Call it a revival to the days of easy credit, or perhaps just a few more months of interest-free living.
Either way, consumers may now apply for a credit card with 0% APR for a full 21 months, which reminds me of the good old days.
It’s not quite 24 months, which I believe was the peak 0% APR period before things went so badly, but it’s pretty close, and certainly better than the 15-month and 18-month 0% APR periods that have ruled recently.
Of course it may suit you to pay more than the minimum payment to ensure you can actually pay off those purchases in full before finance charges apply, but that’s up to you.
Which Citi Cards Offer 0% APR for 21 Months?
You’re probably wondering which Citi cards are offering this ultra-long 0% APR period.
Both offer the promotional APR with NO annual fee, which is certainly a plus for those looking to carry a balance with absolutely no costs.
However, both cards charge a balance transfer fee of $5 or 3%, whichever is greater, so inbound transfers to these cards aren’t the best offer available.
Alternatively, you could consider a convenience check that charges just 1% of the check amount if you’ve already got an existing balance.
How to Get 0% APR for Three Years with No Fees
The best way to take advantage of this offer is to parlay it with another credit card that offers 0% APR with no balance transfer fee.
So if you apply for one of these two Citi cards and make a large purchase that you want to pay off over time, you get 21 months to do so.
But if it’s still not paid off after that time, you can transfer the remaining balance to another credit card, such as Chase Slate, which doesn’t charge a balance transfer fee.
That card gives you another 15 months of 0% APR, which when combined with the 21 months from Citi, totals 36 months of 0% APR.
So if you have your eye on a new computer, or some other big-ticket item, you could pay it off over three years without paying a penny of interest.
For example, if you want the new Apple MacBook Pro with Retina display, you’re looking at a purchase price somewhere around $2,500.
Sure, you could apply for the Barclaycard Visa with Apple Rewards and get 0% APR for 18 months, or you could extend your financing by another three months with one of these cards and even longer if transferred to Slate.
Either way, you have to be disciplined and ensure you make at least the minimum payment, and preferably, set up a payment plan where the item is paid in full by the time the three years (or 21 months) are up.
Tip: By the way, it’s never wise to make purchases on a card you transfer a balance to, as the APRs are often different and could affect how balances are paid off.