Chase credit cards – The minimum credit score you need for each card
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As much as we all love earning points and miles from lucrative credit cards, it can sometimes be difficult to decide which cards to open and use on an ongoing basis. It can be even more difficult to discern which credit cards a bank might approve you for, especially because of the complex algorithms and logic used to make credit card application decisions.
In reality, there’s no precise science to guaranteeing approval for any given credit card — none publicly available, anyway. Chase doesn’t publish the minimum credit score required for its cards. But by looking at historical approval rates and considering typical application behavior, we can create informed hypotheses about which cards have the highest approval odds depending on certain factors like credit score and household income. For the most part, you’ll need decent credit (a score of 680+) to be approved for most Chase cards, with the more premium cards requiring good to excellent credit (a score of 725+).
Here we’ll share what we’ve discovered about the minimum credit score needed for personal Chase credit cards. This list doesn’t include every single credit card offered by Chase, but does cover the most common (and our favorite) cards.
Without further ado, here’s our list:
The Chase Sapphire Preferred is our favorite overall travel credit card for beginners to miles and points. The $95 annual fee is a reasonable price to pay for the 60,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards point sign-up bonus you’ll earn after spending $4,000 on purchases in the first three months of account opening, as well as ongoing earning rates of 5x total points on all travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards, 3x points on dining, including eligible delivery services, takeout and dining out, 3x points on select streaming services, 3x points on online grocery purchases (excluding Target, Walmart and wholesale clubs), 2x points on all other travel, 1x point on all other purchases.
Most people approved for this card have credit scores in the range of 700 and above. As this is considered a mid-level card, it would be tough to get approved with no credit history. This was the first travel card I applied for, and while my credit score was about 760 at the time, I had very little income. This was also the first travel card team member Jasmin was approved for, and her credit score was around 750 at the time.
You can read our full review of the Chase Sapphire Preferred card here.
Chase Sapphire Reserve®
The Chase Sapphire Reserve® is the only “premium” credit card on our list, meaning it carries exceptional travel and purchase benefits in addition to its hefty $550 annual fee. But you’ll receive up to $300 in travel credits annually, great earning rates (3 points per dollar on travel and dining and 1 point per dollar on everything else), and 50,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first three months of account opening.
This is probably the toughest card to get approved for on this list because you typically need at least a ~725 credit score plus a steady income. The Chase Sapphire Reserve is a Visa Infinite credit card, meaning you typically need to qualify for a credit limit of at least $10,000 (though there are some exceptions). Team member Jasmin was approved with an 800+ credit score.
The travel credits and earning on this card are so valuable that I jumped on it as soon as it was released and will likely keep it open for many years to come. Here’s our Chase Sapphire Reserve review.
Chase Freedom Unlimited®
The Chase Freedom Unlimited card is similar to the traditional Freedom card in many respects, in that it has no annual fee and is a great starter credit card. The Freedom Unlimited, however, offers 1.5% cash back (1.5 Chase Ultimate Rewards points per dollar) on all purchases with no rotating quarterly category bonuses. You can combine your points with an annual-fee Chase Ultimate Rewards card and transfer them to Chase transfer partners.
With the Chase Freedom Unlimited card, you can earn a $200 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening.
This card typically has similar approval ratings to the Chase Freedom Flex, requiring a slightly higher minimum credit score, in the range of 675. You can read our Chase Freedom Unlimited Review here.
With the Ink Business Preferred you can earn 100,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points after you spend $15,000 on purchases within the first three months of account opening. It the Ultimate Rewards earning card with the highest welcome bonus, one that’s worth at least $1,250 in travel when you redeem your points through the Chase Travel Portal.
Even though the Ink Business Preferred is a business credit card, Chase will use your personal credit score in deciding whether to approve you. In general, it’s a good idea to have at least a score of 740, though there have been reports of people with lower scores being approved. Regardless, you’ll also need business income, and sometimes Chase goes as far as asking for documents for proof of business, like a business license, invoices, business card, etc.
For the Ink Business Cash card, you’ll generally need good to excellent credit, meaning a score of 700+. That’s because even though the Ink Cash is a business card, like with to the Ink Business Preferred, Chase will use your personal credit score when making its decision.
What’s great about this particular Chase business card is that it’s currently offering an all-time-high welcome bonus of $750 bonus cash back after you spend $7,500 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. This is an excellent deal because the Ink Business Cash has no annual fee. For more details, read our Ink Business Cash review here.
An alternative to the Ink Business Cash is the Ink Business Unlimited. This is the best choice if you’re looking for a business card that earns cash back (or Chase Ultimate Rewards points) but don’t want the hassle of dealing with bonus categories.
