14 Best “No Fee” Credit Cards (Balance Transfer, Prepaid, Annual & More)

No Fee Credit Cards

credit card advice

Amber Brooks
By: Amber Brooks
Posted: September 9, 2016
Opinions expressed here are ours alone, and are not provided, endorsed, or approved by any issuer. Site may be compensated through the issuer affiliate programs.

For me, one of the most frustrating things about moving to a new apartment (besides hauling my couches around while my brothers complain) is all the fees that get tacked on. “There’s a cleaning fee,” my old apartment complex tells me, so I pay that. “There’s an early move-in fee,” my new apartment complex explains, so I pay that too, using a debit card, which adds another fee.

Then, there’s the dog fee, the turning-on-your-power fee, the security fee, the paperwork fee, the shipping-and-handling fee, the we-just-want-your-money fee, and, sure, I’m making some of those up but only because I lost track of all the bogus fees I paid by the end of my move.

Fees just make it that much harder to budget and save your money. When it comes to credit cards, all the different fees can be confusing and overwhelming. To save you some time and frustration, we’ve listed the 14 best no-fee credit cards available.

Annual Fee | Balance Transfer | Foreign Transaction | Bad CreditPrepaid

Best “No Annual Fee” Credit Cards

Thanks to the Credit CARD Act of 2009, issuers must be transparent about credit card fees and can’t pile on hidden clauses meant to siphon away your money. This means that anyone can easily find out what annual fee, if any, is attached to any given card.

Sometimes an annual fee is on a card to balance out the rewards and perks associated with it, but other times it’s an unnecessary cost. The reasons why credit card companies charge annual fees will vary, but it’s simple enough to avoid them altogether and get a “no annual fee” credit card.

If you don’t want to pay an annual fee, you can try any of the following five top-rated credit cards:

  • Unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase — it's automatic
  • Earn a $150 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening
  • 0% Intro APR for 15 months from account opening on purchases and balance transfers, then a variable APR of 14.24-23.24%. Balance transfer fee is 5% of the amount transferred, $5 minimum
  • Redeem for cash — any amount, anytime
  • Cash Back rewards do not expire as long as your account is open
  • No annual fee
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
0%
15 months
0%
15 months
14.24%-23.24% Variable
$0
Excellent/Good
Discover it® 18 Month Balance Transfer Offer Review

at Discover'ssecure website

DISCOVER® RATING

★★★★★
4.9

OVERALL RATING

4.9/5.0
  • Our Take: "With a ridiculously good deal on balance transfers, low APR's, and a generous cash-back program, we can see why this card is so popular.
  • 0% intro APR on balance transfers for 18 months
  • 5% cash back in categories that rotate quarterly, up to $1,500 per quarter when you sign up for the quarterly bonus
  • 1% cash back on all your other purchases
  • Matches the cash back you've earned at the end of your first year (only for new cardmembers)
  • No limit to the amount of cash back that can be matched"
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
0%
6 months
0%
18 months
11.24% - 23.24% Variable
$0
Excellent/Good
Discover it® Miles – Unlimited 1.5x Rewards Card Review

at Discover'ssecure website

DISCOVER® RATING

★★★★★
4.8

OVERALL RATING

4.8/5.0
  • Our Take: "If you're looking for a card that gives you air miles, your search is over. This card helps you earn free flights with multiple airlines, awards very generous bonuses, and offers a low APR to boot.
  • Earn unlimited 1.5x Miles on every dollar spent
  • Cover travel costs by redeeming the miles in any amount for a statement credit
  • Fly any airline, any time
  • No blackout dates
  • At the end of your first year, the card automatically matches the miles you've earned (only for new cardmembers)"
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
0%
14 months
10.99%
14 months
11.24% - 23.24% Variable
$0
Excellent/Good

EXPERT'S RATING

★★★★★
4.8

OVERALL RATING

4.7/5.0
  • $0 Introductory balance transfer fee for transfers made during the first 60 days of account opening
  • 0% Introductory APR for 15 months on purchases and balance transfers
  • Monthly FICO® Score and Credit Dashboard for free
  • No Penalty APR - Paying late won't raise your interest rate (APR). All other account pricing and terms apply
  • $0 Annual Fee
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
0%
15 months
0%
15 months
13.24%-23.24% Variable
$0
Excellent/Good

