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Capital One Classic credit builder card review

The Capital One Classic credit builder card is a popular UK card for people looking to improve their credit rating.

Our review will help you decide whether the Capital One Classic card is right for you.

What are the pros of the Capital One Classic credit building card?

The Capital One Classic card is a reasonably basic card without rewards or perks, and all of its features are meant to help you build credit:

  • You can get it even if you had CCJs or defaults in the past.
  • It has a credit limit of up to £1500, which is higher than most credit credit builder cards (the average maximum limit is usually £1200)
  • If you make payments on time, you can get up to two credit limit increases per year.
  • No annual fee.
  • It has a QuickCheck eligibility tool, which allows you to check for approval before applying without impacting your credit score. While most credit builder cards offer a similar tool, Capital One guarantees they'll 100% approve your card application if you pass this soft check.
  • Its interest-free period on purchases is slightly longer, at 56 days than that of most credit builder cards, which offer between 36 and 48 days.
  • It also comes with all the features you might expect from a credit card, such as a mobile app, text and email alerts, and more.

We also found another Capital One Classic feature that is very interesting: CreditWise.

CreditWise is a service from Capital One that lets you view your TransUnion credit score straight in your app. It can also tell you how your payments impact your credit score and "predict" where it's going.

CreditWise also gives you free access to your TransUnion credit report as part of the same service. This can be useful for understanding what you can do to improve your credit history and can save you from having to sign up for Credit Karma (the most common website for checking the TransUnion credit report and score).

What are some of the cons of the Capital One Classic credit builder card?

Some of the cons of the Capital One Classic credit card include:

  • According to Capital One, if you have no credit history in the UK, you will probably not be accepted for this card.
  • The card has a representative APR of 34.9%. This is similar to the average APR of most credit builder cards, but some can go as low as 29%.
  • Plus, Capital One Classic has no rewards, perks, or cashback. This is not that uncommon for a credit builder card.

However, some other credit builder cards in the UK do offer rewards:

  • Asda Money Select and Tesco Foundation cards give you cash back when you use them at supermarkets.
  • The Barclaycard Forward card automatically lowers your interest rate if you pay your bill on time each month.

These are just two examples. A few other credit-builder cards like these provide extra benefits in addition to the basic credit-building features.

What do customer reviews say about the Capital One credit card?

Capital One claims that its Classic credit card is the UK's most popular card, with over 4 million people accepted.

However, this only shows how easy it is to get this card, not that it's necessarily the best one.

On Trustpilot, one of the UK's largest customer review websites, Capital One scores only a 3.2 rating out of 5, given by only 2000 customers.

Out of these, a whopping 45% only gave it 1 star. Some of the complaints we read are pretty worrying:

  • Poor customer support in case of fraud or scams;
  • No credit limit increase despite timely payments;
  • Errors, like cancelled Direct Debits or duplicate applications, which can impact someone's credit score.

The reviews are not all bad, though. The other 45% of customers who gave Capital One 5 stars praised its mobile app, ease of applying for the card, and even breathing space from interest rate charges when customers lost their jobs.

Is the Capital One credit builder card worth it?

The Capital One Classic card is a mixed bag.

On one hand, it's easy to get even if you have bad credit, and many of its features make it easy to stay on top of your credit score and avoid hurting it further.

On the other hand, the bad reviews are quite concerning. We haven't seen many credit card providers receive this many one-star reviews. This, combined with the lack of rewards or cashback, makes us reluctant to recommend Capital One Classic as a credit builder card. Other credit-building cards like Asda Money Select, Tesco Foundation, or Barclaycard Forward have higher reviews, lower APRs, and offer rewards as well.

An even safer alternative is a credit-building app like Wollit.

Unlike the Capital One Classic credit card, Wollit reports your monthly fixed subscription fee as a loan repayment. This directly builds your credit history without the risks that Capital One customers complained about. And, as your credit score improves, you will eventually be eligible for better cards and deals.

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.