The Ink Business Unlimited is a no-annual-fee card that earns 1.5% cash back (1.5x Chase Ultimate Rewards points) on every purchase. And it comes with a $750 bonus cash back after you spend $7,500 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.
Again, similar to the Ink Business Cash card, you’ll need a credit score of at least 700+ for approval. Here’s our review of the Ink Business Unlimited.
Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus Credit Card
The first of three Southwest credit cards on our list is also the card with the lowest annual fee — just $69 per year. When you open the Chase Southwest Plus card, you’ll earn 40,000 bonus points after spending $1,000 on purchases in the first three months of account opening.
This card has some interesting approval reports, with some folks reportedly receiving the card with just around 600+ credit scores. That makes this a great introductory card for folks with newer credit histories who still want to earn rewards. Here’s our review of the Southwest Rapid Rewards Plus Credit Card.
Southwest Rapid Rewards® Priority Credit Card
With the Chase Southwest Priority card, you’ll earn 40,000 bonus points after spending $1,000 on purchases in the first three months of account opening.
You’ll pay $149 a year to keep this card, but the benefits outweigh the cost if you fly Southwest frequently. You’ll also need an even higher score to get approved for this card, with average successful applicants boasting scores of 680 to 700 and above. Read our Southwest Rapid Rewards Priority Credit Card review here.
The World of Hyatt credit card is a great option for folks who prefer to earn Hyatt points or who stay at Hyatt hotels frequently. This card offers a sign-up bonus of up to 60,000 Hyatt points: 30,000 Bonus Points after spending $3,000 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening; Plus, up to 30,000 more Bonus Points by earning 2 Bonus Points total per $1 spend on purchases that normally earn 1 Bonus Point, on up to $15,000 in the first six months of account opening.
This card carries a $95 annual fee and rewards you with 9x Hyatt points per dollar spent at Hyatt hotels and resorts. You’ll typically need a slightly higher credit score to get approved for the World of Hyatt card, likely in the 700+ range. Read our World of Hyatt credit card review here.
Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card
Marriott offers a couple of different credit cards through Chase, including the popular Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card. This card carries a $95 annual fee but there is welcome offer of 5 Free Nights (each night valued up to 50,000 points) after you spend $5,000 in the first three months from account opening.
This card is somewhat more difficult to get approved for, with an average approval score above 700, but some reports show folks with just 650 credit scores also being approved. Here’s our review of the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless credit card.
Marriott Bonvoy Bold Credit Card
The Marriott Bonvoy Bold card is a no-annual-fee option for those folks still wanting to earn Marriott points with a Chase credit card. Thus, this card is slightly easier to get approved for, and reports online indicate the average credit score for approval is in the 680 range.
With the Marriott Bonvoy Bold Credit Card, you can Earn 30,000 bonus points after you spend $1,000 on purchases in the first three months from account opening. . You can also plan to keep this card open long-term, helping to grow your credit score. Read our Marriott Bonvoy Bold credit card review here.
United Explorer Card
The United Explorer Card is a great option for folks looking to earn United miles to redeem for award flights on United or one of its partner airlines like Lufthansa or Turkish Airlines. This card comes with a $95 annual fee, but the first year is waived.
The card is currently offering a welcome bonus of up to 70,000 miles. Earn 60,000 bonus miles after you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first three months of account opening. Plus, earn an additional 10,000 miles after you spend $6,000 total on purchases in the first six months your account is open. This is also a mid-tier credit card (from a fees and perks perspective) and is relatively easy to get approved for. The average approval credit score is right around 700, but some folks have been approved in the 650 range, too. You’ll find our review of the United Explorer card here.
Things to remember when applying for Chase credit cards
History certainly helps to understand what credit score might be needed to get approved for a new Chase card. But remember that Chase ultimately has the final say, and sometimes denials might happen without rhyme or reason. In these cases, you can always call up the Chase reconsideration line at 888-245-0625 to see if there’s additional information you can give the company to help boost your chances of approval.
You also need to make sure you’re adhering to the Chase 5/24 rule and other application restrictions. And sometimes you might not be eligible for a given card’s sign-up bonus depending on what credit cards you’ve applied for and held in the past. Because of this, we recommend you read our full review of any Chase credit card before deciding whether to apply.
Chase offers some of the very best credit cards when it comes to sign-up bonuses, rewards earning and overall value from benefits and perks. But not every card is easy to get approved for, and Chase has certain general restrictions that make some cards more accessible than others.
There aren’t published minimum credit scores for these cards, but by researching online we’ve found the typical minimum credit scores you’ll need to get approved. Even if you meet those, remember that Chase also will take other factors into account, such as income and your history with the bank.
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