|Credit Building Rating:||3.2 / 5|
|Cost of Membership||3.5|
|Ease of Building Credit||3.4|
In a Nutshell:
The Credit One Bank Platinum Rewards Visa is a practical credit building card with a better-than-most rewards program that offers several ways to earn cash back rewards and plenty of discounts. The high APR might give some pause, but if the balance is paid off in full each month, interest fees shouldn’t be a problem. See rates and fees
Average cost of membership per year ($3,600 annual spend)
Security deposit required
Initial credit limit
Access to higher credit line?
Other rates and fees
Other Notable Features: Free online credit monitoring, fraud liability protection, customizable account notifications and alerts, flexible due date, no penalty APR, shopping discounts
The Credit One Bank Platinum Rewards Visa is a solid choice for people with fair credit who are looking to get the most cash back bang for their buck from a rewards program. The best rewards programs with the highest returns are typically reserved for those with higher credit scores. However, the Platinum Rewards Visa offers a competitive rewards program that allows credit builders to benefit, while working on their credit history. While there is an annual fee, the rewards can offset it.
Low initial credit limit
Because this card is targeted toward people with fair to good credit scores, the initial credit limit is low: $300 minus the annual fee. This means balances with a $300 credit limit will actually have a $205 limit. The upside is that cardholders with low initial balances can expect credit increases based on consistent good behavior. This card conducts automatic account reviews, which can be a great incentive for paying off balances in full and on time.
Maximum rewards and big benefits
This card offers big benefits when used for everyday purchases, such as groceries, gas, cell phone and internet service and cable and satellite TV. Cardholders get 5% cash back up to $5,000 on these purchases, then 1% cash-back thereafter.
Meanwhile, other purchases also yield 1% cash-back.
Furthermore, cardholders have the chance to earn even more rewards − 10% cash back− if they remember to use their card at the participating retailers. They also get access to exclusive discounts available only to Visa cardholders.
Average, but not ideal, annual fee
Because this card is marketed toward those with fair to good credit scores, it can get away with charging an annual fee of $95. But beware: cardholders will also pay handsomely for late payments or carrying a balance.
We estimate the average cardholder earns about $110 per year in rewards. When you subtract the annual fee, that means you earn about $15 in rewards each year. That isn’t too bad when you’re building – or rebuilding – credit. Since many credit building cards come with no rewards program at all – a net positive is a better deal.
Higher than usual APR
You’ll want to avoid carrying a balance with the Credit One Bank Platinum Rewards Visa card, as the card charges all users a high variable APR of 23.99%, regardless of credit history.
While this is much higher than the average credit card APR, it’s in line with the average APR for a credit card designed for someone with fair credit and is actually a bit lower than several credit-building alternatives.
Moderate fees and penalties
The Platinum Rewards Visa charges your typical fees, up to 5% (minimum $10) for cash advance fees and 3% ($1 minimum) for foreign transaction fees.
The late payment fee is where cardholders will really pay. At up to $39 per late and returned payment (plus the applicable interest), these fees are no joke – and may cost more than the initial expense.
Other card benefits
Besides the Platinum Rewards Visa maximum cash-back rewards program and discounts from top retailers, it offers other benefits:
- Free monthly online credit score monitoring
- Custom notifications, payment reminders and fraud alerts
- Notification preference by text, push notification or email
- Zero liability and fraud protection
- Secure access to online account information (paperless)
- Anytime account management via mobile banking app
- Automatic account reviews for credit increases
- Optional credit protection
High odds of approval
Because the Platinum Rewards Visa is geared toward customers with fair credit scores, the odds of approval are high. The annual fee, low initial balance and higher than usual APR are designed to motivate good credit performance.
You can also check out your prequalified offers with no affect to your credit score, to help determine your chances of approval.
Why get the Credit One Bank Platinum Rewards Visa?
- You want a competitive rewards program for those with fair credit whose options might be limited.
- You’re trying to build or rebuild credit
- You are looking for built-in incentives to pay on time
How to use the Credit One Bank Platinum Rewards Visa:
- Use the card to pay for all eligible monthly bills: gas, groceries, internet, TV and cell phone for 5% cash back.
- Pay off balances in full each month to avoid late payment and high interest fees.
- Use it at participating merchants for up to 10% more in cash-back rewards.
- Take advantage of other shopping discounts exclusive to Visa cardholders.
Is the Credit One Bank Platinum Rewards Visa worth it?
With a high annual fee and APR, the Platinum Rewards Visa card is best suited for responsible cardholders who avoid carrying a balance and strategically spend to maximize rewards. As long as you don’t get buried in steep fees, the card can be particularly lucrative for one accessible to those with lower credit scores. If you are still improving your score but are eager to get in on the rewards game, the Platinum Rewards Visa can be a good choice.
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