‘Path to Apple Card’ Aims to Guide Rejected Applicants to Eventual Approval

The program provides customized action items to give prospective cardholders a second chance.

Sara RathnerJuly 6, 2020
‘Path to Apple Card’ Aims to Guide Rejected Applicants to Eventual Approval

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The Apple Card has a lot of intriguing features — none of which can help you if you don't qualify for it. But a new program launched in late June 2020 aims to help some rejected applicants eventually snag that titanium card of their dreams.

With most credit cards, if your application is rejected, you get a letter in the mail that gives some context but few, if any, actionable steps. The "Path to Apple Card" program seeks to demystify the approval process and offer participants specific actions they can take to improve their candidacy in the future.

The four-month program isn’t open to 100% of rejected applicants, though. Here’s how it works.

The invitation

Goldman Sachs issues the Apple Card and reviews a variety of factors to determine your creditworthiness, including your FICO Score 9 and information from TransUnion, one of the three major U.S. credit bureaus.

If you are rejected for the card, Goldman Sachs also determines — based on the information it used to review your application — whether to invite you to take part in the Path to Apple Card program.

If chosen, you’ll receive a notification on the Apple device you used to apply, and you can decide whether you’d like to participate.

Nerd tip: Previously, Apple Card holders could only manage their accounts through Apple Wallet. Now, you can make and schedule payments, manage Apple Card Monthly Installments and download statements online at card.apple.com. To access your account, log in with your Apple ID and password.

The Path to Apple Card program

If you opt in, you’ll receive a customized email listing specific steps you can take to improve your approval odds later on. You’ll also get a suggested time frame for completing the steps. For some, it might best to do them as soon as possible, while others can be completed more slowly over time. The email will also indicate the date when the program ends for you.

There’s a focus on three areas, but you’ll get information only about the ones that apply to your situation:

  • Lowering debt.

  • Making on-time payments.

  • Resolving past-due balances.

The initial email explains how these actions can positively impact your credit. From there, you’ll get monthly check-in emails that update you on your progress. If you successfully complete the program, you’ll be invited to reapply for the Apple Card. You don’t have to reapply if you don’t want to, but that improved credit history will still help you in other ways, namely, qualifying for loans and a greater variety of credit cards in the future.

Even if you don't successfully complete the program and you decide to apply for the card again in the future, you could still be invited to participate in Path to Apple Card.

Nerd tip: Unlike most other credit card applications, Apple Card allows you to see what your credit limit and APR would be before you accept. And until you officially apply, there is no impact on your credit score.

How is your personal information used?

Apple will know if you’re invited to participate in the Path to Apple Card program, it will know if you accept, and it will share that information with Goldman Sachs. Beyond that, an Apple representative confirmed that the company doesn't retain any personally identifiable information.

Goldman Sachs uses the information it pulled as part of the card application process to customize the Path to Apple Card program to you, but that data isn’t sold to third parties or used for marketing purposes.

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