How frequently can you change credit cards? | finder.com
Is it ok to change credit cards frequently?

Is it ok to change credit cards frequently?

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Too many applications for credit can have a negative impact on your credit history, but you shouldn’t be afraid to apply for a new card to get a better deal.

Applying for several credit cards can have a negative impact on your credit history and may hurt your chances of loan approval in the future. However, it’s important to consider changing credit cards every so often, especially if you’re looking to take advantage of introductory credit card offers such as 0% balance transfers and promotional purchase rates.

Since every application is noted on your credit file, how often is too often when applying for credit cards?

Compare credit cards

Name Product APR for Purchases (Purchase Rate) Intro APR for Balance Transfer Annual Fee
14.74%, 18.74% or 24.74% variable
0% for the first 15 months (then 14.74%, 18.74% or 24.74% variable)
$0.00
Earn unlimited 1.5% cash rewards on purchases. See Rates and Fees
12.74%, 16.74% or 20.74% variable
0% for the first 18 months from account opening (then 12.74%, 16.74% or 20.74% variable)
$0.00
An 18-month 0% Intro APR period on both purchases and balance transfers, plus zero foreign transaction fees, makes this is a strong well-rounded card. See Rates and Fees
16.74% variable
0% for the first 15 billing cycles (then 16.74% variable)
$495.00
Mastercard Black Card members receive an annual $100 air travel credit toward flight-related purchases including airline tickets, baggage fees, upgrades and more.
16.74% variable
0% for the first 15 billing cycles (then 16.74% variable)
$195.00
Enjoy unique excursions, privileged access to exclusive events and insider opportunities.
16.74% variable
0% for the first 15 billing cycles (then 16.74% variable)
$995.00
Earn points every time you spend. Luxury Card enhances your purchasing power by providing you with one (1) point for every one dollar ($1) you spend. Every purchase gets you closer to the rewards you want.
24.49% variable
$39.00
Designed to help build credit history with no deposit required and access to benefits.
23.90% variable
$75.00 annual fee for the first year ($99.00 thereafter)
With this card you get a 23.90% Variable APR.
29.99% variable
$75.00 annual fee for the first year ($48.00 thereafter)
Access credit even if you have poor or limited credit history.
17.49% to 25.49% variable
Up to $75.00 annual fee for the first year (up to $99.00 thereafter)
Get 1% cash back rewards on eligible purchases including gas, groceries, and services such as mobile phone, internet, cable and satellite TV, terms apply.
14.74% to 25.74% variable
0% for the first 15 months (then 14.74% to 25.74% variable)
$0.00
Earn 15,000.00 Membership Rewards® Points after you use your new Card to make $1,000 in purchases in your first 3 months.
14.74% to 24.74% variable
0% for the first 12 statement closing dates (then 14.74% to 24.74% variable)
$0.00
Earn more cash back for the things you buy most.
14.74% to 25.74% variable
0% for the first 15 months (then 14.74% to 25.74% variable)
$0.00
Earn $150 back after you spend $1,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months. You will receive the $150 back in the form of a statement credit.
17.74% to 24.74% variable
$0.00 annual fee for the first year ($95.00 thereafter)
Earn 50,000.00 points when you spend $4,000 on purchases within the first 3 months of your account opening, and an additional 30,000 points when you spend a total of $30,000 on purchases within the first year of your account opening.
17.74% to 24.74% variable
$450.00
Earn 50,000.00 BONUS POINTS after spending $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening* — that's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.
14.74% to 24.74% variable
0% for the first 12 months (then 14.74% to 24.74% variable)
$95.00
Earn 15,000.00 Membership Rewards Points after you use your new Card to make $1,000 in purchases in your first 3 months.
16.74% to 25.49% variable
0% for the first 15 months (then 16.74% to 25.49% variable)
$0.00
Earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase - it's automatic. No minimum to redeem for cash back.
17.49% to 24.49% variable
$95.00
Earn unlimited 2 points for every $1 spent on travel and dining purchases and 1.5 points for every $1 spent on all other purchases.
14.49%, 20.49% or 24.49% variable
0% for the first 15 months (then 14.49% to 24.49% variable)
$0.00
Earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase, every day
16.74% to 25.49% variable
0% for the first 15 months (then 16.74% to 25.49% variable)
$0.00
Earn 5% cash back on up to $1,500 in combined purchases in bonus categories each quarter you activate and unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases.
16.49% to 24.49% variable
$0.00
20,000 online bonus points offer. Ditch the restrictions of typical airline rewards cards. Any airline, any hotel, anytime. No blackout dates.
16.74% to 25.49% variable
0% for the first 15 months (then 16.74% to 25.49% variable)
$0.00
Jumpstart your financial fitness! 60 day introductory balance transfer offer, save on interest, and get your free monthly credit score.
14.49%, 20.49% or 24.49% variable
$0.00 annual fee for the first year ($95.00 thereafter)
Earn 50,000.00 bonus miles once after spending $3,000 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening.

