Best secured cards of February 2023

By
Christina Ly
,
Nick Ewen
and
Katie Genter
Updated
Jan 30, 2023
This page is a marketplace where our partners can highlight their current card offers. The reviews and insights represented are editorial, but the order in which cards appear on the page may be influenced by compensation we may receive from our partners.

Not everyone can be approved for a rewards credit card. If you have a limited credit history — or have made some credit mistakes in the past and have a bad or poor credit score — you may want to use a secured credit card while you work to improve your credit. Here are some of the best available options. 

TPG Editor's Rating tooltip icon
2/5
no offer
details
no offer
no offer
Intro Offer
no offer
$0

Why We Chose It

The Capital One Platinum Secured Credit Card is one of the few secured credit cards that may extend you a credit line that is greater than your security deposit. The card can be a good choice for people looking for a secured card since it includes no foreign transaction fees, auto rental collision damage insurance, travel accident insurance and extended warranty protection. It also comes with CreditWise, which gives you alerts when your TransUnion or Experian credit report changes. 

Pros

  • No annual fee.
  • No foreign transaction fees.
  • Travel insurance and shopping protection.

Cons

  • No bonus earning.
  • Requires a deposit.
  • No annual or hidden fees. See if you're approved in seconds
  • Building your credit? Using the Capital One Platinum Secured card responsibly could help
  • Put down a refundable security deposit starting at $49 to get a $200 initial credit line
  • You could earn back your security deposit as a statement credit when you use your card responsibly, like making payments on time
  • Be automatically considered for a higher credit line in as little as 6 months with no additional deposit needed
  • Enjoy peace of mind with $0 Fraud Liability so that you won't be responsible for unauthorized charges
  • Monitor your credit score with CreditWise from Capital One. It's free for everyone
  • Get access to your account 24 hours a day, 7 days a week with online banking to access your account from your desktop or smartphone, with Capital One's mobile app

Pros

  • No annual fee.
  • No foreign transaction fees.
  • Travel insurance and shopping protection.

Cons

  • No bonus earning.
  • Requires a deposit.
  • No annual or hidden fees. See if you're approved in seconds
  • Building your credit? Using the Capital One Platinum Secured card responsibly could help
  • Put down a refundable security deposit starting at $49 to get a $200 initial credit line
  • You could earn back your security deposit as a statement credit when you use your card responsibly, like making payments on time
  • Be automatically considered for a higher credit line in as little as 6 months with no additional deposit needed
  • Enjoy peace of mind with $0 Fraud Liability so that you won't be responsible for unauthorized charges
  • Monitor your credit score with CreditWise from Capital One. It's free for everyone
  • Get access to your account 24 hours a day, 7 days a week with online banking to access your account from your desktop or smartphone, with Capital One's mobile app

Pros

  • No annual fee.
  • No foreign transaction fees.
  • Travel insurance and shopping protection.

Cons

  • No bonus earning.
  • Requires a deposit.
  • No annual or hidden fees. See if you're approved in seconds
  • Building your credit? Using the Capital One Platinum Secured card responsibly could help
  • Put down a refundable security deposit starting at $49 to get a $200 initial credit line
  • You could earn back your security deposit as a statement credit when you use your card responsibly, like making payments on time
  • Be automatically considered for a higher credit line in as little as 6 months with no additional deposit needed
  • Enjoy peace of mind with $0 Fraud Liability so that you won't be responsible for unauthorized charges
  • Monitor your credit score with CreditWise from Capital One. It's free for everyone
  • Get access to your account 24 hours a day, 7 days a week with online banking to access your account from your desktop or smartphone, with Capital One's mobile app
TPG Editor's Rating tooltip icon
3/5
1.5 - 5% cash-back
details
  • 5% Earn unlimited 5% cash back on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel, where you'll get Capital One's best prices on thousands of trip options. Terms apply
  • 1.5% Earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase, everywhere
no offer
Intro Offer
no offer
$0

Why We Chose It

The Capital One Quicksilver card is a great option for new cardholders looking for a flat cash back rate. The Quicksilver card earns unlimited 1.5% cash back on all purchases and has no annual fee. Unfortunately, the secured version of the Quicksilver card does not offer a sign-up bonus. In addition, cardmembers can enjoy unlimited 5% cash back on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel. It is a great card if you are looking for a simple way to earn cash back on all purchases, but it does not offer many additional perks or bonus earnings. 

Pros

  • No annual fee.
  • Cashback on all purchases.
  • Unlimited cash back. 

