DCU Visa Platinum Secured Credit Card Review
Secured credit cards come with few rewards or other benefits, but they can help you build or repair credit. Many secured cards come with high rates and fees, but the DCU Visa Platinum Secured Credit Card has no annual fee and below-average interest rates. It's a good choice when you can't qualify for a standard credit card.
- Qualifying is easy—even with bad credit
- No annual fee, no fee for balance transfers or cash advances, and no foreign transaction fees
- Starting APR of 13.75%
- Car rental insurance, travel insurance, and warranty benefits
- No minimum interest charge
- Low APR — less than the national average for secured cards
- No annual fee
- Travel-related perks including no foreign transaction fees, up to $500,000 in free travel insurance, car rental insurance, and a guarantee your room will remain available at participating hotels and resorts even if you’re late
- Free balance transfers
- No 0% introductory APR for either purchases or balance transfers
- No sign-up bonus
- No opportunity to earn credit card rewards
Recommended Credit Score
- Fair or poor
DCU Visa Platinum Secured Credit Card: A Good Way to Establish Credit?
Secured credit cards, which help you build credit, are notorious for high fees and astronomical interest rates. The DCU Visa Platinum Credit Card stands apart because the interest rate charged is well below the national average for similar secured cards — and the card is mostly fee-free.
This DCU secured credit card undoubtedly caters to customers with bad credit or no credit history, as the card offers little rewards for people who don’t need a secured card. There’s no sign-up bonus, no rewards, and no promotional APRs for purchases or transferred balances. But for those who can’t qualify for a standard card, the DCU credit card is a competitive offering that’s worth a look.
The DCU Visa Platinum Card is secured by deposits you make to a DCU savings account. So to sign up for the DCU secured credit card, you must join the Digital Federal Credit Union — a credit union that operates in Massachusetts and Georgia. You also have the option to link the card with your DCU checking account to provide optional overdraft protection. Qualifying is easy, even with poor credit or no credit, because there’s no risk to the lender since the savings account acts as collateral.
If you’re interested in the DCU Visa Platinum Card, there are some pros and cons to consider.
In this review:
- Benefits of the DCU Visa Platinum Secured Credit Card
- Downsides of the DCU Visa Platinum Secured Credit Card
- How the DCU Visa Platinum Secured Card Compares
Benefits of the DCU Visa Platinum Secured Credit Card
Although the DCU credit card offers few perks to its cardholders, there are a few benefits worth mentioning.
The biggest benefit of the DCU Visa Platinum Secured Card is the absence of fees. Many secured cards charge an annual fee, but the DCU Visa Platinum Secured card doesn’t. You could also save on interest, as the DCU credit card has a low starting APR of just 13.75%, which is well below the national average APR for secured cards.
The DCU Visa Platinum Secured Card saves you money in other ways as well. Not only is there no fee for the card, but you also won’t pay a cash advance fee, a balance transfer fee, or any foreign transaction fees.
The card is especially great if you’re a traveler—not just because there are no foreign transaction fees, but also because it offers $500,000 in free travel insurance. You can use this coverage if you change tickets on airlines, trains, ships, or buses. If you stay at a participating resort, the DCU Visa Platinum Card ensures your room won’t be given away if you arrive late. Finally, DCU members get free auto rental insurance that covers the cost of collision damage or theft of a rental car.
The DCU Visa Platinum Secured Card also offers features to help you even if you shop closer to home. You’ll benefit from an extended warranty on most purchases, while EMV chip technology keeps your DCU Visa Platinum Secured Card safe by protecting your information. Plus, compatibility with Apple Pay, Google Pay, and Samsung Pay ensures using your card is convenient to use wherever you shop.
Downsides of the DCU Visa Platinum Secured Credit Card
While there are plenty of benefits to the DCU Visa Platinum Secured credit card, there are also some downsides.
Bad for Balance Transfers
While there’s no fee for balance transfers, there’s also little reason to transfer a balance to your DCU Visa Platinum Secured card because there’s no 0% introductory APR for balance transfers. And, while the interest rate is lower than the national average for secured cards, there’s no low promotional APR on purchases for new cardholders, which some other secured cards—such as the Discover it Secured card—offer.
Late Payment Fees
The Discover it card also won’t raise your rate if you’re late on a payment, while the DCU Visa Platinum Secured Card charges a penalty rate of 18% for late payments.
No Rewards or Sign-Up Bonus
There’s also no sign-up bonus for the DCU Visa Platinum Secured Credit Card, and DCU offers no rewards program, so you can’t earn cash back or points for card use. Again, other secured cards, including Discover it, do offer the chance to earn rewards.
How the DCU Visa Platinum Secured Card Compares
The DCU Visa Platinum Secured Card’s lack of fees and relatively low standard APR make it a competitive offering compared to similar cards.
The Discover it may seem like a better deal because it offers rewards, no penalty APR, and a promotional balance transfer APR of 10.99 percent for six months, the standard APR on the Discover it card goes up to 24.99 percent. This far exceeds DCU’s standard APR of 13.75 percent, making the DCU card a better option if you think you’ll be carrying a balance on the credit card after six months.
If you’re looking for a low-cost secured credit card and don’t want to worry about a high APR when an introductory rate expires, the DCU Visa Platinum Secured Card is a great choice—especially if you’re a traveler. Of course, you should pay the bill every month, avoid carrying a balance and work on building your credit as quickly as possible so you can keep costs to a minimum and graduate ASAP to an unsecured card with even better terms.
Author: Christy Rakoczy
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