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Credit card eligibility checker

  • Check your eligibility with no impact to your credit score
  • Guaranteed credit limit
  • Transfer your existing credit card balance
Check my eligibility This won't affect your credit score

Representative example: Amount of credit £1,200. Interest rate: 49.0% pa (variable) Representative 49.0% APR (variable)

Eligibility checker

What is a credit card eligibility checker? Simply put, this is a facility offered by most credit card providers so applicants can see if they'll be accepted - without impacting their credit rating. This can be particularly useful to those who may have bad or adverse credit history. Using an eligibility checker requires a soft search, meaning no footprints are left on your credit file. A full credit search is undertaken when completing a full application. This is called a hard search, whereby a lender will undertake a complete search on your credit report. This leaves a footprint on your report which is visible to other lenders too.

Apply for a credit card from 118 118 Money!
Use our Eligibility check to find out what credit limit we'll offer you before you apply, without affecting your credit rating!
Check my eligibility This won't affect your credit score
Eligibility checkers - some key considerations

Soft credit search. Although this may vary between lenders, typically when you complete an eligibility check this doesn't leave a mark on your credit file. This is a key feature of using a credit card eligibility checker. Too many completed applications in a short period can have an adverse impact on your credit file and each full application leaves a mark on your credit report. Some credit card issuers offer the eligibility check option which only uses a soft search. This type of search doesn't leave a footprint on your credit file and isn’t visible to other lenders.

If completing an application online, each lender will usually provide the eligibility checking option on their website. Whilst the type of information required can vary from lender to lender, the actual process of using the eligibility checker can usually be undertaken in a short period of time. Most lenders usually also give you an indication of the result immediately.





Certainty before completing the full application. As the results of the eligibility checker can be relatively quick and accurate, you'll have of certainty before completing the full application. Knowing whether you are eligible or not is useful as a full credit card application requires a credit check. Remember, too many applications in a short period may have a negative impact on your credit rating - so knowing the outcome beforehand can be useful. 


Saves time. Another feature of using a card eligibility checker means you’re not completing a full application for a credit card you may be rejected for or less likely to be accepted for. Therefore saving you time, and more importantly, avoiding the need for numerous hard checks which can negatively impact your credit rating. 

Simple process. When completing the eligibility checker, the details required are usually your personal details such as your full name, address, and date of birth. Some lenders may ask for financial details such as dependents and your annual salary. Typically, this process isn't too time consuming. As with any credit application though, due care and consideration should be given to decide which card is best for your individual circumstances.  





Guaranteed Rate and Credit Limit

  • Credit card for balance transfers
  • Check your eligibility with no impact to your credit score

How does an eligibility check differ from a hard check?

Fundamentally they differ based on a credit check. A full credit check is always undertaken when applying for any form of credit - from loans and mortgages to car finance or credit cards. A hard check does leave a mark on your credit report, this is visible to other lenders. It’s worth remembering, too many hard searches can lead to lenders thinking you're not creditworthy. This is particularly important as too many hard searches over a short period may lead to further rejection of credit.

A pre-application eligibility check doesn't require a full credit search. The lets you see whether you're likely to be accepted or not. It does this without leaving any mark on your credit file. A credit card eligibility check is a soft search check, this isn't visible to lenders. So it won't be flagged on your credit report. An eligibility checker provides indication that you're pre-approved, a full application requires a hard credit search.

What information do I need to provide for an eligibility check? 

Remember, this can vary from one lender to another. Typically though, you'd be expected to provide your name, address and date of birth. This is matched to your credit file and used to verify your identity. 

You may also need to provide details of previous addresses - different card providers have different criteria for how far back they ask for information on. 

You may also need to provide information on your income and employment. This is usually done to ensure you can meet the lender’s affordability criteria. 

Different lenders may have additional requirements, however. 

Once the above information has been provided, lenders then use this to complete their soft search. A soft search, unlike a hard credit search will not leave any 'application for credit' marks on your credit report.  This can be useful if you have bad credit or no credit history at all. 

When completing a full application, lenders will complete a hard credit search. Typically using credit reference agencies such as Experian, Equifax or TransUnion

Does 118 118 Money offer an eligibility checker?

Yes, we offer an eligibility checker for both our products - personal loans and credit cards.

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Credit Card eligibility checker FAQs

If you have a bad credit history, a CCJ or no credit history at all - you may think the likelihood of being accepted for a credit card is low. There are some credit card providers who consider applications from people with a not-so-perfect history. However, whatever your credit rating may be, by using an eligibility checker you could see if you're likely to be approved or not. This doesn't impact your credit rating.   

Credit card features vary dependent on the provider and your own individual circumstances. But whether it's a rewards card, a balance transfer card, a cashback card, or most other types of card - this doesn't impact whether you can use an eligibility checker or not. Many providers, regardless of the card type, provide a pre-application check option. By providing some personal details they are able to establish if you'll be successful with a full application or not.  

Also referred to as a soft inquiry, soft search or soft credit pull, these usually occur when you authorise someone to check your credit report held with a Credit Reference Agency. In contrast to a hard credit search which are attached to an 'application for credit', soft searches don't affect your credit rating. The more hard searches you do, the more you can be seen as a risk to potential credit providers. A soft credit search doesn't leave an imprint on your file so won't have the same impact. Which is why many credit providers in the UK use this during the pre-approval stage.



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