Cons

  • Minimal bonus earning categories. 
  • No annual or hidden fees, and you can earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase, every day. See if you're approved in seconds
  • Put down a refundable $200 security deposit to get a $200 initial credit line
  • Building your credit? Using a card like this responsibly could help
  • Enjoy peace of mind with $0 Fraud Liability so that you won't be responsible for unauthorized charges
  • You could earn back your security deposit as a statement credit when you use your card responsibly, like making payments on time
  • Be automatically considered for a higher credit line in as little as 6 months with no additional deposit needed
  • Earn unlimited 5% cash back on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel, where you'll get Capital One's best prices on thousands of trip options. Terms apply
  • Monitor your credit score with CreditWise from Capital One. It's free for everyone
  • Enjoy up to 6 months of complimentary Uber One membership statement credits through 11/14/2024

Pros

  • No annual fee.
  • Cashback on all purchases.
  • Unlimited cash back. 

Cons

  • Minimal bonus earning categories. 
  • No annual or hidden fees, and you can earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase, every day. See if you're approved in seconds
  • Put down a refundable $200 security deposit to get a $200 initial credit line
  • Building your credit? Using a card like this responsibly could help
  • Enjoy peace of mind with $0 Fraud Liability so that you won't be responsible for unauthorized charges
  • You could earn back your security deposit as a statement credit when you use your card responsibly, like making payments on time
  • Be automatically considered for a higher credit line in as little as 6 months with no additional deposit needed
  • Earn unlimited 5% cash back on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel, where you'll get Capital One's best prices on thousands of trip options. Terms apply
  • Monitor your credit score with CreditWise from Capital One. It's free for everyone
  • Enjoy up to 6 months of complimentary Uber One membership statement credits through 11/14/2024

Pros

  • No annual fee.
  • Cashback on all purchases.
  • Unlimited cash back. 

Cons

  • Minimal bonus earning categories. 
  • No annual or hidden fees, and you can earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase, every day. See if you're approved in seconds
  • Put down a refundable $200 security deposit to get a $200 initial credit line
  • Building your credit? Using a card like this responsibly could help
  • Enjoy peace of mind with $0 Fraud Liability so that you won't be responsible for unauthorized charges
  • You could earn back your security deposit as a statement credit when you use your card responsibly, like making payments on time
  • Be automatically considered for a higher credit line in as little as 6 months with no additional deposit needed
  • Earn unlimited 5% cash back on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel, where you'll get Capital One's best prices on thousands of trip options. Terms apply
  • Monitor your credit score with CreditWise from Capital One. It's free for everyone
  • Enjoy up to 6 months of complimentary Uber One membership statement credits through 11/14/2024
Best for poor credit history
TPG Editor's Rating tooltip icon
2/5
no offer
details
no offer
no offer
Intro Offer
no offer
$35

Why We Chose It

The OpenSky Secured Visa Credit Card comes with a $35 annual fee but is a great option for cardholders with a poor credit history. The Opensky Secured card tours a high approval rate, even for people without a bank account. In addition, the card does not require a credit check and cardholders are routinely considered for an increased credit line after six months. 

Pros

  • No credit pull.
  • Approval is possible with short/bad credit history.

Cons

  • Annual fee.
  • No reward earning. 
  • No credit check to apply and find out instantly if you are approved.
  • OpenSky gives everyone an opportunity to improve their credit with an 85% average approval rate for the past 5 years
  • You could be eligible for the OpenSky Gold Unsecured Card after as few as 6 months
  • Reports to all 3 major credit bureaus monthly, unlike a prepaid or debit card
  • View your FICO® Score through your OpenSky account, an easy way to stay on top of your credit
  • Nearly half of OpenSky cardholders who make on-time payments improve their FICO score 30+ points in the first 3 months
  • Your refundable* deposit, as low as $200, becomes your OpenSky Visa credit limit
  • Easy application, apply in less than 5 minutes right from your mobile device
  • Offer flexible payment due dates which allow you to choose any available due date that fits your payment schedule
  • *View the cardholder agreement

Pros

  • No credit pull.
  • Approval is possible with short/bad credit history.

