|Credit Building Rating:||3.5 / 5|
|Cost of Membership||3.0|
|Ease of Building Credit||4.0|
Average cost of membership per year (annual fee minus average rewards earned per year with $3,600 annual spend)
Security deposit required
Access to higher credit line?
Other rates and fees
Other notable features: More Cash Back Rewards program, credit protection program, zero fraud liability
If you only have fair or average credit but still want a chance to earn cash back or travel rewards, the Credit One Wander card may be worth a look. Though the card comes with a $95 annual fee, it earns at an impressive rate on recreational spending at places like amusement and national parks, as well as on dining and lodging, making it almost tailor-made to fit road trippers and families on the go.
Given it’s available with fair credit, the Credit One Bank Wander Card offers a relatively generous rewards program. While the most lucrative categories are niche, they could be a good fit if you take a lot of family trips to places like national parks, amusement parks or campgrounds, allowing you to earn rewards not only on the cost of admission but also your food and lodging along the way.
You’ll earn 5X points on eligible recreational & amusement park purchases (including national parks & sporting events), 3X points on eligible restaurant & lodging purchases (including campgrounds) and 1X points on all other purchases (terms apply). The highest-earning category admittedly has limited reach, but the dining and lodging categories should offer decent long-term value.
You can redeem cash back rewards as a statement credit and for gift cards, merchandise and travel. Points are worth 1 cent apiece when redeemed for cash back, but vary in value for other redemption methods. Unfortunately, you can only redeem cash back in increments of 1,000 points, with points worth 1 cent apiece, so you’ll need to earn at least $10 worth of cash back rewards before you can redeem. Travel redemptions carry restrictions, too, as you can only redeem for travel through Credit One Bank’s own travel portal.
Statement credit toward National Park Pass
The Credit One Wander card stands out for offering a valuable perk for a card available with fair credit. You can get an $80 statement credit to cover the cost of a National Park Pass when you pay for the pass with your card within a year of account opening. While this is a fairly niche offering, it could be a great benefit if you’d already planned to visit a national park.
Card rates and fees
The most obvious downside of the Credit One Wander card is its $95 annual fee, which is far higher than the fee you typically find on a card with fair or average credit and is more in line with the fee you’d find on either a card designed for someone with bad credit or a mid-tier rewards card. The card also charges a relatively high APR (24.24% variable rate), regardless of your credit history.
Keep in mind, too, the card’s 3% foreign transaction fee (minimum $1), which may limit its utility as a standalone travel rewards card.
It may come as no surprise given the card is available with fair or average credit, but the Credit One Bank Wander Card doesn’t offer much in the way of cardholder perks. You can enjoy some bonus rewards with select retailers via the card’s More Cash Rewards card-linked offer program and enjoy peace of mind with zero fraud liability.
How the Credit One Bank Wander Card compares to other credit cards for fair credit
While the Credit One Bank Wander Card may make sense for cardholders with fair credit who want to work on their score while earning rewards on niche travel, you’ll almost certainly be able to find a lower-cost option at this credit level, which could help you improve your score and eventually move up to a more lucrative travel rewards card. Here are a few alternatives to consider:
1.5% cash back on all purchases
|Other things to know||Other things to know||Other things to know|
Capital One QuicksilverOne Cash Rewards Credit Card
Not only does the card charge an annual fee of just $39 (versus $95 with the Credit One Wander card), but it also offers unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase, which will help offset the card’s cost even further and give it great long-term value. Plus, once your score improves, you may be able to upgrade to a more lucrative rewards or cash back card from Capital One.
Capital One Platinum Credit Card
If you want to avoid an annual fee and have at least fair credit, the Capital One Platinum card is one of our top picks. It’s far from the flashiest card, offering next to nothing in the way of perks, but it carries a $0 annual fee, requires no security deposit and gives you a chance at a credit limit increase after six months of on-time payments. If building credit is your top priority, it’s hard to go wrong with this streamlined card.
Petal® 1 "No Annual Fee" Visa® Credit Card
The Petal 1 card (issued by WebBank, Member FDIC) is a terrific option for credit-builders since it’s available even with bad credit, charges no annual fee and offers a minimum starting credit limit of $300 (up to $5,000). The card is also notable for its flexible approvals process: The issuer can consider more than just your credit score when you apply and may take into account other financial data like your bill payment history. This will be a big help if you’ve had some credit missteps in the past but are otherwise on solid financial ground.
Is the Credit One Bank Wander Card worth it?
While the Credit One Bank Wander Card may be worth it for a small slice of cardholders who want to earn rewards in its niche categories, the $95 annual fee is tough to justify beyond the first year. You’ll likely be better off going with a lower-cost credit-building card, working on your score and then upgrading to an inexpensive and more rewarding travel card.
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