5 Things to Know About the Credit One Platinum X5 Visa

It’s a decent pick for those with fair credit, but the high fee and lack of new cardholder perks should make those with good credit think twice.
Jaime Hanson
By Jaime Hanson 
Edited by Kenley Young

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If you’re a Credit One banking customer and have had good experiences with the brand, the Credit One Platinum X5 Visa might catch your eye as a solid way to earn rewards on spending. It’s the highest end of Credit One’s available cards, after all — and at first blush, earning 5% cash back on purchases seems attractive. Before you bank on brand loyalty to choose your next credit card, though, it’s worth thinking through your options. For customers with fair credit (scores of at least 630), the Credit One Platinum X5 Visa could be a decent, albeit slightly expensive, pick. But if you have good to excellent credit (scores of 690 or higher), you can easily get more value with a rewards card from a different issuer. Here’s what you need to know about the Credit One Platinum X5 Visa.

🤓Nerdy Tip

Credit One (not to be confused with Capital One) offers multiple versions of its "Platinum" card, including the Credit One Platinum E3 Visa, which has different features and terms. For more information on the E3, see our review here.

1. It earns 5% back in some useful categories ...

Chase Freedom Flex
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The Credit One Platinum X5 Visa lets you rack up 5% cash back in a few handy categories: gas, groceries and certain digital utilities like internet, cable, satellite TV and mobile phone services. But the 5% rate comes with a few restrictions. The grocery category, for example, applies only to full-service supermarkets. Smaller markets, big-box stores like Walmart and Target, and warehouse clubs like Costco and Sam’s are all excluded from the category. Plus, 5% earnings are capped at a $5,000 spending limit each calendar year. Once you hit that limit, all other spending earns just 1% back regardless of category.

Two popular $0-annual-fee cards — the Chase Freedom Flex℠ and the Discover it® Cash Back — each offer 5% cash back in quarterly bonus categories on up to $1,500 in combined spending each quarter. (Activation of bonus categories is required; all non-bonus-category spending earns 1% back.) That $1,500-per-quarter spending cap is higher than the cap imposed by the Credit One Platinum X5 — although unlike the X5, the Chase and Discover cards feature a rotating calendar of bonus categories that change each month.

Depending on your spending habits, you may welcome the lower-maintenance Credit One Platinum X5 and its fixed bonus categories.

2. ... But there’s a $95 annual fee

Mission Lane Cash Back Visa Credit Card
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You'll pay $95 a year to hold the Credit One Platinum X5 Visa, which is a relatively high cost given the card’s rewards and perks — or lack thereof. And keep in mind that the annual fee is charged immediately upon account opening, meaning it will count against your credit limit.

For example: The Credit One Platinum X5 comes with a minimum credit limit of $500. But since the $95 annual fee is assessed upfront, that means your effective credit limit could be as low as $405 until you pay your bill.

If you do some comparison shopping against other credit cards for fair or average credit, you’ll find that the Credit One Platinum X5’s fee runs at the high end of available options. In fact, several cards in this category offer decent rewards with no annual fee. The Mission Lane Cash Back Visa® Credit Card, for example, earns a flat 1.5% back with a $0 annual fee and no need to keep track of spending categories or caps.

And if you have excellent credit, even better opportunities abound. Remember the Chase Freedom Flex℠ and Discover it® Cash Back with their rotating 5% cash-back categories? Both of those cards come with an annual fee of $0.

3. There's also no sign-up bonus

Citi Custom Cash® Card
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Many major credit cards with a high annual fee offset that cost — at least for the first year — by offering an enticing sign-up bonus. That’s not the case for the Credit One Platinum X5, which features no welcome offer for new cardholders.

Again, the opportunity cost here depends on your credit scores. For applicants with fair credit, a juicy welcome offer tends to be harder to come by. But customers with good to excellent credit could do much better with, for example, the $0-annual-fee Citi Custom Cash® Card. You'll earn 5% cash back on up to $500 spent in your highest spending category per billing cycle (from a list of eligible options), and then 1% back on other purchases. But new cardholders are also eligible for a rich sign-up bonus: Earn $200 cash back after you spend $1,500 on purchases in the first 6 months of account opening. This bonus offer will be fulfilled as 20,000 ThankYou® Points, which can be redeemed for $200 cash back.

4. Don’t expect savings on interest, either

Wells Fargo Reflect® Card
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Some cards without a sign-up bonus instead offer savings to new cardholders in the form of an interest-free period for the first several months after account opening. But the Credit One Platinum X5 Visa doesn’t offer an intro APR period either.

Yet again, that's not uncommon among cards for fair credit, but it's still worth keeping in mind that the X5's ongoing APR on purchases, as of this writing, was close to 30%. That's much higher than average.

If you have good to excellent credit, you may be eligible for introductory APR offers of several months, which can help you finance a large purchase or transfer a balance. The Wells Fargo Reflect® Card, for instance, offers this promotional rate: 0% intro APR for 21 months from account opening on purchases and qualifying balance transfers, and then the ongoing APR of 18.24%, 24.74%, or 29.99% Variable APR.

Or, if you think you'll need to carry a balance month to month, you could consider a credit card from a regional bank or credit union, as they tend to have lower ongoing APRs.

5. Reward redemption options are limited

Chase Sapphire Preferred Credit Card
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The rewards you earn with the Credit One Platinum X5 Visa can be redeemed as statement credits or turned into gift cards, which are pretty straightforward options. If you’re a travel enthusiast, though, these options are pretty limiting. Credit One doesn’t offer any travel transfer partners, a feature common among higher-fee cards that can help rewards go much further.

You'd need good to excellent credit to qualify for the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card, for example. But while it also carries a $95 annual fee, it’s known among travel enthusiasts for transfer partnerships that can make each point earned that much more rewarding.

The bottom line: If you’re still building credit, already bank with Credit One, and prefer the simplicity of keeping all your financial accounts with one institution, the Credit One Platinum X5 Visa may be a decent choice. Just know that you’ll be paying a lot for what you get — and if you have good to excellent credit, you may be missing out on perks and rewards.

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