How Long Does It Take to Get a Credit Card

A credit card is essential when borrowing money from various financial companies. Your card issuer usually gives you the card so you can borrow money when in need. The cards allow you to borrow in a recurring manner in that you can borrow again and again once you repay your debt. You can apply for your credit card online or at a physical branch. But how long does it take to get a credit card?

We shall check the time taken to get a credit card once you make your application. The time varies from one card issuer to the other. Again, when you apply at a mortar-and-brick branch, you may get your card faster than when you apply online. However, an online card application is convenient and saves time that you could have wasted when lining up at a branch. 

You may get a secured or an unsecured credit card. The secured one is suitable for someone with no borrowing history. You only need to have a deposit amount to get your card. The more your deposit amount, the more your credit limit. On the other hand, unsecured credit cards require you to have a credit history. That means you have some credit scores that are among the determining factors for the kind of credit card you will get.

How to apply for a credit card

how long does it take to get a credit card

You can apply for a credit card by filling out an application form at a branch or online. You may need to have a checking account before getting a credit card. However, that is not a necessity for most card issuers. A secured credit card requires one to deposit money for security and may require an account whereby you will have your deposit locked as you use your card.

Before applying for a credit card, you should check on various factors such as transaction fees, cash advance fees, ATM withdrawal fees, late payment fees, and so on. You should also check the borrowing limits offered and the cards with higher limits. After getting the right card, you can submit your application appropriately.

Once the card issuer gets your application, they can check whether you qualify for the card and notify you. After that, they can send the card to your place or request you to fetch it at their branch. When the card arrives, it will be inactive. You will therefore need to activate it to start transacting. If you collect it at your branch, you may activate it in the branch. For the ones delivered to your address, you will need to activate them online.

When activating your card, you should submit the card number, the expiry date, and the security code.

How long does it take to get a credit card

The time taken to get a credit card varies from one card issuer to another. Also, the time taken to receive your new card depends on the type of credit card you applied for. Again, there are potential delays in the mail service. You can get your card in 10 to 14 days for most credit cards. 

Requesting a unique design could take longer as they try to customize the card to match your preferences. Again, the time may be shortened if you opt for “rush” delivery and pay an additional fee for the exceptional service.

By the way, credit card issuers should respond within 30 days as per the law. However, online applications may get approval within a few minutes. Again, you may know your card status in minutes if you apply by phone or at a branch.

How long does it take to get a replacement card

Sometimes you may lose your card and need to replace it to continue enjoying various services. That is, if you misplaced your card or someone stole it from you. The replacement cards may attract some shipping fees, while you may get a free card shipment in other cases. Usually, the replacement cards arrive within seven days.

However, if you do not receive your card within 10-14 business days yet, everything was approved. You should take steps to check on the situation. You may need to call your card issuer to know about the issue causing the delay.

Also, if you live around the area, the best step will be to visit your branch and inquire about the matter. Your shipping company might have misplaced the package and just kept quiet. In such a case, you can apply for another card and maybe get a temporary card from your issuer while waiting for the other card.

How to use a credit card

There are various ways you can use a credit card. Once you get and activate your card, you can use it in the following ways.

1) Buy goods and services.

The main aim of getting a credit card is to use it to purchase goods and services. You can use the card online, which is accepted by providing the card details when checking out. You may also use the card at physical stores, tap or swipe to pay at the register.

2) Withdraw money at an ATM

A credit card allows you to withdraw money at an ATM, just as you can with a debit or prepaid card. The cards come with PINs, so you can easily get cash for your various needs. Not all the time, you will need to shop as there are other things you can do with your card. However, withdrawing money at an ATM may be costly as you have to part with cash advance fees.

3) Pay your bills

You can use your credit card to pay bills such as electricity, water, internet, etc. You may even set up a recurring payment schedule, so you do not have to remember to make payments now and then.

Bottom line

A credit card is essential for buying goods and services, paying bills, and withdrawing money at an ATM. The cards allow you to borrow money from your card issuer when needed. Depending on your credit history, you can get a secured or unsecured credit card. The cards allow you to borrow recurringly as long as you pay your bills. You can apply for your card online or at a branch.