EXPERT'S RATING

★★★★★
5.0

OVERALL RATING

4.9/5.0
  • Earning unlimited 2% cash back could mean thousands of dollars each year going back into your business
  • Plus, a one-time $500 cash bonus once you spend $4,500 on purchases within 3 months of approval
  • Use Spark Cash across all your business spend, with no categories to limit your purchasing
  • $0 intro annual fee for the first year; $59 after that
  • Rewards don't expire, and you can redeem your cash back for any amount, anytime
  • Get employee cards at no additional cost, and earn rewards from their business spend
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
N/A
N/A
17.24% (Variable)
$0 intro for first year; $59 after that
Excellent, Good Credit

Note that the Capital One® Spark® Cash for Business card only offers a $0 intro annual fee for the first year of signing up for the credit card. After that, you’re back to paying an annual fee.

Best “No Balance Transfer Fee” Credit Card

A balance transfer is a good way to consolidate your debt on a single account, but it often comes coupled with a 3% to 5% transaction fee. However, the Chase Slate® provides no-fee balance transfers. That can be a huge help to cardholders looking for an easy way to save money while making a balance transfer.

EXPERT'S RATING

★★★★★
4.8

OVERALL RATING

4.7/5.0
  • $0 Introductory balance transfer fee for transfers made during the first 60 days of account opening
  • 0% Introductory APR for 15 months on purchases and balance transfers
  • Monthly FICO® Score and Credit Dashboard for free
  • No Penalty APR - Paying late won't raise your interest rate (APR). All other account pricing and terms apply
  • $0 Annual Fee
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
0%
15 months
0%
15 months
13.24%-23.24% Variable
$0
Excellent/Good

The Chase Slate also comes with no annual fee and a free FICO score every month, making this credit card a uniquely affordable and responsible choice. The no-fee-for-transfers policy is good for the first 60 days of opening your account, so don’t dawdle!

Best “No Foreign Transaction Fee” Credit Cards

When you’re traveling abroad, the last thing you need is foreign transaction fees eating up money you could be spending on souvenirs. You should be giving your hard-earned cash to tourist traps, not banks.

To travel without unnecessary and costly complications, check out the following three travel rewards cards with no foreign transaction fees:

EXPERT'S RATING

★★★★★
4.9

OVERALL RATING

4.8/5.0
  • Enjoy a one-time bonus of 40,000 miles once you spend $3,000 on purchases within 3 months of approval, equal to $400 in travel
  • Earn unlimited 2X miles per dollar on every purchase, every day
  • Fly any airline, stay at any hotel, anytime
  • Travel when you want with no blackout dates
  • Miles don't expire and there’s no limit to how many you can earn
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • $0 intro annual fee for the first year; $59 after that
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
N/A
N/A
13.24% - 23.24% (Variable)
$0 intro for first year; $59 after that
Excellent, Good Credit

EXPERT'S RATING

★★★★★
4.8

OVERALL RATING

4.8/5.0
  • Earn 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $625 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • Named Best Credit Card for Flexible Travel Redemption - Kiplinger's Personal Finance, July 2016
  • 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • Earn 5,000 bonus points after you add the first authorized user and make a purchase in the first 3 months from account opening
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 50,000 points are worth $625 toward travel
  • No blackout dates or travel restrictions - as long as there's a seat on the flight, you can book it through Chase Ultimate Rewards
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
N/A
N/A
16.24%-23.24% Variable
Introductory Annual Fee of $0 the first year, then $95
Excellent Credit

EXPERT'S RATING

★★★★★
4.8

OVERALL RATING

4.8/5.0
  • One-time $100 cash bonus after you spend $500 on purchases within 3 months of approval
  • Earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase, every day
  • No rotating categories or sign ups needed to earn cash rewards; plus, cash back doesn’t expire and there’s no limit to how much you can earn
  • 0% intro APR on purchases for 9 months; 13.24%-23.24% variable APR after that
  • Balance transfers also have a 0% intro APR for 9 months; 13.24%-23.24% variable APR after that; a 3% fee applies to each balance transferred
  • Pay no annual fee or foreign transaction fees
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
0% for 9 months
0% for 9 months
13.24% - 23.24% (Variable)
$0
Excellent, Good Credit

These are some excellent credit cards to take with you on your travels, not just because you skip foreign transaction fees, but also because of the miles and cash back deals you can earn abroad by using these travel-friendly credit cards.

