Indigo Platinum Mastercard Review - A Credit-Building Card
When you're struggling to build credit or looking for a way to repair less-than-average credit, it can be tempting to take the first credit card offer that comes your way. There are many cards out there targeted for those building or rebuilding their credit, and the Indigo Platinum Mastercard is one of them.
The Indigo Platinum Master boasts many benefits for those looking to bump up their credit score quickly, but it's not without its flaws. Ultimately this credit-building card doesn't provide any unique benefits that you couldn't obtain with another similar card. Let's take a close look at some of this card's key features, benefits, drawbacks, and who it's best for.
- What is the Indigo Platinum Mastercard?
- How much does Indigo Platinum Mastercard Cost?
- Indigo Platinum Mastercard Features
- Who is the Indigo Platinum Mastercard best for?
- Who shouldn't use the Indigo Platinum Mastercard?
- Indigo Platinum Mastercard pros and cons
- Indigo Platinum Mastercard vs. competitors
- Summary of Indigo Platinum Mastercard vs. competitors
- The bottom line
What is the Indigo Platinum Mastercard?
The Indigo Platinum Mastercard issued by Celtic Bank, an FDIC-insured Salt Lake City-based financial institution, is serviced by Genesis FS Card Services. Celtic Bank was founded in 2001 to provide financing for small businesses. This bank is regularly rated one of the top ten small business lenders in the country, but it offers more than small business financial services.
Designed for anyone with no, low, or poor credit, the Indigo Platinum Mastercard is easy to get approved for, has varying credit limits, does not require a deposit, and offers prequalification without pulling your credit. This card reports to all three of the major credit bureaus — Experian, Transunion, and Equifax - allowing you to start growing your credit score with responsible use.
Despite the benefits, this card has some real drawbacks, like the steep annual fee (varying amounts), low credit line limits, late payment penalties, and high APR — annual percentage rate. How does the Indigo Platinum Mastercard work? You can apply for the Indigo Platinum Mastercard online. If you're worried you may not be approved — although Indigo states it's easier to get approved for this card than other comparable options — you can find out if you prequalify here.
For both the prequalification and application processes, you'll need to provide some key information, like your name, address, social security number, date of birth, annual income, income source, and email address. The Indigo card team will then assess your creditworthiness and make an approval (or preapproval) decision.
Alternatively, if you've received an offer by mail, you can enter this information in when selecting the apply button.
The entire process is quick and easy, and you should receive a decision in a matter of minutes. In some cases, the provider may need more time to process your application, and you may receive a decision by mail. You cannot apply for this card over the phone at this time.
How much does Indigo Platinum Mastercard Cost?
Depending on your credit, you may be charged an annual fee for the Indigo Platinum Mastercard. While those with better credit may not be required to pay an annual fee, most applicants with poor or below-average credit can expect to pay between $59 - $99 annually. Considering the credit line only extends to $300, this may be too steep a fee for some applicants.
Other costs you may incur are late fees — up to $40 — and a penalty APR, which bumps up to 29.90% from 24.90% — a significant jump.
Indigo Platinum Mastercard Features
Overall, the Indigo Platinum Mastercard is rather lackluster — its main appeal is its easier approval odds — but there are some features that prospective applicants should be aware of.
With a card catering to those with credit scores well below 600, it's nice that there's no deposit requirement. While this is not a secured card, the steep $99 annual fee that many with poor credit could end up paying can make it feel like an option stuck somewhere in between secured and unsecured cards.
Won't ding your credit to check approval odds
There's nothing more frustrating than applying for a credit card only to get denied — and have your credit dip because of the hard inquiry. I like that the Indigo Platinum Mastercard lets you determine your approval chances without impacting your credit first. But, it's important to keep in mind that pre-qualification isn't a guarantee — while it can give you a better idea of whether or not you'll be approved, ultimately, a hard inquiry will be needed to firm up your approval.
Easier approval odds
Building credit can feel like a catch 22 — you need access to credit to boost your score, but to get access to credit, you need a good credit score. Indigo claims this card is designed for those with no, poor, or limited credit, allowing you access to an unsecured line of credit that can help you practice responsible credit usage to bump up your credit score.
Fun card design options
You can choose from a variety of card designs for no additional charge. While this isn't a significant benefit, it might be worth considering if you're deciding between another similar card without personalization options.
Like all Mastercard credit cards, the Indigo Platinum Mastercard offers fraud protection designed to protect you from unauthorized purchases if your card or account information is stolen.
The Indigo Platinum Mastercard is a basic, credit-building card that does not currently offer rewards or welcome bonuses. If you're looking for rewards and have limited or poor credit, the Discover it Secured Card, or the Petal 1 Visa card might be better options to explore.
Who is the Indigo Platinum Mastercard best for?
Anyone rebuilding credit looking for an unsecured card. If you're finding it difficult to get approved for a credit card — even those targeted as credit building cards — you may have better luck with the Indigo Platinum Mastercard. It offers a low credit limit, but it's not a secured card.
Students and young adults with no or limited credit. Although there are better credit cards for students to consider, the Indigo Platinum Mastercard might be a solid option for any student with no or limited credit history looking to secure their first credit card.
