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How to get a credit card with bad credit

How to get a credit card with bad credit
Written by Mark Grimley
Published on 5th July 2017
Updated on 10th December 2019
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We think your journey to the right credit should be simple. Whatever your reason for wanting a credit card, it’s important to know what’s available to you. Get to know the facts using this guide.

Get to know your credit file

Find out your credit score before applying so you can be realistic about who’s likely to accept you. Access your credit file for free using ClearScore or Credit Karma. Score looking a little low? We’ve got some credit score improvement tips here. You can easily compare the available credit cards side-by-side using our credit card product library along with genuine consumer reviews.

Once you get a credit card, pay the monthly minimum repayment. If you can, pay the full amount. You’ll avoid the interest and save your cash.

Take a look at your options

We’ll say it until we’re blue in the face; compare the credit card options available to you. The interest rates on bad credit credit cards tend to be higher than other credit cards on the market and the initial credit limit tends to be less than mainstream credit cards but that doesn’t mean there aren’t options available. Spending within your means and making repayments on time will improve your score and could increase your credit limit.

Credit Builder Credit Cards

If you’re hoping to improve your credit score the for future, credit builder credit cards could be the answer you’re looking for. Specially designed for those with a bad credit file, these cards generally have a higher APR. But, if you keep on top of your repayments or pay in full every month, you could really improve your score whilst getting the cash you need.

Find credit cards for bad credit

Have bad credit? Have a look at the full range of credit cards and compare your options using a Choose Wisely comparison table.

Mark Grimley
Written by
Mark Grimley
Head of Partnerships & Take Control Author at Choose Wisely

Mark joined Choose Wisely in 2015. He continues to work in close contact with the providers, brokers and journalists operating in the world of consumer credit.