By: Peter Stephens | Updated: 8th March, 2019.
On Post Office's Secure Website
The Post Office Balance Transfer Card is one of the options that gives you a long period of time to pay down those balance transfers: 25 months! Consider whether you need quite that much time though, since long durations like this normally come with a balance transfer fee. In this case 3% on whatever you transfer. With this card you also get 0% on purchases over the first three months and fee-free travel money if you go to the Post Office or pay online.Read full review >
|Representative rate||19.9% APR (variable)|
|Purchase rate||19.9% p.a. (variable)|
|Assumed Credit Limit||£1,200|
The Post Office Balance Transfer Card comes with a number of attractive features. It offers a 25-month interest-free period on balance transfers, which is on the long end of what’s currently available in the industry. It also offers 0% interest on purchases made in the first three months of having the card.
While a 3% transfer fee and a non-sterling transaction fee for using the card abroad may be viewed as negatives, the card does its main job of cutting the interest rate on existing debt held elsewhere.
While the main attraction of the Post Office Balance Transfer Card is its balance transfer offer, it includes a range of benefits which could help to make it more appealing to a variety of consumers.
I have been writing for The Motley Fool since 2013, and have experienced the booms and busts of the UK economy for a number of decades both as an investor and a consumer. I have held various senior management positions during my career, while also setting up my own manufacturing company in 1996. It was subsequently sold in 2007. I have a keen interest in consumer finance, as well as in the stock market.
While the Post Office Balance Transfer Card offers a range of benefits to its customers, no card is perfect. Here are some of the drawbacks of using the card.
While a transfer fee, limited period to transfer existing debts and a fee for using the card abroad are negatives, ultimately the card is effective at providing a reduction in interest costs over an extended time period for consumers who have existing credit card balances elsewhere.
A 25-month 0% interest period is on the long end of what’s currently on offer across the industry. Although there is a transfer fee, this is relatively common among cards which offer the longest balance transfer periods. Its APR after the 25-month balance transfer period is pretty standard for a credit card without an annual fee.
It is possible to obtain 0% balance transfer cards which have no transfer fee. However, their balance transfer periods are usually shorter. Other cards may also offer lower transfer charges, or even cashback. Therefore, savvy consumers may be able to find a better deal depending on their own circumstances and requirements.
Although the card advertises a 25-month interest-free period, that is not available to everyone that applies. Likewise, the representative APR after the 0% period ends is only offered to the majority of consumers, with the remainder potentially having a different rate.
The Post Office offers a service called ‘Fast Checker’ which provides guidance on how likely it is that an individual will be approved for a card. It does not involve a full credit check, so does not show up on an individual’s credit file. It is free to use and only takes a few minutes. As a result, the card may be of interest to consumers with a variety of credit scores.
Basic information such as name, address, and date of birth is required in order to apply for the card. Other details such as proof of identity and proof of address may also be required, as well as information on employment status, salary, and outgoings. Applications can be made online, by phone or in Post Office locations.
The card seems to offer a number of benefits and may be suited to those individuals who are seeking to reduce the interest they pay on existing credit card balances. As mentioned in the earlier example, balance transfer cards can save an individual a significant sum of interest – even with a transfer fee included. With one of the longest interest-free periods around, the card could offer the opportunity for consumers to more easily clear their existing debts over the next couple of years.
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