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Does American Express report authorized users to credit bureaus?

You can build your credit without applying for a card.

Updated

Fact checked

If you’re too young to apply for a credit card, or if your credit score is preventing you from getting the card you want, consider becoming an authorized user on someone else’s card. As an authorized user, you can build credit without applying for a card.

American Express refers to its authorized users as additional card members. And it reports additional card members to the three major credit bureaus, Experian, Equifax and TransUnion.

What is American Express reporting policy?

American Express will report positive and negative information to the authorized user’s credit report.

How can being an authorized user help my credit?

Being an authorized user, you get to piggyback on a primary cardholder’s activity. But for this to work, the primary cardholder must pay their full balance before the due date and keep their utilization ratio low.

If the primary cardholder is late on their payment or starts piling debt, your credit score can take a hit.

Compare credit cards

If you’re older than 18 and you want to build your credit score, consider secured or student credit cards. But if you already have a good credit score or higher, you can apply for most credit cards and even earn rewards on your purchases.

Name Product Filter values Rewards Purchase APR Annual fee
PCB Secured Visa®
PCB Secured Visa®
18.9% fixed
$39
Choose your initial deposit amount and credit limit from $200 to $1000. Rates & fees
Surge Mastercard® Credit Card
N/A
25.9% to 29.99% variable
$75 to $99
An unsecured credit-building card with a $0 fee on cash advances for the first 12 months, then 5% or $5. This is a rare offer among similar cards.
Reflex Mastercard® Credit Card
N/A
25.9% to 29.99% variable
$75 to $99
Made for people with poor credit who want an unsecured credit card. It can help you build credit, but watch out for high fees and interest.
Petal® 1
2% - 10% cash back from select merchants
19.99% to 29.49% variable
$0
A high-limit no-annual-fee credit card that's ideal for rebuilding scores as low as 550. See if you prequalify with no impact to your credit.
Credit One Bank® Platinum Visa® for Rebuilding Credit
1% cash back on all purchases on eligible purchases
17.99% to 23.99% variable
$0 to $99
Earn 1% cash back on all purchases or in categories based on Credit One Bank’s discretion.
Indigo® Platinum Mastercard® Credit Card
N/A
24.9% fixed
$0 to $99
The Indigo® Platinum Mastercard® Credit Card is specifically designed for those with less than perfect credit.
Credit One Bank® Unsecured Visa® with Cash Back Rewards
1% cash back on all purchases or in categories based on Credit One Bank’s discretion
17.99% to 23.99% variable
$0 to $99
Earn 1% cash back on all purchases or in categories based on Credit One Bank’s discretion.
Official NASCAR® Credit Card from Credit One Bank®
Up to 1% cash back on eligible purchases determined by Credit One and double cash back at the NASCAR Shop
17.99% to 23.99% variable
$0 to $99
Get up to 1% cash back rewards on eligible purchases determined by Credit One and double cash back rewards at the NASCAR Shop.
Applied Bank® Unsecured Classic Visa® Card
29.99% fixed
$75 intro annual fee for the first year ($45 thereafter)
An unsecured credit card for building credit with reporting to the three major credit bureaus.
Total Visa® Unsecured Credit Card
N/A
34.99% fixed
$75 intro annual fee for the first year ($48 thereafter)
Enjoy manageable monthly payments with monthly reporting to all three major credit bureaus.
First Access Visa® Card
N/A
34.99% fixed
$75 intro annual fee for the first year ($48 thereafter)
Build or rebuild your credit with this Visa credit card.
Destiny Mastercard®
N/A
24.9% fixed
$59 to $99
An unsecured credit card for building credit with the option to see if you prequalify before applying.
Milestone® Gold Mastercard®
N/A
24.9% fixed
$35 to $99
All the benefits of Mastercard Gold for those with less than perfect credit.
First Digital Mastercard®
N/A
35.99% fixed
$75 intro annual fee for the first year ($48 thereafter)
An unsecured card for applicants with no credit history or a poor credit score.
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Compare up to 4 providers

Bottom line

If you’re too young to qualify for a credit card, or if you need to build your credit, American Express allows authorized users on its cards.

But if you can apply for a credit card on your own, consider a secured credit card or a student credit card to build your credit.

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