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If you have fair to poor credit and want to build it up or reestablish it with an unsecured card, the Indigo® Platinum Mastercard® may be an option to consider. This is a bare-bones credit card with few perks. There’s no signup bonus, no cashback rewards and you must pre-qualify before you can actually apply for the card. While no security deposit is required, it does come with higher fees that could make you question whether this card is your best option.
The Indigo® Platinum Mastercard® gives those with Bad Credit the chance to get an unsecured credit card, similar to the Credit One Bank® Platinum Visa® for Rebuilding Credit. You may even qualify for the card even with a bankruptcy on your credit report. The pre-qualification won’t affect your credit score, and you can know as soon as 60 seconds whether you’ve been pre-qualified to apply for the card. Of course, once you officially apply, that will be a hard credit inquiry.
The Indigo® Platinum Mastercard® reports card use to the three major credit bureaus, which gives you the chance to establish a consistent payment record while having the convenience of a credit card. Plus it comes with a $300 credit limit, and, unlike a secured card, you don’t have to put down a deposit. You can add an authorized user for $25 and you can customize the card for free.
The card has an annual fee of $0 - $99 — but you won’t know which fee you’ll pay until after you’re approved. The card’s APR of 23.90% can be steep for some.
The card comes with a $300 credit limit, but the $0 - $99 annual fee is automatically removed as soon as the card is opened, which can lower your limit, depending on the fee, before you’ve even had the chance to charge anything. The 23.90% APR is higher than those with excellent credit, but that’s to be expected for cardholders with Bad Credit. In fact, the 23.90% APR is lower than rates for cards like the Capital One® Secured Mastercard®, at 24.99% (Variable) or the Credit One Bank® Unsecured Platinum Visa®, at 17.49% - 25.49% Variable.
You could get dinged for penalty fees, including: late payment, up to $37; over your limit, up to $37; and returned payment, up to $37. If you’re not careful with your card usage, these fees can really add up. The card issuer charges a $3 documentation fee when you request a printed copy of your statement. And it charges $10 for each copy of sales or other items posted to your account, although you won’t be charged if it’s a good faith effort to check a billing error.
Beaverton, Oregon based Genesis Bankcard Services, Inc. services the Indigo® Platinum Mastercard®, which is issued through Celtic Bank. Genesis has a history of providing access to credit for those with Bad Credit.
Here are the additional card benefits:
This card is best for one key purpose — helping cardmembers with Bad Credit build it back up. To stay on track, make the payments on your Indigo® Platinum Mastercard® on time each month and watch your spending. These actions can build up a good credit record, which could lead to credit limit increases.
The truth is, there are no rewards with the Indigo® Platinum Mastercard®. You could say that having Bad Credit but still being allowed to get this card without a deposit to secure it is a reward. But in the end, it’s all about building up your credit score with this card.
Like the Indigo® Platinum Mastercard®, this is another card that’s available for those with Bad Credit that doesn’t require a security deposit. But unlike the Indigo® Platinum Mastercard®, this card allows you to get 1% on eligible purchases, terms apply. Both cards start with a $300 credit limit, but the Credit One Bank® Platinum Visa® for Rebuilding Credit gives you free online access to your Experian credit score, along with a credit report summary.
Other alternatives to cards like Indigo® Platinum Mastercard® designed to help you build or rebuild your credit are secured credit cards like the Capital One® Secured Mastercard®, a credit builder loan company like Self Lender or a traditional personal loan from a bank or credit union.
|Indigo® Platinum Mastercard®||Credit One Bank® Platinum Visa® for Rebuilding Credit|
|Annual Fee||$0 - $99||$0-$99|
|Purchase Intro Rate||N/A||N/A*|
|Balance Transfer Intro Rate||N/A||N/A*|
|Balance Transfer Fee||N/A||N/A|
|Regular Purchase APR||23.90%||17.49% - 25.49% Variable|
|Rewards||N/A||1% on eligible purchases, terms apply|
|Sign Up Bonus||N/A||No bonus|
|Foreign Transaction Fee||See terms||3% or $1.00, whichever is greater|
The Indigo® Platinum Mastercard®’s $0 - $99 annual fee is automatically deducted from your initial $300 credit limit. And there are none of the other real perks and benefits you get with cards for those with better credit. Still, it’s good that those with Bad Credit can have access to an unsecured card. If you make regular payments on time, you may eventually be able to apply for a card that has more perks. But you should still check all your options — including secured credit cards, self lenders or personal loans — before committing to this card.
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