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Getting a credit card with no credit history can present many challenges if you don’t meet the criteria imposed by the traditional FICO score model. Secured credit cards are sometimes an option, but they require an upfront deposit and may not work for everyone.
How To Open A Credit Card With No Credit History
Other credit card companies try to bridge this gap by using unusual underwriting standards to assess creditworthiness based on factors such as income, employment and bank account information. Some of these products work like regular credit cards, while others are more likely to accept cards.
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But the point is whether you have bad credit, limited credit or no credit at all, you have options – and some of them may be easier to find than you think.
Using your credit card regularly and responsibly provides a quick and effective way to build credit. By paying on time, keeping a low balance and keeping an open account, you can make a good record.
Ratings are determined by our editorial team. The scoring system takes into account the type of card being reviewed (such as cash back, travel or balance transfer) and the card’s value, fees, rewards and other features.
Petal’s issuing bank, WebBank, may not rely on credit scores to determine credit card eligibility. It can use a “machine-learning” learning model that takes into account factors such as an applicant’s income, expenses, savings and debt. The Petal® 2 “Cash Back, No Fees” Visa® Credit Card reports your payments to three credit bureaus: TransUnion, Equifax and Experian. These companies record information that is used to calculate your credit scores.
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The card requires no deposit and even offers a cash-rewards program. The annual fee is $0, and you won’t be charged late fees, overage fees or foreign transaction fees. (The card does not allow cash advances or balance transfers.)
You must be a U.S. resident. have a valid Social Security number or individual taxpayer identification number to qualify.
If you don’t have enough cash or credit history to qualify for this card, the Petal® 1 “No Annual Fee” Visa® Credit Card may be an option. Also, it has no annual fee or security deposit – although it does offer a small, solid reward, a potentially high APR and a potentially low loan limit. (Card-type fees are also possible, although those can be avoided with responsible use.) For more information, see the full review of the Petal® 1 “No Annual Fee” Visa® Credit Card. Or, read here to see which Petal card is right for you.
The AvantCard credit card requires you to have some established credit history, even limited or fair credit. It weighs that factor along with your income and credit to determine eligibility. Also, it is produced by WebBank. (Note that this product is not available in Colorado, Iowa, Vermont, West Virginia or Wisconsin.)
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For an annual fee of $39, you get a card that reports to all three US credit bureaus: TransUnion, Equifax and Experian. AvantCard doesn’t earn rewards, but it will save you money on transaction fees, and you won’t have to pay a security deposit. As a Mastercard, it will also be widely accepted by foreign merchants. But the credit limit is currently only $300, which is the lowest compared to other credit cards.
This isn’t a bad option for those with thin credit files, but if you have little credit, better options are available.
The Grow Credit Mastercard, offered by Sutton Bank, is suitable for those with no credit or poor credit (FICO score of 629 or lower). It’s a virtual card that lets you build credit while paying qualifying monthly subscriptions that include bills, TV, music and other streaming services. This is one of the few good cards that doesn’t require a credit check. Instead, the company has its own technology that looks at income to assess creditworthiness. To balance that information, Grow Credit requires you to connect a bank account.
You can choose one of four membership plans, depending on eligibility. Each has different pricing, different spending limits, and different subscription coverage. For example, a free membership plan lets you build credit for subscriptions like Netflix, Pandora, Spotify, Amazon Prime and more. Paid membership plans include “premium” subscriptions, which allow you to build credit with Verizon Wireless, AT&T, Sprint or T-Mobile payments, among others.
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The Advanced Credit Mastercard works like a credit card in some ways, but you are not free to make purchases. You may only charge for individual subscription transactions. The line of credit itself is small, but payments are reported to all three major credit bureaus.
The card also doesn’t allow you to carry a balance from month to month, and as a result, doesn’t charge you interest or fees (more than you’d owe on one of our paid membership plans).
The Chime Builder Visa® credit card offers some of the savings you may need when taking your first or second chance at building credit. While this is technically a secure card, it lacks some of the challenges that come with many products in its class.
For example, you don’t have to go through a hard credit check or pay a minimum deposit upfront. Chime can look at income to determine if you qualify for a card. To do this, you must have a Chime Spending Account and at least $200 in direct deposits made to that account in the past 365 days.
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The amount you transfer from your Chime Spending Account to your Builder Secure Account determines the amount you can spend on the card. That money can also be used to pay off your balance. When you pay, all three credit bureaus will notify you, allowing you to establish credit.
And unlike many other secured credit cards, this card doesn’t allow you to carry a balance each month, and it doesn’t charge interest or fees.
On July 6, 2021, the nonprofit news organization ProPublica reported that Chime customers had their accounts closed without notice, leaving them without access to funds. In the ProPublica report, Chime said that many of the accounts closed involved fraud, but also acknowledged that some of the closures were mistakes. If your account is closed by Chime or other neobanks without notice, there are steps you can take to resolve the situation. Act quickly by contacting neobank to explain the situation. And, if neobank doesn’t help you, you can file a complaint with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.
The Tomo credit card, created by San Francisco-based startup TomoCredit, never performs a credit check, even if it does review an application. Instead, the company’s proprietary technology weighs multiple data points including your income, or potential income, and your account balance. (You must link your bank account.) The bank that issued the card, the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, uses this information to determine if you qualify.
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You’ll earn rewards, and there’s no security deposit, annual fee or even APR – the Tomo credit card doesn’t allow you to carry a balance. If you do not have a Social Security Number or Personal Taxpayer Identification Number, it is possible to apply for a passport.
The Deserve® EDU Mastercard for students is a great option for students who don’t qualify for a credit card because they lack a US credit history.
International students may also qualify without a Social Security number. Deserve uses its own written form to determine card eligibility, checking things like financial documents, contact information, income and US bank account statements to determine your eligibility pay
The Deserve® EDU Mastercard for students earns 1% unlimited cash back on all purchases, a 12-month Amazon Prime Student membership statement (up to $69) and a $30 credit every time you spend -refer you to a friend who is eligible The card also includes and informs all three credit bureaus. The annual fee is $0.
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As a Mastercard, it also makes an ideal travel companion, with wide international acceptance. There are no foreign transaction fees.
The Oportun Visa credit card is a great option for those who can’t qualify for traditional credit cards because they lack a Social Security number and credit history. Oportun’s unique technology can look beyond traditional credit scores and explore other factors such as rent payments, payment history, income, cash flow and more.
To qualify for Social Security eligibility, you must verify a US address in one of the states where the card is issued. (The card was not found in Colorado, Iowa,
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