Best “Bad Credit” Cards with No Fees

Credit One is an issuer that prides itself on nixing out-of-pocket costs to open an account. For people with bad credit, these cards are an option for easy approval. Annual fees range from $0 to $99, depending on your credit score. Below, we’ve listed three cards for people with less-than-perfect credit that have no fees and require no deposit.

Credit One Bank® Visa® with Credit Line Increase Reviews Review

at Credit One'ssecure website

BAD CREDIT RATING

★★★★
4.0

OVERALL RATING

3.7/5.0
  • Interested in growing or rebuilding your credit? We report monthly to all three major credit bureaus. Take advantage of free online access to your credit score and credit report summary.
  • See if you're Pre-Qualified in less than 60 seconds.
  • This is a fully functional, unsecured credit card - not a debit, prepaid, or secured card. No need to load funds or tie up cash in deposits. There are no out-of-pocket costs to open your account.
  • Automatically earn 1% cash back when you buy gas or groceries. Terms apply.
  • Flexible payment date to assist you in making your payments on time.
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
N/A
N/A
15.65% - 24.15% Variable
$0 - $99
Bad Credit
Credit One Bank® Platinum Visa® for Building Credit Review

at Credit One'ssecure website

BAD CREDIT RATING

★★★★
4.0

OVERALL RATING

3.7/5.0
  • See if you Pre-Qualify without harming your credit score
  • 1% cash back on gas & groceries, terms apply
  • This is a fully unsecured credit card with no deposit requirement
  • Flexible payment date to assist you in making your payments on time
  • Automatic reviews for credit line increase opportunities
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
N/A
N/A
15.65% - 24.15% Variable
$0 - $99
Bad Credit
Credit One Bank® - Earn More Credit Fast Review

at Credit One'ssecure website

BAD CREDIT RATING

★★★★
4.0

OVERALL RATING

3.7/5.0
  • Find out if you Pre-Qualify without affecting your credit score
  • This is a fully unsecured credit card with no deposit requirement
  • Automatic reviews for credit line increase opportunities
  • Free online monthly credit score tracking included
  • 1% cash back on gas & groceries, terms apply
  • Zero fraud liability protects you from unauthorized charges
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
N/A
N/A
15.65% - 24.15% Variable
$0 - $99
Poor Credit

+ See more cards for bad credit

Best “Prepaid” Cards with No Fees

Prepaid cards are not like traditional credit cards because cardholders must put up the funds toward their balance, just like a debit card. These cards are paid for in advance and typically come with perks like no credit checks and no risk of overdraft. We’ve picked out two of our top prepaid cards with no monthly or transactional fees attached.

AccountNow® Prepaid Visa® Card Review

at AccountNow'ssecure website

PREPAID RATING

★★★★★
4.8

OVERALL RATING

2.5/5.0
  • No Credit Check. No Risk of Overdraft Fee.
  • $0 Monthly Fee Pay As You Go Plan (See Cardholder Agreement on site)
  • No minimum balance
  • Free† direct deposit and online bill payment
  • Use it everywhere Visa debit card accepted
  • Easy online/mobile account access
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
N/A
N/A
N/A
$0
No Credit Check
Pink NetSpend® Visa® Prepaid Card Review

at NetSpend'ssecure website

PREPAID RATING

★★★★★
4.6

OVERALL RATING

2.5/5.0
  • Get paychecks or government benefits checks up to 2 days faster with Direct Deposit
  • No credit check needed (ID verification required).
  • No credit card debt or late fees because this is not a credit card.
  • Earn cash back for using your card with the NetSpend Payback Rewards program. Additionally, earn up to $20 for every friend you refer.
  • Get real time activity alerts to your mobile phone or use the Mobile App to manage your account while you're on the go (Message & data rates may apply).
  • Funds are FDIC insured up to the current coverage limit (ID verification required).
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
N/A
N/A
N/A
Variable Monthly Fee
No Credit Check

+ See more prepaid cards

Say Goodbye to Hidden Costs with a “No Fee” Credit Card

Whether you’re moving to a new place, building credit, or just trying to make ends meet, fees can be a real drag on your finances. Getting a “no fees” credit card is a smart way to avoid unnecessary spending and save money.

You can take control of your budget by choosing a credit card that charges no annual fees, foreign transaction fees, balance transfer fees — or by getting a prepaid credit card with no fees. Even people with bad credit have options to get a credit card without putting down a deposit.

Our list of the 14 best no-fee credit cards is a great place to find a valuable deal on your next line of credit. Choose wisely!