Credit Cards for Less-Than-Perfect Credit

Even if your credit score is a work in progress, here are 4 cards to consider—all with benefits you’ll love

Whether you’re applying for your first credit card or rebuilding your credit, choosing a card that supports your financial goals is a big decision. Whatever your starting point, Capital One has several options with terrific perks—some even come with cash-back rewards.

From picking your monthly due date to choosing how you want to pay, these cards give you options that put you in control of your account. Don’t get overwhelmed trying to navigate options, though. 

Here are the ins and outs of some cards designed with you in mind.

Rebuilding Credit

Secured Mastercard 

A secured card is an awesome tool that—with responsible use—you can use to help rebuild your credit. The Secured Mastercard from Capital One has no annual fee. And if you make the minimum required security deposit, you’ll get an initial credit line of $200. Need a higher credit line? Just deposit more money before your account opens.

Average Credit

Platinum Credit Card

The Platinum Credit Card from Capital One is a great starter card. As you build credit with responsible use, you’ll potentially be in a better position to be considered for a card that offers rewards. Plus, there’s no annual fee.


Want to earn rewards? Check out QuicksilverOne. Your rewards won’t expire for the life of the account. And you can redeem them for any amount, anytime! You can apply rewards as a statement credit, redeem them on a recent purchase to eliminate it from an upcoming bill, spend them on gift cards and more. Do keep in mind, though, that there’s a $39 annual fee. 

Journey Student Card

Want cash-back rewards with no annual fee? Journey might be the answer. Designed for students, it gives you 1% cash back on every purchase—plus, if you pay your bill on time, you’ll boost your cash back to 1.25% for that month.

Other Features and Benefits

No matter which of these cards you decide is right for you, they all offer great features and benefits that make using your card responsibly that much easier. Here are just a few:

  • Be automatically considered for a higher credit line in as little as six months.
  • No foreign transaction fees.
  • Fraud coverage if your card is lost or stolen.
  • Eno, your Capital One assistant, keeps an eye on your accounts 24/7 and reaches out if something unusual is spotted, like duplicate charges or a tip that’s more than your usual amount, and helps you fix it. You can also ask Eno questions about your account and receive instant answers online, on the mobile app or over text.1 
  • CreditWise from Capital One gives personalized suggestions that are intended to help you build your score and monitor your credit. It’s a free app that anyone can use, even if you’re not a Capital One cardholder.2
  • The Capital One Mobile app lets you manage your account anywhere, anytime. Pay your bill, view your balance and lock your card with a few taps if it’s ever misplaced, lost or stolen.3

Remember, there are plenty of cards designed for every credit level—even if your credit score isn’t the best just yet. Whether you’re new to credit or rebuilding your score, the right card is out there.

And at Capital One, you can find out whether you’re pre-approved for certain cards before you even apply. Pre-approval is quick, secure and only requires some basic info. And it won’t hurt your credit score. 

1Eno is learning all the time and may not catch everything. Eno service outages may occur. Capital One customers are responsible for regularly checking their account statements. Web access is needed to use mobile banking. Check with your service provider for details on specific fees and charges. Texting with Eno means you agree to chat about your account over SMS and receive recurring messages. Message and data rates may apply.  Mobile phone carrier fees for text messages may apply.

Some or all Eno features may not be available to all Capital One customers, depending on the types of accounts held. For example, certain bank accounts are not eligible to text with Eno, and Eno email notifications, app notifications and virtual card numbers from Eno may not be available for certain credit cards.

The Eno browser extension for virtual card numbers is only available in certain web browsers, and enrollment is required. Virtual card numbers are not available for debit cards and some credit cards.

2Your CreditWise score is calculated using the TransUnion® VantageScore® 3.0 model, which is one of many scoring models used by lenders. It likely won’t be the same model your lender uses, but it is an accurate measure of your credit health. The availability of the CreditWise tool depends on our ability to obtain your credit history from TransUnion. Alerts are based on changes to your TransUnion and Experian credit reports and information we find on the dark web. The tool is not guaranteed to detect all identity theft.

3Some activity may continue, including returns, credits, payments, interest, dispute adjustments, other account fees, purchase transactions during system downtime and certain other exempted transactions.

Learn more about Capital One’s response to COVID-19 and resources available to customers. For information about COVID-19, head over to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Government and private relief efforts vary by location and may have changed since this article was published. Consult a financial adviser or the relevant government agencies and private lenders for the most current information.

We hope you found this helpful. Our content is not intended to provide legal, investment or financial advice or to indicate that a particular Capital One product or service is available or right for you. For specific advice about your unique circumstances, consider talking with a qualified professional.

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