pay more credit card interestWhile this information was accurate at the time this post was published, these cards’ offers and perks may have expired or changed over time. Visit our reviews of the best credit cards to find the right card for your needs.

Editor’s Note: This blog post was written for the Dec. 15, 2016 interest rate increase and updated when the March 15, 2017 rate increase was announced.

Those carrying a credit card balance are about to get some bad news: you’ll be paying more in interest soon. That’s because the Federal Reserve just increased the short-term interest rate by 0.25%, making it the first rate increase of the year, following December’s 0.25% increase and 2015’s 0.25% increase. While higher rates actually have a lot of positive affects on consumers and the economy, like savings accounts will offer a larger return, there are also some negative impacts, especially for anyone carrying a credit card balance. To help consumers understand how this will impact them, we have the breakdown of what this rate hike means for those carrying credit card debt.

What does this mean if you have credit card debt?

If you have credit card debt, it might be time to start thinking about how you will eliminate that debt because your credit card issuer will increase your variable interest rate soon. It should be noted that if have a credit card (or loan) with a fixed interest rate, you will not be impacted by this increase, as it only affects those with variable interest, which is a large majority of the credit cards on the market. Although you may not be able to pay off your credit card debt right now (or before the issuer raises your rate), there is a solution for you: balance transfer credit cards. These cards offer long-term 0% intro APRs on balance transfers, which means you can transfer the balance of your current credit card(s) to a balance transfer credit card and avoid paying interest on that balance for an extended period of time. Even though a majority of balance transfer credit cards charge a balance transfer fee, this one-time fee (usually 3% to 5% of the transferred balance) is likely a lot lower than the ongoing interest you’re paying on your current credit card, especially after the rate hike.

Best credit cards to avoid interest

Finding the right balance transfer credit card for your needs can be a challenge, which is why we detailed four that may be a fit for you.

Citi Diamond Preferred Card – 21 Month Balance Transfer Offer

pay more credit card interestThe Citi Diamond Preferred Card – 21 Month Balance Transfer Offer (a NextAdvisor advertiser) offers a whopping 21-month 0% intro APR on balance transfers made in the first 4 months. You have to pay a rather high 5% balance transfer fee for all transferred balances ($5 minimum), but you’re likely still coming out ahead since you have almost 2 years to pay off the balance without interest. On top of that, you’ll get a 12-month 0% intro APR on purchases, pay no annual fee and be able to choose your own payment due date.

Citi Simplicity Card – No Late Fees Ever

pay more credit card interestOffering one and a half years of no interest is the Citi Simplicity Card – No Late Fees Ever. This card offers an 18-month 0% intro APR on purchases and balance transfers. Even though you have to pay a 5% balance transfer fee for every transferred balance, that fee is likely a lot lower than the current interest rate (and future increased rate) you’re paying on your credit card. Rounding out the Citi Simplicity Card – No Late Fees Ever are no annual fee, no late fees and no penalty rate, which is ideal if you have a habit of forgetting when your credit card bill is due.

Discover it Balance Transfer

pay more credit card interestIf you have not-so-spotless credit, Discover it Balance Transfer is for you, as it’s the only card on this list that is available to those with average to excellent credit (usually a credit score above 670). In fact, this card has benefits usually reserved for those with great credit and it’s also one of our top-rated cards for those with excellent credit. Not only that, but Discover it Balance Transfer also has an impressive 0% intro APR period and earns cash back rewards on purchases. To start, you’ll get an 18-month 0% intro APR on balance transfers (with a 3% balance transfer fee) and a 6-month 0% intro APR on purchases. Next, you’ll earn 5% cash back in rotating categories each quarter you activate (up to the quarterly maximum, then it’s 1%) and 1% on all other purchases. From January through March of 2017, you’ll get 5% back at gas stations, ground transportation and wholesale clubs and from April through June, you’ll earn 5% back at home improvement stores and wholesale clubs. What’s more, Discover will match all of the cash back you’ve earned at the end of your first year — this means Discover can turn $500 into $1,000! Closing out the card are no foreign transaction fees, perfect for world travelers, and no annual fee.

Want to learn more about theses cards? Read our balance transfer credit card reviews to see how they compare to other cards on the market.

Disclaimer: This content is not provided or commissioned by the credit card issuer. Opinions expressed here are author’s alone, not those of the credit card issuer, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuer. This content was accurate at the time of this post, but card terms and conditions may change at any time. This site may be compensated through the credit card issuer Affiliate Program.