Cons

  • Annual fee.
  • No reward earning. 
  • No credit check to apply and find out instantly if you are approved.
  • OpenSky gives everyone an opportunity to improve their credit with an 85% average approval rate for the past 5 years
  • You could be eligible for the OpenSky Gold Unsecured Card after as few as 6 months
  • Reports to all 3 major credit bureaus monthly, unlike a prepaid or debit card
  • View your FICO® Score through your OpenSky account, an easy way to stay on top of your credit
  • Nearly half of OpenSky cardholders who make on-time payments improve their FICO score 30+ points in the first 3 months
  • Your refundable* deposit, as low as $200, becomes your OpenSky Visa credit limit
  • Easy application, apply in less than 5 minutes right from your mobile device
  • Offer flexible payment due dates which allow you to choose any available due date that fits your payment schedule
  • *View the cardholder agreement

Pros

  • No credit pull.
  • Approval is possible with short/bad credit history.

Cons

  • Annual fee.
  • No reward earning. 
  • No credit check to apply and find out instantly if you are approved.
  • OpenSky gives everyone an opportunity to improve their credit with an 85% average approval rate for the past 5 years
  • You could be eligible for the OpenSky Gold Unsecured Card after as few as 6 months
  • Reports to all 3 major credit bureaus monthly, unlike a prepaid or debit card
  • View your FICO® Score through your OpenSky account, an easy way to stay on top of your credit
  • Nearly half of OpenSky cardholders who make on-time payments improve their FICO score 30+ points in the first 3 months
  • Your refundable* deposit, as low as $200, becomes your OpenSky Visa credit limit
  • Easy application, apply in less than 5 minutes right from your mobile device
  • Offer flexible payment due dates which allow you to choose any available due date that fits your payment schedule
  • *View the cardholder agreement

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Card Best for Welcome Offer/Sign Up Bonus Earning Rate Annual Fee
Capital One Platinum Secured Credit Card Best for credit card perks N/A N/A $0
Capital One Quicksilver Secured Cash Rewards Credit Card Best for flat-rate earning N/A
  • Earn unlimited 5% cash back on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel, where you'll get Capital One's best prices on thousands of trip options. Terms apply
  • Earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase, everywhere
$0
OpenSky® Secured Visa® Credit Card Best for poor credit history N/A N/A $35

What is a secured credit card?

A secured credit card is a card that requires a security deposit from the cardholder when the account is opened. This security deposit is usually refundable and determines your initial credit limit. Secured credit cards are often used by consumers without credit history or with low credit scores and can be useful for building or repairing credit.

Related: Secured vs. unsecured credit cards: What you should know

How we chose the best secured credit cards

In choosing the best secured credit cards for this guide, we prioritized cards that don’t charge an annual fee and report credit activity to the three main credit bureaus. Reporting activity to credit bureaus is important since you’ll want your activity on the card to help improve your credit score. We also included some cards with modest annual fees with unique perks or aspects that may make them the best option for some consumers.

We didn’t put much weight on the APR rate, as you’ll want to ensure you can pay off your balance each month to work on building or repairing your credit. And, although this article is on The Points Guy, you shouldn’t put too much weight on the rewards earning rate since you’ll generally only keep your secured card until you’ve built or repaired your credit enough to move to a rewards credit card.

Related: How to choose the right credit card for you

Should I get a secured credit card?

Secured credit cards are best used for building or repairing credit. If you don’t have strong enough credit to be approved for most beginner credit cards, and you don’t have any trusted friends or family members that are willing to add you to their account as an authorized user, a secured credit card can be an assured way to getting a credit card and working to improve your credit score.

You should see a secured credit card as a stepping stone to an unsecured (or traditional) rewards credit card. If you can already get approved for an unsecured rewards credit card that doesn’t have high fees, you won’t need to consider getting a secured credit card.

Related: Travel rewards strategies for people with low credit scores

How does a secured credit card help build or repair credit?

If you’re looking to build or repair your credit with a secured credit card, you’ll want to ensure the card you get will report your payment activity to the credit bureaus. All of the cards described in this guide advertise that they do so — after all, card issuers realize that most people using secured credit cards are working to build or repair credit.

With a secured credit card, you’ll generally start with a low credit line. So, to build or repair your credit, you’ll initially want to make small, infrequent purchases and focus on paying off your balance in full each month.

The issuer may eventually offer you a higher credit line, which can help your credit score as long as you keep your utilization low. It’s also a good idea to check your credit score regularly while working to build or repair your credit.

Related: The best first credit cards

Is it worth it to pay an annual fee on a secured credit card?

Generally, it’s not worth paying an annual fee on a secured credit card. However, if you don’t want the issuer to perform a credit check, you may need to pay an annual fee to access a secured credit card that offers no credit check, like the OpenSky Secured Visa. And, although you should be paying your credit card bill in full every month to improve your credit score, if you are looking for a secured credit card with a low APR, you’ll usually need to pay an annual fee.

Related: Guide to credit card annual fees