The Capital One Platinum credit card is worth a look for its attractive perks and benefits that make building credit easy if you choose to create credit without a secured credit card.
Everyone has to start somewhere. It’s an axiom that applies to a lot of things, including credit cards. With a nosebleed-inducing APR of 26.99% (Variable) the Capital One® Platinum Credit Card may not seem attractive for many consumers.
Still, for those with mediocre credit, or those who are just beginning to build a credit history, the Capital One® Platinum Credit Card offers a few features worth considering, but is one that you wouldn’t want to revolve a balance on.
For starters, the Capital One® Platinum Credit Card charges no annual fee or any fees for balance transfers (by contrast, many other cards charge 3% to 5% to move a balance from another card).
Also, someone with an average or fair-at-best credit score stands a good chance of qualifying for this card. If you pass that threshold and you keep up your monthly payments, you could upgrade to another card with lower rates, rewards points and other perks.
For those seeking a no-frills starter credit card, the Capital One® Platinum is an option to consider. It’s designed primarily for customers with limited credit history; it also functions well as a credit rebuilder card.
Typically, products with these limitations carry annual fees or may be secured. This card has neither drawback.
Capital One allows potential customers to check for pre-qualified offers. As this won’t impact your credit score, it can be a convenient way to establish whether you’re likely to be approved.
This may be important since Capital One is known for consulting all three credit bureaus when considering new applicants.
The card will start with a low credit limit, perhaps as low as $300. However, this may be increased in as little as six months with responsible credit usage and on-time payments.
Note that the card has a high APR, making it crucial to pay the balance in full each month.
Pros and Cons of Capital One® Platinum Credit Card
- Offers an unsecured option for people with limited credit
- Provides access to a higher credit line after making your first five payments on time
- Charges no annual fee or foreign transaction fee
- Very high variable APR
- No rewards program
- No welcome bonus or intro APR offer
- 3% cash advance fee (min $10)
- Consumers with fair or limited credit
- Individuals who want to avoid a secured credit card
- Fee-averse credit card users
Not Great for:
- Card users who want rewards
- Consumers with bad credit
- Balance carriers
Things to Consider
The main drawbacks of the Capital One® Platinum Credit Card are the lack of rewards and the low credit limit. If you’re looking to use this card as your main credit card, you’re not really going to get much out of it besides establishing a consistent credit history.
For some credit card users who are just starting their credit history, this might be just fine. But if you’re a seasoned credit card holder, it might benefit you to look into options with rewards like cash back or travel points.
The other potential issue is the low credit limit. Again, if you’re just using this card as part of your strategy to build your credit, it may not be a big deal.
This is especially true if you make the first five payments on time and successfully increase your credit limit.
Another drawback is the high-interest rate. This isn’t a great card to carry a high balance on or max out the limit, so if you choose this credit card, make sure you’re paying the balance in full each month.
Otherwise, you risk creating a disastrous financial situation for yourself and watching your credit score dip.
Capital One® Platinum Credit Card Credit-building Details
After five months of on-time payments, your credit limit may increase after an official account review. If you don’t max out your new higher credit limit, your credit utilization ratio will be lower, an important factor that goes into your credit score.
Just so we’re on the same page here, your credit utilization is defined as the amount of credit you’re actually using compared to the total available credit available. The lower your utilization, the higher the likelihood of a credit score bump.
Capital One® Platinum Credit Card Fees
Planning international travel generally means planning out what cards to use since some carry high foreign transaction fees when you swipe them aboard.
The Capital One® Platinum Credit Card, however, has no foreign transaction fee, so you can make international purchases without an extra surprise cost tacked on. If you choose to get a cash advance, you’ll be charged $10 or 3% on the advance, whichever is more.
Late payments will set you back up to $39. But there’s no penalty APR and no returned payment fee. Of course, it’s good practice to avoid making late payments even if there is no penalty.
Practicing good financial habits over time can boost your credit score.
Is the Capital One® Platinum Credit Card Right for You?
Before applying for this card, consider the financial effect and see if it’s a good fit for you. Here are two common reasons you might apply for this card:
- Building your credit. This card has a $0 annual fee, so it can be a good starter card. If you pay off your balances in full and on time, this card can help you build credit efficiently and effectively.
- Balance transfer. Though this card has no balance transfer fees, you should take a look at the card’s terms to understand what interest rates you’re subject to. If the APR is higher than your current APR, a balance transfer may not make financial sense.
Alternatives to Capital One® Platinum Credit Card
The Capital One® Platinum Credit Card’s biggest drawback is the lack of rewards, which is actually common in the building-credit category of cards. That said, there are secured cards that do offer rewards — you’ll just need to make a security deposit.
Discover it® Secured offers 2% cash back for restaurants and gas (capped at $1,000 of combined spending each quarter), 1% on all else, and doubles all cash back earned in the first year.
Cardholders must make a refundable security deposit of at least $200.
The Petal Visa® Credit Card is a unique credit card designed for building credit that doesn’t require a security deposit.
You’ll earn 1% cash back on all purchases in the beginning, but that rate will jump to 1.25% after six months of on-time payments, and up to 1.5% after 12 months of on-time payments.
1. Does the Capital One Platinum Credit Card Have Rewards?
The Capital One Platinum Credit Card does not offer a rewards program.
2. Credit Score Is Needed for the Capital One Platinum Credit Card?
The Capital One Platinum Credit Card is designed for average, fair or limited credit, so you may need a FICO credit score of at least 580 to qualify. But it’s possible you’ll be approved with a lower score.
3. Do I get any special benefits from this card?
Yes. This credit card lets you enjoy an array of Platinum Mastercard® benefits such as extended warranty; auto rental insurance; travel accident insurance; 24-hour roadside assistance; 24-hour travel assistance services and price protection.
Whether you’re just starting out or you’re working hard to build your credit, using a credit card responsibly can help you establish and build credit. Once approved for a card, it’s best to make full payments on time and keep your credit utilization low.
If your goal is to build credit and have a hassle-free card, the Capital One® Platinum Credit Card could be a good fit. It’s all about understanding your goals for a credit card before you apply.
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