Is the U.S. Bank SKYPASS Visa Secured Card worth it? | February 2018

Review: U.S. Bank SKYPASS Visa® Secured Card – February 2018

Earn miles on everyday purchases and a bonus 5,000 miles after your first purchase while building your credit.

Product NameSKYPASS Visa® Secured Card
Balance Transfer Rate (not intro)17.49% variable
APR for Purchases ( Purchase Rate )17.49% variable
Annual fee$50
Cash Advance Rate20.99% variable
Card TypeVisa
Interest Free Period
The interest-free period on purchases is the period or number of days you do not have to pay interest on your card purchases. You will be charged interest either from the day you make a purchase or from the statement date, unless you pay the closing balance in full by the due date (or within the interest-free period) on your statement.
Up to 24 days
Returned Payment Fee$35
Foreign Currency Conversion Fee (VISA)
Foreign currency conversion fees are charged when you make a transaction that is converted by a credit card network, such as MasterCard, Visa or American Express, from Australian dollars to a foreign currency. You’ll also incur a currency conversion fee if you make a purchase or obtain a cash advance in Australian dollars while overseas or shopping online with a foreign merchant or financial institution.
3% of transaction value
Minimum Interest$2
Minimum Age18 years of age
Min credit limit
This is the lowest credit card limit that you can request. It is possible to apply for a higher credit card limit but not a lower one than this figure.
$300
Max credit limit
This credit limit may not be issued to you immediately on application. This is the maximum credit limit for this card which must be applied for or offered to you after you are approved and have already opened the account.
$5,000
Annual fee$50
Returned Payment Fee$35
Late Payment Fee$38
Cash Advance Fee4% of the amount of each advance or $5 minimum
Rewards ProgramU.S. Bank
Bonus Points on Sign-up5,000
Rewards Points per $ spent (VISA/MC)1
Points ExpiryNever

The basics

You shouldn’t have to give up rewards just because you’re working to build positive credit. One of the few secured cards with travel rewards, the U.S. Bank SKYPASS Visa is great for those who are always on the go. The $50 p.a. annual fee is higher than many secured cards, but travel rewards and a relatively low APR might be worth it.

Approval with limited or poor credit isn’t a problem, and flexible credit limits can help you monitor your spending to more quickly get back on track. Choose your limit with a deposit of $300 all the way up to $5,000.

The card makes it easy to earn travel miles while building or rebuilding your credit, and it comes equipped with plenty of other travel benefits, including emergency assistance and $250,000 in travel accident insurance. It’s also accepted worldwide.

What’s great about this card?

Like most secured cards, the SKYPASS Visa Secured Card is ideal for anyone hoping to establish or improve their credit. The relatively low APR helps you maintain a low balance, while flexible credit limits allow you to limit your spending. Your initial deposit even earns interest while you use the card, meaning you’ll get money back if you switch or upgrade to another one.

You’re also eligible to graduate to a U.S. Bank unsecured credit card after 12 months of responsible spending and on-time payments.

What makes this card a standout, however, are its reward program and travel benefits. Unlike other secured cards, you’ll earn reward miles on everyday purchases. You’ll also earn 5,000 bonus miles after first purchase and your 1,000 bonus miles at renewal.

Redeem your miles toward airport lounge access, award flights and upgrades with SkyTeam Alliance Airlines, which includes Delta, Air France and Aeroméxico. Or use your miles on hotel stays and rental cars.

Members of the SkyTeam Alliance Airlines group include:

  • Aeroflot
  • Aerolíneas Argentinas
  • Aeroméxico
  • Air Europa
  • Air France
  • Alitalia
  • China Airlines
  • China Eastern Airlines
  • China Southern Airlines
  • Czech Airlines
  • Delta Air Lines
  • Garuda Indonesia
  • Kenya Airways
  • KLM
  • Korean Air
  • Middle East Airlines
  • Saudia
  • TAROM
  • Vietnam Airlines
  • Xiamen Airlines

How to make this card worth it

Compared with other secured credit cards, the $50 p.a. annual fee might sound steep. But with bonus miles at signup and renewal and the ability to earn 1x on everyday spending, the fee can quickly pay for itself.

To get the most out of this card, swipe it to pay for the things you’re already buying, like groceries and gas. To avoid unnecessary interest while building your credit, budget to routinely pay off your monthly balance.

