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Credit Card Reviews 2024

The smart Investor unbiased experts reviews the top US credit cards in every major category, from rewards to student cards. Understand cards pros and cons, sign up bonuses, rewards and fees.

We earn a commission from our partner links on this page. It doesn't affect the integrity of our unbiased, independent editorial staff. Transparency is a core value for us, read our advertiser disclosure and how we make money.

Popular Credit Card Reviews

Why Trusting The Smart Investor Credit Card Reviews?

Choosing a credit card is no small decision, and trusting the source of information is crucial. Here the main reasons your can trust our team:

  • Objective Analysis: Our credit card reviews are conducted with an objective and unbiased approach. We prioritize providing users with accurate and impartial information to help them make informed decisions based on their individual needs.

  • In-Depth Research: Our team conducts thorough research on each credit card, delving into various aspects such as interest rates, fees, rewards programs, and customer service. This comprehensive analysis ensures that users receive detailed insights into the features and terms of each card.

  • Expertise: Our team consists of financial experts who bring a wealth of knowledge and experience in the credit card industry. Their expertise enhances the reliability and accuracy of our reviews.
  • User-Centric Approach: We understand that users have diverse financial goals and preferences. Our reviews are tailored to address different user profiles, considering factors like credit score, spending habits, and lifestyle to offer personalized recommendations.

  • Transparency: Transparency is a core value in our review process. We disclose all relevant information, including fees, terms, and conditions, so users can make decisions with full awareness of the implications.

  • User Feedback Integration: We value the experiences of credit card users. We streive to incorporate user feedback, reviews, and ratings into our assessments, providing a real-world perspective on the pros and cons of each credit card.

  • Regular Updates: The financial landscape is dynamic, and credit card terms may change. We commit to regularly updating our reviews to reflect the latest information, ensuring users receive current and relevant insights.

How to Find the Right Card for Your Needs?

If you want to pick the best card for your needs, you need to narrow down your search to a few select factors. Here are important factors you can consider to find the ideal card for your needs:

1. Check Your Credit Score

Credit card issuers generally require borrowers to have a good credit score to get approved for credit. A higher credit score will help you qualify for credit cards with favorable terms.

However, if your credit score is not within the expected level, you should examine your credit report to determine the cause. Start by paying delinquent payments and ensure on-time payments on all monthly bills.

2. Know the Credit Card Benefits You Need

Each credit card offers different rewards and perks, and you should figure out the benefits that you need the most. For example, if you are a traveler, you can get a credit card that offers travel accident insurance, coverage for lost baggage, airport lounge membership, trip cancellation insurance, and purchase protection to cover damaged or stolen goods. Credit cards offer plenty of perks, and you should decide the specific benefits you need, and pick the card that satisfies those needs.              

3. Check Total Fees

Before picking a credit card, make sure you are comfortable paying the associated credit card fees. For example, some cards charge an annual fee of up to $500 or higher, which may be too expensive for some cardholders. Still, cards that charge an annual fee may offer various benefits such as sign-up bonuses, elite hotel status, annual travel credits, etc. that cover up for the annual cost. Compare associated credit card fees for different types of credit cards, and decide the card that you are most comfortable with.

4. Pick the Card With the Best Terms

Once you have a list of credit cards that you are interested in, you should calculate the benefits of each card based on your average spending and what you stand to gain. When comparing the benefits, narrow down to the cards with the highest perks and cardholder benefits. If the credit card has an annual fee, compare the value of the perks and bonuses you get to determine if it is worth it.

How to Review Your Credit Card Provider Rate on TrustPilot and BBB Rating?

Before taking a credit card, you should first check the issuer’s rating on Trust Pilot and BBB rating. To check a credit card provider on Trust Pilot, go to, and search the business name in the search box. If the business is listed on Trust Pilot, the search will return the business profile of the provider.

Click the business name of the credit card issuer to view its profile and recent ratings and reviews. Scroll through the ratings to see what verified customers say about the provider and if the complaints are resolved.

You can also check the credit card provider’s ratings on You can search the provider by its business name, website, email or phone number. If the business is listed on the website, the search will return the business profile, with a link to the reviews and complaints.

Click to view the business profile, and scroll through the ratings to get an overview of what other customers think about the business. A lender with a BBB rating of A or A+ gains public trust and confidence.  

Why it’s Important?

Consumers trust businesses that are Trust Pilot and BBB accredited since it acts as a vote of confidence in the business. Businesses also benefit from dispute resolution and inquiry services, where aggrieved customers can file complaints, and allow businesses to address and solve complaints amicably. Potential borrowers can review credit card issuers to determine if they have unresolved complaints that may paint them in a bad light.   

How Can You Learn More About Your Card?

With the different types of credit cards on the market, it takes time to uncover the pros and cons of each card, and the cost savings you will get by picking a specific card. Here is what you can do to know more about your cards:

  1. Compare different types of cards

With multiple credit card options to consider, you should compare credit cards to determine the best possible offer. If you have bad credit, you can choose a secured credit card to help you build credit as you borrow. Alternatively, if you want to consolidate your credit card debts, you should go for a balance transfer card that offers a 0% introductory fee. Also, consider the applicable fees for each credit card, by looking at the annual fee, foreign transaction cost, late-payment fee, etc. Compare several cards, and pick one with the highest cost savings.

  1. Reward programs

Credit cards offer different reward programs, and it is important to understand where you spend your money the most and get a card that gives you rewards such as cash backs and discounts. If you travel a lot, you can get a credit card that gives you travel benefits such as lost luggage protection, trip cancellation protection, and car rental insurance. You can also redeem the rewards for cash and gift cards that can be used in participating online retailers.

Can I Get a Card with a Bad Credit Score?

