The Best Credit Cards for Fair Credit

Advertiser Disclosure Editorial Disclosure

Last updated on March 16th, 2023

Credit card for excellent credit (like the Platinum Card from Amex, the Chase Sapphire Reserve) and bad credit score cards (like secured cards) tend to get the most traffic – and headlines – on sites like BestCards. But what about credit cards for people with fair credit? There are a huge assortment of credit cards for average credit, so we’ve broken them down – here are our picks for the best credit cards for fair or average credit.

The Best Credit Cards for Average Credit

Bouncing back from a bankruptcy, default, or other negative credit event can be challenging. Secured credit cards offer the easiest lifeline when it comes to credit, but the deposit requirement means their spending potential is limited for most consumers.

Reaching a “fair” credit score (a FICO Score between 580 and 669) offers the opportunity for better credit options, inducing unsecured credit cards. Unsecured credit cards for fair credit provide access to revolving credit without the need for a deposit.

Fair Credit Cards that Offer Credit Limit Increases

Some of the premier cards for average credit scores provide the chance to receive a credit limit increase with a set amount of on-time payments.

One example of a card that provides an automatic credit line increase is the Merrick Bank Double Your Line™ Platinum Visa®. During the first seven months from account opening, all cardholders need to use their card and make at least the minimum payment on time every month. After that, cardholders receive a double credit line increase – automatically.

Thanks to the Double Your Line™ feature, new account holders can watch their credit line jump to up to $2,700 in less than a year – significantly helping to lower their credit utilization ratio (with financially responsible card use).

Merrick Bank Double Your Line® Mastercard®

merrick bank double your line mastercard 224x141
Build Credit with Double Your Limit!
  • See If You Are Pre-Approved Within Minutes
  • Credit lines range from $500-$1,350 which double to $1,000-$2,700 after your account qualifies
☆ 2X Your Limit with 7 On Time Payments
☆ No security deposit required
☆ 100% U.S.-based customer service
☆ FICO® Credit Score for free each month

Merrick Bank also offers other card offers for repairing credit. These options include two secured credit cards: the Merrick Bank Double Your Line® Mastercard® and the Merrick Bank Secured Visa®.

The Mission Lane Visa Credit Card is another option that provides the chance at a credit limit increase. Mission Lane will increase the cardholder’s credit line should they make their first six monthly payments on-time and demonstrate financially responsible behavior. Even better, Mission Lane offers credit limit increases wherever possible – regardless of the time frame.

Mission Lane Visa® Card

mission lane visa new
Recieve an Instant Decision on Your Application
  • Get a higher credit line if you're in good standing after making your first 6 payments on time
  • Enjoy coverage from Visa®
☆ 24/7 Online Account Access & Mobile App
☆ No Interest if You Pay in Full Each Month
☆ Build Credit with No Security Deposit
☆ Visa Zero Fraud Liability

Surge’s credit card products are popular tools in the credit repair space. The Surge Secured Mastercard®, the secured card of the family, provides the chance at building credit plus 1% cash back rewards on all purchases, for instance. The unsecured Surge Mastercard®, however, replaces rewards with the chance of an unsecured credit limit increase – and that is an even juicer reward for someone with a non-prime credit score.

New Surge Mastercard® cardholders can watch their up to $1,000 initial credit limit double up to $2,000 in as little as six months. Celtic Bank and Surge automatically double the credit limit with on-time payments for each of the first six months of after opening a card account.

Surge Platinum Mastercard®

new surge secured 224x141
All Credit Types Welcome to Apply
  • See if you’re Pre-Qualified with no impact to your credit score
  • Monthly reporting to the three major credit bureaus
  • Zero Fraud Liability
☆ Fast Online Application
☆ Up to $1,000 credit limit doubles up to $2,000!
☆ Build Credit with Mastercard
☆ Free access to your VantageScore

The FIT Platinum Mastercard is another credit card for fair credit that provides a credit line increase to qualified cardholders, automatically. New FIT cardholders can double their $400 starting credit line to $800 by simply making their first six monthly payments on-time – that’s it!

FIT Platinum Mastercard®

new fit 224x141
Less Than Perfect Credit Welcome
  • All credit types welcome to apply!
  • $400 credit limit doubles to $800! (see terms)
  • An opportunity to build and access credit
☆ 24/7 Online Account Access
☆ Free VantageScore Access (see terms)
☆ Build Credit with Responsible Use
☆ Mastercard Zero Fraud Liability

Fair Credit Cards that Earn Rewards

Some subprime – or near-prime – credit cards provide rewards. While some secured cards provide rewards points, these are usually restricted to larger banks and provide limited value due to the small credit limits those cards provide. Most rewards for average credit take the form of cash back, therefor.

The Surge Secured Mastercard® is one such example of a secured card that provides cash back rewards. The card earns an unlimited 1% cash back on all purchases, with rewards automatically applied to the card’s statement balance as a credit. This process not only makes the Surge Secured rewarding, but it also provides an exceptional way to build credit – and reduce costs.

Surge Platinum Secured Mastercard®

new surge secured 224x141
Earn Rewards While Building Credit!
  • Earn 1% Cash back Rewards on every purchase
  • Monthly reporting to the three major credit bureaus
  • Zero Fraud Liability
☆ Fast Online Application
☆ Your Deposit Is Your Credit Line
☆ Build Credit & Earn Rewards
☆ Free access to your VantageScore

The Revvi Card is another great option for cash back rewards, but this time without the need for a security deposit. Cardholders earn 1% back on purchases^^ when paying the card’s minimum balance due every month. Cash back rewards apply towards statement credits to help pay down Revvi Card balances.

Earning 1% cash back while building credit is an excellent feature, making Revvi a solid option for anyone seeking to boost their score and get rewarded at the same time. Revvi also offers the chance at a credit limit increase, with credit reviews on accounts as early as 12 months after opening.

Revvi Card

revvi 224x141 new
Don’t Need Perfect Credit to Apply
  • Simple and fast application process
  • Monthly reporting to all 3 major credit bureaus
  • $300 credit limit (subject to available credit)
☆ Quick Pre-Qualification
☆ Perfect for Building Credit
☆ Ideal for everyday purchases to help build credit

^^See Revvi Rewards Program Terms & Conditions for details.

Related Article: What Are the Easiest Credit Cards for Bad Credit to Get?

Featured image by Ramdlon /PixaBay

About: Cory
Cory Santos

Cory is's "Jack of all trades" and resident credit expert, covering all facets of the credit card space. Cory holds academic degrees in both the U.S. and U.K. In addition to credit cards, Cory finds that jogging, cats, and memes are essential parts of a balanced day.

Advertiser Disclosure

BestCards is an independent, Florida-based credit card comparison platform. Many of the card offers that appear on this site are from companies from which BestCards receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). BestCards does not include all card companies or all card offers available in the marketplace.

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