Instant Approval Credit Cards

Some credit card companies market their cards as “instant approval credit cards.” The idea is that you can fill out a credit card online application and find out immediately whether you are approved and what your credit limit will be. The card issuers always reserve the right to change the credit limit once they’ve completed their underwriting process, but at least you get an answer right away. Having applied for many credit cards online, I thought most of them gave you a response within about 60 seconds. At least I believed that until I get an email from a friend. Here’s what happened.

A few days ago, a good friend of mine emailed me that he had applied for a balance transfer credit card from this site. By itself this didn’t surprise me. Credit card transfers can be a great way to get cash at zero or near zero percent interest. But it’s what he said next in his email that caught me attention: “I applied for IBERIABANK — it only took 15 minutes, more or less. After I finished the online application, I had to fax a recent pay stub. Fortunately, I have one. :-)” He had to fax a pay stub?!! Having applied online for many credit cards, never once had a card issuer asked me to fax proof of income.

As surprised as I was at the pay stub requirement, his next statement really floored me: “They claim it will take 30 days, which is going to run me close.” 30 days to get a credit card! Well, at this point I had to undertake an investigation, and in the process, learned quite a bit about credit card applications and how card issuers process them.

It turns out that certain credit cards require applicants to fax proof of income. This can be in the form of a pay stub, as in my friend’s case, a W-2 or even a copy of your tax returns. After that, these card companies can take up to 30 days to evaluate your credit history and either approve or decline your application. Of the credit card offers you’ll find on this site, two card issuers fall into this category: IberiaBank credit cards and Pulaski credit cards.

Both offer credit cards with extremely competitive terms. For example, they both offer a 0% APR balance transfer for 6 months with no balance transfer fee. And they both offer extremely low interest rates, at least compared to most other credit cards. The IberiaBank Visa Classic, for example, offers an interest rate on purchases that currently is just 6.25%. As you would expect, these credit cards require excellent credit. So while you can get really good terms with both of these card issuers, the application process is more tedious, and you may have to wait up to 30 days to get a decision.

If you are looking to get a credit card faster, you’ll need to turn to an instant approval card. In my experience, many credit cards will give you a decision instantly when you apply online, but not all card issuers market their credit cards as instant or fast approval. Here’s how it works. After you submit your online credit card application, the card issuer makes an initial determination based on, among other things, your credit score. Typically, a decision is then emailed to you in about 60 seconds. There are situations that arise where even an instant approval card needs to take more time to evaluate an applicant. But most of the time, you get a decision right away.

With that, here are several credit cards that typically issue a decision very quickly:

UPside Visa® Prepaid Card
UPside Visa® Prepaid Card
Apply Now...
  • Similar to a checking account with a Visa prepaid card
  • Save up to $220 compared with other cards, the first year alone
  • 100% approval with no credit check and no activation fee
  • $0.99 monthly fee if $500 is loaded each month. (Only $4.95 otherwise)
  • Free Direct Deposit from employers or deposit cash at 50,000 retailers
  • Write personal checks online: easy to pay rent or other bills
  • Earn 1,500 cash back reward points for you first direct deposit load
  • Optional companion card available, as if you had a joint checking
Intro APR Intro APR
Period
Regular
APR
Annual
Fee
Balance
Transfer
Credit
Needed
N/A N/A N/A up to $4.95 monthly fee N/A No Credit Check

[showoff template=cc_box offer=ncs22555101]
Account Now Gold Visa® Prepaid Card
Account Now Gold Visa® Prepaid Card
Apply Now...
  • Get Paid up to 2 days faster with Free Direct Deposit † - get your paycheck or benefits checks in your card account and access your funds up to 2 days earlier than payday.
  • 100% Guaranteed Approval* - upon successful ID verification. No Credit check.∞ No ChexSystems check. And no existing bank account required.
  • $0 Activation Fee. No Minimum Balance. No Overdraft fees.
  • $15 Bonus§ with recurring Direct Deposit. Never pay to cash your paychecks and get your pay faster.
  • Use it everywhere Visa Debit cards are accepted and pay anyone with PayAnyone Bill Pay. Shop online, rent a car, pay your rent and more.
  • Easy Mobile Account Access and Text Alerts. Get your account balance, transaction details sent to your phone within seconds
  • BBB Accredited A+ Company. Excellent Customer Service.
Intro APR Intro APR
Period
Regular
APR
Annual
Fee
Balance
Transfer
Credit
Needed
N/A N/A N/A up to $9.95 monthly fee N/A No Credit Check

Published or Updated: April 13, 2014
About Rob Berger

Rob founded the Dough Roller in 2007. A litigation attorney in the securities industry, he lives in Northern Virginia with his wife, their two teenagers, and the family mascot, a shih tzu named Sophie.

Comments

  1. Howdy, i read your blog occasionally and i own
    a similar one and i was just wondering if you get
    a lot of spam responses? If so how do you prevent
    it, any plugin or anything you can recommend? I get so much lately it’s driving me mad so any help is very much appreciated.

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