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Credit building credit cards

Looking to improve your credit rating? Below is a selection of cards that are designed for people with limited or poor credit history. Repaying a credit card each month can help you build your credit rating, which in turn can help when you apply for mortgages, loans or other credit cards in the future.

Credit Cards best buy table heading

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Barclaycard Platinum 18 Months
18 months
0.0% interest
2.90% 3 months
0.0% interest

no rewards

24.9%
APR
Apply
Card info Card rating

Available to customers with a fair credit rating

Representative example: If you spend £1,200 at a purchase rate of 24.9% (variable) your Representative APR will be 24.9% (variable)

This details the cost of borrowing with this card after any introductory 0% deals have ended.

The representative APR is offered to at least 51% of customers accepted, and takes into account the annual interest rate charged on purchases and any annual fees.

The £1,200 spend is used as an example.

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  • Defaqto 4 stars
  • This credit card has a 4 Star Rating from independent financial research company, Defaqto, for its level of features and benefits. Tell me more

More details
Capital One Classic Preferred
no 0% intro
28.9% interest
3.00% no 0% intro
28.9% interest

no rewards

28.9%
APR
Apply
Card info Card rating

Capital One will consider applicants with a history of CCJs or defaults

Representative example: If you spend £1,200 at an annual interest rate of 28.94% (variable) your Representative APR will be 28.9% (variable)

This details the cost of borrowing with this card after any introductory 0% deals have ended.

The representative APR is offered to at least 51% of customers accepted, and takes into account the annual interest rate charged on purchases and any annual fees.

The £1,200 spend is used as an example.

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  • Defaqto 3 stars
  • This credit card has a 3 Star Rating from independent financial research company, Defaqto, for its level of features and benefits. Tell me more

More details
Now with free aqua Credit Checker aqua Classic - 29.7%
no 0% intro
29.7% interest
3.00% no 0% intro
29.7% interest

no rewards

29.7%
APR
Apply
Card info Card rating

Available to applicants with CCJs or a low income- get a response in 60 seconds

Representative example: If you spend £1,200 at an annual interest rate of 29.73% (variable) your Representative APR will be 29.7% (variable).

This details the cost of borrowing with this card after any introductory 0% deals have ended.

The representative APR is offered to at least 51% of customers accepted, and takes into account the annual interest rate charged on purchases and any annual fees.

The £1,200 spend is used as an example.

Help

  • Defaqto 3 stars
  • This credit card has a 3 Star Rating from independent financial research company, Defaqto, for its level of features and benefits. Tell me more

More details
Aquis Credit Card
no 0% intro
no 0% intro
0.00% no 0% intro
29.8% interest

no rewards

29.8%
APR
Apply
Card info Card rating

Build up your credit history to improve your credit rating

Representative example: If you spend £1,000 at an annual purchase interest rate of 29.84% (variable) your Representative APR will be 29.8% (variable).

This details the cost of borrowing with this card after any introductory 0% deals have ended.

The representative APR is offered to at least 51% of customers accepted, and takes into account the annual interest rate charged on purchases and any annual fees.

The £1,200 spend is used as an example.

Help

  • Defaqto 2 stars
  • This credit card has a 2 Star Rating from independent financial research company, Defaqto, for its level of features and benefits. Tell me more

More details
Barclaycard Initial
no 0% intro
34.9% interest
2.90% 3 months
0.0% interest

no rewards

34.9%
APR
Apply
Card info Card rating

0% interest on purchases for 3 months from account opening

Representative example: If you spend £1,200 at a purchase rate of 34.9% (variable) your Representative APR will be 34.9% (variable)

This details the cost of borrowing with this card after any introductory 0% deals have ended.

The representative APR is offered to at least 51% of customers accepted, and takes into account the annual interest rate charged on purchases and any annual fees.

The £1,200 spend is used as an example.

