THE changing credit market is bad news for borrowers who depend on interest-free ways to repay their credit card debts. According to Moneyfacts’ quarterly UK Credit Card Trends Treasury Report, the number of interest-free balance transfer deals has fallen to its lowest level on record – down to 87 from 101 in June - while the amount of introductory interest-free purchase cards has fallen as well. Meanwhile, the length of interest-free balance transfer offers has decreased. At the same time, the cost of making a balance transfer has increased, with the average introductory balance transfer fee hitting 2.20 per cent this month – up from 2.04 per cent in January. This is all worrying for people who rely on switching their debts from one interest-free deal to another, as it means they’ll now have less time to repay their debt before interest applies. This also means it will take longer and cost them more. And it could get worse too. How to pay off large amounts of … [Read more...] about Warning for credit card customers with large debts as lenders slash balance transfers and increase fees
2 years interest free credit card
Experimental feature Listen to this article Play audio for this article Pause Are you ready for a holiday? Having toiled solidly through a month-long heatwave in London, I have a horrible feeling that it will end up tipping down for the precious weeks we manage to snatch away from the capital. Regardless, I never feel like I am truly on vacation until I’ve arrived at our destination (usually in Italy), ordered my first Aperol Spritz and taken a deep sip. And relax!However good it tastes, you may find yourself plunged back into a stressful situation when the bill arrives. Typically, when you put your card into a foreign payment terminal, it will ask you to make a decision: “Do you want to pay in pounds or euros?”Pick the wrong one, and you could end up paying nearly 8 per cent more than you need to, according to new research into the phenomenon that is “dynamic currency conversion”. So before you jet off, repeat this mantra: never pay in pounds … [Read more...] about A holiday credit card trick that will save you money
Credit card companies are tightening their belts and targeting only the safest of customers due to fears of an economic slump. Research published by ClearScore, a credit referencing service, found that the best balance transfer deals had disappeared from the market in the last year. This is because banks and card companies now prefer to focus on lower-risk customers, rather than those who are heavily indebted and looking to shift their debts around. Balance transfer cards let users move existing debt to a new provider, which usually offers an interest-free period as an incentive. However, with fears that consumer spending is at unreasonable levels and interest rates expected to rise again this... To continue reading this article Start your free trial of Premium Access all Premium articles Subscriber-only events Cancel any time Free for 30 days then only £2 per week Try Premium Access one Premium article per week Register for free … [Read more...] about Credit card market tightens as banks fear economic slump
This has taken me a while to admit but finally I need to say it – longer isn’t always better! For years when listing balance transfer credit cards that slash existing debt costs, I’ve led on the longest 0% deals. Yet the market’s changing. Anyone paying interest on credit or store cards sit up and take note. Balance transfers are where you get a new card that pays off credit and store card debt – so you owe the new card instead but at a much cheaper rate. The impact can be huge, as Adele tweeted me: “Just saved over £1,200 in interest switching my card thanks to @MartinSLewis.” Most long balance transfer cards charge a one-off fee of the amount of debt shifted – as much as £30 per £1,000 – and after years of these long 0% deals getting ever longer, they’re going the other way. Today the longest is 36mths 0%, a year ago it was 43mths. At the same time, the longest NO-FEE deals have stayed stable. So for … [Read more...] about Anyone paying interest on credit or store cards take note, says Martin Lewis
Virgin has launched two credit cards that reward borrowers with points that can be used on flights, upgrades and free "companion tickets". One of the cards, the Virgin Atlantic Reward credit card has no annual fee and offers 0.75 "Flying Club" miles for every £1 spent. You'll also get 5,000 points with the first card purchase as long as it's within 90 days of the account opening. The Virgin Atlantic Reward+ credit card costs £160 a year. Borrowers earn 1.5 miles per £1 spent and 15,000 bonus points with the first card purchases within 90 days. Double miles can be earned with Virgin flights and Virgin holidays with both cards if booked direct. Both cards offer six months interest free for balance transfers and money transfers after an initial 3pc fee. How do the Flying Club miles work? You can use the points on upgrades and companion seats once you hit a spending limit. But the best rewards are saved for the big spenders. Once you've spent … [Read more...] about Virgin launches two new reward credit cards – how much do you need to spend to get the travel perks?