Check your credit score today

See your credit score and browse a huge range of credit cards. It’s free, forever.

Check your score

What credit score do you need to get a credit card?

Is there a magic number?

Photo by Justin Little

Check your credit score today

See your credit score and browse a huge range of credit cards. It’s free, forever.

Check your score

There’s no magic credit score you need to hit for your credit card application to be approved. But the higher your score, the better the chances your application will be successful.

The first step is to understand what your credit score is. Credit scores are calculated by credit reporting bodies, such as Experian. Your Experian credit score is between 0 and 1000. It’s ranked across five categories: excellent, very good, good, fair and below average. Your credit score takes into account your lending history, your track record paying monthly repayments like your credit card bill, as well as any bad debts or defaults.

Generally, credit card providers prefer to lend to borrowers with a credit score that’s ranked as fair or higher. So ideally, your score will be above 550 points. You can access your free credit score instantly by going to ClearScore.

There are steps you can take to improve the chances of your credit card being approved. Paying off your debts on time and in full is one.

But your credit score can go down if you apply for a credit card and your application is rejected or even approved. So think carefully before applying for credit and only apply for a loan or credit card if you genuinely need one. Also remember to space out your applications. This is because applying for multiple credit cards in a short space of time is likely to also reduce your credit score.

Whether your credit card application is approved will also depend on the type of card you apply for. In most cases, you will need a higher score if you apply for a credit card with a high limit. This is particularly the case for platinum or black cards, which normally have a minimum credit limit of $15,000. So if you are worried about being approved, it may be an idea to apply for a card with a lower limit.

Your credit score and report can be one of the most important factors a credit card provider will take into account when assessing your creditworthiness. But it’s not the only factor. The provider will also look at other information such as your income and expenses, as well as the number of dependents you have and the length of time you have been in your job.

Go to Clearscore to find out more about the different credit cards that are available and to access your free credit score and report.


Lucy has a wealth of personal finance knowledge, and is one of our in-house experts.