Anyone seeking a low credit line. While most would consider the $225 to $300 credit line that the Indigo Platinum Mastercard offers to be a drawback, in some cases, it might be a highlight. If you know you're tempted by high-limit credit cards or want to prevent overspending and to dig yourself into a significant amount of debt, then a smaller credit line might be a perk, making this card the right choice for you.
Who shouldn't use the Indigo Platinum Mastercard?
Anyone with average or above-average credit. If your credit score is higher than 600, chances are you can get approved for a better card with no or lower annual fees, some rewards system, and no or lower penalties.
Anyone seeking a high credit limit. The $300 credit limit may be perfect for someone just starting on their credit journey, but if you're trying to boost your credit score with your credit utilization rate, this card won't make much of a difference.
Indigo Platinum Mastercard pros and cons
Still not sure if the Indigo Platinum Mastercard is right for you? Here are some pros and cons to consider.
- Better approval odds
- No deposit
- Prequalification won't impact your credit
- Card design personalization options
- Steep annual fee (for most applicants)
- Low credit limit of $300
- High penalty fees ($40) and penalty APR (29.90%)
- No welcome bonus
- No rewards
- No ability to request a credit increase
Indigo Platinum Mastercard vs. competitors
How does Indigo Platinum Mastercard stand up to competitors? Let's take a look.
Indigo Platinum Mastercard vs. Petal 1 Visa Credit Card
The Petal 1 Visa credit card offers no annual fees, credit limits between $500 and $5,000, 2% - 10% cashback at select merchants, and no deposit. Like the Indigo Platinum Mastercard, this credit option is designed for those with poor credit. Petal takes this one step further, by creating a Cash Score — an alternative way of looking at how you manage money — by reviewing the money coming into your account and the money spent on bills each month.
Petal 1 also offers lower APR ranges — 19.99% to 29.49% — which could save you money on interest. This card has no foreign transaction fees and allows you to freeze your card when needed to prevent unnecessary spending.
Indigo Platinum Mastercard vs. Discover It Secured Card
The Discover It Secured Card is a secured card, requiring a minimum deposit of $200 (which is refundable). But, unlike the Indigo Platinum Mastercard, the Discover It Secured Card has no annual fee, a lower APR (22.99%), a higher credit limit of up to $2,500, and the ability to freeze your card to curb overspending.
What's unique about the Discover It Secured Card is that you're able to earn rewards — a feature that's not common with secured cards or even unsecured credit-building cards. You'll earn 2% back at gas stations and restaurants (on up to $1,000 in purchases each quarter), 1% unlimited cash back on all other purchases, and a cashback match for your first year's worth of rewards.
Indigo Platinum Mastercard vs. Capital One Secured Card
The Capital One Secured Card is another top credit-building option. Unlike the Indigo Platinum Mastercard, it does require a deposit — either $49, $99, or $200, depending on your credit score. It also offers a lower initial credit line than the Indigo Platinum Mastercard, giving you a limit of $200. The APR is also a bit higher than the Indigo Platinum card at 26.99%.
The good news is, after 6 months of on-time payments and responsible credit use, you are automatically considered for a higher credit line. You might also earn your deposit back in the form of a statement credit.
Like the Indigo Platinum Card, the Capital One Secured Card offers no rewards or welcome bonuses.
Summary of Indigo Platinum Mastercard vs. competitors
|Bank||Annual Fee||Deposit||Credit Limit||APR||Rewards|
|Indigo Platinum Mastercard||$0 - $99||None||$300||24.90%||None|
|Petal 1 Visa||None||None||$500 - $5,000||19.99% - 29.49%||2% - 10% cash-back at qualifying merchants|
|Discover It Secured Card||None||$200 (minimum)||$200 - $2,500||22.99%||2% cash-back at gas stations and restaurants (for up to $1,000 spent each quarter); 1% cash-back on all other purchases; cash-back match for first year’s rewards|
|Capital One Secured Card||None||$49 - $200 * refundable||$200 (eligible for higher limit after 6 months)||26.99%||None|
Does the Indigo Platinum Mastercard offer cash advances?
Yes, you can get a cash advance with your Indigo Platinum Mastercard, but I'd avoid this option if possible because of the steep fees. Indigo does not publish their cash advance fees, but providers typically charge a fee between 3% - 5% of the cash advance amount, on top of interest and higher APR brackets.
Is the Indigo Platinum Mastercard a secured card?
No, the Indigo Platinum Mastercard is an unsecured card that does not require a deposit. It may, however, require you to pay an annual fee.
What bank issues the Indigo Platinum Mastercard?
Celtic Bank in Utah is the issuer for the Indigo Platinum Mastercard.
The bottom line
The Indigo Platinum Mastercard is a standard credit-building card that is easy to get approved for, but offers few additional incentives. While it can be a solid card for establishing credit, its lackluster rewards and features, combined with its small credit limit and high fees, make it a card you should only consider as a last resort.
The Petal 1 Visa and Discover it Secured cards both offer better perks and lower APRs. If you're worried about getting approved for a credit card, I'd recommend checking out the Petal 1 Visa. And if you don't mind paying a deposit, the Discover it Secured card can pay for itself if you use it responsibly while racking up rewards.
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