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What is a low interest credit card?|

A low interest rate credit card is a credit card that has a low APR range. The best low interest credit cards have an APR range that's lower than the national average—often by several points. Some low rate credit cards go one better by offering an introductory 0% APR on new purchases, balance transfers or both for a limited time.

~What is the difference between a 0% interest credit card and a low interest credit card?|

An 0% credit card does not charge any interest for a certain period of time after you open the account. The intro 0% APR can apply to new purchases, balance transfers or both. After this time period the interest rate then increases to a much higher rate.

On the other hand, a low interest credit card will have just that—a low interest rate. While the interest rate won't be zero, it will be lower than the national average. That said, most low interest credit cards have a variable APR range. The exact APR you'll receive depends on your creditworthiness. For example, if the range is 17.24% - 28.24%, you can receive an interest rate anywhere in between. Generally the higher your credit score, the lower the interest rate.

~What credit score do I need for a low interest credit card?|

To qualify for a low interest credit card, you'll generally need good to excellent credit. The exact credit score you need for a low interest credit card varies based on the credit card issuer's requirements. There are cards geared toward applicants with bad credit, fair credit, good credit and excellent credit. The higher your credit score, the better card you'll qualify for, which means you'll benefit from a lower interest rate.

~How to compare low interest credit cards|

In order to get the best low interest rate credit card, you should compare multiple cards. When reviewing each card, pay close attention to the rates and fees table.

Perhaps the most important factor to compare is the APR range. Most cards have variable APRs, so take a look at the entire range since you don't know what rate you'll receive until you apply. It can be a good idea to choose the card with the lowest range, so you have the best chances of securing a low interest rate. Other factors to review include the annual fee, foreign transaction fee and balance transfer fee.

~Can I negotiate the interest rate on my credit card?|

Yes, you can negotiate the interest rate on your credit card. This can be done by calling your credit card issuer and requesting a reduction. However, you should aim to do this when you have a good credit score and good relationship with your card.

If your card issuer isn't willing to offer a lower rate indefinitely, ask for a temporary reprieve. For instance, a one-year rate reduction of 1 to 3 percentage points. If they still say no, don't give up hope. Set a reminder to call back in a few months and try again. If you have multiple credit cards with different issuers, try calling another to see if you have any success.

~How can I avoid paying credit card interest?|

The simplest way to avoid paying credit card interest is to pay your statement balance in full and on time every month. You can automate this by signing up for autopay and selecting your statement balance. Payment history is the most important factor of your credit score, so it's key to always pay on time.

~How a low interest rate card can help you|

Having a credit card with a low interest rate can be beneficial if you wind up carrying a balance on your card. While carrying a balance isn't ideal, it can be unavoidable at times. A card with a lower interest rate can save you a significant amount of money compared to a card with a high interest rate.

~What causes credit card interest rates to change?|

Credit card interest rates fluctuate for a variety of reasons. Some of these are completely out of your control, but others depend on how you use your credit card or manage your account.

If the Fed changes its benchmark rate, also known as the prime rate, and you have a variable-rate credit card, your interest rate will change in the same direction the Fed rate changes. For example, a rise in the prime rate will likely cause your credit card APR to increase.

If you're more than 60 days late on a payment, your interest rate can spike with a costly penalty APR. This new rate can apply to existing balances and new transactions until you make six monthly payments on time.