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INSTANT DECISION CREDIT CARDS

Instant decisions on credit cards  

Compare instant decision cards from across the market

MoneySuperMarket works with a range of household-name credit card providers, including

company logo for Amexcompany logo for Tesco bankcompany logo for Capital Onecompany logo for MBNAcompany logo for Virgin moneycompany logo for barclayscompany logo for Santander

What's an instant decision credit card?

When you apply for a credit card online you’ll often get a very quick decision – particularly if you’ve got a good or excellent credit score. You might even be pre-approved for a card – so you know you’ve got a strong chance of getting the card deal you see. This can give you speedy access to credit when you need it.

Searching for a new credit card with MoneySuperMarket is quick and easy. We’ll show you card deals to suit your needs and your chances of being accepted.

Know where you stand with a pre-approved credit card

Our Eligibility Checker shows you the credit cards you're most likely to be accepted for, protecting your credit score by showing you only the cards that are right for you.

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    Accurate results

    We’ll ask you a set of questions to rate your chance of approval giving you a score out of 10 for each card 

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    Apply with confidence

    You’ll be shown your eligibility before you apply, so you know if you have a high chance of acceptance

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    Guaranteed rates

    You’ll see which cards you’re most likely to get and their features, so you won’t have any nasty surprises down the line

What do I need to get a decision on a credit card?

It’s easy to apply for a credit card in the UK, but you’ll need to provide a few personal details and there are certain eligibility criteria you’ll have to meet, such as:

  • Evidence you’re aged 18 or over

  • A UK resident

  • Earn more than £7,500 per year

  • Your address history

  • Date of birth

  • Nationality

What are the easiest cards to get?

Credit cards that are more likely to offer instant approval are those with wider eligibility criteria, such as credit builder credit cards

Credit builder cards tend to offer lower credit limits and higher interest rates, but if you keep up with your monthly repayments they can be an excellent way of building up your credit score.

MoneySuperMarket’s free credit card eligibility checker tool can work out how likely you are to get instant acceptance on a particular card – without harming your credit score.

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Improve your chances of getting an instant decision

Your credit score is the single biggest factor that determines what type of credit card you’re offered. There are plenty of ways to improve your credit score, including:

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    Get on the electoral roll

    Registering to vote can give your credit score an immediate boost. Our data shows people on the electoral roll have, on average, a credit score that is 35 points higher.

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    Pay your bills on time

    Missing a debt repayment can have a big detrimental effect on your credit score so set up direct debits to avoid missing payments.

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    Reduce outstanding debts

    By lowering the amount of your borrowing relative to your available credit limit you could boost your credit rating.

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    Don't make lots of credit applications

    Applying for lots of credit cards in a short space of time can damage your credit score. It gives the impression to potential lenders that you’re desperate for credit.

Get an instant decision on credit cards with MoneySuperMarket

If you are looking for a great deal credit card the next step is to use the MoneySuperMarket Eligibility Checker to see what cards are available – and your chances of approval.

  • Tell us about yourself

    We’ll ask you a handful of simple questions about you and your financial circumstances, and what you need from a credit card

  • We browse the market

    We’ll sift through dozens of credit card offers from across the market, and then show you the cards we think will suit you best

  • Pick the card you want

    You’ll be shown a range of credit cards, which you’ll then be able to sort according to APR, features and your chances of being approved

 

You can speed up the process by applying for a credit card online rather than through the post. But once you’ve been approved, you have to wait for your credit card to arrive. 

It’s a good idea to check your credit file before applying for a card. This way you can correct any mistakes on your file, which could affect or delay your application.

 

Approval for any credit card depends on your credit rating, and there’s no credit card that’s guaranteed to approve any applicant. However, the eligibility criteria for bad-credit credit cards is wider, so this might be your best option if your credit history isn’t perfect.

 

A rejection can harm your credit score. When you apply for a credit card the lender performs a ‘hard search’ on your credit file and this ‘footprint’ can reduce your score. This could make it more difficult to be accepted if you then go on to apply for another card.

If you’re looking to access credit quickly, getting an instant decision on a card can help, but you’ll also want to know how quickly you can access that credit.  Some instant credit cards allow customers to use their card right away by issuing a card number that can be added to a digital wallet and used with apps such as Apple Pay, Samsung Pay, or Google Pay. Not all credit cards work this way though, and for others you’ll have to wait for the card to arrive in the post.

 

Once you’ve been approved, credit cards usually take between seven and 10 days to arrive through the post. With some credit cards you won’t have to wait for the physical card to arrive, but you’ll be able to add a virtual card number to your digital wallet and use it immediately.

 

You cannot get a credit card without the lender performing a check on your credit file and score.

 

APR stands for Annual Percentage Rate and it represents how much it’ll cost to borrow money on a particular credit card. It’s calculated by taking into account:

  • Your interest rate
  • Additional fees and charges.

However, you might see the term ‘representative APR’ on adverts for credit cards – this means that the interest rate quoted only has to be offered to at least 51% of successful applicants, so it may not be the actual rate you get when you apply.

