How long does it take to get a credit card?

Your credit card application's just been approved, so what happens next? Find out when you'll get your new credit card here.

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After taking the time to compare credit card offers and apply for one that suits your needs, it’s exciting to find out your application has been approved. But then comes the hard part: waiting for the card to actually arrive.

So how long does it take before you can start using your new credit card? Here, we explain when you can expect to receive your card and what happens after your application is approved. You can also find out what you’ll need to do when you get your new card, compare credit cards with 60-second approval and get answers to frequently asked questions so that you can be as prepared as possible when it finally arrives.

When will I get my new credit card?

Compare the application length and waiting period for new credit cards by provider to find out how long you may have to wait to get your next credit card.

Provider Application length (approx) Decision time (business days) Card arrival (business days)
Chase Less than 3 minutes In minutes or if more information is needed, in a few days 7 to 10 days
American Express 3-5 minutes In minutes or if more information is needed, in a few days Mailed within 3-5 days
Barclaycard 3-5 minutes In minutes or if more information is needed, up to two weeks 7 to 10 days
Capital One 3-5 minutes Less than a minute or if more information is needed, 7-10 days 7 to 10 days
Discover 3-5 minutes In minutes or if more information is needed, you’ll receive a message 7 to 10 days
Wells Fargo 3-5 minutes In minutes or if more information is needed, 5-7 days. 7 to 10 days
Citi 5-10 minutes In minutes or if more information is needed, up to 10 days 7 to 10 days
U.S. Bank Less than 3 minutes In minutes or if more information is needed, notification by mail 10 days
Bank of America 5-10 minutes 10 to 12 days 7 to 10 days
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Compare credit cards

Name Product Filter values Rewards Purchase APR Annual fee
Citi Rewards+℠ Card
Earn 2x points at supermarkets and gas stations on up to $6,000 annually, then 1x points after that and on all other purchases
0% intro for the first 15 months (then 14.99% to 24.99% variable)
$0
The only credit card that automatically rounds up to the nearest 10 points on every purchase - with no cap.
Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express
2% at US gas stations and select US department stores, 3% at US supermarkets on up to $6,000 per year, then 1% after that and on all other purchases
0% intro for the first 15 months (then 14.49% to 25.49% variable)
$0
Earn a $150 bonus statement credit after you spend $1,000 on purchases in the first 3 months. Rates & fees
CardMatch™ from creditcards.com
See terms
See issuer's website
See terms
Can't decide on a card? Get personalized credit card offers with CardMatch™.
Capital One® VentureOne® Rewards Credit Card
1.25x miles on all purchases and 10x miles at hotels.com/venture
0% intro for the first 12 months (then 13.49%, 19.49% or 23.49% variable)
$0
Earn 20,000 bonus miles once you spend $1,000 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening.
Citi Simplicity® Card
N/A
0% intro for the first 12 months (then 16.24% to 26.24% variable)
$0
Enjoy one of the longest intro APRs on balance transfers, no late fees, no penalty rate and no annual fee.

Compare up to 4 providers

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What happens after I’ve applied for a credit card?

Man looking at his tablet and holding a cupAfter you submit your credit card application, the credit card issuer will assess your credit history and current finances in order to determine whether or not you are eligible for the card. They also use this process to determine how much credit they will offer you (in the form of your credit limit).

Providing you meet all the key application criteria, you could get conditional approval for the card within 60 seconds of submitting an online application. If not, you may get a follow up call or email from the credit card issuer asking for further information.

Providing supporting documentation
When you receive conditional approval for a credit card, the issuer may also ask you to submit supporting documents to complete the application process. The sooner you provide this information, the faster you’ll get your card. The documents you’ll need may vary between providers, but generally, include some or all of the following:

  • A copy of your driver’s license
  • A copy of your passport
  • Recent payslips
  • Recent bank statements
  • Your most recent Tax Assessment Notice
  • Your employment contract
  • A letter from your employer or accountant verifying your employment and/or financial details

The credit card issuer will let you know what documents to submit for your individual application. Usually, you can submit them through a secure online service, via email or by post or fax. You may also be able to provide your supporting details by visiting a nearby branch. After the issuer receives these documents, your application approval will be finalized and they can issue your new credit card.

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What do I need to do when I get my credit card?

After completing the whole application process, your credit card will usually come in the mail within the timeframe outlined by your provider. In some circumstances, you may also be asked to go to your nearest branch to pick it up for security reasons.

Your new credit card issuer will also put together a “welcome pack” for you containing valuable information about the bank, the credit card and its terms and conditions of use. The welcome pack will either arrive before the card or come with it. Make sure you read through the provided information thoroughly before you start using your new credit card. In some cases, an issuer will provide the credit card account number as well. If so, you can start using your credit card account immediately after approval.

If you’re replacing an old credit card that you aren’t using anymore, you might consider returning or destroying your old one.

How do I activate my credit card?

Depending on the issuer, you may be able to activate your new credit card online, over the phone or in person. Information about card activation will also be included in your welcome pack and usually takes just a few minutes to complete.

Remember to sign your card

The signature panel on your new credit card gives you the legal authority to use the it and protects you against unauthorized transactions if it’s lost, stolen or compromised. So make sure you sign it when you first activate the card.

While it is exciting to be approved for a new credit card, there are a few more steps you need to know about before you can start using it. Being prepared for this process means you can tick all the boxes along the way and start using your credit card as soon as possible.

Is it ok to change credit cards frequently?

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Frequently asked questions

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2 Responses

  1. Default Gravatar
    MartinAugust 13, 2019

    How do I replace my worn out old card?

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      JhezAugust 14, 2019Staff

      Hello Martin,

      Thank you for your comment.

      To have a card replacement, the issuer must be contacted. You can either call them on their contact numbers or you may request a card replacement by logging in to your online banking account and look for “order card replacement option”. Usually, banks have this feature in their internet banking facility. Hope this helps.

      Regards,
      Jhezelyn

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