brands. Cardholders will benefit from Visa Offers, which will give them relevant cashback offers based on where they spend with their card. The amount of cashback you earn depends on the individual offer and what the qualifying purchase is. Further details can be found on the bank’s website. Cardholders can also enroll in the home&away reward programme, which provides discounts on major brands across the globe.
  • Worth knowing – You can take out an additional card free of charge for your partner or family member, provided they are above 18 years of age. Be aware that you cannot transfer balances from other cards in the HSBC Group, including first direct, M&S Financial Services and John Lewis Financial Services. Added to that, you are not eligible to apply for this card is you have had an HSBC credit card in the last six months.

Why trust me

I worked on the front line of personal-finance best buys for over eight years at one of the world’s largest research companies, Nielsen. I reported daily on the developments of the 2008 financial crisis and beyond, keeping up with the changing financial landscape and providing insights to all the major banks in the UK. I know the key players in the market and the tactics behind how they behave. All of which I will apply to highlight the best deals and give honest reviews to help you in your search.

What could be improved?

The HSBC Balance Transfer Credit Card is a stand-out offer, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t areas that could be improved.

  • Short transfer window – While the interest-free period on your balance transfers is long, the window in which to make that transfer is relatively short. At 60 days it is at the lower end of the market, with other cards offering a period of 90 days in which to make transfers. This is not necessarily a problem, but something to be aware of.
  • Short 0% introductory period for purchases – At three months, the interest-free period is short, particularly in comparison with the period offered by cards that specifically cater for purchases. There is the added danger that this period could tempt you into spending within the first few months instead of focusing on getting your balance under control.

How does the HSBC Balance Transfer Credit Card offer stack up?

The HSBC Balance Transfer Credit Card is a competitive option. The 0% period on balance transfers crosses over the 30-month threshold, which few other cards currently do. At 28 months, it is one of the longest interest-free periods around at the moment. Add to that a lower than average balance transfer fee of 1.4% and a 0% introductory period on purchases, and the card places itself as one of the top choices for balance transfer cards currently available.

The HSBC Balance Transfer Credit Card credit score

The card requires applicants to have an annual income/pension of £8,500 or more. You must also be a UK resident, over 18 and not hold an HSBC Basic Bank Account.

How do I apply?

Applications can be made online, although if you are on the Channel Islands or Isle of Man you will need to visit your local branch. Applicants will need to provide personal details such as addresses for the past three years, date of birth and nationality, as well as information regarding their income and outgoings.

Is the HSBC Balance Transfer Credit Card right for you?

If you’re looking for a balance transfer deal that will give you a long runway in which to clear your debt, then the HSBC Balance Transfer Credit Card could be the right fit. The 28-month period gives you just under three years to clear your balance, and with a comparatively low transfer-fee of 1.4%, you won’t have to pay as much as with other cards for the privilege. If you’re not fussed about having a long time in which to pay off your debt, then there are other cards available that offer a decent 0% introductory period but are fee-free. Similarly, if you are looking for a card that caters for purchases as well, then there are better options available. But if it is solely a 0% period on balance transfers you are after, you would struggle to find a card that offers the same combination of a long interest-free period and relatively low transfer fee.

See the Best Balance Transfer Credit Cards


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