The Best Credit Cards for Fair Credit

If your credit score in the range of 580-669 you have what’s known as fair credit. While you might not be able to get the best credit card with the best rate, there are still plenty of excellent options that include cash back and reward offers available to you.

Finding the best credit card for fair credit means reading reviews, studying product features, and diving into the ins and outs of available options and interest rates. With the right credit card for fair credit, you can continue to build your credit history and improve your credit score.

We reviewed dozens of credit cards for fair credit to identify the best of the best, based on CreditCards.com reviews, how easy they were to apply for and use, cost, and other considerations. We narrowed our search down to 5 of the top-rated credit cards for fair credit people can apply for to ensure a healthy credit history and score.

Top Pick
Capital One® Platinum Credit Card

No balance transfer fee or annual fee, and 24-7 access to your account

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We’ve identified the Capital One® Platinum Credit Card as the best credit card for fair credit out there. With no annual fee and acceptance anywhere MasterCard is accepted, this credit card for fair credit is one that will allow you to keep shopping with ease. These benefits allow you to continue making important purchases, while still working on building and improving your credit score.

The 5 Top-Rated Credit Cards for Fair Credit

Editor's PicksBrandRating
Best OverallCapital One® Platinum Credit Card 4.5
Runner UpCapital One® QuicksilverOne® Cash Rewards Credit Card4.6
Best Credit Card with Cash Back for Fair CreditCredit One Bank® Platinum Visa® with Cash Back Rewards4.6
Best Credit Card for Students with Fair CreditDiscover it® Student Cash Back4.8
Best Credit Card for Fair Credit with No Annual FeeDiscover it® Secured 4.1

*Ratings are from CreditCards.com at the time of publication and can change

Our Top Pick: Capital One® Platinum Credit Card

The Capital One® Platinum Credit Card took the top spot on our list of the best credit cards for fair credit, and boasts no balance transfer fee or annual fee. Users have 24-7 access to their account online and by phone. After making the first five monthly payments on time, cardholders can access an increased credit limit to help continue building their credit history and score. Payments can easily be made by check, online, or at a local branch, all with no fee, and on the date that works best for the user.

Those who applied for and reviewed this credit card for fair credit appreciated that it can be used in a large number of places, and liked the account benefits it offered, including extended warranties, auto rental coverage, and travel accident insurance.

With no annual fee and a 26.96% variable APR, the quality service associated with the brand, as well as the ease of setup and use, this credit card is a great option for nearly anyone with fair credit. It has a rating of 4.5 out of 5 on CreditCards.com with more than 8,500 people reviewing it, which we think goes a long way in convincing people to make the application.

Capital One® Platinum Credit Card Key Features: 

  • No annual fee
  • Fraud coverage in case of loss or theft
  • No foreign transaction fees

Runner-Up: Capital One® QuicksilverOne® Cash Rewards Credit Card

Runner Up
Capital One® QuicksilverOne® Cash Rewards Credit Card

A generous rewards program offers 1.5% cash back on every purchase

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The Capital One® QuicksilverOne® Cash Rewards Credit Card took the runner-up spot on our list of the best credit cards for fair credit, thanks in large part to its generous rewards program which offers 1.5% unlimited cash back on every purchase. While there is an annual fee of $39 with this card, most people should have no problem earning that amount of cash back rewards over the course of a year’s spending. After making the first five monthly payments on time, users are eligible for a credit limit increase.

Cardholders who applied for and reviewed this credit card for fair credit appreciated that the Capital One app let them easily track and review their spending, while letting them build their credit history and score. People said they liked the benefits of the card, and found it easy to shop online or in person.

At a cost of $39 per year, it doesn’t come cheap, but the quality service associated with the brand, as well as the generous rewards program more than justifies that price. It has a rating of 4.6 out of 5 stars on CreditCards.com with nearly 10,000 people reviewing it, which we think goes a long way in convincing people to make the application.

Capital One® QuicksilverOne® Cash Rewards Credit Card Key Features: 

  • Fraud protection in case of loss or theft
  • Cash back doesn’t expire for the life of the account
  • Capital One mobile app offers customized alerts

Best Credit Card with Cash Back for Fair Credit: Credit One Bank® Platinum Visa® with Cash Back Rewards

Best Credit Card with Cash Back for Fair Credit

Cash back rewards on all purchases, no annual fee, and a competitive APR

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The Credit One Bank® Platinum Visa® with Cash Back Rewards is an excellent choice for those looking for a credit card for fair credit that offers cash back rewards. It gives a 1% cash back reward on all purchases, has no annual fee, and offers a competitive APR. The $0 fraud liability feature means that you aren’t responsible for unauthorized charges, and you can easily monitor your credit with free online access to your Experian credit score.

