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Credit Cards That Offer High Credit Limits

Credit Cards That Offer High Credit Limits

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This article was last updated Apr 22, 2019. Terms and conditions may have changed. For the most accurate information, please consult the issuer website.

Getting approved for credit cards with high credit limits is a true accomplishment. It means that you’ve proven yourself to be creditworthy and deserving of more purchasing power than most. So do you have what it takes to qualify?

Of course, it all depends how you define high limit. For some consumers, it might be anything around $10,000. But generally speaking, high limit credit cardholders report credit limits in the mid-$20,000 to mid-$30,000 range. In rarer cases, limits could reach $50,000 or even six figures.

While each credit issuer has its own criteria for setting credit limit amounts, it’s always a bit of a guessing game as to what your approved credit limit will be.

Here’s what we do know: If you’re a newer credit user, have a sketchy recent credit history or don’t have adequate income, you probably won’t be approved for a high credit limit credit card.

“Typically, cards with very high limits are reserved for people with not only good credit scores, but a larger credit footprint,” said Jeff Richardson, spokesperson for VantageScore, one of the major credit scoring models.

Before trusting you with a large amount of available credit, issuers want to make sure that you have the capacity to pay your debts (i.e., a strong income and all of your other debts under control), as well as a long history of managing other substantial credit lines.

“If it’s your first credit card, your expectations shouldn’t be that you’ll have a high credit limit,” said Richardson. In fact, you may start out with a $1,000 or less, he says, and it could take years until you can qualify for credit cards with higher credit limits.

Why aim for high limit cards?

The type of consumers that high limit credit cards appeal to are usually those who also want high value rewards, says Tom Quinn, vice president, Scores, at FICO, the widely used consumer credit scoring model. “They typically want a higher line, especially if there’s an annual fee with the card,” he said, “so they can use the card to pay for all their purchases to get rewards points.” As such, they’ll want a higher credit line to support that higher volume of transactions.

Another reason for a higher limit: to boost your credit utilization ratio, which is a big factor in your credit score. Your credit utilization is the amount of credit card balances you’re carrying compared to your credit limits. The closer you get to maxing out your card, the more it hurts your credit score. So, if your credit limit is higher, the bigger balance you can carry without dinging your score.

But here’s the rub: You just don’t know what credit limit you’ll be offered until you apply, even if you think you’re an above average credit user. As one myFICO Forums user put it: “No matter how good your profile is, lenders can and will surprise you. On the other hand, no matter how bad your profile is, lenders can and will sometimes surprise you.”

What we do know is that the average new credit line has increased since 2011 for consumers in every credit score tier, according to The Consumer Credit Card Market report by the Consumer Financial Protection Board. The research reveals that superprime borrowers (defined as those with scores of 720 or higher) had an average credit line of around $10,000, compared with subprime borrowers (with scores between 580 and 619), whose average credit line was about $1,000.

How to boost approval chances a high credit limit

When you apply for a credit card, credit score is just one factor that’s considered. Issuers will typically ask you about your income, job status and fixed expenses, such as rent or mortgage payments. Plus, they’ll look at how high and how old your other credit lines are, and when/how often you’ve applied for other credit.

Even people with scores north of 700 sometimes get denied for credit cards with high credit limits for a variety of reasons, including having debt obligations that are too high relative to their income, or too few accounts. If you’re aiming for a Chase card specifically, you might also get rejected because of it’s 5/24 rule – that is, you’ll be automatically denied if you’ve opened more than five cards in the past 24 months.

How a high credit limit can impact your credit score          

High limit credit cards can impact your credit score in either a positive or a negative way, depending on your behavior once the card application is approved. It mostly has to do with utilization rate, which refers to how much of your available credit is being used.

Say you usually make about $750 in purchases in a given month. If your card has a $1,000 limit, that would mean you’re utilizing 75% of the credit line. If that limit was $3,000, however, then you’d only be using 25% of your available credit.

