How to get a credit card with good credit
According to the latest research, the average person in the U.S. owes $5,525 in credit card debt. We’re often told to avoid credit card debt as interest rates are notoriously high and compound over time. If not used responsibly, balances can spiral out of control, making repayment more difficult.
But, when used responsibly, you can be financially better off in the long run. A credit card can help build your credit score, which in turn gives you access to lower interest rates and a wider range of financial products.
Comparing credit card offers for good credit is fast and easy:
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Best Credit Cards for Good Credit of February, 2024
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✔ Welcome bonus: 10,000 AAdvantage® reward bonus and a $50 statement credit when you spend $500 in first 3 months
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✔ Welcome bonus: Earn 20,000 bonus rewards after spending $1500 on your card within the first 3 months (that's $200!), 0% Intro APR for the first 15 months
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What is considered good credit?
There are two main credit scoring systems, these are FICO and VantageScore. The base scores range between 300 – 850. A lower score indicates poor credit where the lender judges your ability to repay debt as low and a higher score gives greater confidence that you will meet debt obligations.
FICO defines 670 to 739 as a good range. Scores above 740 are considered very good and above 800 are defined as exceptional.
VantageScore considers 661-780 as good credit. Scores that are 781 and above are excellent.
Many factors determine your credit score including payment history, credit usage, length of credit history, types of accounts, and recent activity. The importance of each of these factors can differ between FICO and VantageScore, but the amount owed and payment history generally have a larger weighting in the calculation.
What are the benefits of having a credit card with good credit?
Even when you have a good credit score, it can be advantageous to use a credit card. Using a credit card responsibility can help you further improve your credit history over time. Plus, there are several other advantages such as protection from losses due to fraud, cashback, reward points, air miles, and various insurance policies.
How to choose a credit card when you have good credit
When choosing a credit card, you should apply for a card that fits your spending habits and financial goals. Certain cards have a 0% APR which is useful if you’re likely to carry your balance over to the next month or use your card for emergencies.
Alternatively, a rewards-based card can be the best option if you’re looking for sign-up bonuses, air miles, or cashback. As these cards have a high APR, be mindful to pay your balance off every month in full to avoid high-interest charges carrying over to the next month.
What are the best credit cards for good credit?
No one credit card is the best for everyone. If you have good credit, look for cards that give approval with a FICO rating of 700 and above. Here are a few that you can consider:
- Amex EveryDay Preferred Credit Card: With easy ways to earn bonuses, if you use your credit card at least 30 times a month you’ll receive a 50% bonus on that month’s points. It has an annual fee of $95 with a 12.99% - 22.99% variable APR on purchases.
- Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card: This card is best for travelers, as there is no limit to the number of miles you can earn. Plus, the miles will not expire for the lifetime of the account.
- Chase Sapphire Preferred Card: Offering a welcome bonus of 60,000 points, and rewards on several other areas of spending, this card has a modest annual fee of $95.
- Citi Double Cash Card: With a $0 annual fee and a simple cashback structure, there is no limit on the amount of cashback that can be earned.
- Discover it Miles: There are no annual fees and no foreign transaction fees. You can earn miles at a rate of 1.5 miles for every dollar you spend.
- Citi Premier Card: This card has a high potential to earn points and rewards for your purchases. Plus, the rewards do not expire and there is no limit to the amount you can earn.
- American Express Platinum Card: While this card has a high annual fee of $695, it offers many luxury perks including lounge membership and a welcome bonus of 100,000 points.
- Capital One Platinum Credit Card: There is no reward program for this card and no annual fee. However, it does give access to a higher credit limit when you make your first 5 payments on time.
Are there credit cards that offer instant approval?
Several credit cards give you instant approval. Here are some options when you have good credit:
- American Express Blue Cash Everyday Card: Assuming your identity can be verified, American Express can provide you with instant approval and give you access to your credit card numbers by logging into your account.
- Alaska Airlines Visa Signature: With 40,000 bonus miles, travelers can enjoy additional perks including a round-trip ticket to many destinations. Plus, you can use your miles with any of the Oneworld Alliance partners. With instant approval, there is a good chance you’ll receive instant access to your credit card details.
Tips for improving your credit score from good to excellent
There are many ways you can improve your credit score and take it from good to excellent. An excellent rating can give you access to credit cards with better rewards and lower interest charges. Here are a few tips:
- Check your credit report: It’s a good idea to review your credit report at least once a year and look for factors that are hurting your credit score. High credit card balances and missed payments can count against you. Once you have the information, you can implement changes such as reducing debt and balances on your credit cards, making payments on time, and closing down accounts that are hurting your credit score.
- Lower your credit utilization ratio: When you have a high balance relative to your credit limit, this can hurt your credit score. Aim to keep your balance at 20-30% of your credit limit (or less). Alternatively, you can also ask for a higher credit limit.
- Limit hard inquiries: When you apply for a credit card, a loan, a mortgage, or other types of credit, a hard inquiry is performed which can temporarily ding your credit score. If you’re applying for many forms of credit at the same time, this is likely to have an adverse effect. Hard inquires can remain on your credit report anywhere from a few months to two years, so it’s best to limit them where you can.
How many credit cards should I have if I have good credit?
There is no right or wrong answer to how many credit cards you should have, the key is to use them responsibly and meet payment deadlines.
According to a recent Experian Consumer Credit review, the average American has 4 credit cards. One of the benefits of having multiple credit cards is that you can maximize rewards and perks offered by credit card issuers. However, if you find yourself unable to manage balances and miss payments, you may want to limit the number of cards that you carry.
If you’re looking to increase the number of credit cards you have, it’s best to open them slowly throughout many years. Opening them all at the same time, can hurt your credit rating and send a signal to the lender that you are facing financial difficulties.
How to get a credit card with good credit
When shopping around for a credit card it’s important to look at multiple providers to find the best rewards and interest rates. You’ll need to consider your financial situation and assess your spending to choose the best card for you. For instance, if you don’t travel very often, then a credit card with airline perks will not be advantageous for you.
Certain credit cards are only available to people with excellent credit scores. Be mindful to look out for this, because it’s unlikely that you will receive approval with a good credit rating. Plus, this could hurt your credit score when a hard credit inquiry is performed.
Is it worth it to get a credit card with good credit?
Credit cards are a great tool to help you build your credit score when used responsibly. Making repayments on time, keeping a low credit utilization ratio, and using credit over many years, help in improving your credit rating which in turn gives you access to a wider range of borrowing options and lower interest rates.
If you’re disciplined, you can take your rating from good to excellent while earning a variety of rewards and perks offered by card issuers.
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