Compare credit cards from across the market. Suitable cards for applications with all credit types.
Long Term Low Rate Credit Cards
If you would like to enjoy the benefit of a long term low rate credit card then we can help. We have displayed and compared all the lenders who are offering low rate deals for the longer term.
What is a long term low rate credit card?
The credit card is an essential tool for the majority of people in the UK. Not only is it used for high-end items such as electrical devices and household goods, but it can also be used for minor online purchases and groceries, and even for cash withdrawals on occasion. Most people are so keen to have a credit card that they are willing to overlook the biggest problem with these items, the high interest rates that most borrowers end up on after a few months. If you enjoy having a credit card, but want to keep hold of that low interest rate, then rather than jumping from card to card every few months you could look into the limited number of credit cards offering long-term low interest rates.
What is the difference between standard credit cards and those offering low rates?
If you have a standard credit card, then you know that the interest rate usually starts at 0% on purchases and balance transfers, but this rate doesn't last. Some credit cards have a short-term rate, which can only be three months at 0%, and then it goes up to a much higher rate, up to around 16-19%. Long-term low interest rate credit cards tend to offer no 'free' period, instead charging interest at the lowest amount from the start.
With a low-rate credit card, you can expect to pay between 5 and 10% for all of your purchases and the balance transfer. This is considerably lower than the rates charged by most standard credit cards, and is where the real benefits appear. You can find a range of credit cards able to offer you a lower rate than you can find in a bank or traditional credit card company, and if you would like to really save money on your cards, then a long-term low interest rate could be the perfect solution.
What rates can I expect to pay?
As with other types of credit card, there are a range of different interest rates charged by different companies. All of them are lower than the standard, and the majority of the ones with genuinely lower APR are also below 10% APR. The best credit card at the moment is the Bank of Scotland, offering a low rate of balance transfer (6.45%) and a low APR of 6.40%. There is no introductory rate for your new purchases, however.
Lloyds Bank offer a lower rate with their platinum credit card, including the same rates as the Bank of Scotland, but with 0% on balance transfers in the first 3 months, with a rate of 3% after that.
The MBNA low rate card offers 6.5% on balance transfers and 6.6% APR, with no introductory rates for balance transfers.
Sainsbury's Low Rate credit card offers 6.95% on balance transfers and 6.9% APR, with no introductory rate.
Tesco Low APR credit card offers 0% on balance transfers and purchases for three months, then 7.8% on purchases, and 7.8% APR after this.
These are all the current companies who are offering low interest rates at less than half the lowest rate of standard credit cards. There are some which offer 11.9%, but this is so close to the charges of the bank and traditional credit card companies that it is probably not worth the risk of being rejected.
What are the disadvantages?
Although there might seem to be several good reasons for looking at a low interest credit card, there are also some disadvantages which you may want to consider before you apply for one of these cards. Firstly, if you are struggling with a poor credit rating, then you are unlikely to be accepted for a low interest rate credit card. Although these cards should be the most useful to those who struggle with debt, most card companies offering low rates require that you have a standard, if not excellent credit score.
If you are struggling with a poor rating, then you may be better off applying for a credit builder card before you move onto standard cards. Secondly, you may also struggle with credit cards offering low interest rates but also offering rewards. All too often, borrowers are tempted into spending more money than they have because they are keen to gain these rewards, and this could have a negative effect on your interest rates. Thirdly, while these are low-rate credit cards, you still need to keep an eye on your debt, and make sure that you regularly pay off all you own. Even low rates of interest can mount up significantly if ignored.