Since utilization is the second most important factor comprising most credit score calculations, the lower you keep it, the better your credit score will be. “You want the gap between the amount you charge and the amount available to be as large as possible,” said Richardson. “If you have that self-control, it’s certainly to your benefit to have your limit raised.”

If the sole reason you’re aspiring toward credit cards with high credit limits is to improve your credit utilization and therefore your score, however, be careful. “I’ve had lots of interactions with consumers where they thought they were doing the right thing to improve their score, but it had a reverse effect,” said Quinn.

For one thing, opening new lines of credit, especially multiple ones in a short period of time, can cause temporary score drops. What’s more, a bigger credit line could mean a greater temptation to overextend yourself.

“I’ve seen examples where a consumer gets a new credit card with a high limit and they start using it to pay school expenses, book a vacation, etc.,” said Quinn. As balances increase, the utilization ratio gets higher and causes a decrease in score – plus, they’ve entered a death spiral of debt.

The best way to manage a high limit card is to make sure you control your spending, and aim to pay your balance in full (or close to it) each month to keep the utilization low.

Cards for which you may be approved for a high credit limit

Chase Sapphire Reserve®

  • Earn 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.

  • 3X points on travel immediately after earning your $300 travel credit. 3X points on dining at restaurants & 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases.

  • $300 Annual Travel Credit, Airport Lounge Access, and Flexible Redemption Options

Highlights
  • Earn 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • Named "Best Premium Travel Credit Card" for 2018 by MONEY® Magazine
  • $300 Annual Travel Credit as reimbursement for travel purchases charged to your card each account anniversary year
  • 3X points on travel immediately after earning your $300 travel credit. 3X points on dining at restaurants & 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases. $0 foreign transaction fees.
  • Get 50% more value when you redeem your points for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 50,000 points are worth $750 toward travel
  • 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
  • Access to 1,000+ airport lounges worldwide after an easy, one-time enrollment in Priority Pass™ Select
  • Up to $100 application fee credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®

See additional details for Chase Sapphire Reserve®

More Info

  • Annual fee: $450
  • Welcome offer: Earn 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.
  • Rewards: 3X points on travel immediately after earning your $300 travel credit. 3X points on dining at restaurants & 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases.
  • Who is most likely to qualify for this card: People with excellent credit and a track record of juggling other mid- to high credit lines responsibly. Limits can range from $10,000 to $35,000-plus, depending on a variety of factors.

Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card

  • One-time bonus of 50,000 miles once you spend $3,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening, equal to $500 in travel

  • 2 Miles per dollar on every purchase, every day

  • Receive up to $100 application fee credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®

Highlights
  • Enjoy a one-time bonus of 50,000 miles once you spend $3,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening, equal to $500 in travel
  • Earn 2X miles on every purchase, every day.
  • Receive up to $100 application fee credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®
  • Fly any airline, stay at any hotel, anytime; no blackout dates. Plus transfer your miles to over 12 leading travel loyalty programs
  • Miles won't expire for the life of the account and there's no limit to how many you can earn
  • Named ‘The Best Travel Card' by CNBC, 2018
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • $0 intro annual fee for the first year; $95 after that

See additional details for Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card

More Info

  • Annual fee: $0 intro for first year; $95 after that
  • Welcome offer: One-time bonus of 50,000 miles once you spend $3,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening, equal to $500 in travel.
  • Rewards: 2 Miles per dollar on every purchase, every day.
  • Who is most likely to qualify for this card: Excellent credit score holders can add this solid card to their travel rewards repertoire. Reported limits of $15,000 to $50,000 show that there is a lot of wiggle room depending on your status.

Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express

  • $250 statement credit after you spend $1,000 in purchases on your new Card within the first 3 months.*

  • NEW 6% Cash Back on select U.S. streaming subscriptions & 3% Cash Back on transit including taxis/rideshare, parking, tolls, trains, buses and more.

