Chase Slate® Review: Balance Transfers With No Intro Fee
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Although the ultimate solution to eliminating credit card interest is paying off your debt, there is an interim strategy that can eliminate interest charges. Promotional financing offers common on many credit cards can allow new cardholders to transfer their balance from an existing card to the new one, which can offer interest-free financing for a period of 6-18 months. The Chase Slate® Card offers 0% intro APR for 15 months on both new purchases and balance transfers. This card also features Chase's innovative Blueprint program that offers tools to help you meet your debt elimination goal on a time frame that you set.
How the Balance Transfer Works
Once approved for the Slate card, customers have 60 days in which to execute the promotional balance transfer. In effect, you are asking Chase to pay off your old credit card's balance and apply that amount to your new Slate card. Just note that the old balance must be on a card that is not from Chase.
I have reviewed dozens of other cards, but all others require that an additional 3% of the amount transferred be added to your new account as a balance transfer fee. So this is clearly the best balance transfer offer on the market as it is the only one with no balance transfer fee for an introductory period. But in addition, new purchases can also be made interest-free for a period of 15 months. Always keep in mind that you will still have to make a monthly minimum payment, and you will still have to pay off all charges within 15 months in order to avoid interest. (See also: When to Do a Balance Transfer to Pay Off Credit Card Debt)
The Beauty of Blueprint
Savvy credit card experts quickly recognize the fact that Slate is the only card on the market with no balance transfer fee for the first 6 months. But few reviewers understand is the value behind Chase's unique Blueprint program. Blueprint is a feature available at no additional charge to holders of several different Chase credit cards. But I strongly believe that this program is ideally suited to the typical Slate cardholder, someone who carries a balance.
There are four components to this system:
Full Pay. When you can't pay your balance in full you can designate particular types of charges that you want to pay off, and carry a balance on the others through Full Pay. This is an amazing feature as other cards will incur interest on all charges unless your entire balance is paid in full. The Blueprint program will allow you to pay off some purchases without charging you interest, even if you currently carry a balance.
Split. You can create a plan to pay off a large purchase in the amount of time you choose with the Split option.
Finish It. This component allows you to plan how much you want to pay each month and calculates how long it will take to pay off your debt at that rate. Alternatively, you can decide when you want to pay off your balance, and it will calculate the monthly payments necessary to achieve that goal.
Track It. This feature is a budgeting tool to help you group and total your purchases. Together, these options are the most powerful debt reduction system offered by any credit card issuer.
Credit Score and Credit Dashboard for Free
This card includes access to your FICO Score based on Experian data, as well as the Chase Slate Credit Dashboard for accessing and viewing helpful credit information. (See also: Credit Cards With Free Credit Scores)
- $0 Annual Fee
- 0% Intro APR for 15 billing cycles for purchases and balance transfers. After that, a variable APR of 13.24%-23.24%
- $0 Balance Transfer Fee for transfers made within the first 60 days of account opening. After that, 5% or $5, whichever is greater.
- Foreign Transaction Fee: 3% of each transaction in U.S. dollars
No intro fee on balance transfers. With 15 months of 0% intro APR on your existing balance and no balance transfer fee for transfers made during the first 60 days, you will not find this offer anywhere else. (See also: Best Credit Cards Without Balance Transfer Fees)
Promotional financing on new purchases. New transactions are also interest-free for 15 months.
Blueprint program. Lets you avoid interest on some charges while paying others on a schedule you set.
No annual fee. Neither the Slate card nor the Blueprint features have any annual fees or balance transfer fees for transfers made within the first 60 days.
No rewards. There is no sign-up bonus, and there are no spending rewards for this card. (See also: Best Cash Back Credit Cards)
Foreign transaction fees. For all transactions processed outside of the United States, this card charges a foreign transaction fee of 3% of each transaction in U.S. dollars. (See also: Credit Cards Without Foreign Transaction Fees)
Who This Card Is Best For
If you have credit card debt, your number one priority should be to pay it off. The Chase Slate card helps you to do that by offering a 0% introductory APR for the first 15 billing cycles on both new purchase and balance transfers with no balance transfer fee for transfers made within the first 60 days of opening the account. However, do not use Slate or any other balance transfer card just to kick the can down the road and pay off your debts another time. With these features and the Blueprint program, the Slate card can be an important part of paying off and eliminating credit card debt.
How to Find Chase Slate Promotions
- Internet – Most Recommended. One of the best places to find the most current Chase Slate offers is on the Internet. You not only find the best offers online, but you can also research and compare the particular offer with other card promotions to make sure you’re choosing the best card for you. This is especially handy with card issuers like Chase, which generally have multiple low-interest, cashback, and travel rewards credit cards to choose. Plus, you can usually apply and get an answer within minutes, while sitting at home with your laptop, instead of holding on the phone or waiting for an answer in the mail.
- Mail Promotions. Although you might find your fewer mail promotions in your mailbox than in the past, it’s still a common method of reaching prospective cardholders. Mail promotions today, however, are often more targeted than in the past, increasing the likelihood of getting an offer that fits your situation. The primary downside to mail promotions is that you generally have to wait to get the offer, if you get it at all, and there’s a chance you’ll miss out on it altogether. Mail offers for the Chase Slate Credit Card will often direct you online to apply at slatefromchase.com, slatefromchasenow.com.
- Television Ads. Commercials are still popular ways that many consumers get their promotions. With Chase, you may find fewer ads for specific credit cards and more covering new features like its Blueprint program for paying for your purchases. Television ads usually include a phone number to apply for the card or a link such as chase.com/slate so you can visit and apply online. Like some of the other promotions, however, television ads can limit what’s available, and you risk missing out on a credit card that works better for you.
- Magazines and Newspapers. You’ll likely come across ads for credit cards in magazines and newspapers as well. These promotions may include a phone number to call or a website URL like chase.com where you can apply for the card. Magazines and newspaper ads, however, also do not provide an opportunity to research and compare different cards, and the information available regarding the card and its benefits is limited to whatever fits within the space of the ad.
- Bank Branches. With large banks and card issuers like Chase, you can also get information on applying for credit cards directly from the bank branch. With more than 6,000 branch locations, you also have a good chance of living close enough to one you can visit. Although bank branches limit your card options to only those that they offer, Chase Bank is, at least, a branch that includes a broad range of other financial products like checking and savings accounts and home mortgages.
Editorial Note: Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any bank, card issuer, airline or hotel chain.