If you really need unlimited credit, you’ll have to wait for your invitation to arrive. Cards like the Centurion® Card from American Express (also known as the Black Card), the J.P. Morgan Reserve Card, and the Citi Chairman® American Express® Card that offer ultra-high discretionary credit limits are not available to the public but to only those chosen specifically by the card issuer.
For most of us, having a credit card that offers unlimited spending isn’t necessary. With a steady income, a good credit score, and little debt, chances are you can get all the credit you need, and more.
For those who do require, or desire, a high credit limit, you’ll find a nice selection of cards from which to select.
And that is the topic on our agenda today. We’ll discuss some of the best credit cards that offer the possibility of higher than average credit limits.
How Does a Credit Limit Work
A credit limit is a term used to describe the maximum balance you are allowed to have on a credit card, as dictated by the card issuer.
Credit card issuers determine a specific credit limit for each card issued to an applicant. The amount of the credit limit is based on several factors including income, credit history, debt to income ratio, whether the card is a business or personal card, the amount of credit a person already has with the issuer, credit utilization percentages, activity history with that issuer, and more.
The definition of what constitutes a high credit limit on a credit card is subjective, but a limit of $5,000 for good credit and $10,000 for excellent credit seem to be frequently cited as acceptable definitions.
Based on the product offerings of the credit card issuer, some cards are also issued without preset credit limits and offer more discretionary spending for those cardholders who meet specific card issuer requirements.
We’ll include both types of cards in our discussion.
The Benefits of a High Credit Limit
There are several reasons a high credit limit might be desirable. Let’s look at a few situations where it could be useful.
Running a Business With Seasonal Cash Flow
Having access to credit to pay your bills, invest in needed equipment, or to hire extra help could be crucial to keeping a business operational when cash flow is low.
Running a Household With Variable Cash Flow
If your income is higher in some months than others, having access to credit can help balance the household cash flow.
A Higher Credit Limit Can Benefit Your Credit Score
One factor that contributes to how your credit score is calculated is your percentage of credit utilization. In other words, how much credit you have used compared to the total amount available. The lower the percentage, the better. Having a high credit limit and using just a small percentage can help boost your credit score.
Access to Credit in Case of Emergency
There’s certainly peace of mind knowing that if you had an emergency, you’d have access to enough credit to handle the unexpected expense.
Bottom Line: Credit limits that dictate the maximum amount you can spend on a credit card are assigned by the card issuer at the time of approval. A high credit limit can help you manage erratic cash flow, reduce your percentage of credit utilization, and provide access to credit in an emergency.
Best High Limit Credit Cards for Good to Excellent Credit
Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
If your income is sufficient and your credit history strong enough, you could end up with a credit limit of $100,000 (or more) on the Chase Sapphire Preferred card. One of our favorite travel credit cards also charges a relatively low annual fee for being such a credit powerhouse.
We like the Chase Sapphire Preferred card for its generous welcome bonus, the ability to earn valuable Ultimate Rewards points, and its flexible redemption options that offer great value for your rewards. You’ll also find its collection of travel benefits, such as primary car rental insurance, some of the best.
Chase Sapphire Reserve®
The minimum credit limit for the Chase Sapphire Reserve card is $10,000, which is considered a high limit. While there is no published credit limit for this premium travel rewards card, it is reasonable to expect that the card, like the Chase Sapphire Preferred card, could also have a top limit exceeding $100,000.
With complimentary Priority Pass Select membership for worldwide lounge access, a $300 statement credit each year for travel purchases, and redemption values worth 50% more on the Chase travel portal, you’ll find plenty of economic reasons to consider the card.
Capital One® Venture® Rewards Card
You’ll need good to excellent credit to be approved for the Venture card but you can expect to receive a credit limit of at least $5,000.
With its simplistic earning feature and 2 miles earned for every dollar spent on the card, the Venture card won’t have you wasting your time managing a complicated earning structure. Additionally, miles can be redeemed to wipe out previous travel purchases or transferred to Capital One’s airline and hotel partners.
Cards Without Specified Limits
The terms credit cards and charge cards are used interchangeably, but the 2 are quite different products. While credit cards are issued with a specified limit of credit dictated by the issuer, charge cards do not publish a preset spending limit.
This does not mean that there is no credit limit, it means that the issuer has determined your ability to pay is strong enough to warrant a flexible limit which can be evaluated as you gain positive experience with that issuer.