Help

  • Defaqto 4 stars
  • This credit card has a 4 Star Rating from independent financial research company, Defaqto, for its level of features and benefits. Tell me more

More details
Capital One Classic Mastercard
no 0% intro
34.9% interest
3.00% no 0% intro
34.9% interest

no rewards

34.9%
APR
Apply
Card info Card rating

Capital One will consider applicants with a history of CCJs or defaults

Representative example: If you spend £1,200 at a purchase rate of 34.94% (variable) your Representative APR will be 34.9% (variable)

This details the cost of borrowing with this card after any introductory 0% deals have ended.

The representative APR is offered to at least 51% of customers accepted, and takes into account the annual interest rate charged on purchases and any annual fees.

The £1,200 spend is used as an example.

Help

  • Defaqto 3 stars
  • This credit card has a 3 Star Rating from independent financial research company, Defaqto, for its level of features and benefits. Tell me more

More details
Capital One Classic Extra
no 0% intro
34.9% interest
3.00% no 0% intro
34.9% interest

Uncapped cashback

34.9%
APR
Apply
Card info Card rating

Build your credit rating while earning 0.5% cashback on everything you buy

Representative example: If you spend £1,200 at a purchase rate of 34.94% (variable) your Representative APR will be 34.9% (variable)

This details the cost of borrowing with this card after any introductory 0% deals have ended.

The representative APR is offered to at least 51% of customers accepted, and takes into account the annual interest rate charged on purchases and any annual fees.

The £1,200 spend is used as an example.

Help

  • Defaqto 4 stars
  • This credit card has a 4 Star Rating from independent financial research company, Defaqto, for its level of features and benefits. Tell me more

More details
Aqua Rewards
no 0% intro
34.9% interest
3.00% no 0% intro
34.9% interest

Uncapped cashback

34.9%
APR
Apply
Card info Card rating

Build your credit rating while earning 0.5% cashback on everything you buy

Representative example: If you spend £1,200 at an annual interest rate of 34.92% (variable) your Representative APR will be 34.9% (variable).

This details the cost of borrowing with this card after any introductory 0% deals have ended.

The representative APR is offered to at least 51% of customers accepted, and takes into account the annual interest rate charged on purchases and any annual fees.

The £1,200 spend is used as an example.

Help

  • Defaqto 4 stars
  • This credit card has a 4 Star Rating from independent financial research company, Defaqto, for its level of features and benefits. Tell me more

More details
Now with free aqua Credit Checker aqua Advance
no 0% intro
34.9% interest
3.00% no 0% intro
34.9% interest

no rewards

34.9%
APR
Apply
Card info Card rating

Can help build your credit - repay on time and your rate could reduce to 19.9% APR

Representative example: If you spend £1,200 at an annual interest rate of 34.92% (variable) your Representative APR will be 34.9% (variable).

This details the cost of borrowing with this card after any introductory 0% deals have ended.

The representative APR is offered to at least 51% of customers accepted, and takes into account the annual interest rate charged on purchases and any annual fees.

The £1,200 spend is used as an example.

Help

  • Defaqto 4 stars
  • This credit card has a 4 Star Rating from independent financial research company, Defaqto, for its level of features and benefits. Tell me more

More details
Luma Credit Card
0 months
35.9% interest
3.00% 3 months
0.0% interest

no rewards

35.9%
APR
Apply
Card info Card rating

Can help build your credit- you could get a credit limit up to £1,500

Representative example: If you spend £1,200 at a purchase rate of 35.94% (variable) your Representative APR will be 35.9% (variable)

This details the cost of borrowing with this card after any introductory 0% deals have ended.

The representative APR is offered to at least 51% of customers accepted, and takes into account the annual interest rate charged on purchases and any annual fees.

The £1,200 spend is used as an example.

Help

  • 5 Star Rating
  • This credit card has a 5 Star Rating from independent financial research company, Defaqto, for its level of features and benefits. Tell me more

More details
Vanquis
no 0% intro
0.0% interest
0.00% 0 months
39.9% interest

no rewards

39.9%
APR
Apply
Card info Card rating

You could get a credit limit of up to £1,000

Representative example: If you spend £1,000 at an annual purchase interest rate of 39.94% (variable) your Representative APR will be 39.9% (variable).

