It goes without saying that the better your credit score, the more likely you’ll be approved for the best reward-earning credit cards. And while your credit score is one of the most important factors for approval, when it comes to applying for a Chase credit card, there are additional factors taken into consideration.
Chase does things a bit differently, applying its own, sometimes unpublished, rules for card qualification.
While nothing is absolute, today we’ll attempt to lay the foundation of the core requirements you’ll need for Chase to consider you as a cardholder.
Let’s get started.
The Value of a Chase Relationship
Establishing a relationship with Chase can be the beginning of creating long-term value that can serve you financially throughout your lifetime.
Let’s start by exploring the reasons you might want to consider jumping through the hoops of securing a Chase credit card.
Credit Card Earning, Redemption, and Travel & Shopping Benefits
First, Chase issues some of the most valuable credit cards available.
While earning power and benefits vary by card, here are some of the overall attributes that make Chase cards desirable:
- Earn Flexible Points That Can Be Redeemed for Cash — Chase cards earn Ultimate Rewards points that can be redeemed for statement credits or even cash-back.
- Redeem for up to 50% More Value — Premium Chase cards allow you to redeem points for travel via the Chase travel portal at up to 50% more in value.
- Transfer Points to Travel Partners — Ultimate Rewards points can be transferred to airline and hotel partners for even greater potential value.
- Travel Benefits and Protections — Chase cards come with valuable travel benefits such as car rental insurance, trip interruption/cancellation/delay coverage, baggage insurance, and more.
- Shopping Benefits and Protections — Qualifying items purchased with your card may receive coverage such as purchase protection and extended warranty.
- Statement Credits — Some Chase cards come with statement credits for travel purchases.
Additional Banking Services
In addition to providing a wide range of credit card options to fit any lifestyle or business operation, Chase offers the following additional banking products and services:
Bottom Line: Whether you’re a college student, young entrepreneur, homeowner, or business owner, establishing the beginning of a financial relationship with a Chase credit card can create benefits that can last a lifetime.
Minimum Requirements for Chase Credit Cards
What We Know for Sure
There are certain requirements that are critical to getting approved for a Chase credit card:
- A Good to Excellent Credit Score — While the terminology can vary by credit bureau, you will generally need to have a good to excellent credit score to secure a Chase credit card. Experian, one of the top credit bureaus, states that a score of 670 or above is “generally considered good” and a “score of 800 or above is considered to be excellent.”
- Sufficient Income — Chase will want to verify sufficient income to determine your ability to pay and to calculate the amount of your credit card limit.
- A U.S. Address and Social Security Number — You will need a U.S. address and a social security number or EIN number (for business cards) to be approved for a Chase credit card.
Requirements Based on Data Points
While not published requirements, we know, based on the experience of those who have applied and been denied, that you will also need to meet the following to be considered for a Chase credit card.
- No More Than 5 Credit Cards, From Any Issuer, Issued Within the Past 24 Months — Also known as the 5/24 rule, Chase will not issue a new card if you have exceeded this guideline.
- 30-Day Chase Card Limits — If you have opened 2 or more personal Chase cards, or 1 business Chase card, in the past 30 days, you are likely to be denied.
Optional, But Potentially Helpful
Having an existing relationship with Chase is not necessary for card approval. However, having a current positive relationship with Chase, such as a mortgage, savings or checking account, or other financial relationship, could weigh positively on your chances for approval. Logging in to an existing account prior to applying for a Chase credit card can also expedite the application process as parts of the application will auto-fill.
In addition to the above-mentioned criteria, Chase will review your payment history, credit utilization, and other information found on your credit report or application, to determine eligibility.
Bottom Line: At a minimum, you will need to have at least a good to excellent credit score, sufficient income, and be under 5 total new credit cards in the last 24 months to qualify for the best Chase credit cards.
Applying for a Chase Credit Card
Fortunately, there is a step you can take to find out if you have existing Chase card offers available to you without actually completing a credit card application.
Check To See if You Have Offers
For a risk-free way to see if you have Chase card offers waiting for you, you can utilize the CardMatch tool.
There is no credit check on your credit report and the process is simple to complete with quick results.
While having Chase card offers available to you does not guarantee you’ll be approved for those cards, it will give you an idea of the cards for which you’re more likely to get approved.