Credit card providers can change interest rates at any time, so it’s always a good idea to stay on top of your credit balance. If you have a 0% offer on your credit card, this will only be for a set number of months so you should make sure you clear your balance before it ends, or transfer your remaining balance to another 0% card.

You can apply for credit cards online, either using MoneySuperMarket or going directly to the provider, or by calling them up or through the post. You can also stop by your bank or building society branch and apply in person.

First consider what you want to use the credit card for – cards come with different features that are useful for different purposes.

If you have a large purchase coming up, you might want to spread the cost with a 0% purchase card, if you fly a lot you might want an airmiles card, and if you want to transfer a balance to avoid interest payments, a balance transfer card could be ideal.

By comparing on MoneySuperMarket, you’ll be able to see a list of credit cards, so you can browse at will and choose which one suits you best.

You’ll get a cooling off period of two weeks from when you receive your card, and you’ll have 30 days to pay off your balance. You can cancel by contacting your provider, either by post, phone, online, or in-branch.

However, if you want to cancel your credit card after the cooling off period, your account balance generally must be zero.

Your credit score is a number that represents your creditworthiness to credit lenders, based on an analysis of your credit history (your history of borrowing and paying back credit).

The higher your score, the more likely you are to be accepted for future credit applications. If your score is low, there are ways to improve it. MoneySuperMarket’s Credit Monitor lets you check your credit score for free and gives you tips on how to improve it.

A soft credit search is a way of finding out which credit cards you’re most likely to be accepted for without your credit score being affected. This is usually done via a website such as MoneySuperMarket.

A hard search on your credit report is a mark left by a lender who has assessed your credit rating after you have applied for a credit card. Too many hard searches (often through multiple applications) may make lenders think you are desperate for credit so it’s best to limit your applications for credit in a short space of time.

If you have a bad credit rating or you don’t have a credit history because you’ve never borrowed before, you might not qualify for the very best credit card deals. However, some credit cards are designed specifically for those who need to build up their credit score. Just be aware they often come with low credit limits and high interest rates.

However, if you use this type of card sensibly and always pay off your balance in full, you can improve your credit score so you’ll eventually be eligible for better credit cards.

If you miss a repayment on your credit card balance, you likely have to pay a penalty fee. What’s more, if you have any type of promotional offer with your card, such as an interest-free deal, this may be cancelled, and a missed payment may have a negative effect on your credit score.

If you get rejected for a credit card, this will leave a mark on your credit report and could lead to further rejections in the future. It’s a good idea to use MoneySuperMarket’s Eligibility Checker to see how likely you are to be accepted for a card before applying to get it, and it won’t affect your credit score.

You might be able to get more credit from your provider if you prove yourself to be a responsible borrower by repaying on time and never missing payments. Once you’ve established a good credit history, you might be successful when asking for a higher credit limit.

Unlike many loans and mortgages, you generally won’t be charged for making early repayments on your credit card – which means it’s a good way to get ahead of your balance.

You can’t get joint credit cards in the same way as bank accounts and mortgages, but you can add additional users to your own credit cards. However, you should remember that it’s still the primary cardholder’s responsibility to pay off the balance.

The Consumer Credit Act was established in 1974, and under Section 75 the credit card lender is jointly responsible with the retailer or supplier for any goods or services you purchase with your credit card.

This means if those products are faulty, or if there was any contract breach or misrepresentation on the retailer’s part, you can claim from your credit card company as well as the retailer.

However, you can’t recover money from both sides, so it’s useful for when the retailer has gone bust or they won’t respond to your communication. You should be aware the purchase value must be more than £100 and not more than £30,000 for you to be able to claim.

You can cancel your credit card by contacting your lender, by phone, email, online, post, or in person if they have a local branch.

If you’re applying for a credit card, you might be able to find a better deal if you look through offers from different providers before taking one out. With MoneySuperMarket you’ll be able to search through multiple credit cards and compare them by a range of factors, including their interest rates and any benefits and rewards they come with.

All you need to do is answer a few questions about yourself and your financial situation, and our Eligibility Checker will show your chances of being accepted for different credit cards. This won’t affect your credit score, so you can run a check without any worries.

Once you know which card you want, you can normally apply by phone, online, or in person if the provider has a high street branch. However, when you do apply, the provider will usually run a hard credit check – which will show up on your credit report – to confirm whether they’ll give you the card. If you’re accepted they’ll tell you your credit limit and interest rate, and soon you’ll be ready to start using your credit card.

MoneySuperMarket gives you lots of clever ways to save a lot, by doing very little.

  • Take control of your credit score by checking and improving it for free with Credit Monitor
  • Never overpay again with Energy Monitor, our energy monitoring service
  • Over 50 ways to Get Money Calm

So how do we make our money? In a nutshell, when you use us to buy a product, we get a reward from the company you’re buying from.

But you might have other questions. Do we provide access to all the companies operating in a given market? Do we have commercial relationships or ownership ties that might make us feature one company above another?

We commit to providing you with clear and informative answers on all points such as this, so we have gathered the relevant information on this page.