This details the cost of borrowing with this card after any introductory 0% deals have ended.

The representative APR is offered to at least 51% of customers accepted, and takes into account the annual interest rate charged on purchases and any annual fees.

The £1,200 spend is used as an example.

Help

  • Defaqto 2 stars
  • This credit card has a 2 Star Rating from independent financial research company, Defaqto, for its level of features and benefits. Tell me more

More details
Argos Card
no 0% intro
no 0% intro
0.00% no 0% intro
39.9% interest

no rewards

39.9%
APR
Apply
Card info Card rating

You could get a credit limit between £150 and £1,000

Representative example: If you spend £1,000 at an annual purchase interest rate of 39.94% (variable) your Representative APR will be 39.9% (variable).

This details the cost of borrowing with this card after any introductory 0% deals have ended.

The representative APR is offered to at least 51% of customers accepted, and takes into account the annual interest rate charged on purchases and any annual fees.

The £1,200 spend is used as an example.

Help

  • Defaqto 2 stars
  • This credit card has a 2 Star Rating from independent financial research company, Defaqto, for its level of features and benefits. Tell me more

More details
Now with free aqua Credit Checker aqua Classic
no 0% intro
39.9% interest
3.00% no 0% intro
39.9% interest

no rewards

39.9%
APR
Apply
Card info Card rating

Available to applicants with CCJs or a low income- get a response in 60 seconds

Representative example: If you spend £1,200 at an annual interest rate of 39.95% (variable) your Representative APR will be 39.9% (variable).

This details the cost of borrowing with this card after any introductory 0% deals have ended.

The representative APR is offered to at least 51% of customers accepted, and takes into account the annual interest rate charged on purchases and any annual fees.

The £1,200 spend is used as an example.

Help

  • Defaqto 3 stars
  • This credit card has a 3 Star Rating from independent financial research company, Defaqto, for its level of features and benefits. Tell me more

More details

Got a question about credit building cards?

  • Do I need a credit building Credit Card?
    Answer: If you have a history of missing payments, or a limited credit history then a credit building card might be able to help.

    Credit building cards are more likely to approve customers with poor or limited credit history compared to other mainstream cards.
  • Why would I need to improve my credit rating?
    Answer: Improving your credit rating can mean that you're more likely to be accepted for financial products such as loans, mortgages or credit cards.

Credit building credit cards: help, tips & providers

About credit building cards

What is a credit building credit card?

Credit building cards are exactly that, they are credit cards that are designed for people with a limited credit history in order to help them build up their credit rating. Keeping up to date on your credit card payments can help improve your credit rating, as it shows you can borrow and pay back money responsibly. Typically credit cards are aimed at people with good credit ratings, whereas credit building cards can help people to get a better credit history in order to have a better chance at being accepted for other credit cards, mortgages and loans.

Which is the best card?

Everyone’s financial situation is different, so there isn’t a ‘best’ credit card to recommend, but you can work out which is the best card for you by looking at the individual features and deciding which is the most important feature for you. Credit building cards often start with very low credit limits which rise the longer you’ve held the card, or sometimes they start with high representative APRs which decrease gradually over time. It’s worth considering a few cards before you decide which one to apply for.

Can everyone get a credit building card?

While credit building cards are aimed at people without a credit history, not everyone is guaranteed to be accepted for the cards. It’s important to check the credit cards site before you apply to check the exact lending criteria, as some cards will only accept people who earn over a certain amount. You can also use our our free Card Matcher tool to check your likelihood of acceptance for a credit card.

You can also check your credit rating for free to find out what you can do to make sure you get the credit you want.

Which providers offer this type of card?

Many credit card providers offer cards that are aimed at people with limited credit history, but typically the most common providers are Capital One, Aqua and Vanquis.