Indigo Platinum Mastercard Review

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The Indigo Platinum Mastercard, issued by Celtic Bank, is designed for those with no credit or poor credit as a tool to start building a positive credit history. The card does not require a security deposit, as you would need with a secured card. But unlike other starter cards for people with bad or no credit, the Indigo Platinum Mastercard is a temporary solution with no extra benefits or rewards, and no automatic pathway to graduate into a better product.

Indigo® Platinum Mastercard®

Overall Rating
2.8
Indigo® Platinum Mastercard®
Recommended Credit Score Our recommended ranges are based off of the FICO® Score 8 credit-scoring model. Credit score is one of the many factors lenders review in considering your application.
350 579
580 669
670 739
740 799
800 850
Poor - Excellent
Regular APR (%) 24.9% variable
Annual Fee $0 - $99
Ratings Breakdown
for Interest
1.5
for Fees
2.4
for Rewards
2.3
for Credit
5.0

Who Is This Credit Card Best For?

  • Avatar for Savvy Saver Persona
    Prioritizes sticking to their budget while buying what they want and need See more cards
    Savvy Saver
  • Avatar for Debt Warrior Persona
    Attacks existing balances while avoiding new debt See more cards
    Debt Warrior
  • Avatar for Credit Builder Persona
    Takes improving their finances seriously and wants recognition for using credit responsibly See more cards
    Credit Builder

If you need to establish or rebuild your credit and don’t have the cash on hand to put down a security deposit, the Indigo Platinum Mastercard might be worth checking out. You’ll first need to fill out a prequalification application, which will help determine whether or not you may qualify without counting as a hard inquiry (which would ding your credit score). Once you have a fairly good sense that you’ll be approved (although approval isn’t 100% guaranteed), you can move forward with the actual application.

A hard inquiry occurs when you apply for a line of credit, and the creditor pulls your credit file. This has a small negative impact on your credit score.

You will only have a $300 credit limit to work with over the life of the account, so the card isn’t good for those who need to spend more within one billing cycle. 

Pros
  • No security deposit required

  • Choose your card design

Cons
  • No bells and whistles

  • A tight credit leash

Pros Explained

  • No security deposit required: Typically, if you have very poor or nonexistent credit, you have to opt for a secured credit card (for which you leave a security deposit that matches the credit limit), or you have to get someone to add you as an authorized user on their account. The Indigo Platinum Mastercard is a chance to get credit in your own name without having to put your own money down.
  • Choose your card design: If this is your first card or the only card you can get, you can at least choose a fun design such as a beach scene or cityscape to match your personality. 

Cons Explained

  • No bells and whistles: If you’re looking for any perks, you won’t find them on this card. Secured cards sometimes offer rewards like cash back, a lower introductory APR, and/or automatic credit increases or upgrades to an unsecured card as your credit improves.
  • A tight credit leash: You’ll start with just a $300 credit limit, which will be reduced by the amount of your annual fee (if any), and that’s all you’ll have for as long as the card is open. That doesn’t give you much wiggle room as far as credit utilization goes, which you’ll need to keep on the lower side to see credit score progress. 

Your credit utilization is an important factor in your credit score. It’s calculated as the amount of debt you have divided by your credit limits. You want to keep it as low as possible—definitely below 30%. With this card’s credit limit capped at $300, you should aim to keep your balance under $100 throughout the billing cycle—even if pay your balance in full every month.

How to Get the Most Out of This Card

If approved, once you begin using the card, your credit activity will be reported to the three credit bureaus. This reporting is critical, since consistent positive behavior will lay the foundation for building your credit score.

The best way to improve your credit with this card (or any card) is to make small, regular purchases so you keep the card active and build up a positive payment history. Try keeping your total balance below $100—less than $50 is even better—so you’re never using more than 30% of your available credit.

Most importantly, pay your entire balance on time each month, and in full if you can. The amount of credit you use and your payment history are the two most impactful components of your credit score. 

Customer Experience

The card provides alerts of new hard inquiries on your TransUnion credit report and some basic information about credit card terminology, too.

Also, you won’t have access to an app or a customer service chat feature, which some other credit cards offer. But you can call customer service toll free, and access your account anytime from your desktop computer, mobile phone or tablet. 

Security Features 

The Indigo Platinum Mastercard has standard security features, including chip technology.

Indigo Platinum Mastercard’s Fees to Watch Out For

The Indigo Platinum Mastercard has fees for just about everything, from the annual fee (unless you’re approved to not have one) and foreign transaction fees (1%), to ones for late payments (up to $40), returned payments (up to $40), and going over your credit limit (up to $40). If you happen to take a cash advance, however, you won’t have to pay a fee in your first year. After that, you’ll pay $5 or 5% of the transaction amount (whichever is greater).

Next Steps
For Indigo® Platinum Mastercard®
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CURRENT CARD
Indigo® Platinum Mastercard®
overall rating
2.8
Recommended Credit Score Our recommended ranges are based off of the FICO® Score 8 credit-scoring model. Credit score is one of the many factors lenders review in considering your application.
350 579
580 669
670 739
740 799
800 850
Poor - Excellent
Regular APR (%) 24.9% variable
Annual Fee $0 - $99
Our Methodology
At The Balance, we are dedicated to giving you unbiased, comprehensive credit card reviews. To do this, we collect data on hundreds of cards and score more than 55 features that affect your finances.
  • Our Reviews Are Always Impartial: No one can influence which cards we review, the way we present them to you, or the ratings they receive. The scores and reviews come directly from the data we collect and our editorial expertise, and we focus on three areas:
  • How Much Does It Cost? With credit card debt at an all-time high, we believe you should know the cost of carrying a balance. Because of that, we give regular purchase APRs significant weight in overall scores, and cards receive low marks if they have an array of pricey fees.
  • What Are the Rewards Worth? Cards accumulate rewards in different currencies—points, miles, cash back—and their values vary widely. To simplify the problem, we built a system that fairly compares rewards and gives them a dollar value. We do this by looking at the ways you can earn and use rewards, which includes evaluating Americans’ typical spending habits and analyzing common travel patterns.
  • Does It Make Your Life Easier? Our scoring system favors cards that accept a wide range of credit profiles and offer simple solutions for things like checking your credit score or contacting customer service. Finally, we give preference to credit cards that have several tools for dealing with fraudulent charges.
  • For every review on The Balance, we hold the credit cards to these standards, and we set the bar high. While we recognize the appeal of splashy features like six-digit sign-up bonuses, our approach ensures that credit cards with the best combination of value, affordability, and accessibility receive the highest scores. See our full methodology for more details.

Article Sources

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  1. Indigo Card. "Terms and Conditions." Accessed June 30, 2020.