Compare up to 4 providers

Why you might want to change your credit card

By not looking, you could miss out on more competitive offers, affordable interest rates and beneficial features. Some of the main reasons you might consider applying for a new credit card include:

  • 0% balance transfer offers. Promotions for low or a 0% interest rate on balance transfers are usually in place from six to 24 months.It can be a useful way to pay down your debt without the additional cost of interest. Keep in mind that when the offer finishes, a standard interest rate on purchases or cash advances will apply on remaining balances.
    Guide on applying for a balance transfer
  • 0% purchase rate offers. If a big purchase is in your future or you’re sick of accruing high interest, you might want to consider a card with low or no interest rates on purchases for a promotional period. These cards have a 0% promotional purchase rate for a set period, sometimes 6 to 18 months. It’s important that you make your purchases as early as possible so you can take advantage of as much of the promotional period as you can before the standard interest rate kicks in.
  • Reward points. A reward points offer is an easy way to boost your points balance and a persuasive reason to switch cards if your spending aligns with eligible purchases defined in the plan. Some rewards cards and frequent flyer cards offer up to 30,000 to 50,000 reward points on sign-up when you meet certain spend requirements in a set period.
  • Annual fee waiver. Some cards offer either no annual fee for the life of the card or waive the annual fee for the first year.

The pitfalls of frequently changing credit cards

Too many credit card applications on your credit history can be a red flag to future lenders because declined applications imply that you’re a high-risk applicant who isn’t eligible or capable of paying back a credit card. Also, every time you apply for a credit card (and are either denied or approved), it’s logged on your credit report.

Rather than applying for multiple credit cards at once, take the time to compare your options, understand the features and fees that come with the card and ensure you meet the eligibility requirements before you apply.

Am I eligible?

The standard eligibility requirements usually include:

  • Age. At least 18 years old.
  • Minimum income. You’ll may be required to meet a minimum income.
  • Residential status. Cardholders typically need to be permanent US residents, though some secured cards are available to temporary residents.
  • Good credit history. Credit history is the basis of approval — so if you’ve got a history of bad debts, missed payments or bankruptcy, you should consider some alternative credit options, like a personal loan.
    Order a free copy of your credit score here

You’ll also be required to provide information such as proof of identity (for example, your driver’s license or passport) and proof of income (including your employer’s information and recent pay stubs), so make sure you have these handy.

What to consider before changing credit cards

There are a few important factors to consider before you make the switch:

  • What type of card do you want? If you’re struggling to repay a debt, a 0% balance transfer card might be suitable. Otherwise, you might want to consider a 0% purchase credit card if you have some big-ticket items to purchase. If you repay your balance each month and want to get more from your card, a rewards credit card could help you reach those goals.
  • Promotional offers. Make sure you understand if there are any terms and conditions involved (such as applying before a set date), how long the offer is in place and what the normal rate or fee is when the offer does end.
  • Reward points requirements. You’ll usually have to meet a spend requirement to earn bonus points, so try not to be tempted to overspend as you can quickly find yourself in credit card debt if you’re unable to repay the balance before it accrues interest.
Create a realistic budget and payment plan
Consider the annual fee, interest rates and any other fees that come with that card and consider how they fit into your budget. While the card will have a minimum repayment amount, you should make a payment plan that ensures you can pay more than this each month. Ideally, you’ll want to pay off the entire balance before the statement period ends and the debt accrues interest.

What should I do if I’ve been rejected for a credit card?

You should wait at least a few months before applying for another and during this time, you should work on paying down any existing debts to prove your ability to repay. If you do this for a few months, the repayments you’re making on your existing debt should help improve your credit score and as long as you meet the eligibility requirements, you should improve your chances of future approval.

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Kyle Morgan

Kyle Morgan is a writer and editor for finder.com who has worked for the USA Today network and Relix magazine, among other publications. He can be found writing about everything from the latest car loan stats to tips on saving money when traveling overseas. He lives in Asbury Park, where he loves exploring new places and sipping on hoppy beer. Oh, and he doesn't discriminate against buffalo wings — grilled or fried are just fine.

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US Credit Card Offers

Important Information*
Deserve® Classic Card
Deserve® Classic Card

APR

24.49
variable

Annual fee

0 For the first year
More info
Luxury Card Mastercard® Gold Card™
Luxury Card Mastercard® Gold Card™

APR

16.74
variable

Annual fee

995 For the first year
More info
First Access Visa Card®
First Access Visa Card®

APR

29.99
variable

Annual fee

75 For the first year
More info
Indigo® Platinum Mastercard® Credit Card
Indigo® Platinum Mastercard® Credit Card

APR

23.9
variable

Annual fee

75 For the first year
More info
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