When applying for a credit card, lenders use your credit score as one of the factors to determine your creditworthiness. Borrowers with a credit score below 580 are considered high-risk, and this makes it difficult to qualify for a credit card. Bad credit may be due to one or more missed payments, late payments, delinquent accounts, filing for bankruptcy, or a history of foreclosures.

If you have bad credit, you can apply for a secured credit card as a way to access credit and improve your credit score at the same time. A secured credit card requires cardholders to pay a deposit of a certain amount into a savings account, and the credit limit is calculated as a percentage of the deposit. The deposit also acts as collateral for the loan, and it is not used when using the cash to make payments. For example, a credit card issuer may require a deposit of $300, and set a credit limit equivalent to 80% of the deposit. As you make on-time payments on the card, you also build your credit line. A secured credit card can also be converted into an unsecured card if your credit status remains in good standing without missed or late payments over a period of time.

What are the Requirements to Qualify for Credit Cards?

Credit card issuers have a set of requirements that they consider when reviewing credit card applications. Knowing what the lender requires to approve your application can help you know the possibility of getting the credit card application approved. Here is how to qualify for a credit card:

  1. Positive Credit history

Credit card issuers require applicants to have a good credit history to approve a credit card application. Although one late payment may not lock you out, some lenders are interested in lending to borrowers with a spotless credit report. Watch out for any errors in your credit report such as paid up loans that have not been updated, and which may prevent you from qualifying for a credit card.

  1. Secured credit card

If you have limited or no credit history, you are less likely to get approved for a premium credit card. You can apply for a secured credit card to help you improve your credit score. When applying for secured credit card, lenders require you to make a security deposit of at least $250 or higher before you can be approved. The security deposit may be equal to the approved credit limit.

  1. Get a co-signer

If you have bad credit or limited credit history, you can ask a friend or colleague to co-sign your credit card application. The co-signer must have a higher credit score, and meet the required criteria for credit card approval. The co-signer takes a risk by agreeing to co-sign your application, and is responsible in the event that you fail to make payments on time.

Can I know my Credit Limit?

Every time you use your credit card to make a payment, the amount deducted from your card is added to the current credit card balance. If you spend beyond your credit limit, the issuer automatically charges an over-limit fee, which can affect your credit score.

Before swiping your credit card to pay for purchases, it is important to know your credit limit and the available credit amount that is available to spend.

This chart created with Experian data, highlights the significant increase in the average credit card limits in the last decade. Credit card limits have consistently increased with an overall increase in the recent 10 years.


Start by logging into your credit card account to see the approved limit. Most issuers show the available credit on the account dashboard. The dashboard is updated immediately a new transaction is made. If you have not signed up on your issuer’s website, you can create an online account to track your credit card transactions. You can also check your credit limit by requesting your credit card’s billing statement. The billing statement shows all transactions conducted within the billing period, the credit limit, current outstanding balance, and the available credit.

How Card Companies set my Credit Limit?

The credit limit is the highest amount of money that issuers allow cardholders to borrow using their credit cards. Issuers use different methods to determine the credit limit for cardholders.

Examples of factors that lenders consider include your credit scores, payment history, income, etc. Knowing what your lender is looking for can help increase the chances of getting approved for a higher credit limit.

One of the things that issuers consider is your ability to pay. Your past payment history can give issuers insights into your ability to pay by checking your history of paying bills and debts. Issuers also consider your credit history to determine your credit limit.

The issuer can also assess your ability to pay by looking at your income and expenses. If your expenses and debts take a huge portion of your monthly income, a credit card issuer will be hesitant to approve a higher credit limit. For example, if your monthly income is $5000, and the expenses amount to $4500, it will be impossible for the lender to give you a credit limit of $10,000.

If you are using a secured credit card, you can control the credit limit for your card. Usually, credit card issuers require cardholders to make a security deposit to the credit card, and the credit limit is based on the amount of deposit. For example, a security deposit of $2000 qualifies you for a credit limit of up to $2000.

The security deposit can be as low as $250, and go as high as $10,000. Credit card issuers hold the deposit as collateral for the account, and cardholders cannot access these funds when the card is active.

Things to Do Before Applying to a Credit Card

Understanding what credit card issuers are looking for can help you become more confident and increase your chances of getting approved. Check the following things before applying for a credit card:

1. Check Your Credit Status

When applying for a new credit card, your credit status plays a key role in determining whether or not your application will be approved. Request a copy of your credit report to know where your credit stands. Also check for any errors and inaccurate entries on your report.

2. Resolve Any Errors in your Credit Report

The presence of errors such as wrong or inaccurate entries may affect your credit score, and diminish your chances of getting a credit card. If you have identified errors on your credit report, you should file a dispute with the credit bureau that produced the report, to have the error modified or removed. Generally, credit bureaus have 30 days from the date of your dispute to make a decision.

3. Prequalify

Applying for multiple credit cards within the same period can damage your credit score since these inquiries appear in your credit report. To avoid such scenarios, you can prequalify for several offers to get an idea of the terms that each issuer offers. Although prequalification is not a guarantee that the issuer will approve your application, it can help you narrow down your search to a few offers. Plus, inquiries made during prequalification do not affect your credit score.

Will Prequalification Affect my Credit Score?

If you are shopping for a new credit card online, you have probably found lenders that allow you to prequalify for a credit card. But can prequalification affect your credit score? The answer is “no”.

When you prequalify for a credit card, the lender performs a soft inquiry to assess your creditworthiness and your level of risk. A soft inquiry is part of the background check of online lenders, and it is not considered when calculating credit scores.

Prequalifying for a credit card helps you know the loan terms of each lender before applying for a credit card. Although prequalification does not guarantee approval, it can help you compare offers from several lenders before you can apply for a card.