Those who purchased and reviewed this credit card for fair credit appreciated that they received automatic account reviews for credit line increase opportunities, and that the app made it easy to track and review spending habits. People liked that they could be pre-qualified, and that the card offered a $300 minimum limit.

With a cost of $0-$99 per year, this credit card is a solid choice for those looking for a credit card for fair credit with cash back. It has a rating of 4.6 out of 5 stars on CreditCards.com with nearly 5,000 people reviewing it, which we think goes a long way in convincing people to make the application.

Credit One Bank® Platinum Visa® with Cash Back Rewards Key Features: 

  • Customizable text and email alerts
  • Eco-friendly paperless option
  • Free Credit One Bank mobile app

Best Credit Card for Students with Fair Credit: Discover it® Student Cash Back

Best Credit Card for Students with Fair Credit
Discover it® Student Cash Back

Rewards are the same as Discover it® Cash Back, but no credit history is required

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The Discover it® Student Cash Back is an excellent card for students with fair credit, as it offers all the same rewards of the Discover it® Cash Back credit card, but with no credit history required. The company is currently offering a cash back matching incentive to all new applicants, where they will match all the cash back earned at the end of the first year, automatically, with no limit to how much is matched.

Those who applied for and reviewed this credit card for fair credit appreciated that the card offered a cash bonus for good grades, and that rewards could be redeemed at any amount. The card also offers free overnight replacement in case of loss or theft, and identity alerts to help protect your account.

With no annual fee and a decent interest rate, the quality service associated with the brand, as well as the ease of setup and use make this an excellent card for students with fair credit looking to build or improve upon their credit score. It has a rating of 4.8 stars out of 5 on CreditCards.com with more than 1,000 people reviewing it, which we think goes a long way in convincing students to make the application.

Discover it® Student Cash Back Key Features: 

  • Regular APR 15.24% – 24.24% variable
  • Intro rate on balance transfers of 10.99% APR for 6 months
  • No annual fee

Best Credit Card for Fair Credit with No Annual Fee: Discover it® Secured

Best Credit Card for Fair Credit with No Annual Fee
Discover it® Secured

Establish your credit line by providing a refundable security deposit

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The Discover it® Secured credit card is a great choice for those who want a credit card with no annual fee, but only have a fair credit rating. It allows new and seasoned credit users alike to establish their credit line by providing a refundable security deposit from $200-$2,500. It has no annual fee, yet still provides the opportunity to earn cash back, and build credit with responsible use. Automatic account reviews begin at 8 months to transition users to an unsecured line of credit and return their deposit.

Those who hold and reviewed this credit card for fair credit appreciated that they could build history with ease, and found customer service to be excellent. People also enjoyed the perks like $0 fraud liability, cash back rewards, and free security alerts.

With an annual fee of $0, the quality service associated with the brand, as well as the ease of setup and use make this card an excellent option for those who want a credit card with no annual fee and don’t necessarily have the best credit history. It has a rating of 4.1 out of 5 stars on CreditCards.com with nearly 800 people reviewing it, which we think goes a long way in convincing people to make an application.

Discover it® Secured Key Features:

  • US-based customer service
  • Automatically cash back matching at the end of the first year
  • Earn 2% cash back at gas stations and restaurants on up to $1,000 in combined purchases every quarter, with unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases

Who Should Apply for a Credit Card for Fair Credit?

A credit card for fair credit is an ideal choice for those who are new to building their credit history and score, or for those who are experienced with credit, but don’t necessarily have the best credit rating. A credit score in the range of 580-669 is considered to be fair, with 300-579 being bad, and 670-739 being good.

People can find out their credit score for free by requesting a free copy of their credit report from each of the three major credit reporting agencies – Equifax®, Experian®, and TransUnion® – once each year at AnnualCreditReport.com or call toll-free 1-877-322-8228.

A credit card for fair credit is often also an excellent option for students, who are new to the world of credit, but need to build history and responsible spending habits.

