We all know how convenient it can be to have a credit card. You don’t need to worry about paying for things with cash or whether or not you’re carrying enough cash. Therefore, we made this article to help you choose the right credit card from the best credit cards available in 2022.
From cash back, travel, balance transfer, and rewards to 0 percent intro APR and much more. We did the research, so you don’t have to sit through enormous lists of many secured credit cards to choose the best one for yourself.
The credit cards that we’ve included provide many benefits, though, in order to get the maximum of your card, you need to make sure that you practice responsible credit behavior, such as avoiding overspending, falling into debt, and paying off your balance in full until the due date each month. The same is advised by theislandnow as well.
So without further ado, we present the best credit cards for bad credit to help you save on interest charges, build credit, and earn money in cash back after some years. Keep reading on to find out more about them.
The Best Credit Cards of 2022
- Indigo Card – Overall Best Company for Credit Cards On The Market
- Milestone Gold Mastercard – Popular Secured Credit Card Offers
- Destiny Card – Reliable Pre-Approved Credit Cards
- First Access Card – Top Credit Cards for Bad Credit Score
- FIT Mastercard – Best Credit Cards for Beginners
#1. Indigo Card – Overall Best Company for Credit Cards On The Market
The Indigo Mastercard is great for those who have bad credit. You won’t need to provide a lot of information to qualify for this card. A small application form only takes a few minutes to fill in.
You can check the APR they charge on each credit score on their website before you apply for it. For instance, if you have a credit limit of $300, you will receive $225 because the company will subtract $75 as the annual fee.
The Indigo Mastercard charges just a 1% foreign transaction fee on your transaction. If you aim for taking a cash advance, the card will charge you 5$ minimum.
You won’t need to wait months after opening your account before taking a credit card. You can open a new one and immediately ask for a Free Access card, and the company will deliver you one.
High approval rate
You won’t need to provide your current credit score or bank information on the initial form. The company will use your Social Security number in order to check your details. After you’re qualified for pre-approval, they will ask for further information that will determine which card they’ll be able to offer you.
Zero-interest on purchases
As long as you make payments before the due date, you will not be charged interest on purchases. The due date is 25 days after every billing cycle; therefore, ensure that you pay it on time so you won’t have to pay interest.
You can pre-qualify without affecting your credit score
Before you formally apply to the Indigo Mastercard, you can pre-qualify to check your likelihood for approval without affecting your credit scores. By doing so, you’ll know where you might stand.
Keep in mind, though, that pre-qualification doesn’t necessarily mean that you’re approved. It weighs more like a soft “yes” or a “probably.” Afterward, you’ll still need to submit a full application so the company can review it and decide.
Reports to all three major credit bureaus
The Indigo Mastercard reports to all major credit bureaus: Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion. This is ideal for people who are trying to rebuild their credit, and that’s because these bureaus collect your activity information to calculate your credit score.
Your payment history is key to those scores. As long as you make all of the payments on time, you can qualify for better credit cards further on.
- Extended warranty coverage
- Travel assistance services
- Widely-accepted abroad
- 1% foreign transaction fee
- Fast and easy application form
- You can establish your payment history
- Soft credit pull
- Reports to all three major credit bureaus
- No security deposit – standard credit limit
- Zero-interest on purchases
- The maximum credit limit is low
#2. Milestone Gold Mastercard – Popular Secured Credit Card Offers
Building credit can take a lot of hard work. Whether you’re rebuilding your credit score after it had taken a dive or have no credit history at all, you may have only several options because many lenders will hesitate to offer you a credit card or a personal loan.
The Milestone Gold Mastercard is notably built for individuals with bad credit, and at first glance, it might seem like a good option. This card is convenient for people who have a hard time coming up with a minimum deposit of around $200. This is because it is an unsecured credit card, which doesn’t require a security deposit.
Another advantage is that it reports all of your card usage to their three major bureaus. Therefore, if you practice positive credit habits, your credit score might go up.
However, the Milestone card is loaded with many confusing terms, such as high-interest rates or varying annual fees. So, keep reading on to see whether giving this card a chance is worth a shot.
24/7 online customer support services
You can easily contact your credit card provider at any time of the day or week, and they will have someone ready to assist you with any questions you might have.
Milestone Gold Mastercard’s focus is to build credit. This means that the card won’t come with a sign-up bonus or any kind of reward structure. This is expected, though, as this is the case with most cards of this type.