Another attribute of a charge card is that the balance must be paid off each month. You will generally need excellent credit and sufficient income to be approved for a charge card.
Best Business Cards With High Limits or No Specified Limits
Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card
The fact that the Ink Business Preferred card has 3x earnings on the first $150,000 spent each year on select business categories tells you it sits towards the top of the list of cards offering a high credit limit.
Earning is easy with common business purchases such as shipping, social media and search engine advertising, cable, internet, and phone, and travel purchases all earning 3x points. Ultimate Rewards points have flexible redemption options as well including 25% more value via the Ultimate Rewards travel portal and the ability to transfer points to Chase’s travel partners for even greater value.
The Business Platinum Card® from American Express
If you own a business and manage high cash flow, you’ll want a card that can keep up.
Hot Tip: Check to see if you’re eligible for a huge welcome offer of up to 150,000 points with the Amex Business Platinum! (The current public offer is 120,000.)
The card excels with premium travel benefits such as worldwide airport lounge access that includes Centurion lounges, statement credits for specific purchases, and hotel and car rental elite status.
Hot Tip: Comparing features and benefits are important when it comes to selecting a business credit card that’s a match for your operation. We’ve put together a comparison of these 2 strong business credit cards that can assist you in determining which card might be the better fit.
Best High Limit Credit Card With No Annual Fee
Chase Freedom Unlimited®
It’s hard to believe, but true, that the no-annual-fee Freedom Unlimited card can come with a high credit limit. Evidence shows that the card been issued with as much as a $20,000 credit limit.
Best High Limit Credit Cards for No Credit or Bad Credit
If you’re looking to build or rebuild your credit and have cash on hand, a secured card that grants a high credit limit equal to the amount of your security deposit could be a viable option.
Note that credit limits for secured cards are normally much less than non-secured cards.
Here are a few examples of credit cards that offer the possibility of a high credit limit.
Wells Fargo Secured Credit Card
The Wells Fargo Secured card grants an equal amount of credit based on the amount of the security deposit. You can deposit up to $10,000 and receive a credit limit of the same amount.
UNITY Visa® Secured Credit Card
The Unity Visa Secured card also matches up to $10,000 in security deposits with equal credit limits. The card issuer accepts no credit or bad credit and reports to all 3 credit bureaus.
With no annual fee and a maximum credit limit of up to $2,500, the Citi Secured Mastercard could benefit those who need to establish good credit. The minimum security deposit is $200 and the credit limit will be equal to the amount of the deposit.
Bottom Line: If you have no credit or poor credit, a secured credit card may be an option for building or rebuilding your credit. You’ll need to provide a security deposit but you can start small and work your way to good credit. For more details on secured credit cards, you’ll want to access our article with more detailed information.
Instant Approval Credit Cards With High Limits
While any credit card can be approved in as little as a minute after submitting your application, to utilize the card immediately you’ll need access to your credit card number and associated information.
The best credit cards for instant approval and immediate access to your credit card number would be those issued by American Express. While instant approval is not guaranteed, if you are instantly approved, you’ll have immediate access to your card information.
If having immediate access to your card information is important to you, you’ll want to check out our article on the cards that offer this feature.
Requesting Higher Limits on Existing Cards
You may be able to obtain a higher credit limit by requesting an increase on a current credit card. Note that credit card issuers may access your credit report and do a hard credit inquiry before granting an increase, so use this option sparingly.
Credit increases can also happen without a request as you build a positive credit history with the issuer.
For more information on this topic, access our articles on requesting increases on American Express Cards and on Chase-issued cards.
There are plenty of positives of having high credit limits, but of course, there could be downsides. The temptation to spend more than is prudent or to not pay off your statement each month could result in paying high interest charges.
Also, if high credit limits are not managed wisely, it could be possible to easily accumulate a lot more debt.
But for those who have earned the privilege of receiving high credit limits, the benefits are many. Being able to make large credit card purchases and having access to emergency funds, a useful tool for managing credit utilization, and capital to level out cash flow all make high credit limits desirable.
The information regarding the Centurion® Card from American Express, J.P. Morgan Reserve Card, Citi Chairman® American Express®, Wells Fargo Secured Credit Card, and UNITY Visa® Secured Credit Card was independently collected by Upgraded Points and not provided nor reviewed by the issuer.
For rates and fees of The Business Platinum Card® from American Express, click here.