Compare the Best Credit Cards for Bad Credit

Looking for the best credit card for bad credit? You’ve come to the right place. BestCards.com has an extensive selection of credit cards for poor credit. Browse reviews and offers below.

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Merit Platinum Card

Merit Platinum Card
  • Regular Purchase APR 0%
  • Annual Fee None
  • Credit Needed Fair , Poor , No Credit Required
  • Processing Network N/A
Best Benefits
  • Bad Credit, No Credit? No Problem
  • Reports to Major Credit Bureau
  • Fast and Easy Application
  • No Employment or Credit Check
Rates & Fees
  • Regular Purchase APR: 0%

Revvi Card

Revvi Card
  • Regular Purchase APR 34.99%*
  • Cash Advance APR 34.99%*
  • Annual Fee $75 1st year, $48 after*
  • Credit Needed See website for details
  • Processing Network Visa
Best Benefits
  • Earn 1% Cash Back Rewards^^ on payments made to your Revvi Credit Card
  • Fast and easy application; response provided in seconds
  • A genuine Visa credit card accepted by merchants nationwide across the USA and online
  • Reports monthly to all three major credit bureaus
  • $300 credit limit (subject to available credit)
  • Checking account required
  • Don't need perfect credit to apply
  • ^^See Revvi Rewards Program Terms & Conditions for details
  • *See rates, fees, costs and limitations for additional details
Rates & Fees
  • Regular Purchase APR: 34.99%*
  • Cash Advance APR: 34.99%*
  • Cash Advance Transaction Fee: See Terms
  • Annual Fee: $75 1st year, $48 after*
  • Late Payment Penalty Fee: See Terms
  • Return Payment Penalty Fee: See Terms
Credit Card Deals

Merrick Bank Double Your Line™ Platinum Visa® Credit Card

Merrick Bank Double Your Line™ Platinum Visa® Credit Card
  • Regular Purchase APR 19.45% to 28.45% variable based on creditworthiness and the Prime Rate
  • Cash Advance APR 24.95% to 33.45% variable based on creditworthiness and the Prime Rate
  • Annual Fee $0 to $72
  • Credit Needed Good , Fair , Poor
  • Processing Network Visa
Best Benefits
  • Credit lines range from $500-$1,350 which double to $1,000-$2,700 after your account qualifies. No security deposit required
  • Double your credit line by making at least your minimum payment on time each month for the first 7 months your account is open
  • See if you are pre-approved within minutes, without affecting your credit score
  • Build or rebuild your credit. As you pay your bill every month, we report to all three major credit reporting agencies
  • Get 100% U.S.-based customer service & get your FICO® Credit Score for free each month
  • Fraud coverage if your card is lost or stolen. Access your account 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Get help staying on track with Auto Pay and account alerts
  • Card issued by Merrick Bank, Member FDIC
Rates & Fees
  • Regular Purchase APR: 19.45% to 28.45% variable based on creditworthiness and the Prime Rate
  • Cash Advance APR: 24.95% to 33.45% variable based on creditworthiness and the Prime Rate
  • Cash Advance Transaction Fee: Either $10 or 4% of the amount of each cash advance, whichever is greater
  • Annual Fee: $0 to $72
  • Foreign Transaction Fee: 2% of the transaction amount in U.S. dollars
  • Late Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $40
  • Return Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $40
Credit Card Deals

Assent Platinum 0% Intro Rate Mastercard® Secured Credit Card

Assent Platinum 0% Intro Rate Mastercard® Secured Credit Card
  • Regular Purchase APR 12.99% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Cash Advance APR 18.99% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Annual Fee $49
  • Credit Needed Poor , No Credit Required
  • Intro Purchase APR 0% for 6 months from account opening date
  • Processing Network Mastercard
Best Benefits
  • Full-Feature Platinum Mastercard* Secured Credit Card
  • Monthly Reporting to all 3 Major Credit Bureaus to Establish Credit History
  • Good for Car Rental, Hotels: Anywhere Credit Cards Are Accepted!
  • 24/7 Online Access to Your Account
  • Credit Line Secured by Your Fully-Refundable Deposit of $200 – $2,000 Submitted with Application
Rates & Fees
  • Intro Purchase APR: 0% for 6 months from account opening date
  • Regular Purchase APR: 12.99% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Cash Advance APR: 18.99% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Cash Advance Transaction Fee: Either $10 or 3% of the amount of each cash advance, whichever is greater
  • Annual Fee: $49
  • Foreign Transaction Fee: 3% of the transaction amount in U.S. dollars
  • Late Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $40
  • Return Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $29
  • Minimum Deposit Required: $200
Credit Card Deals