  • 1% back on other purchases*

Highlights
  • Earn a $250 statement credit after you spend $1,000 in purchases on your new Card within the first 3 months.
  • NEW 6% Cash Back on select U.S. streaming subscriptions.
  • NEW 3% Cash Back on transit including taxis/rideshare, parking, tolls, trains, buses and more.
  • 6% Cash Back at U.S. supermarkets on up to $6,000 per year in purchases (then 1%). 3% Cash Back at U.S. gas stations. 1% Cash Back on other purchases.
  • Over 3 million more places in the U.S. started accepting American Express® Cards in 2017 and 2018.
  • Low intro APR: 0% for 12 months on purchases and balance transfers, then a variable rate, currently 14.49% to 25.49%
  • $95 annual fee.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees

See additional details for Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express

More Info

  • Annual fee: $95
  • Welcome offer: $250 statement credit after you spend $1,000 in purchases on your new Card within the first 3 months.
  • Rewards: NEW 6% Cash Back on select U.S. streaming subscriptions & 3% Cash Back on transit including taxis/rideshare, parking, tolls, trains, buses and more
  • Who is most likely to qualify for this card: If you fall in the very good to excellent credit score range and prefer everyday spending rewards over travel ones, this card is a good high limit option. From $8,000 to $25,000, users report a wide spectrum of credit limits.

Tip: Consumers say that American Express is generous when it comes to granting credit limit increase requests to responsible cardholders at least 60 days of card opening.

Chase Freedom Unlimited®

  • 0% for 15 months on purchases and balance transfers

  • $150 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening. Earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on all purchases.

  • 16.49% - 25.24% Variable

Highlights
  • Earn a $150 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening.
  • Earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on all purchases.
  • 0% Intro APR for 15 months from account opening on purchases and balance transfers, then a variable APR of 16.49 - 25.24%.
  • 3% intro balance transfer fee when you transfer a balance during the first 60 days your account is open, with a minimum of $5
  • No annual fee
  • No minimum to redeem for cash back
  • Cash Back rewards do not expire as long as your account is open

See additional details for Chase Freedom Unlimited®

More Info

  • Annual fee: $0
  • Welcome offer: $150 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening. Earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on all purchases.
  • Rewards: 1.5% cash back offer.
  • Who is most likely to qualify for this card: For those seeking a high limit cash back card, credit scores in the very good to excellent tiers will help get you approved. Higher scores (750 and up) while meeting other criteria can garner limits in the neighborhood of $16,000, while less qualified borrowers could end up with $5,000 or less.

Discover it® Cash Back

  • Get a dollar-for-dollar match of all the cash back you've earned at the end of your first year, automatically*

  • Earn 5% cash back at different places each quarter up to the quarterly maximum, when you activate*

  • Any amount, any time. Cash back rewards never expire*

Highlights
  • INTRO OFFER: Discover will match ALL the cash back you've earned at the end of your first year, automatically. There's no signing up. And no limit to how much is matched.
  • Earn 5% cash back at different places each quarter like gas stations, grocery stores, restaurants, Amazon.com and more up to the quarterly maximum, each time you activate.
  • Plus, earn unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases - automatically.
  • Redeem cash back any amount, any time. Rewards never expire.
  • Use your rewards at Amazon.com checkout.
  • Get an alert if we find your Social Security number on any of thousands of Dark Web sites.* Activate for free.
  • No annual fee.
  • See Rates & Fees

See additional details for Discover it® Cash Back

More Info

  • Annual fee: $0
  • Welcome offer: Discover will automatically match all the cash back you earn at the end of your first year.*
  • Rewards: 5% cash back at different places each quarter like gas stations, grocery stores, restaurants, Amazon.com and more up to the quarterly maximum, each time you activate, 1% unlimited cash back on all other purchases - automatically.
  • Who is most likely to qualify for this card: Discover it® applicants have found that high limit credit cards are not necessarily out of reach if you’ve had a few missteps. Even consumers with scores under 700 have reported five-figure limit approvals, much to their delight.

Bottom line

If you want to qualify for credit cards with high credit limits, that’s a privilege that you’ll have to earn gradually through good credit behavior. As long as you have ample income, says Richardson, “Credit limit is up to a lender’s discretion.”


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