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Aqua Classic credit card review

The Aqua Classic credit card is a credit-building card for UK residents with a limited or poor credit history. Here is our review of the card's features, pros, and cons.

What are the pros of the Aqua Classic credit building card?

  • Almost anyone can get it. The Aqua card is meant to help people with poor or no credit history improve their credit score by making on-time payments. Based on the customer reviews we've seen online if other card providers reject you, Aqua might still give you a chance.
  • Eligibility check: Like any credit-building card, Aqua offers an eligibility check that runs a soft credit check on your file. This allows you to see your chances of approval without hurting your credit score.
  • Potential to reduce APR and increase credit limit: By making payments on time and staying within the credit limit, you may be able to increase your credit limit and lower your APR eventually. The credit limit increase is especially important as it can improve your credit score.
  • And all the features you'd expect from a regular credit card: a mobile app, text alerts for payments, and purchase protection.

What are some of the cons of the Aqua Classic credit builder card?

The Aqua Classic card comes with some big cons, too:

  • High APR. Its representative APR, starting at 34.9% and in some cases going as high as 49.9%, is higher than many other credit-building cards on the market.
  • Foreign transaction fees: There is a 2.95% foreign exchange fee for using the Aqua Classic card abroad, which can add up if you travel often.
  • Other fees: The card also charges you for late payments (£12), over the credit limit (£12), and so on. These can add up quickly.
  • Low initial credit limit: Your initial credit limit can only go as high as £1,200. This is pretty typical for a credit builder card, but some cards do offer more.
  • No rewards or perks: Unlike some other credit cards, the Aqua Classic does not offer rewards, cashback, or other perks for using it. It is a basic credit-building card without any additional benefits.

In Aqua's defence, most credit builder cards in the UK come with similarly high APRs and low credit limits. Most also offer no rewards. But some do.

For example, Asda Money Select and Tesco Foundation reward you for your supermarket purchases. Barclaycard Forward also automatically reduces your interest rate if you pay your bill on time. There are many other such examples. The Aqua Classic is one of many credit-building cards available in the UK market, and it could be better.

What do customer reviews say about the Aqua credit card?

The Aqua credit card has a rating of 4.3 out of 5 on Trustpilot, one of the largest customer review websites, given by more than 11,000 customers.

Out of these, 67% gave it 5 stars. Most seemed to like the fast application process or that Aqua was among the few credit cards accepted when they had poor credit. Interestingly, even some of these 5-star reviews complain about the high APR and the low credit limit.

This leads us to their bad reviews. Out of the 11,000 reviews on Trustpilot, 16% gave it only 1 star.

The most common complaints are unexpected charges, poor app security, and, worst of all, a decrease in credit limit (and therefore credit score) despite a history of timely repayments.

We've also noticed several customers complain about Aqua taking their payments late and hitting them with late payment fees – which is expensive and another way someone's credit score can get damaged.

Also, in a recent "Which?" survey, Aqua got a customer score of just 60%, placing it last alongside 118 118 Money. Customers were unhappy with Aqua's customer service, clarity of statements, and transparency of fees and penalties.

Is the Aqua credit builder card worth it?

The Aqua Classic credit card can be an option if your credit history is extremely poor. However, the very high APR, low credit limit, lack of rewards, unexpected fees, and some of the customer reviews we've seen make us reluctant to recommend it as a credit-building card. There are too many better alternatives.

If you're looking for a safer and less costly alternative for repairing your credit score, consider downloading a credit-building app.

One such app is Wollit. Unlike the Aqua Classic credit card, Wollit reports your monthly fixed-fee subscription as a loan repayment.

This directly builds your credit history and gives you a chance to improve your credit score while keeping you safe from the unexpected fees and high-interest charges that Aqua customers complain about. As your credit score improves, you will eventually be eligible for better cards and deals in the future.

Wollit, no stress, no hassle - just a clear path to better credit

Terms apply. Results may vary. Improvements to your credit score are not guaranteed. Wollit Credit Builder plans are unregulated.

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Terms apply. Results may vary. Improvements to your credit score are not guaranteed. Wollit Credit Builder plans are unregulated.