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American Express offers a wide variety of credit cards for both consumers and businesses. From cash back to travel rewards and business credit cards, American Express is one of the largest players in the credit card space.
While widely known for its travel credit cards, business credit cards and charge cards, the issuer also offers balance transfer credit cards, which can help consumers consolidate high-interest debt from other cards for 0% APR promotions for a limited period of time.
We will walk you through how to do a balance transfer with AmEx, and factors to consider before choosing a balance transfer credit card.
What is a balance transfer?
A balance transfer is when you move existing credit card debt from one card to another with the intention of either seeking relief from high-interest charges or consolidating multiple card balances into one payment.
Balance transfer cards typically offer an extended interest-free period that allows you to focus 100% of your payments toward the principal of the debt rather than the principal plus interest charges. These cards can charge a balance transfer fee between 3% and 5% of each amount transferred, which is then added to the balance, but not all balance transfer cards do.
Know that you cannot do a balance transfer with the same issuer. For example, you cannot pay off debt on an existing American Express card with an American Express balance transfer offer.
The balance transfer is initiated by either contacting your new card provider to request the balance transfer or when you fill out the online application for the new balance transfer card and include the details of the account you want to transfer the balance from.
The advantages to utilizing a balance transfer offer from American Express or other card issuers allow you to:
- Save on interest charges for a specified period of time
- Consolidate debts from multiple credit cards into one bill
- Switch to a card that may have more perks and benefits
If a balance transfer interests you, here’s how to do a balance transfer with AmEx.
How to do a balance transfer with AmEx
First, identify a card that fits your needs. The best way to do this is analyze your financial circumstances, and determine what your needs are. Do you need a balance transfer to consolidate existing credit card debt? Or do you need a card with an introductory APR offer on purchases? Once you determine your need, you can accurately choose a card that works best for you.
Not all balance transfer cards are the same. They differ in the length of the balance transfer offer, balance transfer fee and spending rewards. So be sure to select a balance transfer credit card that best adheres to your financial situation.
If you are stuck on which card to select, American Express offers a prequalification tool. This can help narrow down your choices by showing you which cards that you prequalify for, but know that even if you prequalify, you’re not 100% guaranteed approval.
Once you select the right card for you, apply for the card. Once approved, you can move forward with processing the balance transfer with Amex. You can follow the steps below:
- Log in to your account on americanexpress.com.
- Click “account services.”
- Click “payment and credit options.”
- Click “transfer balances.”
- Your limit will be shown below the offer.
- Select the American Express balance transfer offer you’ve been approved for.
- Input the amount you want to transfer and the credit card number that you want to transfer from.
- Click “next” to review.
- Accept the terms and conditions.
- Confirm and submit your balance transfer request.
Keep in mind that the entire balance transfer process can take several weeks. So if your offer states that the introductory APR is valid for the first 60 days of card membership, it is important to start the balance transfer process promptly. And continue to make payments on the old card until it shows a $0 balance.
Balance transfer best practices
Along with beginning the balance transfer process quickly, there are a few best practices to ensure the process goes smoothly and you maximize the benefit.
- Review the terms and conditions. Each offer is unique, so it is important to carefully read the terms of the offer.
- Consider balance transfer fees. Many balance transfer credit cards charge a fee ranging from 3%-5% of each balance transfer amount. So when considering a balance transfer, be sure to take note of any applicable fees. Even with the fee, the balance transfer can make sense. But do the math first by using our balance transfer calculator.
- Pay on time, every time. Because introductory balance transfer offers are considered promotional, they can be taken away if minimum payments aren’t made. It is best to set up automatic payments to avoid this from happening.
- Continue making payments on your previous card. Since the balance transfer process can take several weeks, it is likely you will have at least one bill payment due on your old card. Be sure to continue paying your previous servicer until the balance fully moves to your new card.
- Minimize your spending. The purpose of balance transfers is to help you consolidate and get out of debt faster. If you add to the balance on your new card with new purchases, it will be that much harder to eliminate your credit card debt.
American Express balance transfer offers
American Express balance transfer offers are quite competitive against the other large card issuers. Many balance transfer credit cards have very few to no benefits, such as earning rewards or having travel protections like car insurance. However, American Express balance transfer cards offer notable benefits like the ability to earn points on purchases.
Here are a few American Express balance transfer offers:
|Card||Introductory Balance transfer offer||Welcome offer||Annual fee||Balance transfer fee|
|The Amex EveryDay® Credit Card from American Express||$0 balance transfer fee.||10,000 membership rewards® points after you use your new card to make $1,000 in purchases in your first 3 months.||$0||$0 balance transfer fee.|
|American Express Cash Magnet® Card – $150 Welcome Offer||N/A||$150 statement credit after you spend $1,000 or more in purchases with your new card within the first 3 months of card membership||$0||N/A|
|Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express||N/A||$150 statement credit after you spend $1,000 in purchases on your new card within the first 3 months.||$0||N/A|
These American Express balance transfer cards are great options because of the benefits they offer outside of the balance transfer, including cash back or travel rewards programs.
Balance transfer credit cards, such as the Chase Slate®, are designed specifically for balance transfers, and not for daily use or long-term utilization. However, when considering a balance transfer card, debt payoff should be your initial focus as adding new purchases to a transferred balance will only make it that much harder to achieve your debt payoff goal.
The information related to these cards Chase Slate®, The Amex EveryDay® Preferred Credit Card from American Express and The Amex EveryDay® Credit Card from American Express have been independently collected by MagnifyMoney and have not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of this card prior to publication. Terms apply to American Express credit card offers. See americanexpress.com for more information.