Although this card might not be the first choice for a credit card, it is great if you don’t want to turn to a secured card. The reason why it’s great is that it reports your credit use to all three of the company’s major credit bureaus. This can help you boost your credit just enough to qualify for other better credit cards in the future.
The standard benefits of protection include zero liability fraud protection for any purchases that have been made and are unauthorized on lost or stolen cards. The benefits also offer users identity monitoring, meaning that they protect your email addresses, account login information, Social Security number, credit cards, debit cards, and bank accounts.
This card has a very quick pre-qualification process. This process uses a soft credit pull in order to look at your credit details. This may not guarantee you approval, but it will give you a strong indication of what your chances of approval may be in the future.
This type of pre-screening process makes it more convenient for you to get a credit card without a hard credit pull impacting your credit.
Rates and fees
The ongoing APR of the Milestone Gold Mastercard is 24.90 percent, and the cash advance APR is 29.90 percent for all three card offerings. Therefore, a good way to avoid cash advances is by paying your balance in full every month. After all, it’s a good and important financial habit, considering that this card has high-interest rates.
Foreign transaction fee
This fee is quite light, at 1 percent to be precise, and the cash advance fee of $5 or 5 percent is waived throughout your first year.
- A security deposit is not required
- Reports to three credit bureaus
- Quick pre-qualifying process
- Balance transfers are available
- Fraud protection in case of a lost or stolen card
- You can use it wherever Mastercard is accepted in the U.S.
- Has a high annual fee of up to $99
- High APR rates
#3. Destiny card – Reliable Pre-Approved Credit Cards
If you have a low credit score and are looking to find ways to improve your credit rating, then the Destiny Mastercard might be ideal for you.
It is unsecured and provides you with a pre-qualification option, meaning that you’ll know whether you’re eligible or not for the card within one minute.
The best thing about the Destiny card is that the pre-qualification inquiry doesn’t affect your credit score.
This card is also great for individuals looking for their first credit card and aims to build a positive credit reputation. Even those who have had bankruptcies in the past can qualify for the card.
The Destiny card reports to all three major credit bureaus, and this is a good thing if you’re looking to build your credit standing. You can use it without paying an upfront security deposit as well.
No cash advance fees
The Destiny card doesn’t charge you a cash advance fee for your first year. After one year has passed, it’ll charge you a fee of $5 or 5% of the amount of the transaction.
This card offers a significantly low credit limit of $300. Most of the other cards have much higher limits.
The Destiny card will charge you $75 as an annual fee for the first year, $99 as an annual fee after that, or $59 as an ongoing annual fee, depending on your eligibility.
No upfront security deposit
Most cards for people with bad or poor credit scores will be secured with an upfront deposit, but the Destiny card won’t charge you with an upfront security deposit.
Fast pre-qualification process
The pre-qualification check for this card is fast and convenient. All it takes is just 60 seconds to notify you whether you qualify for it or not.
Low minimum credit score
Another good thing about this card is that you can qualify for it with a bad to poor credit score. Even people who have prior declared bankruptcies can qualify.
Reports to three credit bureaus
The card regularly sends reports to all of its three major credit bureaus, and this helps you build a good credit score with acceptable card usage.
- Monthly reports to all credit bureaus
- Quick response to the application
- Personal choice of card design
- Fast pre-qualification without any impact on your credit score
- Low credit limit
- Fraud protection
- You can use it wherever Mastercard is accepted
- High-interest rate
#4. First Access Card – Top Credit Cards for Bad Credit Score
The First Access Card is a Visa credit card that was made for people who’ve made credit mistakes and are looking for a way to repair them via an easy-access card.
With this card, you can easily be approved with bad credit because it is one of the few cards that are meant for people who have bad credit and have a first-year welcome offer. Although convenient, these perks still come at a high cost through an excess of fees.
This First Access Card is an unsecured credit card, meaning that cardholders won’t have to put down deposits in order to access the equivalent in credit limits.
However, its initial credit limit is fairly low, meaning that the high annual fee will dig deeper into your already low credit limit, and any other credit limit increase assessments will sustain a fee.
Since the Free Access Visa card is unsecured, it is still a great option for those who don’t have immediate cash and need a lifeline so that they can improve or repair their credit.
Instead of a standard introductory rewards offer or APR, this card charges no monthly fees or cash advance fees for the first year of owning a card. Considering the card’s high fees, waiving the cash advance fee and the monthly service fee of $8.25 will come as a relief.
