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Benefits of the Capital One Platinum

This card doesn't offer rewards or much in the way of perks. Its benefits are geared toward those looking to improve their credit.
Oct. 30, 2019
Credit Cards, Credit Cards for Average or Fair Credit
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The Capital One® Platinum Credit Card isn’t a fancy credit card by any means.

It doesn’t offer rewards or perks or even a low interest rate. What makes it such a popular card is who can get it. It’s specifically marketed to people with average credit.

Here are the benefits of the Capital One® Platinum Credit Card.

» MORE: NerdWallet’s best credit cards for fair credit

Qualify with average credit

There just aren’t a lot of good credit card options for people with credit scores roughly between 630 and 690 — commonly referred as “fair” or “average” credit. There are options galore for those with good to excellent credit, and people with bad credit can turn to secured credit cards. Those in between the extremes can get stuck. The Capital One® Platinum Credit Card is one of the few cards from a major issuer that is available to people with less-than-good credit and doesn’t require a security deposit. In short, the signature Capital One® Platinum Credit Card benefit is that it’s available to so many people.

» MORE: Get your free credit score with NerdWallet

No annual fee

As a general rule, a credit card for someone with good to excellent credit won’t charge an annual fee unless it offers outstanding rewards or perks that make up for the cost. But people with poor or fair credit sometimes face annual fees of $25 or more just for a basic card with no rewards. The Capital One® Platinum Credit Card has an annual fee of $0. Not only does that save you money now, but a $0 fee means you can keep the card account open at no cost even after you qualify for other, better products — and that can benefit your credit score.

Path to a higher credit limit

Make your first five monthly payments on time and Capital One may give you access to a higher credit limit. This can add flexibility to your finances. More important, it can benefit your credit by reducing your credit utilization, or the percentage of your available credit that you’re using, a major component in your credit score. This automatic account review is especially beneficial if you’re working to build your credit because it means you don’t have to request a credit line increase yourself. Customer-initiated requests can lead to a “hard” credit check that hurts your score.

» MORE: What’s the difference between a soft inquiry and a hard inquiry on my credit report?

No foreign transaction fees

Most U.S. credit cards impose a surcharge on purchases made outside the country. The typical fee is about 3%. Capital One’s cards don’t charge foreign transaction fees, making this card a fine traveling companion.

» MORE: NerdWallet’s best no foreign transaction fee credit cards

Choose your due date

You can select the date of the month when your payment will be due, a benefit to those who have to carefully manage their cash flow.

Excellent upgrade options

One drawback with many cards designed for average credit is that they come from specialty issuers that focus only on the lower-score segment of the market. You can use their cards to build credit, but once your score has improved, you have to look elsewhere for better options. Capital One, however, has an array of excellent rewards cards that you could request a product change to. Just know that approval for an upgrade is never guaranteed.

» MORE: NerdWallet’s best Capital One credit cards

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