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Review: USAA secured credit cards
USAA's secured cards are discontinued at this time.
While they were still offered, USAA secured cards came with potentially low APRs and no foreign transaction fees. At the same time, they had annual fees of $35, compared to the $0 annual fees of several great secured credit cards.
USAA is a reputable financial resource for people of the US Armed Forces and their families. If you have poor or no credit, a USAA secured credit cards gives you an opportunity to build your credit with a trustworthy financial group.
And if the security of a USAA secured credit cards isn’t rewarding enough, this card requires the purchase of a two-year certificate of deposit (CD). This means that while you use this credit card, you’re earning interest and increasing your investment. That’s money in your pocket as long as you keep up with payments.
What types of secured credit cards does USAA offer?
USAA used to offer these two secured credit cards:
- USAA® Secured American Express® Card
- USAA® Secured Visa Platinum® Card
As we mentioned above, however, these cards aren’t open to new applicants right now.
Please note: Both of these cards have been discontinued, and are not available on our site.
Alternatives to USAA secured cards
USAA secured cards might not be available at this time, but there are other great secured cards to compare. These include:
A USAA secured credit cards can help you rebuild your credit when you keep your credit utilization ratio low and consistently make on-time payments. To get a secured card, you must open a two-year CD. The money deposited into the CD acts as a security deposit and becomes your credit limit.
A USAA® Secured Visa Platinum® Card allows you to build stronger credit while earning money on your CD. The annual percentage yield is currently 54%, but will change periodically throughout the 2-year term. A minimum deposit of $250 is required, with a max of up to $5,000.
- No foreign transaction fees. Use your USAA® Secured Visa Platinum® Card internationally without paying transaction fees.
- Collision insurance. Get protection for rental vehicles, including for damage and theft.
- Extended warranties. Any purchase you make with your USAA card comes with an extended warranty.
- Identity theft assistance. USAA will help you out if your identity is ever stolen.
You’ll also like…
- Rebates. Finance charges that are accrued while you’re serving in a military operation can earn rebates.
- Special deployment rate. A 4% APR is available for up to 12 months during deployment or PCS.
- Servicemembers Civil Relief Act.USAA extends a special 4% SCRA rate to any account balance you when you enter active duty military service.
What should I know before I apply?
In order to apply for a USAA secured credit cards, you must be a member of USAA and a member of the military, a veteran who was honorably discharged or an eligible family member of military personnel. You also must be:
- A US citizen or permanent resident
- At least 18 years old
How to apply for a USAA secured credit cards
Before you begin the application process, you’ll want to gather the following information.
Required documents & information
- Full name and address
- Marital status
- Birth date
- Contact information
- Proof of employment and income
Steps to apply
Once you’ve gathered your info, here are the steps to follow:
- Head over to the USAA secured credit cards landing page.
- Choose your secured credit card and click the green “Get Started” button.
- If you’re already a member of USAA, you’ll then log in to your account. If you’re new to USAA, click the “Get Started Now” link toward the bottom of the page.
- If you followed the “Get Started Now” link, they’ll take you through some steps to determine if you are eligible for USAA membership.
- If you qualify, sign up for a USAA membership and navigate back to the USAA® Secured American Express® Card lading page and click the “Get Started” button.
- Once you log in to your USAA account, you can begin the application process.
- Provide the information requested in the online application and learn whether you qualify for the USAA® Secured Visa Platinum® Card.
I got the card! Now what?
- Avoiding interest. To avoid paying interest on your purchases, pay your entire balance by the due date each month.
- Avoiding fees. There is a transaction fee of 3% on cash advances, but this fee is waived when you transfer funds electronically from your USAA credit card to your USAA Bank deposit account.
- Customer service. You can reach USAA at 800-531-USAA (or 800-531-8722).
- Graduating to a secured card. USAA secured credit cards do not provide a direct path to an unsecured card. However, once you use this card to raise your credit score, you can then go on to apply for an unsecured card.
A USAA secured credit cards is a great benefit for those in the military who need to improve their credit — if you use it responsibly and keep your credit utilization ratio low and make your monthly payments on time.
However, before you settle on a USAA secured credit cards, check out other secured credit cards in the industry. Or if you might qualify for an unsecured credit card, check out other options offered by USAA.
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