Sifting through credit card promotions and offers in the day’s mail can be both exhilarating and exhausting. On one hand, there’s all that buying power, not to mention the chance to improve or maintain your credit score. On the other, all those details can be confusing — and potentially costly if you don’t pay close enough attention.
To find the best credit card offers for you, consider your spending and payment habits. In addition to reading credit card reviews, think about how your budget and credit history will be affected after your introductory rate ends. And don’t settle for the first credit card offer that comes in the mail — take advantage of the best credit card offers available.
7 Credit Card Deals
Plenty of great deals on credit cards are available, especially if you have good credit. Here are the best types of credit card deals you could get:
1. Special Interest Rates for Balance Transfers
Some credit card deals give you a lower rate on balance transfers from other credit cards for a predetermined time period. Credit card issuers must provide this special rate for a minimum of six months and are required to state when cardholders will be charged the normal rate again. Be sure you’re comfortable with paying the higher rate or are able to pay your balance each month.
2. Promotional Interest Rates
Some credit cards offer low introductory rates known as teaser rates. The promotional rate might only apply to certain types of purchases. You might be charged an annual fee, and various other charges could apply to the credit card promotion. Read the fine print before choosing a card based on an introductory rate, especially if you don’t think you’ll pay off the balance every month.
3. 0% APR Introductory Offer
With this type of credit card promotion, you can make purchases for a set period of time without paying interest. Even if you still have a balance at the end of the promotional period, purchases made during that time are interest-free. There is a caveat, though: Check for fees if you plan to transfer a balance from one or more of your other credit cards.
Related: Choose the Right Credit Card for You
4. Long-Term Low-Interest Rates
For those who don’t routinely pay off the balances on their credit cards each month, low-interest credit card offers are smart choices. Cards offering lower overall rates often carry fewer fees than those offering alluring promotions or credit card rewards.
5. Rewards Credit Cards
Rewards credit cards often seem like the best credit card offers at first glance. Who wouldn’t want free cash, gift cards or frequent-flyer miles in return for purchases you would have made anyway? Although these offers are perfect for credit card users who pay their balances in full, they make less sense for others. The average reward is worth 1 to 5 percent of your balance, whereas the interest paid can be as high as 30 percent. Weigh the differences before deciding if this is the right type of credit card promotion for you.
6. Travel Credit Cards
Within the rewards credit card category, there are subcategories including travel credit cards. Choose the rewards credit card that best suits your spending habits. If you’re a frequent traveler, opt for an airline credit card so you can reap the rewards you’ll use the most. Other types of travel credit cards, like hotel credit cards and gas cards, offer lucrative rewards for people who are always on the go.
7. Student Credit Cards
If you’re in college, it might be tempting to open a credit card to make ends meet. If you have a job and are a responsible spender, opening a credit card could help you build credit, and there are plenty of good deals on student credit cards out there. Before you let an on-campus representative convince you to open a card on the spot, do some research. Make sure you’re getting the best interest rate possible and if you can, request a low credit limit so you don’t dig yourself into debt before you even graduate.
It’s tempting to choose credit cards based on the highest cash-back percentage or an interest-free promotion. Although these credit card offers can help users save money, the best credit card offer is the one that works for your budget and lifestyle. Avoid shiny-object syndrome by looking beyond the intro period and finding out whether fees or interest-rate changes apply down the road.
Laira Martin contributed to the reporting for this article.