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Surge Platinum Mastercard Review 2024

Surge Platinum Mastercard Review
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Our evaluations and opinions are not influenced by our advertising relationships, but we may earn a commission from our partners’ links. This content is created independently from TIME’s editorial staff. Learn more about it.

updated: July 4, 2024

The Surge® Platinum Mastercard® is a credit card for those looking to re-establish or improve their credit score. Unlike many cards for applicants with less-than-perfect credit, this isn't a secured card; it’s an unsecured credit card with no deposit required. Activity is reported to all three major credit bureaus, and credit limits can grow over time. However, account fees make the card an expensive way to rebuild your credit. Here’s a closer look at the Surge® Platinum Mastercard® and what you should know if you’re considering applying.

card_name

Surge® Platinum Mastercard®

Surge® Platinum Mastercard®

APR
reg_apr,reg_apr_type
Annual fees
annual_fees
Credit score
Limited, Bad, Fair/Poor

TIME’s Take

The card may be a good option for some people looking to repair or rebuild their credit without needing to make a security deposit. But recurring fees make it a poor choice if you can qualify for a card without ongoing fees.

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Applicants may be approved with subprime credit scores.
  • No security deposit is required.
  • Credit limits can increase over time.

Cons:

  • An annual fee, and a monthly maintenance fee may apply.
  • There is an extra fee to add an authorized user.
  • Fees apply for certain card designs.

Who is the card for?

The Surge® Platinum Mastercard® is designed for applicants with “less than perfect credit.” If you have late or missed payments in the past and don’t qualify for cards with cash back rewards and without recurring fees, you may like this card’s ability to help you rebuild your credit without a security deposit.

If you choose this card, it’s best to use it for a limited time, perhaps two or three years, until you can get a card with no annual fee. The Surge® Platinum Mastercard® includes access to your credit score, updated monthly, which you can use to track your score as it rises, until your credit score is good enough to get you a card without the steep recurring costs. You may also consider keeping this card as your credit score improves, since length of credit history can have a positive impact on your credit score.

Features

The Surge credit card’s features primarily focus on helping users build or improve their credit.

  • Credit limit may increase over time with responsible card usage. Credit limits start at $300 to $1,000, depending on your credit history. After six on-time monthly payments, your credit limit can double, up to $2,000. A higher credit limit in relation to your balances, paired with on-time payments, helps improve your credit score.
  • Reports to all three major consumer credit bureaus. Credit activity is reported monthly to Experian, TransUnion, and Equifax. As lenders may use any of these as a source for credit decisions, building your credit with all three is helpful in the long term.
  • No security deposit requirement. Many cards for people looking to build or repair credit require a security deposit. The Surge Platinum isn’t a secured card, so there’s no need to put down a security deposit to open a new account.
  • Monthly credit score updates. If you opt for electronic statements, you’ll get free access to your credit score with monthly updates. Tracking your score’s progress can help you decide when to apply for a new card with better terms and benefits.

The fine print

The big downside of the Surge card is the cost. It has a high interest rate and steep fees for a card with no rewards.

As of Dec. 11, 2023, the Surge card’s annual percentage rate (APR)ate is 29.99%, near the top of the range of interest rates for all credit cards and well above the U.S. average APR of 21.9% in August 2023, per the Federal Reserve. As with all credit cards, you can avoid interest charges by paying off your balance in full every month by the due date. Keeping your balance low also helps your credit score.

Cards are subject to an annual fee of annual_fees for the first year and $99 to $125 thereafter. Starting after the first year, you’ll also pay a monthly maintenance fee of $0 to $10. Additional users require a one-time $30 fee, and “premium” card designs incur a one-time $9.95 fee.

Additional fees apply to less common activities, such as cash advances and foreign transactions. Late and returned payments cost up to $41 each.

Additional hidden perks

The card withdoes come with Mastercard benefits like ID Theft Protection, Lost Stolen Card Reporting, Emergency Card Replacement and more. As a Mastercard, there’s also zero liability for fraudulent purchases. Notify the issuer as quickly as possible if your card is lost or stolen to ensure you don’t have to pay for unauthorized purchases.

What could be improved

The most significant area for the issuer to improve is the fees. High annual and monthly fees for a card constitute a considerable drawback. The card could significantly improve by lowering recurring costs and dropping fees for additional users and “premium” designs.

Card alternatives

card_name
APR
reg_apr,reg_apr_type
reg_apr,reg_apr_type
reg_apr,reg_apr_type
Annual fees
annual_fees
annual_fees
annual_fees
Credit score
Limited, Bad, Fair/Poor
credit_score_needed
credit_score_needed
Rewards
bonus_miles
bonus_miles
bonus_miles

*Interest rates as of Dec. 11, 2023

Bottom line

While the Surge® Platinum Mastercard® may be a reasonable option for someone with less than perfect credit, other cards with rewards and/or lower annual fees are likely a better choice if you qualify.

card_name

Surge® Platinum Mastercard®

Surge® Platinum Mastercard®

APR
reg_apr,reg_apr_type
Annual fees
annual_fees
Credit score
Limited, Bad, Fair/Poor

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is a Surge® Platinum Mastercard®?

The card_name is an unsecured Mastercard credit card.

What is the credit limit on the Surge® Platinum Mastercard®?

The Surge Mastercard starts with a limit between $300 to $1,000, which doubles after your first 6 monthly on-time minimum payments.

Is Surge® Platinum Mastercard® legit?

Yes, the Surge Platinum Mastercard can be used anywhere Mastercard is accepted.

Is Surge a real credit card company?

Yes. Surge® Platinum Mastercard® is a product of Continental Finance, which is issued and managed by Celtic Bank, a Utah-based financial company.

The information presented here is created independently from the TIME editorial staff. To learn more, see our About page.

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