If you have poor credit, it’s essential to find ways to improve it. The fastest way to do this is by practicing fiscal responsibility in a way that will be reported to the three major credit bureaus.
Sure, you could start spending wisely, but if you’re being responsible with cash, there’s nothing positive going into your credit history to outweigh the negatives.
This means that a credit card that reports to the three credit bureaus can be instrumental in speeding up your credit improvement process. Many people with poor credit find themselves in the impossible situation of needing to build up positive credit, but with their bad credit, they cannot get approved for a credit card from a financial institution.
One option is a secured credit card. This is a type of card where you put down a deposit, and your credit history doesn’t factor in as much. But what if you can’t afford to put down a deposit of hundreds of dollars?
This is where you may want to consider an unsecured credit card that has been specifically designed for people with poor credit. One such card is the Indigo Platinum Mastercard.
Let’s dig into the specifics, so you can decide if this card is right for you.
What is the Indigo Platinum Mastercard?
The Indigo Platinum Mastercard is a credit card option for those with poor credit.
Since the Indigo Platinum Mastercard is not a secured credit card, no deposit is required to open an account.
However, the card does have an annual fee, a high-interest rate, and a low credit limit. Therefore, consumers will need to be savvy and thoughtful about how they use this card if they want it to help their credit situation and not hinder it further.
You don’t only need to make payments on time; you also need to keep your credit utilization rate low, which can be tricky when your credit limit is only a few hundred dollars, and a large chunk of that is lost to the annual fee.
Still, with smart planning and fiscal responsibility, you can improve your credit score with this card. They report to all three credit bureaus, so you can raise your credit score and avoid interest charges if you keep your credit use low and pay your bill in full every month.
To apply, you simply go to indigocard.com and click ‘prequalify now.’ All you have to put in is some basic information, and the site states that you’ll be pre-approved in mere seconds. The pre-approval will consider your credit history, and an annual fee will be based on this.
Indigo Credit Card Pros and Cons
Pros of the Indigo Platinum Mastercard
- The card is designed for people with low credit scores. Even if your credit score is relatively low, there is still a good chance you will be approved.
- Responsible use of the card helps to build a positive credit history. Every month when you pay your bill on time, this will be reported to the three credit bureaus.
- No deposit is needed. This is truly what distinguishes an unsecured card like Indigo Platinum from a secured credit card. While you do get your deposit back when you close a secured credit card (and you do not get the annual fees of an unsecured card returned), if you don’t have the money available for a deposit, then a secured card designed for those with low credit scores is the next best thing.
- A convenient app and online portal make it easy for you to keep track of your Indigo Platinum Mastercard account.
- The card comes in a variety of fun and unique designs.
- Prequalifying credit check for the card doesn’t hurt your credit score, and the application process is simple.
- The card is accepted everywhere that Mastercard is accepted, and it comes with all of the benefits of a Mastercard, including identity monitoring, Mastercard ID Theft Protection, and the option to sign up for free credit monitoring with TransUnion.
Cons of the Indigo Platinum Mastercard
- There is a high fixed interest rate of 24.9%.
- There are high fees. Depending on your credit history, your annual fee could be as high as $99. There are other options to build credit that won’t cost you a good deal of money over time.
- There is a very low credit limit of only $300. Couple this with the high annual fee, and you don’t have much credit to work with. If your annual fee is $99, that leaves you with only $201 of available credit. This can severely impact your credit utilization rate and hurt your credit score rather than help it.
- There are no rewards or perks. While many other cards have a perks system, such as offering points, miles, or cash back, the Indigo Platinum card doesn’t have any. This is a very bare-bones card. If you are looking for better options, there are better credit cards available, but would require a higher credit score.
- This card has a high volume of negative customer reviews. This is something to consider, but it’s also worth noting that unhappy people are always more likely to leave a review than satisfied customers. Most poor reviews are complaints about customer service and mix-ups with payments (such as card payments being declined or auto-pay being mistakenly canceled). Other customers have voiced displeasure at not being able to increase their credit limit, even after using the card responsibly for a significant amount of time.
Rates and Fees
As we’ve already covered, one of the most significant drawbacks to the Indigo Platinum Mastercard is how costly it is. Between the high fixed interest rate and the variable annual fee, this can be an expensive way to build credit.
The fixed interest rate is 24.9%, and while the annual fee varies based on your credit history, it can be as high as $99.
Some other rates to take notice of include:
- Interest rate of 29.9% on cash advances
- Interest rate of 29.9% on penalty fees
Other fees to take notice of include:
- Foreign transaction fees of 1% of the transaction (in U.S dollars)
- Cash advance fee of $5 or 5% of the transaction (whichever is greater, although this fee is capped at a maximum of $100).
- Late payments fee of up to $40
- Return payment fee of up to $40
- Over limit fee of up to $40
Is the Indigo Credit Card Right for You?
If you haven’t been able to get approved for other cards and need to build credit, the Indigo Platinum Mastercard might be a good option for you. For example, if you can’t secure funds for a deposit on a secured credit card, this could be the best choice for you.
If you can swing a deposit, a secured credit card will likely cost you far less in the long run. Many secured credit cards take a deposit in lieu of a high annual fee.
The Indigo card is best for those who have had trouble getting approved for other unsecured cards and who can’t put down a deposit for a secured card. Other unsecured cards have more perks and come with fewer fees and a higher credit limit. However, these cards often require a better credit history than Indigo Platinum Mastercard does.
If your credit is poor and you’re ready to use the card responsibly to avoid most interest and fees, this card may work out decently for you. With payments made on time and a low debt to credit ratio, you can improve your credit score, as Indigo Platinum Mastercard reports to all three credit bureaus.
