The best credit cards in the UK for low credit scorers

Last Updated on 19 January 2021 by Dan

Hello everyone! Today we continue our recent series of articles on the best credit cards available by looking at those that the best cards on the market for those who have poor credit scores and have found getting accepted onto other cards difficult.

Credit cards aimed at low scorers are one of a number of options, and the answer on what card is best for you depends on your personal financial situation. We’ve written a guide here which explores a few scenarios and what type of credit card might be best for your circumstances here.

If you’re not in a dire credit situation, using a 0% interest credit card as part of our debt plan is probably the best option, and you can find our guide to 0% cards here.

We’ve stressed before that we’re not about racking up unnecessary debt here at the Financial Wilderness, and if you have a poor credit history that message is really important. We think that careful use of a credit card can be an excellent tool for rebuilding credit, where you demonstrate you can use the card responsibly. But…..

A word of warning

These cards should not be used to dig yourself even deeper into the mire of credit card debt, and if you’re looking for one of these simply because you need to borrow more, I’d advise you to stop and reconsider.

As you already have some risk factors, the rate of interest on these cards tends to be higher and without a solid plan you can easily find yourself in trouble.

Instead, our guide to digging yourself out of credit card debt is here. And if you don’t trust yourself with credit, we simply recommend you don’t have a credit card at all and work in cash.

How low scorer credit cards work

The way these work is very simple as they offer you access to credit, but provide a very small credit limit to you. The idea that that this can provide a springboard to gradually rebuilding credit as you show that you can manage and pay off the debt effectively, which should improve your credit score.

Remember to do an acceptance check

Whilst these cards are aimed at low scorers, you should always run an acceptance check with the provider regardless to make sure, particularly if your credit history has been very problematic.

Being rejected for a formal credit card application can hurt your credit score, so you should always run the eligibility checker that each provider runs – it should give you an idea of if you’ll be accepted or not before you apply without running the kind of hard credit search that affects your score.

You can find out the factors that influence credit score at this article, and how to improve your credit score within this one.

What is the best credit card aimed at low credit scorers in the UK?

If you are accepted, the signup bonus offered by the Amazon Classic Credit Card along with it’s 0% interest rate period and competitive APR makes it the best in class I’ve found.

Our pick of the cards:

All information is correct as of our last update on 19.01.2021. We’ll do our best to keep our information up to date, but details and best deals can change all the time (especially in this category) so you should make sure you double check this yourself.

The Financial Wilderness may also receive a small payout if you make a purchase through a link on this site. It won’t affect the service you receive and we recommend only what we honestly believe to be the best available, not what gives us commission. You can read more about our affiliate policy on our disclaimers page.

Best overall card for low credit scorers looking for a 0% interest rate period:

Amazon Classic Credit Card

Amazon's classic credit card

Interest Free Period: 3 months

Representative APR: 29.9% APR Variable

Annual Fee: Free

Balance Transfers: No introductory rate so do not use this card for this.

Welcome bonus: £20 Amazon Voucher

Other notes: None

The Wilderness Verdict: A good card in terms of what you get in a part of the market where any kind of bonus is rare. This card gives a 3 month interest free period for essential extra spending as part of a wider debt reduction plan, and a bonus in terms of an Amazon gift card.

Coupled with that, the ongoing interest rate is one of the best in the category, although we don’t recommend having an ongoing balance on any of these cards if you can possibly avoid it.

You can find further details of this card and apply at the Amazon website here.

Next best card for low credit scorers looking for an 0% interest rate period:

Barclaycard Forward

A picture of the Barclaycard Forward Card

Interest Free Period: 3 months

Representative APR: 33.9% APR Variable

Annual Fee: Free

Balance Transfers: No introductory rate so do not use this card for this.

Welcome bonus: None

Other notes: The credit limit will be a maximum of £1,200.

The Wilderness Verdict: There’s relatively slim pickings in terms of 0% interest card for those with poor credit scores. If you absolutely must take on essential extra borrowing, this Barclaycard is one of the few other options out there that provides a little breathing space, as three months of interest free provides flexibility as part of a debt management plan.

You can find further details of this card and apply at the Barclaycard website here.

Best Credit Card for low credit scorers who are struggling with acceptance:

Vanquis Bank Chrome Card

A picture of the Vanquis Bank Chrome Card

Interest Free Period: 3 months

Representative APR: 29.3% APR Variable

Annual Fee: Free

Balance Transfers: No introductory rate so do not use this card for this.

Welcome bonus: None

Other notes: Low credit specialist, but you really don’t want to miss payments on this, as they’ll charge you extra.

The Wilderness Verdict: Vanquis specialises in offering cards to those with a poor or no credit history, so if you’re struggling to get accepted on the cards above this one might be for you.

There’s nothing fancy or gimmick here, but it’s the lowest APR I’ve been able to find on a card aimed at those with poor or no credit.

You can find further details of this card and apply at the Chrome (Vanquis) website here.

Any Questions?

There’s lots to consider with these cards. If you have any further questions (or think you’ve spotted a better card than the options here) please just leave a comment below and let us know!

Remember you can also see our other articles in the credit card series here:

And you might be interested in our post on how to improve your credit score here.

And that’s it!

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