FIT Mastercard®

FIT Mastercard®
  • Regular Purchase APR See Terms*
  • Cash Advance APR See Terms*
  • Annual Fee See Terms*
  • Credit Needed Fair , Poor
  • Processing Network Mastercard
Best Benefits
  • All credit types welcome to apply!
  • Initial Credit Limit of $400.00!* (subject to available credit)
  • $400 credit limit doubles to $800! (Simply make your first 6 monthly minimum payments on time)
  • Free access to your Vantage 3.0 score from Experian* (When you sign up for e-statements)
  • Fast and easy application process; results in seconds
  • Use your card at locations everywhere that Mastercard® is accepted
  • Mastercard Zero Fraud Liability Protection (subject to Mastercard guidelines)
  • Free online account access 24/7
  • Checking Account Required
Rates & Fees
  • Regular Purchase APR: See Terms*
  • Cash Advance APR: See Terms*
  • Cash Advance Transaction Fee: See Terms*
  • Annual Fee: See Terms*
  • Foreign Transaction Fee: See Terms*
  • Late Payment Penalty Fee: See Terms*
  • Return Payment Penalty Fee: See Terms*
Credit Card Deals

Mission Lane Visa® Credit Card

Mission Lane Visa® Credit Card
  • Regular Purchase APR 26.99 – 29.99% (Variable)
  • Cash Advance APR 29.99% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Annual Fee $0-$59
  • Credit Needed Fair
  • Processing Network Visa
Best Benefits
  • See if you qualify instantly without harming your credit score
  • Get a higher credit line if you're in good standing after making your first 6 payments on time
  • Free, online credit score access for cardholders
  • Instant decision on your application
  • No interest on purchases when you pay in full and on time each month
  • No security deposit required – get started today!
  • Enjoy coverage from Visa®
  • Access your account anytime, anywhere with our mobile app
Rates & Fees
  • Regular Purchase APR: 26.99 – 29.99% (Variable)
  • Cash Advance APR: 29.99% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Cash Advance Transaction Fee: Either $10 or 3% of the amount of each cash advance, whichever is greater
  • Annual Fee: $0-$59
  • Foreign Transaction Fee: If the transaction occurs at a merchant outside of the U.S., the fee is 3% of the U.S. dollar amount of the transaction, regardless of whether a currency conversion is performed at the time of the transaction
  • Late Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $35
Credit Card Deals

Sable Secured Credit Card

Sable Secured Credit Card
  • Regular Purchase APR 10.24% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Annual Fee None
  • Credit Needed Fair , Poor
  • Processing Network Mastercard
Best Benefits
  • Earn up to 2% cash back on select purchases
  • Earn 1% cash back on all other purchases
  • Cell phone protection included
  • No annual fee
  • No foreign transaction fees
Rates & Fees
  • Regular Purchase APR: 10.24% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Return Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $30
  • Minimum Deposit Required: $10
Credit Card Deals

Self Visa® Credit Card

Self Visa® Credit Card
  • Regular Purchase APR 23.99%
  • Annual Fee $25
  • Credit Needed Fair , Poor , No Credit Required
  • Processing Network Visa
Best Benefits
  • Get the savings plan that helps build credit today
  • Start with a Credit Builder Account that reports monthly payments to all 3 major credit bureaus
  • Sample product: A $539.00 Credit builder account, paid 12 times over one year would have a monthly payment of $48.00, and an Annual Percentage Rate of 15.97%. Please refer to www.self.inc/pricing for the most recent pricing options
  • No credit score is needed to get started
  • Your money is secured and protected in a bank account
Rates & Fees
  • Regular Purchase APR: 23.99%
  • Annual Fee: $25
  • Late Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $15
  • Return Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $15
Credit Card Deals