Top Pick
Capital One® Platinum Credit Card

No balance transfer fee or annual fee, and 24-7 access to your account

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Important Features to Consider

Not all credit cards for fair credit are created equal. A credit card for fair credit should have a low or no annual fee, and provide some sort of perks to the user. Here’s what to consider when evaluating the options in search of the best credit card for fair credit:

  • Annual fee. The first thing to consider when searching for the best credit card for fair credit is the annual fee. Cards with annual fees tend to have lower APRs, which make borrowing more affordable. Cards with low or no annual fees often carry higher APRs, but as long as you are making payments in full and on time, they can still be a good option if you don’t want the hassle of annual fees. Credit cards for fair credit vary in price from $0-$100 or more annually, although some cards with cash back can easily pay for themselves.
  • Card type. Once you’ve decided if you want a card with or without an annual fee, you’ll need to decide if you want a Visa, MasterCard, Discover card, or AmEx. Not all merchants accept all cards, so if there’s somewhere you plan to use your card regularly, check to ensure you can make purchases without hassle.
  • Introductory APR. Some credit cards for fair credit offer an introductory APR (annual purchase rate) that is much lower than the regular APR. If you have a number of upcoming purchases and want to keep the cost of borrowing low, a card with an introductory APR offer might be a good option. There are some cards that also offer a promotional balance transfer APR, which can make transferring a balance from another card to the new card a smart choice, as long as you can make the payments responsibly.
  • Regular APR. A card’s regular APR will determine how much interest you are charged each month. Cards with lower APRs make borrowing more affordable, but they sometimes come with annual fees. Cards with low or no annual fees often carry higher APRs, but as long as you are making payments in full and on time, they can still be a good option.
  • Bonus features. Some credit cards for fair credit come with bonus features that make them more appealing to users, such as free spending tracking apps, extended warranties, travel insurance, or fraud protection. Review a card’s additional features to see if there are any that would be applicable to your personal situation.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the average credit score to get a credit card?

The average credit score to get a credit card will depend in large part on the particular card that you are applying for. Each card should include the minimum credit score required in order to receive approval. A credit score of 750 is excellent, and you’ll likely have your pick of credit cards with that rating. A good credit score of 700-750 will allow you to receive approval for most credit cards. A fair credit score in the range of 600-700 carries a higher chance of denial, while people with credit scores below 600 may require the use of a secured credit card in order to build up their credit score before applying for a better credit card.

Other factors, such as too much debt (or high credit balances even if you pay them off), too much available credit, too short of a credit history, or recent late payments, charge-offs, or other negative items can also affect your chances of approval for a credit card.

Can I get approved for a credit card with a 600 credit score?

Yes, you can still get approved for a credit card with a 600 credit score, although you might not have many options to choose from, and will likely have a higher APR than if your credit score were higher. You might also need to use a secured credit card for a while in order to build up your score. Other factors, such as too much debt (or high credit balances even if you pay them off), too much available credit, too short of a credit history, or recent late payments, charge-offs, or other negative items can also affect your chances of approval for a credit card with a 600 credit score.

Can I get a credit card with a 650 credit score?

Yes, you can still get approved for a credit card with a 650 credit score, although you might not have many options to choose from, and will likely have a higher APR than if your credit score were higher. Other factors, such as too much debt (or high credit balances even if you pay them off), too much available credit, too short of a credit history, or recent late payments, charge-offs, or other negative items can also affect your chances of approval for a credit card with a 650 credit score.

How can I rebuild my credit fast?

Unfortunately, there is no quick fix for rebuilding your credit fast — it takes time and patience, as well as consistently paying off your balance. The first step to improving your credit score is to correct any errors on your credit history. Carefully review your credit report from all three credit reporting agencies, and dispute inaccurate or missing information by contacting the credit reporting agency and your lender. After you’ve corrected any errors, you will need to make regular payments on time. Pay off as much of your balance as you can each month. Avoid closing or opening new accounts as a means of gaming your credit score to be better, as this approach could actually backfire.

Other Credit Cards for Fair Credit We Reviewed

Top Pick
Capital One® Platinum Credit Card

No balance transfer fee or annual fee, and 24-7 access to your account

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We looked at 20 other credit cards for fair credit. Even though they didn’t make our 5 best credit cards for fair credit list, they’re the best of the rest and each is still a great option for building and using your credit. The information you’ll need to compare each one is included with the listing.