This card offers the biggest perks to frequent flyers of Korean Air. Up to 20,000 miles can qualify toward Korean Air’s Morning Calm Club membership (you’ll need to accumulate the other 30,000 miles through flight miles on Korean Air). Once you’ve collected enough miles, you’ll gain access to membership benefits that include, priority baggage handling, exclusive check-in and access to posh KAL lounges.

What to watch out for

  • Foreign transaction fees. If you plan on using this card for international travel, you’re looking fees equal to 2% of your purchase in US dollars, or 3% in a foreign currency.
  • High annual fee. Most secured cards charge an annual fee, but $50 p.a. is more than most. The rewards program is valuable, but you may want to consider another card if you’re focused only on building your credit.

How to apply for the U.S. Bank Secured Visa Card

If you have a checking or savings account, apply for the SKYPASS Visa Secured Card and fund your deposit easily online.
1. Visit U.S. Bank’s SKYPASS Secured site page and click Apply Now.

US Bank SKYPASS Visa Secured Card step 1

2. Click Get Started to apply online. (Or start the process of printing and mailing your application with a cashier’s check or money order.)

US Bank SKYPASS Visa Secured Card step 2

3. Complete the sections for your personal, housing, income and employment information. Indicate whether you’d like additional cards, and then supply your banking details for the deposit. Read and accept the terms and conditions, and then click Submit.

US Bank SKYPASS Visa Secured Card step 3
4. Continue through the application, confirming the information you’ve entered, before fully submitting your application.

If you choose to mail your application, you’ll complete your printed form and submit it with a money order or cashier’s check for your deposit to:

U.S. Bank National Association
Cardmember Service
PO Box 790408
St. Louis, MO 63179-0408

You’ll hear back about the status of your application in seven to 10 business days.

How likely is my approval?

The card doesn’t require a minimum credit score, so approval is likely for most applicants. The exception is those with a bankruptcy on their credit report — U.S. Bank automatically denies applicants whose reports reveal a bankruptcy.

How long will it take to be approved?

Approval wait times for this card are unclear, but going off other secured cards, expect to wait anywhere between a few hours to a few weeks. For mailed applications, you’ll receive an update on your status in a week or two after receipt. Look into other credit-repair cards for one that might meet your needs.

I got the card. Now what?

Once you’re approved, it’s time activate your card and start earning miles. Here’s what to do with your new SKYPASS Visa Secured Card.

  • Make timely payments. Mail in payments or pay through your online U.S. Bank account within your card’s grace period to avoid interest on your purchases.
  • Set up autopay. Avoid unnecessary fees and interest by setting up automatic withdrawals for your monthly payments.
  • Check your TransUnion Score. Log in to your online account to check your credit score for free.
  • Get support. Support is available by phone, mail or secure email through your online account.
  • Graduate to an unsecured card. Manage your credit obligations responsibly and consistently for 12 months, and you might be able to move on to an unsecured U.S. Bank credit card.

What do customers say?

U.S. Bank is accredited by the Better Business Bureau (BBB) since 1970, boasting an A+ rating. However, look deeper and you’ll find a never ending supply of negative reviews and complaints from customers: 98% of the 102 recent reviews are negative. Complaints range from payment issues to excess fees, but the recurring theme is a lack of transparency.

U.S. Bank has a TrustScore of 4.4 out of 10 on Trustpilot, likely associated with the growing number of negative reviews on the website. Here too, users detail their frustrations with misinformation and trouble resolving issues with representatives.

Customers on other review sites report being told there wouldn’t be a hard inquiry when switching cards only to find a hard inquiry from U.S. Bank on their credit history.

If you choose this card, keep a close eye on your account for unexplained fees, and document your interaction with customer service, including names, times and details of your call.

Bottom line

This card is a solid option for frequent travelers who are looking to build their credit history. Flexible credit limits and a rewards program make it a strong choice among other secured credit cards.

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2 Responses

  1. Default Gravatar
    DavisonJanuary 16, 2018

    Does this card have any travel insurance benefits or other types of benefits travel benefits?

    • Staff
      RenchJanuary 16, 2018Staff

      Hi Davison,

      Please note that we are not affiliated with US Bank or any company we feature on our site and so we can only offer you general advice.

      With U.S. Bank SKYPASS Visa® Secured Card, the card makes it easy to earn travel miles while building or rebuilding your credit, and it comes equipped with plenty of other travel benefits, including emergency assistance and $250,000 in travel accident insurance. It’s also accepted worldwide. You’ll earn reward miles on everyday purchases. You’ll also earn 5,000 bonus miles after first purchase and your 1,000 bonus miles at renewal.

      Hope this infomation helped.

      Best regards,
      Rench

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