Unique Platinum Card

Unique Platinum Card
  • Annual Fee None
  • Credit Needed Poor , No Credit Required
  • Processing Network N/A
Best Benefits
  • $1000 Credit Limit
  • No Credit Checks
  • Instant Approval
  • 0% Financing
Rates & Fees
  • Late Payment Penalty Fee: $10
  • Return Payment Penalty Fee: $30

Surge Secured Mastercard®

Surge Secured Mastercard®
  • Regular Purchase APR 19.99% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Cash Advance APR 19.99% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Annual Fee $69
  • Credit Needed Poor , No Credit Required
  • Processing Network Mastercard
Best Benefits
  • Initial refundable deposit of $300 becomes your credit limit
  • 1% Cash back Rewards on every purchase
  • Free access to your Vantage 3.0 score from Experian* (When you sign up for e-statements)
  • Monthly reporting to the three major credit bureaus
  • Fast and easy application process; results in seconds
  • Use your card at locations everywhere Mastercard® is accepted
  • Mastercard Zero Fraud Liability Protection (subject to Mastercard guidelines)
  • Checking Account Required
Rates & Fees
  • Regular Purchase APR: 19.99% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Cash Advance APR: 19.99% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Cash Advance Transaction Fee: Either $5.00 or 5% of the amount of each cash advance, whichever is greater
  • Penalty APR: See Terms
  • Annual Fee: $69
  • Foreign Transaction Fee: 3% of each transaction in U.S. dollars
  • Late Payment Penalty Fee: See Terms
  • Return Payment Penalty Fee: See Terms
  • Over Limit Penalty Fee: See Terms
  • Minimum Deposit Required: $300
Credit Card Deals

What Is a Bad Credit Score?

A bad credit score is nothing to be ashamed of. According to a recent study conducted by YouGov, 53% of Americans have experience with being rejected for an application because of a bad or poor score.

So, what is a “bad credit score?” According to our helpful Credit Score Explained guide, a FICO Score below 579 is considered “bad” or “poor.” For VantageScore, an alternative scoring model created by Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion, a bad score is any credit score below 600.

Credit Score Range

Before fixing a damaged credit score, it is crucial to understand what a credit score is, and what is considered good, bad, or ugly by different credit reporting bureaus. The two main credit scoring models that banks use to gauge creditworthiness are FICO and VantageScore.

FICO Score

FICO is the oldest of the credit scoring systems, and the most popular credit bureau for banks. A FICO score ranges from 300 to 850, with ratings ranging from Very Poor (bad) to Exceptional.

The FICO scoring model breaks down as follows:

VantageScore

VantageScore is a newer scoring model created by the three leading credit agencies: Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion. Like FICO, VantageScore ranges from 300 to 850, but places more scoring weight on newer credit histories than FICO.

The VantageScore model breaks down as follows:

How A Bad Credit Score Can Hurt You Financially

What impact can a bad credit score have on your financial life? Or even your everyday life, for that matter?

Tougher to Receive Credit

The most obvious impact of bad credit is a more difficult time getting approved for new lines of credit. Those with poor credit will struggle to get most credit cards with a few notable exceptions. Banks are much less willing to extend credit to those with bad credit, and only credit cards for bad credit or secured credit cards will be an option. People with bad credit will also struggle with getting personal loans, car loans, and mortgages.

Significantly Higher Loan Terms

Poor credit will not eliminate any chances at getting cards or loans, but those lines of credit will come with less favorable terms. Loans and credit cards for poor credit feature very high-interest rates, higher annual fees, and potentially monthly service fees.

More Difficulty When Renting Apartments

Poor credit directly impacts your ability to find housing. Landlords may be less willing to take a risk with someone with bad credit, viewing them as a potential liability.

Loss of Employment Opportunities

Bad credit can even impact your professional life. Many employers access the credit reports of potential hires to see if they are a trustworthy, reliable individual. While companies can’t access your credit score, the information on your report may make you seem like a liability. Some government agencies won’t hire people with poor credit, viewing them as a security risk due to their financial situation.

The Best Unsecured Picks for Bad Credit for 2022

Here are some of our team’s favorite offers for consumers with bad credit:

Best for: Rewards

Surge Secured Mastercard®

surge secured mastercard
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 Surge Secured Mastercard® is a secured credit card that offers rewards – and the ability to build credit – in one package. The card differs from most secured cards on the market in that it earns 1% cash back rewards on every purchase and can help users build their credit score at most places in the United States where Mastercard is accepted.