Credit Cards with Cash Back for Fair Credit

Credit One Bank® Platinum Visa® for Rebuilding Credit

Credit One Bank® Platinum Visa® for Rebuilding Credit

This credit card with cash back for fair credit offers a 1% cash back bonus on most eligible purchases, and allows applicants to see if they pre-qualify without a hit to their credit score.

Key Features: 

  • Regular APR 20.24%-26.24% variable
  • Monthly reporting to the major credit bureaus
  • Automatic account reviews for credit line increase opportunities

Cost: $0-$99 annually

Credit One Bank® Cash Back Rewards Credit Card

Credit One Bank® Cash Back Rewards Credit Card

This credit card with cash back for fair credit offers a 1% cash back reward on all purchases, and includes no annual fee with a competitive interest rate.

Key Features: 

  • Regular APR 20.24%-26.24% variable
  • Includes $0 fraud liability
  • Credit One Bank mobile app

Cost: $0-$99 annually

Credit One Bank® NASCAR® Visa® Credit Card

Credit One Bank® NASCAR® Visa® Credit Card

This credit card with cash back for fair credit lets qualified applicants receive exclusive benefits such as 1% cash back rewards on all purchases, no annual fee, and a competitive APR.

Key Features: 

  • Regular APR 20.24%-26.24% variable
  • Earn double cash back rewards at the NASCAR.com Superstore
  • Free online access to Experian credit score and credit report summary

Cost: $0-$99 annually

Discover it® Cash Back

Discover it® Cash Back

This credit card with cash back for fair credit offers unlimited 1% cash back on most purchases, with up to 5% cash back at different places each quarter.

Key Features: 

  • Regular APR 14.24%-25.24% variable
  • Cash back matching on first year’s purchases, with no maximum
  • Redeem cash back at any amount, rewards never expire

Cost: $0 annually

ABOC Platinum Rewards Card

ABOC Platinum Rewards Card

This credit card with cash back for fair credit offers a 0% intro APR on purchases and balance transfers for 12 months, with no upper limit on the points you can accumulate.

Key Features: 

  • Regular APR 15.15%-25.15% variable
  • $150 credit after making $1,200 in purchases within the first 90 days
  • 3% foreign transaction fee

Cost: $0 annually

Suncrest Bank Real Rewards Visa Signature® Credit Card

Suncrest Bank Real Rewards Visa Signature® Credit Card

This credit card with cash back for fair credit lets users earn 1.5 points for every eligible net $1 spent, with no cap or limit on the amount of points that can be earned.

Key Features: 

  • 2,500 bonus rewards points awarded after first purchase
  • Intro APR of 0% for 6 months on purchases and balance transfers
  • Regular APR 16.24%-25.24% variable

Cost: $0 annually

First Hawaiian Bank Priority Rewards Mastercard®

First Hawaiian Bank Priority Rewards Mastercard®

This credit card with cash back for fair credit lets users earn 1 CashPoint for every $1 spent in net qualifying purchases, with the ability to redeem for gift cards, merchandise, and travel rewards.

Key Features: 

  • No reward limit
  • Regular APR 18.00% variable
  • Foreign transaction fee 3%

Cost: $0 annually

Credit Cards for Students with Fair Credit

Discover it® Chrome for Students

Discover it® Student chrome

This credit card for students with fair credit is an excellent choice for those with no credit history, and features an introductory cash back matching bonus on all the cash back earned at the end of the first year, with no limit.

Key Features: 

  • Balance transfers intro APR 10.99% for 6 months
  • Introductory purchases APR 0% for 6 months
  • Regular APR 15.24%-24.24% Variable

Cost: $0 annual fee

Journey® Student Rewards from Capital One®

Journey® Student Rewards from Capital One®

This credit card for students with fair credit allows cardholders to earn 1% cash back on all purchases, with a 0.25% bonus when you pay your balance on time each month.

Key Features: 

  • Regular APR 26.96% variable
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • Pick a monthly due date that works best for you

Cost: $0 annually

Deserve® Edu Mastercard for Students

Deserve® Edu Mastercard for Students

This credit card for students with fair credit offers 1% unlimited cash back on all purchases, with a maximum credit limit of 5,000.