Supplementary card allowed
You can get another card as well if your spouse or partner needs one. You will share the credit limit and be charged another annual fee; therefore, you’ll need mutual communication and budgeting to get the maximum out of the card.
Reports to all major credit bureaus
The most important thing about credit-building card reports is that they at least report to one of the major credit bureaus to track your actions and efforts, and luckily, the First Access Visa card reports to all three credit bureaus.
Wide card acceptance in the U.S.
Since this card is a Visa credit card, all merchants online and across the U.S. can accept this credit card. However, you cannot make any charges with this card if you’re abroad.
Rates and fees
- APR – The card has a high ongoing APR. There is a 34.99 percent APR on cash advances and purchases, and interest charges have a minimum price of one dollar.
- Sign-on fee – This is a one-time program fee, and it charges you $95 after your application is approved.
- Annual fee – For the first year, the fee is $75, and it is charged upfront and deducted from your total credit limit. With this, the initial credit limit of $300 will start at just $225. After the first year, it will drop to $48 annually.
- Monthly service fees – The monthly service fee starts from month 13 at $8.25.
- Credit limit increase fee – After your first year as a First Access Visa cardholder, you can become eligible for a limit increase assessment. The cost of this is 20%.
- Fast and convenient online application
- Wide acceptance across the U.S.
- Supplementary cards are allowed
- Low annual fee
- Reports to all three major credit bureaus
- High regular APR
#5. FIT Mastercard – Best Credit Cards for Beginners
The FIT Mastercard Credit Card was created for cardholders that are aiming to rebuild or establish credit. This is because the card is unsecured, meaning that you won’t have to put down a security deposit that will determine what your credit limit is.
The card’s initial credit limit only goes up to $400, though this depends on your credit worthiness. Also, if you manage to make six on-time payments, then you can double your credit limit. This means that, at most, you could have a credit limit of $800 after those 6 months have passed.
However, while it isn’t a low credit limit, it still isn’t high enough to justify the FIT Mastercard’s fees. When you open your account, you’ll see an annual fee of $99 that you pay right away and $89 plus for opening your account.
Additionally, it does have a high APR, too, if you don’t manage to pay off your balance on time at the end of the month. Either way, the card reports credit activity monthly to all three major credit bureaus, making it a decent option for building credit.
$400 initial credit limit
The initial credit limit for the FIT Mastercard credit card is $400. You can use your FIT Mastercard wherever Mastercard is accepted. You can shop, dine, and even travel with your new FIT Mastercard. Your credit card account will help you rebuild your credit score and improve it as you make on-time payments and keep your balance under your credit limit.
Ability to double your credit limit
You can get a credit limit increase along with trying to build your credit. It surely is a milestone achievement. With the FIT Mastercard, you can double your initial credit limit by simply paying the first six monthly payments on time.
Zero liability protection
You can enjoy peace of mind with FIT Mastercard’s zero liability protection. With this, you will not be held responsible for any possible unauthorized charges on your FIT card.
With this zero fraud liability, you will only be responsible for purchases.
Therefore, you can shop freely and confidently, knowing your card activity is protected.
No matter where you shop, whether it’s online, at a store, or traveling abroad, you can always rely on Continental Finance to keep your Fit credit card account protected.
Monthly reports to all three major credit bureaus
This card is an effective tool for building credit. Continental Finance will accept people that apply for the FIT Mastercard even if they have less than perfect credit. They will report your payments to all three major credit bureaus – Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion.
Free monthly credit score
In order to activate your FIT Mastercard, you need to create an account. One of the best features of your account is that you get a free monthly credit score upon enrolling in e-statements.
You can check your score each month. If you’re aiming to build your credit for the first time or repair it, you can see how your payment actions impact it, especially positively when you make on-time payments each month.
- A security deposit is not required
- Opportunity to double your credit limit within 6 months
- Cash advances and foreign transactions are available
- Credit reporting to all of the credit bureaus
- Fast and convenient application
- High fees
- High APR
How We Made This List of The Best Credit Cards to Have?
With having things in mind, the high-interest rates are probably not the only thing that is important when you’re getting a credit card. Other factors just as important will determine which card is most suitable for you.
For instance, people that use credit cards to make online purchases would most likely want to avoid any additional fees for installment payments.