8 Tips to Improve your Credit
Since the Indigo credit card is designed to help improve your credit, we also recommend practicing some financial best practices in conjunction with using your Indigo credit card to help your FICO score increase as fast as possible.
1. Check Your Credit Report
The first step to improving your credit scores is regularly checking your credit report for errors, incorrect information, and any accounts that may have been opened without your knowledge.
This will help you catch anything suspicious right away so that you can take the appropriate measures. In addition, you are allowed to receive one free credit report each year from AnnualCreditReport.com, and it’s a good idea to regularly check this website for any updates or changes that may need your attention.
2. Track Your Spending
Tracking all of your spending is also important but should be done in conjunction with checking over your credit report so that you can get an accurate assessment of your credit situation.
If there’s a large balance on any one account, it might be a good idea to pay down the balance and keep it low until you’re able to improve that account’s credit score. This will help lower your credit utilization ratio if that number is too high.
3. Dispute Inaccurate Information
If you find anything on your credit report that’s inaccurate, it’s important to send a credit dispute letter to the credit reporting company as soon as possible.
Make sure that you keep track of all communication and put everything in writing to prove if necessary. You can include supporting documentation such as receipts or bills to prove that what you’re saying is true.
4. Pay your Bills on Time
Always make sure that you pay all of your bills on time, including credit cards, loans, and any other type of recurring payment.
If you can only afford to make the minimum monthly payments, it still makes an impact. A positive payment history makes up 35% of your credit score, so it’s important to keep track of when these accounts are due to avoid late fees or an account being sent to a collection agency.
5. Fix Past Due Accounts and Collections
Any past due accounts or collections on your credit report can damage your credit score, but they might also affect you more severely the longer they’re left unpaid.
As mentioned, payment history is one of the most important factors when it comes to improving your credit scores, and paying down any balances as quickly as possible is an excellent way to keep a clean credit report.
6. Improve your Credit Utilization Ratio
Credit utilization ratio refers to the amount of credit you have available to use versus how much you use. You can calculate this number by taking the total credit limit across all of your accounts, dividing it by the current balance, and multiplying that number by 100%.
You’ll want to keep your utilization low. A utilization ratio of 30% or higher is considered a bad thing by most credit reporting companies, so it’s a good idea to keep this number below that.
This can be difficult if you have a large credit limit on one account and smaller limits on the rest, but it’s important not to max out your credit cards.
Pro Tip: Besides paying off your debt each month, consider asking your current credit card company for a line of credit increase. This will lower your debt to credit ratio and can help improve your credit score.
7. Don’t Close Old Accounts
Another tip to improving your credit score is not closing any old accounts you may have had before. Even though some accounts may no longer be in use, they still show up on your credit report and can help boost your accounts’ average age.
8. Have the Right Credit Mix
Having the right credit mix is another important tip to improving your credit score.
Credit reporting companies look at your type of credit accounts to see what’s most popular with you, which helps indicate how responsible you are with your debt. When it comes to types of loans, having a variety can be beneficial.
For example, if you have 15 credit accounts in total, it’s good to have at least one installment loan, two revolving lines of credit, and one mortgage or auto loan.
Indigo Credit Card FAQs
Where can I use my Indigo credit card?
Your Indigo credit card can be used anywhere Mastercard is accepted. This includes gas stations, grocery stores and online purchases.
How do I make a payment on my Indigo credit card?
You can make a payment on your Indigo credit card by mail, phone, or online.
What is the interest rate on the Indigo credit card?
The interest rate on the Indigo credit card is 24.9%.
Is there an annual fee for the Indigo credit card?
The yearly fee for the Indigo credit card is up to $99, depending on your credit history.
Is there a foreign transaction fee for the Indigo credit card?
Yes, the foreign transaction fee for the Indigo credit card is 1% of the transaction (in U.S dollars).
What are some of the other fees associated with the Indigo credit card?
Some of the other fees associated with the Indigo credit card include a cash advance fee, late payment fee, return payment fee, and over-limit fee.
The cash advance fee is $5 or 5% of the transaction (whichever is greater, although this fee is capped at a maximum of $100). The late payment fee is up to $40, the return payment fee is $40, and the over-limit fee is $40.
Can I increase my credit line on the Indigo credit card?
One of the limits of this card is that there is no credit limit increase. This card is designed for people who are working on rebuilding their credit, so the limit is low to help you avoid getting in over your head.
What is the minimum credit score needed for the Indigo credit card?
Because this card caters to people that have far less than perfect credit, you can get approved even if your have bad credit scores score is in the 400s.
Wrapping It Up
If you need to improve your credit score, there are several different ways to do this, but if your score is already low, your options for financing may be limited. There are some drawbacks to the Indigo Platinum Mastercard. Although some (like the annual fee and low credit limit) can’t be avoided, others can be mitigated with smart spending habits and planning.
By paying your balance in full each month, you can avoid accruing hefty interest fees and after several months of responsible card usage, you may be able to use your newly improved credit score to graduate to another card.
In short, while it isn’t the flashiest credit card and there are a few things to watch out for, it may be just the tool to get you that initial credit boost you need to get approved for other financing options down the line.
With any financial tool, you always want to take the time to weigh the pros and cons, read through customer reviews, consider your financial situation and what you’re hoping to gain, and compare it to other tools on the market.
Every card, secured or unsecured, comes with benefits and drawbacks, so whether or not a card will work for you depends on various factors that you’ll want to take the time to fully consider.
We hope you found our Indigo Platinum Mastercard review helpful. If you’re interested in learning more or applying, click the button below.
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