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Q: I really want an American Express card, but my credit score is less than average. What should I apply for, if anything?
A: You should know up front that you are not going to be eligible for any credit card if your credit score is too low, or if your credit history has a lot of “dings” (such as late payments, bankruptcy, or judgments, just to name a few.) However, if your credit is considered average, or if you’re willing to take a prepaid card, then American Express can help you.
The prepaid card is called the Pass®. Although it is intended for teens, with its unique colors and the ability of the user or the giver to choose the design, anyone can use it. This card requires that you pay a balance up front that will cover the charges put on the card. (These types of cards are sometimes called “secured” or “reloadable” credit cards.) You can always add to this card, so if your teen shows responsibility, you can “re-load” the card.
The True Earnings card from American Express is another card that you may be eligible for if your credit is “less than perfect”. This card has many of the features and advantages that other American Express cards do, and is accepted in the majority of places where American Express cards can be used.