There are other factors, such as lower foreign transaction fees, a statement credit, and lower deposits if you’re someone with a bad credit score. The statement credit is the lowest amount a lender will credit your account with, and this won’t backfire on your minimum payment if the creditor decides to subtract it.
With all of these credit cards on the market and so many features to consider before getting one, it can be hard to find the right one. That’s the initial reason why we did this review for the best credit cards for you. To make a list of the best cards on the market currently, we had to look for the following features:
The Annual Percentage Rate is collected monthly, and then it is added to your credit card check. This percentage rate is based and depends on your outstanding balance. Some credit card companies might charge a higher APR, while others want to keep it as low as possible.
Therefore, we found companies with lower APR compared to the rest in the market and included them in this list. Additionally, as you pay everything on time, the companies that are on this list will lower your APR even further and make it more convenient for you.
No extra fees
If you purchase something in installments, then you might have to pay a fixed percentage or a fixed processing fee. However, some companies won’t charge this fee if you purchase something from a merchant they cooperate with or support.
Also, if you wish to upgrade your secured credit card, then you can choose from one of the companies mentioned in this list because they take less of a balance transfer fee.
Low foreign transaction fee
These foreign transaction fees are necessary if you want to use your credit card for any foreign transactions. Thus, we chose credit card companies that charge a low foreign transaction fee on your card for anything that you’ve purchased abroad and online orders that ship to the USA.
The foreign transaction fee is applied by credit card companies that are against imports, hence why they charge large transaction fees so that they can discourage people from purchasing things abroad.
Good for a bad credit score
The credit cards that we picked out are easy to get ahold of, even if your credit score is bad. You might have a lower percentage of getting the unsecured card with a lower credit score, but if you make your installment payments on time, then the lender might provide you with an unsecured one.
Things to Consider Before You Choose Major Credit Cards
Owning a credit card is a crucial piece of building your financial profile. Though, with so many options out in the open, it can be tough to find the most suitable one for your needs. Here are some things to consider before you make a decision on which card is best for you.
Would you want to earn rewards?
If you’re looking to earn rewards, then there are hundreds of credit cards out there, even some on our list, that give you the ability to earn points, cash back, or miles, all depending on the number of purchases you make using the card.
If so, which specific categories do you find more important?
If you’re looking for credit cards with rewards, then they come in wide varieties. If you’re looking to maximize the rewards in a specific category, then check out cards that offer bonus rewards when you spend money on things such as groceries, entertainment, gas, travel, and more. If you’re not looking for this, then you can keep it simple and go for a cash-back card.
Do you want to get out of debt?
If you have a certain balance on a high-interest credit card, then you should consider transferring that balance to a balance transfer credit card that offers no interest for up to 21 months. There are even some cards that have an option for no balance transfer fees.
Are you looking to build credit?
Most experts say that the faster you build credit, the better, and credit cards are one of the best ways to do that. If you’re looking to build credit, then you should look for secured cards for credit newbies or other credit cards for building or repairing credit. Unsecured cards are a good option, too, especially if you don’t want to put down a security deposit.
Do you travel abroad?
Owning a credit card with no foreign transaction fees is essential if you travel a lot. It will usually save you the typical 3% fee for every purchase outside of the United States. Also, it is a favorable idea to consider credit cards that waive TSA PreCheck or Global Entry application fees.
The credit cards you choose should be accepted worldwide. Also, they should not get their rates determined by the bank while converting USD to another currency during online purchases. Some banks charge a different amount than the open market, which can significantly raise the product’s overall price.
You can either ask the bank directly concerning this issue or check your credit card’s details to see if any additional charges get deducted for international payments. Usually, it will be mentioned as a foreign transaction charge, and it is a small percentage.
Upgrading your credit card
As you continue to use your card and improve your credit score, you can require a credit card update so that you can use it for more significant purchases. Additionally, you can look for credit cards that allow a credit limit increase over time as well.
For instance, the FIT Mastercard gives you the advantage of having a 100% increase in your credit limit after six months. This increase continues up until your credit limit hits $2,000. This can be an important factor to consider upon choosing a credit card.
FAQs About Credit Cards to Build Credit
Q1. Should I pay off my debt before I get another credit card?
Having credit card debt is very inconvenient because you have to pay compound interest on the balance. Therefore, we wouldn’t recommend you get another credit card before you break free from the debt.
Make sure to take a pause from credit cards and clear all of your debt, and afterward, make sure you start using your cards responsibly before you opt for a new one.
Q2. Is it worth getting a credit card with an annual fee?