Best for: Rebuilding Credit

Destiny™ Mastercard®

destiny-new
Quick Pre-Qualification Available
  • Simple and fast application process
  • Monthly reporting to all 3 major credit bureaus
  • Less than perfect credit is okay
☆ Quick Pre-Qualification
☆ Perfect for Building Credit
☆ Ideal for everyday purchases to help build credit

The Destiny Mastercard is an ideal credit card for those with bad or fair credit who want the purchasing power of Mastercard but without the security deposit requirement of a secured credit card. With a modest annual fee and manageable initial credit limit, the Destiny Card doesn’t care about your credit past – instead, it helps you focus on your credit repair journey.

Best for: Personalization

Indigo Platinum Mastercard®

Choose Your Own Card Design
  • Great for demonstrating responsible use of credit
  • Monthly reporting to all 3 major credit bureaus
  • Less than perfect credit is okay
☆ Quick Online Pre-Qualification
☆ Perfect for Building Credit w/ On-Time Payments
☆ 24/7 Mobile Account Access

The Indigo Mastercard is rapidly becoming recognized as a top credit card option for applicants with less-than-perfect credit. It is a great resource for anyone who wants to establish, build, or repair their credit score. What’s more, benefits of the Indigo Mastercard include quick pre-qualification with no impact on your credit score, 24/7 mobile account access, chip card technology, and more.

Once approved, you can choose your own card design at no additional charge so you can personalize your Indigo card. Moreover, this will let your personality show whenever you use your card to make a purchase. Here are a few of the designs:

Best for: New to Credit

Merrick Bank Double Your Line™ Secured Visa®

Merrick Bank Double Your Line™ Secured Visa®
Double Your Credit Line in 7 Months
  • Double your $200 credit line with on-time payments
  • Monthly reporting to the three major credit bureaus
  • Fraud coverage if your card is lost or stolen
☆ Quick Application
☆ Your Deposit Is Your Credit Line
☆ Build Credit with Responsible Use
☆ Get Your FICO® Score Free Each Month

The Merrick Bank Double Your Line™ Secured Visa® Credit Card is a useful tool for boosting your credit score thanks to its Double Your Line feature. The card requires an initial security deposit of $200. Once  cardholders make each of their first seven months, they will automatically have their credit line raised to $400 – without the need to add more funds through additional security deposits. This credit line increase is the perfect motivational tool on your credit journey – and can help you take the first step towards a brighter future with unsecured credit in as little as seven months.

Best for: Introductory APR

Assent Platinum 0% Intro Rate Mastercard®

assent_platinum_mastercard
Purchase APR of 0% for 6 Months!
  • Full-Feature Platinum Mastercard*
  • Monthly Reporting to all 3 Major Credit Bureaus
  • 24/7 Online Access to Your Account
☆ Quick Application
☆ $200 Minimum Deposit
☆ Build Credit w/ 0% Intro APR
☆ Use Anywhere Mastercard's Accepted!

The Assent Platinum Mastercard IS one of the only secured credit cards that feature 0% intro APR on purchases. New accounts enjoy 6 months of 0% introductory APR on purchases. For those planning on making a purchase they want to pay down over time, the $49 annual fee is more than worth the cost.

Merchandise Cards

Building credit is challenging. Repairing credit is just as tough, if not more so. Many lenders are wary of applicants with bad credit or no credit at all. What about those who want a credit card to build credit but don’t have the available money for a security deposit? When a person wants to establish a credit history but can’t set aside the money for a deposit on a secured card, catalog and merchandise cards are a potential option.

Why Choose a Catalog or Merchandise Card?

Merchandise cards are a great choice for those with a limited credit history – or no credit history at all. Why choose catalog store credit cards or merchandise cards for bad credit? Here are three of the top reasons to consider a catalog card:

Catalog cards are a unique type of retail payment card. These are not credit cards, but they provide a line of unsecured credit at an individual online store – or online catalog. Unlike mainstream credit cards, catalog merchandise cards are closed-loop, meaning they may only be used at the store associated with them.

There are several merchandise cards on the market today. These cards offer different benefits to account holders, depending on the card’s issuer.