Chase also has a similar tool specific to its card offers.
Know Your Credit History
Even if you’re prequalified for a specific card, you’ll want to know your credit score prior to applying to understand your chances for approval. You can obtain a free copy of your credit report via annualcreditreport.com.
While credit reports can give you your credit history, these reports do not normally contain your credit score. If you have an existing credit card, you may be able to access your score via the card’s website or you can use Credit Karma.
Hot Tip: Our guide offers more information on the difference between a credit report and a credit score.
What if You Have No Credit or Poor Credit?
Chase does not offer a credit card product that caters to those who have no credit or poor credit. However, there are plenty of card issuers who do offer cards for which you can get approved if you are in this situation.
We give you an overview and some solid card choices to build or rebuild your credit in our informative article.
Bottom Line: Prior to applying for any credit card, you can check for existing offers using the CardMatch tool or, if available, the specific card issuer’s pre-approval site. You should also know your credit score to help determine your chances of approval.
Best Chase Personal Credit Cards for Good to Excellent Credit
You will need an excellent credit score to qualify for these Chase credit cards:
Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
A great first card to consider if you have excellent credit, the Chase Sapphire Preferred card offers a generous welcome bonus, earns flexible Ultimate Rewards points, and has travel redemption options that deliver 25% more in value. You can also transfer points to travel partners for potentially even more value.
You’ll also find that the card comes with money-saving travel and shopping protections/benefits.
Chase Sapphire Reserve®
Chase’s premium travel rewards card, the Chase Sapphire Reserve card comes with benefits such as worldwide lounge access, travel statement credits, travel benefits, shopping protections, and more.
Key redemption features include receiving 50% more in value when redeeming Ultimate Rewards points for travel and the ability to transfer points to travel partners for even more potential value.
Chase Freedom Unlimited®
Chase Freedom Flex℠
The Freedom Unlimited card and the Freedom Flex card are great first Chase credit cards due to the lack of an annual fee, elevated earning opportunities, and travel/shopping protections and benefits.
The Best Chase Business Credit Cards
Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card
One of our favorite Chase business card picks, the Ink Business Preferred card offers elevated 3x earnings on many common business expenses. The card also earns valuable Ultimate Rewards points that can be redeemed for 25% more in value toward travel purchases on the Chase travel portal. You may also receive even greater value when transferring to airline and hotel partners.
We also like that the card offers cell phone protection and other travel/shopping benefits.
You’ll need an excellent credit score to qualify for the Ink Business Preferred card.
Ink Business Cash® Credit Card
Ink Business Unlimited® Credit Card
Designed specifically to meet the needs of small businesses, the Ink Business Cash card and Ink Business Unlimited card offer generous welcome bonuses and earn valuable Ultimate Rewards points. The cards also offer introductory 0% APR periods to help you facilitate the repayment of purchases over time without interest.
You’ll be able to keep these no-annual-fee cards indefinitely to establish a credit history and later pair with premium Chase cards to elevate redemption values as much as 50% greater when redeemed for travel.
You’ll need a good to excellent credit score to qualify for either card.
Bottom Line: While the best Chase credit cards require an excellent credit score, the issuer does offer both personal and business cards that can be secured with a good or very good credit score.
Even if you meet the guidelines, it’s possible that Chase could deny your application or require additional information before approving you for a card.
If you do receive a denial or a delay in getting a response to your application, you may want to call Chase to discover the reason. You can then provide additional information that might initiate a reconsideration or expedite an approval.
Learn more about how to utilize the reconsideration line here.
While we’ve given you our take on the minimum requirements necessary to get approved for a Chase credit card, Chase will have the ultimate say and could make a decision that is contrary to these guidelines.
Your best chance for approval for a Chase credit card is to know your credit score and obtain a copy of your credit report to ensure it is accurate and there are no errors. Additionally, you’ll want to have less than 5 opened credit cards in the past 24 months, and have sufficient income to pay your obligations.
And if you do get denied, make an effort to speak with Chase to clarify the reason and offer any additional information that could help alter that decision.
While 1 credit card is a small step towards a relationship with Chase, an ongoing long-term relationship with the financial institution is a valuable asset that can serve you for years to come.