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Credit Cards

How to Check Your Credit Card Application Status

Looking to check the application status for a credit card you applied for? Credit card issuers have a way to instantly approve or deny many applications based on credit report and income. However, certain situations require the lender to examine the details of your application more closely.

If you didn’t get an instant decision when you applied, you have several options to check the status of your credit card application.  

We’ve done the work for you. This is your one stop for phone numbers, online tools, our complete articles on how to check your credit card application status for every major credit card issuer—and tips if your application is denied. Keep reading to find out where to check your credit card application status. 

In this guide:

How to check credit card application status online or by phone

Credit card issuers will have a phone number or online tool (sometimes both) for checking your application status. 

These are listed below for the top credit card issuers. 

Credit card issuerPhone numberCan you check application status online?
Capital One800-903-9177No
PNC800-762-0974No
Discover800-347-2683Yes
Citizens Bank866-991-0101No
USAA 800-531-8722Yes, for current customers
Citi888-201-4523
877-343-4118 for Costco Citi cards
Yes
American Express866-314-0237Yes
Bank of America800-432-1000Yes
Chase888-338-2586Yes, for current customers
Barclays866-928-8598Yes

When you call or check your credit card application status online, credit card issuers will ask for some combination of your:

  • Name
  • Birthdate
  • Social Security number
  • Zip code
  • Email address
  • User ID and password if you’re a current customer

What does my credit card application status mean?

Aside from “approved” or “denied,” you may see statuses listed for your credit card application, such as: 

  • Pending application: Certain situations require the lender to examine your identity, credit history, income, recent card applications, debt, payments, and your business (if applicable) in more detail. You may get a letter requesting more information and need to return the requested documentation.  
  • Under review: Your application isn’t yet approved or denied. It’s the same as a “pending application” and may need a human to determine whether your application is approved. 

Reasons your credit card application may require a review include:

  • Too many new credit inquiries: Several new credit inquiries can be problematic to credit issuers because they might signify a stolen identity or credit trouble. The credit card issuer may want an employee to review your credit. 
  • To verify the information: The credit card issuer may also want an employee to verify your information. For instance, if you go by “Joe” and “Joseph” or underwent a recent address change, the credit card issuer’s algorithm might not automatically approve your application. Business owners may need to jump through additional hoops if they do not have previous years of tax returns to verify current income.
  • Suspected fraud: New credit inquiries can be a sign of identity theft. Credit card issuers want to prevent this as much as possible, so they may need additional time to ensure you’re who you say you are. 

Remember: The reason your credit application is under review may be different from a credit denial reason, such as: 

  • Too much debt
  • Low credit score 
  • Bankruptcy
  • Account in collections
  • Insufficient income 

What will happen next if I’m approved for a credit card?

If approved, you should receive a new card in the mail in about 10 to 14 business days. 

Some credit issuers have a way for you to use your credit immediately. If a credit issuer can authenticate your identity and has a product with instant credit available, you may be able to use your new credit card number to make purchases.  

Here’s how it works:

  • Step 1: Apply for an eligible card. Not all cards offer instant credit, so if this is important to you, ensure it’s an option before you apply.
  • Step 2: Add the account number to your digital wallet after approval. 
  • Step 3: Shop online or anywhere digital wallets are accepted.

If you need to make a large purchase, it’s helpful to call the credit issuer ahead of time to inquire about your options. 

What should I do if I’m denied for a credit card?

If your application is denied after review, consider one or more of the following options.

Call the reconsideration line

The reconsideration line allows you to request a customer service representative to review your credit application again. 

It’s possible to move credit over from another credit card or offer an explanation to help the company make a better decision about offering you credit. As every effective negotiator knows, don’t take the first “no” as an answer. Getting approved for a credit card after being denied is possible, especially if you have a good reason. 

Learn the reason your application was denied

Credit card issuers are required by the Equal Credit Opportunity Act (ECOA) to tell you the specific reason it denied your application. 

Suppose the lender’s denial is based on your credit report. In that case, it must give you the following:

  • Your credit score
  • The credit reporting bureau that reported the score
  • Information about where to obtain a free copy of your credit report
  • Explanation about how to correct errors on your report

Knowing why your application was denied can help you make changes so you can get approved in the future. Credit issuers encourage potential cardmembers to apply again

Improve your credit score

Be aware that credit inquiry, whether approved or not, may hurt your credit score. If your application was denied because of your credit score, start making moves to improve it:

  1. Automate your bills to get a clean credit payment history.
  2. Pay down balances to improve your debt-to-income ratio.
  3. Correct errors.
  4. Settle disputes or collections accounts.
  5. Diversify your credit.
  6. Keep older accounts open, and limit new accounts to show a steady credit history.

Find alternative financing

If you applied for a credit card because you wanted to use it to make a specific purchase, a denial means you must find another way to pay for that expense. 

Alternatives include:

  • Personal loan. A personal loan allows you to get a fixed amount and repay it over time in installments. It can be an effective way to get flexible, fast funds.
  • Home equity loan. If you have a home with significant equity, you may be able to get a home equity loan. It takes time to get a home equity loan, and the loan is secured with your home, but the interest is often lower than a credit card or a personal loan. You could also consider a home equity line of credit (HELOC).
  • Private loan. These are loans from friends or family. They can be flexible but may have strings attached. 
  • Borrow from investments. You could consider borrowing from your 401(k), Roth IRA, or other taxable accounts.

Wait to apply for another credit card

If a specific recent event lowered your credit score—for instance, too many recent hard inquiries—you may need to wait to apply for another credit card.