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Credit Cards That Don’t Require a Preapproval Mail Offer

Last updated on October 19th, 2020


The Mercury Mastercard is one of the most popular credit cards for improving your credit score. Unfortunately, the card requires a preapproval mail offer to apply. What can you do if you don’t have a reservation code but still want to fix your credit? Here are several other options to consider:

Don’t Have a Preapproval Mail Offer?

One of the most deflating things about cards like the Mercury Mastercard or Ollo Card is that they require a mail offer to apply for. What happens to those who don’t have an offer from the card issuer?

The good news is that the credit repair marketplace is full of credit card offers that don’t require a preapproval mail offer before applying. Many of these cards also provide online preapproval, meaning you can check to see if you stand a good chance of approval before applying – with the added benefit of no snail mail letter required.

Options to Consider Instead of the Ollo Card Or Mercury Mastercard

 Here are four of the most popular credit card options for people with subprime credit (a fair credit score) or deep subprime credit (a bad or poor credit score):

Milestone® Gold Mastercard®

24.9% APR on purchases
  • Quick pre-qualification with no impact to credit score
  • Free 24/7 online account access
  • Mastercard® Gold Benefits

Indigo® Platinum Mastercard®

24.9% APR on purchases
  • Short and easy-to-complete pre-qualification form
  • 24/7 mobile account access
  • Great for demonstrating responsible use of credit

Destiny™ Mastercard®

24.9% APR on purchases
  • Simple and fast application process
  • Accepted nationwide, wherever Mastercard is accepted
  • 1% foreign transaction fee

Reflex Mastercard® Credit Card

Varies See issuer terms
  • See if you’re Pre-Qualified with no impact to your credit score
  • Free access to your Vantage 3.0 score from TransUnion
  • Monthly reporting to the three major credit bureaus

The Destiny, Milestone, and Indigo Mastercards are all quality card offers. While none of these cards offer rewards, like the Mercury, it’s important to note that not all successful applicants will earn rewards with the Mercury Mastercard – and those that do will earn 1% cash back.

While these four particular offers do not offer rewards, they provide a lower APR on purchases. Having a card with a steady, fixed APR is preferable to one with a variable APR, since it allows applicants to lock in one rate. Like the Mercury or Ollo, variable-rate credit cards will offer higher interest rates to those with lower credit scores and slightly better APRs to those with fair credit.

Also of note is the impressive foreign transaction fee with the Destiny Mastercard. This fee (the charge for using the credit card for purchases outside the U.S. – even on foreign websites) is one of the lowest foreign transaction fees for a “poor credit” card – making it the perfect companion both at home and abroad.

Secured Cards

Choosing a secured card is another good option for those who don’t have a preapproval mail offer. Secured cards require a cash security deposit (which might sound like a reason to avoid them). Fortunately, these deposits are refundable – provided the cardholders make their payments on-time, and their account is in good standing when closing it.

Because secured cards require a deposit, they are also easier to get than unsecured credit cards. This ease of access makes them ideal for building credit. So, what are some of the best secured credit cards to consider instead of the Ollo or Mercury Mastercard?

The Assent Platinum Card is a unique offering in that it provides a 0% introductory APR on purchases for six months. Very few credit cards for bad credit offer a 0% APR, so getting six months of no interest on purchases – and then a low regular APR after that – is a spectacular deal.

The OpenSky Visa is another great option. Part of repairing damaged credit involves learning the skills to use credit properly. OpenSky is great in this aspect, as it provides cardholders with free access to its knowledge base. The OpenSky knowledge base offers a range of articles on building credit. These topics include how to receive a free copy of your credit score, how credit scores are calculated, and tips on boosting credit. 

Finally, the Applied Bank secured card provides an impressive APR under 10% (the same as the First Progress Platinum Prestige Mastercard®) which is a lower APR than that found with most credit cards on the market – regardless of credit score.

Related Article: Secured Credit Card Resources

Things to Consider Before Applying

As with all credit card offers, always check the specifics of each card before applying. Reviewing the fine print is essential to making sure a card is a good deal. Beyond basic information like the credit limit and interest rates, make sure the annual fee, penalty fees (including late payment charges), and other terms are fair.

Other things to consider include:

  • How will you use the card?  Credit repair credit cards are best for those who plan on making their payments in-full every month. This frees up your credit line for the next month and thus keeps your credit utilization ratio down. Plus, you’ll avoid activating that high interest rate. 
  • Carrying a balance: If you plan to carry a balance, always check out the APR before applying. Those planning on carrying a balance should consider a secured credit card, as they feature lower interest rates than unsecured cards for bad credit.

Featured image by Gerd Altmann on Pixabay

About: Cory
Cory Santos

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