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When you have thin credit, imperfect credit, or too many new credit cards, you may consider searching for which credit card is the easiest to get to avoid a declined application. Here are some products to consider first when considering what card is easiest to get approved for.
What Card is Easiest to Get Approved For?
In addition to specific credit cards that are easy to qualify for, these types of credit cards have lenient credit requirements:
- Secured credit cards
- Student credit cards
- Store charge cards
These cards typically accept applications with no or little credit history. You can also qualify with a bad credit score in the high 500s.
As a tradeoff, these cards usually have small spending limits. In the case of store credit cards, they can only be used for purchases at that retailer. Student credit cards are only available to actively enrolled college students.
Thankfully, your payment history reports to the consumer credit bureaus to help you build a credit history and increase your score. That way, you can later qualify for the best rewards credit cards that usually require a good or excellent credit score exceeding 670.
Credit Cards With No Credit History
Here are some of the starter credit cards to consider that are very easy to qualify for.
U.S. Bank Altitude® Go Visa® Secured Card
The information for the U.S. Bank Altitude® Go Visa® Secured Card has been collected independently by Johnny Jet. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.
The U.S. Bank Altitude® Go Visa® Secured Card earns up to 4x points on purchases, and your spending limit is equal to your refundable security deposit. It has no annual fee. It’s also possible to earn up to $15 in annual streaming credits after 11 consecutive months of streaming-related purchases.
Petal Credit Cards
The information for the Petal 1 and Petal 2 cards has been collected independently by Johnny Jet. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.
There are two different Petal Card options, and you can see which one you prequalify for. It’s possible to earn rewards and not pay an annual fee or make a security deposit as both products are unsecured credit cards.
What Credit Card Can I Get Instantly?
Several banks offer instant approval credit cards, including American Express, Capital One, and Chase. These cards are available for different credit score ranges, although those requiring a higher score typically have better rewards and benefits.
Below are some of the best credit cards with instant numbers.
American Express Credit Cards
All consumer American Express credit and charge cards offer an Instant Card Number to qualified applicants. So, whether the rewards card earns Membership Rewards® points or is a co-branded product for Delta Air Lines, Hilton Honors, or Marriott Bonvoy, for example, you can start spending within minutes after getting approved before your physical card arrives.
Bilt World Elite Mastercard
The Bilt World Elite Mastercard® is your best option for paying rent and earning rewards as you won’t pay credit card fees. Your points are also worth 25% more for travel redemptions, and they have several 1:1 points transfer partners.
Related: Bilt Credit Card Review
Southwest Airlines Credit Cards
The Southwest Rapid Rewards Credit Cards are an exciting option as your standard purchase rewards plus the Rapid Rewards received from a signup bonus count toward the Companion Pass® point requirements.
Chase Freedom Unlimited®
The information for the Chase Freedom Unlimited® has been collected independently by Johnny Jet. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.
The Chase Freedom Unlimited® is one of the best cash-back credit cards as it earns at least 1.5% back on purchases. Its signup bonus is $200 bonus cash (after spending $500 in the first 3 months) plus earning up to 5% back on groceries during the first 12 months. It has no annual fee.
Related: Chase Freedom Unlimited Review
Amazon shoppers with a Prime membership may love the Prime Visa. Your reward categories include:
- 5% back at Amazon.com, Amazon Fresh, Whole Foods Market, and Chase Travel purchases with an eligible Prime membership
- 2% back at gas stations, restaurants, and on local transit and commuting (including rideshare)
- Everything else earns 1% back
Further, there is no annual fee.
What Credit Card Can I Get Approved For?
Getting credit card pre-approval through a tool like CardMatch™ is one of the best places to estimate your approval odds for several banks at once. The inquiry only takes a few minutes, doesn’t hurt your credit, and you might receive targeted Amex offers.
Another option is visiting the prequalification tool from the credit card provider’s website. Once again, this process is quick, easy, and doesn’t hurt your credit score.
What Credit Card is the Easiest to Get?
Credit cards without an annual fee that cater to individuals with fair credit (580 to 669) are the easiest to qualify for, but these products don’t always earn rewards. A notable example is the Capital One Platinum Credit Card.
However, your options open up considerably once you achieve good credit (670 to 739) or excellent credit (740 to 850). Co-branded airline credit cards and hotel credit cards with no annual fee or one below $100 can be relatively easy to qualify for.
As they offer a plethora of benefits, you will want to avoid premium credit cards with an annual fee above $250 until you have responsibly managed one of the best travel credit cards for beginners.
Several factors influence your approval odds:
- Credit score
- Annual income
- Monthly housing costs
- Number of new credit cards within the last 24 months (i.e., Chase 5/24 Rule)
- Current number of credit cards with the bank you’re applying with
How Can I Get a Credit Card if I Can’t Get Approved?
If you don’t qualify for the best unsecured credit cards, you should look at the reason why your application was declined. You may have good or excellent credit, but perhaps you have too many cards with a particular bank or have opened too many too soon.
A secured credit card can be your best option when your credit score is in the low 600s or below. These cards require a lower score as you make a refundable security deposit at the account opening. After several months of timely payments, the bank may review your updated credit history to upgrade you to an unsecured product and refund your security deposit.
Summary of What Card is Easiest to Get Approved For?
Starter credit cards such as the Capital One VentureOne Rewards Credit Card or a secured credit card are prime candidates if you’re at the start of the credit journey. Most credit cards with an annual fee of $95 or less are within reach with a credit score above 700, although bank-specific application guidelines can mean having to wait before applying.