General Credit Card Frequently Asked Questions

What is the annual percentage rate or APR?

The annual percentage rate (APR) is the annual rate charged by a lender, such as a credit card company, for borrowing money. With a credit card, consumers can avoid paying interest by paying their balance in full each month.

By law, credit card issuers are required to disclose the annual percentage rate and whether it is fixed or variable. A fixed APR is one that remains the same, regardless of outside factors. With a variable APR, the rate can change, such as the result of certain economic indicators.

What is a grace period?

A grace period, also known as a free period, provides the opportunity to avoid finance charges by paying off your balance before the due date. It’s important to know if your credit card has a grace period, as this will help you understand when you need to pay your bill in order to avoid a finance charge.

What is an annual fee?

An annual fee is exactly what it sounds like: this is a fee you pay for nothing more than the ability to use the credit card. Generally speaking, annual fees range from $25 on the low end to $500 on the high end. Not all credit cards have an annual fee, so it’s important to consider your options.

What will happen if I make a late payment?

It’s never a good idea to make a late credit card payment, but there are times when life gets in the way. If this happens, your issuer may charge a late payment fee. Also, depending on the terms and conditions of your card, a late payment could result in an APR increase.

How do I qualify for a credit card?

Every credit card offer has its own eligibility requirements, but some details are standard across the board. You must be a United States citizen or permanent resident alien, and a minimum of 18 years old with a steady income. Also, the creditor will review your credit score and history to determine if you would make a good customer.

Does applying for a credit card impact my credit report?

Yes. Every credit card application triggers an inquiry, which remains on your report for one year. If there are 10 or more inquiries on your report during a six month period, it may raise some flags regarding your risk as a customer.

What if I am turned down for a credit card?

As frustrating as this may be, there is a silver lining. You can ask the issuer why you were turned down, as to better understand what went wrong. From there, you can use the information to apply for a credit card that is better suited to your financial situation.

What is a secured credit card?

A secured credit card is one that requires a cash deposit in order to guarantee future payments. If you default on payments, the issuer will keep your deposit. Secured credit cards are most common among people with no credit or those with a low credit score.

What is a cash advance?

In addition to using a credit card in a traditional manner, you can also request a cash advance. This is nothing more than cash provided to you by your credit card issuer. Most credit card companies charge a cash advance fee, which can be assessed per transaction or by a percentage of the amount borrowed.

Is a lender or loan provider?

Neither one. is not a lender or a loan provider, but instead a company that strives to provide high quality information on the many types of financial products available to consumers.

What fees will I be charged for a loan?

What is the APR for a loan?

What happens if I make a late payment?

What is the renewal policy?

At, we don’t set the fees, rates, or terms and conditions associated with any financial product you find on the site. When you click on an offer, you are taken directly to the lender’s website, at which point you can learn more about the requirements and terms and conditions. You are not obligated to accept any offer on our website, and you have the right to leave at any time.

What is the difference between bad, good, and excellent credit from a lender’s point of view?

While it can vary from one lender to the next, here’s some basic guidelines: bad credit is 600 and below, fair credit is 600 to 650, good credit is 650 to 725, and excellent credit is 725 and above.

Does canceling a credit card affect my credit score?

Yes. When you cancel a credit card, it can harm your score as your debt-to-credit ratio will be impacted. Also, since your ratio appears more risky, it can harm your ability to secure a loan.

How much do you pay every month/year for access to a credit card?

With a good or above credit score, you shouldn’t have any problem finding a credit card with no monthly or annual fee. However, if you have poor credit or are interested in a “top tier” credit card, you may be required to pay an annual fee.

How do I apply for a credit card?

Once you view and compare several credit cards, you can choose the one that makes the most sense for you. From there, click the appropriate offer, complete the application, and wait for a decision. It really is that simple!

Is it safe to apply for a credit card online?

In today’s world, applying for a credit card online is the safest method of doing so. In addition to credit card applications equipped with SSL technology, every credit card issuer has its own safety and security measures in place to keep your information confidential. Best yet, when you apply online, you will receive a response in a more timely manner.
How long does it take to receive a response after submitting an application?

While some credit card offers guarantee a response within 60 seconds, most issuers will inform you of their decision within one to two weeks. You can expect to receive the decision online or via mail.

What is the best way to opt out of credit card solicitations?

If you’re tired of receiving credit card offers via mail, you can call 1-888-567-8688 to opt out. You can also do so online by visiting

I have a question about my credit card. Who can I call for help? does not provide any type of customer service in regards to the offers listed on its website. Any questions regarding your credit card account should be directed to your issuer. We have compiled a list of credit card issuers on our Customer Support Page.

Does issue credit cards?

No. We don’t issue credit cards, but instead provide information that allows consumers to confidently compare offers and make a decision. With information on hundreds of credit cards, you’ll have the knowledge necessary to make the right selection.

What type of information will I need to supply when applying for a credit card?

This can vary from one offer to the next, but typically includes: name, address, Social Security number, date of birth, annual income, and miscellaneous financial information.