Key Features: 

  • Regular APR 20.99% variable
  • Free Amazon Prime Student subscription
  • No foreign transaction fees

Cost: $0 annually

State Farm® Student Visa® Credit Card

State Farm® Student Visa® Credit Card

This credit card for students with fair credit lets users earn 1 State Farm Loyalty Rewards® point for every $2 spent on eligible purchases, and includes access to many student discounts provided by Visa.

Key Features: 

  • Regular APR 17.49%-25.49% variable
  • Earn 3 points for every $1 spent on insurance premium payments
  • 3% foreign transaction fee

Cost: $0 annually

Suncrest Bank College Real Rewards Visa Signature® Credit Card

Suncrest Bank College Real Rewards Visa Signature® Credit Card

This credit card for students with fair credit lets users earn 1.5 points for every eligible net $1 spent, with no cap or limit on the amount of points that can be earned.

Key Features: 

  • 2,500 bonus rewards points awarded after first purchase
  • Introductory APR of 0% for 6 months on purchases and balance transfers
  • Regular APR 16.24%-25.24% variable

Cost: $0 annually

Banc of California College Real Rewards World Mastercard®

Banc of California College Real Rewards World Mastercard®

This credit card for students with fair credit lets users earn 1.5 points for every eligible net $1 spent, with no cap or limit on the amount of points that can be earned.

Key Features: 

  • 2,500 bonus rewards points awarded after first purchase
  • Introductory APR of 0% for 6 months on purchases
  • Regular APR 16.24%-25.24% variable

Cost: $0 annually

Credit Cards for Fair Credit with No Annual Fee

Milestone® Gold Mastercard®

Milestone® Gold Mastercard®

This credit card for fair credit with no annual fee features a quick and easy pre-qualification option that won’t impact your credit score, and the option to choose a custom card design.

Key Features: 

  • Regular APR 24.90% fixed
  • Free online account access
  • Fraud protection in case of loss or theft

Cost: From $0 annually

Indigo® Platinum Mastercard®

Indigo® Platinum Mastercard®

This credit card for fair credit with no annual fee features a quick and easy pre-qualification option that won’t impact your credit score, and is suitable for those with previous bankruptcy.

Key Features: 

  • Regular APR 24.90% fixed
  • Free, mobile-friendly online account access
  • Extended warranty program

Cost: From $0 annually

Citi® Secured Mastercard®

Citi® Secured Mastercard®

This credit card for fair credit with no annual fee boasts monthly reporting to the three major credit bureaus, with the ability to check your FICO score for free once available.

Key Features: 

  • Regular APR 24.74%* variable
  • Minimum security deposit of $200 is required
  • Flexible payment due dates

Cost: $0 annually

Capital One® Secured Mastercard®

Capital One® Secured Mastercard®

This credit card for fair credit with no annual fee offers all the credit building benefits of a regular card, with a minimum security deposit of $49, $99, or $200.

Key Features: 

  • Regular APR 26.99% variable
  • Balance transfer fee $0
  • Builds credit when used responsibly

Cost: $0 annually

U.S. Bank Harley-Davidson® Visa® Secured Card

U.S. Bank Harley-Davidson® Visa® Secured card

This credit card for fair credit with no annual fee earns users one H-D™ Genuine Rewards point for every $1 in net purchases, with the option to redeem 2,500 points for a $25 H-D™ Gift Card.

Key Features: 

  • Regular APR 25.24% variable
  • Zero fraud liability protection
  • Auto rental collision damage waiver

Cost: $0 annually

First Hawaiian Bank Heritage Mastercard®

First Hawaiian Bank Heritage Mastercard®

This credit card for fair credit with no annual fee is a good choice for those new to or rebuilding their credit history, and offers a low introductory rate to help save on the cost of borrowing.

Key Features: 

  • Introductory APR 2.99% for 8 months on purchases and balance transfers
  • Regular APR 18.00% variable
  • Foreign transaction fee 3%

Cost: $0 annually

Fingerhut Credit Account Issued by WebBank

Fingerhut Credit Account issued by WebBank

The Fingerhut Credit Account issued by WebBank offers a convenient and affordable solution for those who are looking to purchase brand name products for their home on a low monthly payment plan.

Key Features: 

  • Choose from more than 500,000 items
  • Fast, easy online application process
  • No access card is provided

Cost: $0 annual fee

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