Most credit cards will charge an annual fee, although some won’t. However, the ones that do charge an annual fee usually have some distinct features that make paying the annual fee worth it.
Thus, before you apply for any credit cards, estimate the rewards you’d be able to earn in a year and see whether it would be worth it. Try to see if the benefits will outweigh the cost of the full annual fee.
Q3. How can I cancel a credit card?
Before you try to cancel a credit card, make sure that it’s the best thing to do. If you choose to cancel your card, it might cause harm to your credit score. This can happen because it might shorten your credit history and reduce the available credit.
However, if your credit card has a high annual fee and you struggle trying to pay it off, it will just make you dive into deeper debt, and in that case, it is best to cancel it. Before you cancel, make sure that you’re doing it the right way.
First, you have to redeem any remaining rewards, and if you have any automatic payments, switch them to another card. Afterward, either transfer or pay off your balance. You can request to cancel your credit card via phone or online, and you have to confirm that it has a 0$ balance.
Finally, you have to check your credit report and confirm if the information about your closed account is correct.
Q4. How long will it take until I get a credit card?
There’s a chance that you can get approved and start using a credit card instantly, but there’s also a chance that it might take more time. Your credit card approval may get delayed if you request a large credit limit or you have a credit freeze in place.
Additionally, if you get approved for a credit card, then it usually takes from 7 to 10 days for it to get shipped to you after approval. If you want to access it instantly, then check if your issuer offers any expedited shipping or if they can provide you with a digital wallet or the number of the credit card.
Q5. Which credit card is most suitable for traveling?
When it comes to traveling, the credit cards we would suggest are the Milestone Gold Mastercard, FIT Mastercard, and the Indigo card. This is due to them having lower foreign transaction fees.
To be more precise, the Milestone Gold Mastercard foreign transaction fee is quite light (as low as 1%), as well as the Indigo card, which also charges you 1% on foreign transactions.
Then, we have the FIT Mastercard, which has both foreign transactions and cash advances.
Whichever credit card you choose from these so you can use abroad, it won’t come at a huge cost. These three would be the most convenient for traveling and enjoying your time.
Q6. Is it possible to improve my credit score by using a credit card?
Yes, it is, and the best way to do this is by paying your installments and dues right on time. A payback period is set between you and your lender, and you must pay the minimum dues before that period.
This is important for building a good credit score because you show lenders that you’re a very reliable borrower and capable of handling your credit responsibly. The more you manage your account to be as clean as possible, the more you increase your chances of improving your score.
Another way to improve your credit score is by allowing your bank to automatically pay your credit card dues. By doing so, you’ll never miss a payment, and you will enhance your credit score.
Q7. How do I use my credit card?
Suppose you’re using a general-purpose credit card. In that case, you can use it for multiple reasons, such as paying your telephone bills, making everyday purchases, taking things in installments from more merchants, and more.
You can use it to build your credit score as well, and this can help you with getting bigger loans from various lenders.
Q8. Should I have more credit cards?
Many people have multiple credit cards, and of course, there are a few benefits following this.
Firstly, it might aid you in increasing your credit score. This is done by giving you more available credit, and that helps you have a better credit utilization ratio.
Additionally, owning multiple credit cards may also help you make more purchases when you don’t have enough money to cover everything up front.
You can also set up each card to be used for different spending categories. By doing so, you gain the ability to earn more rewards.
For example, you can use one card to pay all your dining purchases, and that card will earn you rewards in that category, and another card for buying groceries, and that will have its own bonus multiplier.
In the long run, it’s your decision on how many credit cards you want or need. Always make sure to research which card is best for you and to evaluate all of your spending habits.
Q9. What credit card should I use to make a big purchase?
If you plan on making a big purchase, then spreading out the payments would make it a lot easier. Therefore, it is best to consider using a credit card that has a 0% introductory purchase APR.
Most low-interest credit cards will offer an interest-free period that lasts for a period of 12 to 18 months.
Final Thoughts About Unsecured Credit Cards for Bad Credit
In conclusion, we hope this article has helped you grasp a few things you might’ve found confusing about getting a credit card. We made sure to include only the best credit cards on the market, and we hope that this list will help you choose the most suitable one for yourself.
The chances of qualifying for one are very high, and you can even apply for pre-qualification to see your chances. You can do all of this online. However, make sure that you can pay the installments and fees of the credit card on time and practice being a responsible cardholder!