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Virgin Money Launches new 29-month balance transfer credit card

25/02/2014

This information is intended for use by journalists and is correct at the time of publication. Customers wanting to view our current cards range should visit our cards pages.

  • 0% balance transfer period extended to 29 months, with six months for purchases
  • One of only a few credit cards in the UK to offer a Money Transfer service to new customers
  • Credit Card survey shows almost a third (32%) of people with an outstanding balance on their credit cards use them for shopping and grocery shopping
  • Over 40% of credit card holders don’t know what interest rate they are paying on their current credit card balance
  • But eight out of ten (82%) of those with an outstanding balance have a clear plan to pay down their credit card balance over the next 12 months

Virgin Money is extending the 0% introductory period on its balance transfer (BT) credit card from 26 months to 29 months for new customers.

The introductory rate applies to balance transfers made within the first 60 days of account opening, which will attract a fee of 2.99%. Once the introductory period ends, the interest rate reverts to a standard rate of 18.9% per annum (variable).1

In addition, the 0% rate for 29 months applies to money transfers, when borrowers transfer funds into their current account straight from their credit card. Money transfers made within the first 60 days of account opening will attract a fee of 4%. Once the introductory period ends, the interest rate reverts to a standard rate of 20.9% per annum (variable).

To mark the launch of its best ever balance transfer credit card, Virgin Money commissioned a YouGov ‘Credit Card’ survey to establish how people in Britain use their credit cards. Virgin Money asked 1,499 credit card holders what they had purchased to make up the current outstanding balance on their credit card; if they knew their current interest rate on their credit card and if they had a clear plan to pay off their credit card balance over the next 12 months.

The results demonstrate that although many Brits (32%) with an outstanding balance on a credit card use them to help manage their grocery shopping, the vast majority (82%) said they do have a clear plan to pay off their credit card debt over the next 12 months. (Full spend table below)

Which, if any, of the following have you purchased that make up the current outstanding balance on your credit card(s)?

PurchasePercentage
Grocery shopping32%
Holiday29%
Other26%
Electronics (e.g. laptop, TV etc.)17%
Consolidation of other debts16%
Home improvements/ DIY12%
White goods12%
Car8%
Don’t know/ can't recall8%


Of the 2,077 adults surveyed, 69% have at least one credit card, and 27% of card holders said they have an outstanding balance of over £1,000 on their card. Reassuringly, only 5% of people with an outstanding balance surveyed said they strongly disagreed when asked if they had a clear plan to pay off their credit card debt over the next 12 months.

For people who do not pay off their credit card balances in full, purchases could be costing them far more than they think. Virgin Money experts have analysed three scenarios to illustrate how purchases, large and small, could be costing far more than necessary over 29 months, and how much could be saved by transferring an existing credit card balance on standard interest rates to a 0% balance transfer credit card with a balance transfer fee of 2.99%.

White Goods (12% of consumers with an outstanding balance have used their credit card to buy white goods)

A Bosch WAE24167UK Washing Machine bought for £299 would actually cost you £390 over 29 months on a card with an APR of 18.9%, if you pay the minimum amount each month.

Transferring this to a credit card offering 0% APR over 29 months could save you up to £82, after paying the Balance Transfer fee.


Car (8% of consumers with an outstanding balance have used their credit card to buy a car)

A Ford Fiesta Zetec 16 v bought for £2,495 would actually cost you £3,254 over 29 months on a card with an APR of 18.9%, if you pay the minimum amount each month.

Transferring this to a credit card offering 0% APR over 29 months could save you up to £684, after paying the Balance Transfer fee.


Electronics (17% of consumers with an outstanding balance have used their credit card to buy electronic equipment)

A laptop bought for £1,249 would actually cost you £1,629 over 29 months on a card with an APR of 18.9%, if you pay the minimum amount each month.

Transferring this to a credit card offering 0% APR over 29 months could save you up to £342, after paying the Balance Transfer fee.


Thomas Rebel, Commercial Director of Credit Cards at Virgin Money said: “We are delighted to offer our best ever balance transfer credit card. Credit card holders unaware of their current interest rate may be paying significantly more than they need to on any outstanding balance. The new Virgin Money 29 month 0% balance transfer deal is great for customers who are looking for some extra breathing space to pay down their debt.

Rebel added: “Virgin Money is also one of the few credit cards in the UK offering a Money Transfer service. Having the option to transfer cash directly from your credit card to your current account can help customers with unexpected costs or can be used to pay off an overdraft at a better rate. Almost forty per cent of people value the features and benefits of money transfers”.

To find out more about the Virgin Money 29 month Balance Transfer Credit Card, visit virginmoney.com.

-ENDS-

1Product Details

  • Interest of 0% per annum for 29 months will apply to any balances transferred to a new Virgin Money credit card within 60 days of account opening. Introductory balance transfers attract a fee of 2.99%
  • Interest of 0% per annum applies to purchases for the first six months following account opening, following which a rate of 18.9% per annum (variable) will apply
  • Virgin Money credit cards incorporate contactless technology offering customers a hassle-free way to pay for items up to £20 just by holding their card to a reader without having to enter their PIN
  • Promotional rates will no longer apply from the beginning of any statement period during which a customer has breached their terms and conditions, for example if they haven't paid on time or have gone over their credit limit. Customers cannot transfer balances between MBNA-issued accounts
  • The Virgin Money Credit Card is issued by MBNA Limited
  • Representative example 18.9% p.a. variable on card purchases. This is equivalent to 18.9% APR representative variable based on a credit limit of £1,200.


Media Contacts

Virgin Money Press Office
0191 279 4676
press.office@virginmoney.com

Notes to Editors

All figures, unless otherwise stated, are from YouGov Plc. Total sample size was 2,077 adults, of which 1,449 are credit card holders. Fieldwork was undertaken between 18th - 20th February 2014. The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all GB adults (aged 18+).

About Virgin Money

  • Virgin Money provides savings, mortgages, credit cards, pensions, investment and protection products
  • Virgin Money’s business ambition is to make “everyone better off” – this philosophy underpins our approach to business by offering good value to customers, treating employees well, making a positive contribution to society and delivering a profit to shareholders
  • Virgin Money is the official sponsor of the London Marathon, the biggest annual one-day fundraising event in the world. Virgin Money leads the London Marathon sponsorship with the ambition to help runners raise £¼ billion over 5 years and will use its infrastructure, online capability and financial expertise to deliver that through Virgin Money Giving

Supplementary notes

  • The information contained in this press release is intended solely for journalists and should not be used by consumers to make financial decisions. Any consumer interested in learning more about this product should visit http://uk.virginmoney.com/virgin/splash/cards.jsp for full terms and conditions.