What is a credit card balance transfer?

A balance transfer (BT) is the process of moving an amount of money that you owe from one or more credit cards to a different card, giving you a special rate on the amount you transfer.

If multiple credit card or store card debts are weighing you down, a BT on a NAB credit card can provide the breathing space you need. You might consider a BT for several reasons, such as consolidating debts to a single card or moving your debts to a card with a lower interest rate.

How balance transfers work

There’s a few key things to know about how balance transfers work.

A monthly repayment is required

Even if you have a BT offer of 0% p.a., you must make your minimum monthly payment by the due date each month for your promotional rate to continue.

Credit card repayments go towards paying off the highest interest first. That means cash advances first, then new purchases and then your balance transfer.

Interest-free days on purchases

While you have an outstanding balance transfer, interest-free days on purchases only apply if you pay the interest-free days payment in full by the due date each month. This applies to both new and existing cards.

Promotion periods run for a set time

Sometimes we have special offers, with different promotion periods and transfer fees.

The special offer and its promotional rate usually lasts for a set period. It’s best to pay off the transferred amount within your promotion period, as the card’s variable cash advance interest rate (currently 21.74% p.a.) will apply to any unpaid amount after the promotion period ends.

Once your balance transfer is paid in full, your card will revert to the variable purchase rate.

Benefits of a balance transfer

Still deciding if a balance transfer is right for you? These are the key benefits of a balance transfer.

Save on interest

Reduce the amount of credit card interest you're paying during the promotion period.

Fewer fees

Reduce the amount of credit card fees by consolidating your debt into one credit card.

Simplify your banking

Enjoy easier account management by having just one account and one monthly statement.

Standard balance transfer rates and fees

For our credit card products that don’t have an offer running and that allow balance transfers, this is the standard offer you can take advantage of.

Balance transfer rate

0 % p.a. for 12 months

After that period, your BT reverts to your NAB credit card’s variable cash advance rate of  21.74% p.a.

Balance transfer fee

3 %

Once-off fee is a percentage of the amount you transfer. It’s charged to your new NAB credit card account when your balance transfer is processed.

We can’t process balance transfers from certain issuers – see our indicative list.

You'll also get charged an annual fee, unless waived under an agreement or promotional offer. Other fees and charges may apply to your card. See our fees and charges guide.

When applying for new cards, we may sometimes have special offers, with different promotion periods and transfer fees.

Example of what you can save with our standard offer

  Other card interest paid at 19.99% p.a. Your savings  including 3% BT fee
Amount of $5,000 $979.54 $829.54
Amount of $8,000 $1,567.27 $1,327.27

0% p.a. BT for 28 months with 2% BT fee

  • Available on a new NAB Low Rate card. This could help you to consolidate your debt and reduce the amount of interest you pay on it. Try using our balance transfer calculator to see how much you could save.

    We can’t process balance transfers from certain issuers – see our indicative list.

  • Enjoy no annual fee for the first year (usually $59).

    If you’re already a NAB customer you could be eligible for additional credit card offers such as reduced annual card fees, bonus rewards points and more by applying through the NAB app or NAB Internet Banking.
    Minimum monthly repayments required. NAB may vary or end this offer at any time. Eligibility criteria and terms and conditions apply.

Things to consider

NAB offers two types of balance transfer, each with different rates and fees.

  • The promotional balance transfer is available on the NAB Low Rate Card only.
  • The standard balance transfer is available on all NAB credit cards, excluding the NAB StraightUp Card.

Balance transfers can be processed from up to five non-NAB credit cards or store cards. They can’t be processed between two NAB credit cards, or on business cards.

A balance transfer may suit you if:

  • you’re able to find a credit card with a credit limit high enough to cover your previous balance
  • you can find a promotion period long enough to pay off the balance before the rate increases.
  • If the available credit on your card can’t cover the full amount of the balance transfer you requested, you’ll need to pay off the remaining amount using your own funds.

To process your balance transfer, we use your non-NAB card number to BPAY the balance transfer request. If your BPAY reference number for your non-NAB card isn’t your credit card number, we won’t be able to complete the balance transfer.

Other options

If you have other debts (like a personal loan) or you think it will take more than the promotion period to pay off your debt, then a debt consolidation loan  might be a better option. Learn more about the benefits of consolidating your loans  and explore our personal loans for debt consolidation.

If you’re experiencing financial difficulty making your NAB credit card or personal loan payments, see our support options.

Before you apply

  1. Make sure you understand what you’re applying for to avoid getting caught out. Once the special promotional period ends any of the balance transfer amount you haven’t paid off will attract interest at the variable cash advance rate for your new card.

  2. Know what the variable cash advance rate is and how long it will take to pay off your debt to make sure you don’t end up worse off overall.

  3. Don’t forget to factor in any one-off balance transfer fees.

  4. Remember that regardless of the special offer on your card, you need to make the minimum repayments by the due date each month.

Check your potential savings

Try using our balance transfer calculator to estimate how much you could save

Request a balance transfer on a new NAB card

Don’t have a personal NAB credit card yet? You can do a balance transfer when you apply for a new personal NAB credit card.

Within the first 30 days of opening a new NAB credit card, you can transfer up to 90% of the approved credit limit (less any applicable annual card fee or balance transfer fee).

It takes five to 10 business days from when your new credit card account is opened to when the balance transfer is completed.

Request a balance transfer on an existing NAB card

For an existing NAB credit card, you may transfer up to 100% of the available credit limit (less any applicable annual card fee or balance transfer fee).

If you already have a NAB credit card, apply in the NAB app.

  1. Log into the NAB app.

  2. Tap Cards.

  3. Select your card.

  4. Select Usage controls.

  5. Select Request a balance transfer.

It takes three to five days from the day you submit the request for the balance transfer to be completed.

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Terms and Conditions

Fees and charges

Credit cards terms and conditions apply. Personal interest rates, fees and charges are payable.

Approval and credit limit is subject to NAB's credit assessment criteria. Information, including interest rates and annual card fees, subject to change. Correct as at 4 October 2023.

Credit cards issued by National Australia Bank Limited.