OpenSky Secured Visa Credit Card

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The $35 annual fee makes this card a no-go.

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The two reasons you may want to apply for the OpenSky Secured Visa Credit Card is if you don’t own a checking account, but still want access to a credit card, or if you’re looking for a secured card with a decent annual percentage rate.

There’s a very narrow band of consumers this applies to, we imagine.

For everyone else, the $35 annual fee should make this card a non-starter.

Review

That being said, OpenSky Secured Visa can help you build or rebuild your credit, as the issuer, Capital Bank, reports your monthly payments to the three major credit bureaus — Equifax, Experian and TransUnion.

Applicants do not have to have a credit history, and Capital Bank will not run a credit check.

As with most secured credit cards, your credit limit is determined by the amount you deposit, between $200 and $3,000.

We like that the annual percentage rate for purchases isn’t as bruising as with some secured cards. You’ll pay 18.39% APR, which is higher than standard credit card interest rates, but lower than the 20% APR or higher you’ll find on other cards.

But there’s no reason for most people to pay the $35 annual fee. We caution most consumers to avoid paying such fees on secured cards, as there are plenty of fee-free options for consumers with limited credit.

Who should get this card

If you don’t have a bank account and/or your credit check would make a traditional credit card issuer avoid your calls, an OpenSky secured credit card may be just what you’re looking for.

Advantages
  • You'll pay no interest on purchases made during the first billing cycle.
  • You don't need a bank account to apply.
  • The APR is relatively low compared with other secured credit cards.
Disadvantages
  • You can only apply online, which may not be palatable to some.
  • Your monthly income must be higher than your monthly expenses to qualify.
  • Because this card is issued through Capital Bank, your account history with them must be in good standing.
  • There’s a $35 annual fee.

Fees and APR

  • The annual fee is $35.
  • You’ll pay a 3% foreign transaction fee for all purchases made outside the U.S.
  • The annual percentage rate is a variable 18.39%.

Extras and perks

OpenSky’s secured credit card offers a lot of flexibility for funding an account, which makes it a great option for those who have thin or less-than-optimal credit files. You can choose from using a debit card, writing a check, or for the unbanked, a Western Union transfer or mailing in a money order.

How this card compares

Capital One® Secured MasterCard®
Card Details
  • No annual fee, and all the credit building benefits with responsible card use
  • Unlike a prepaid card, it builds credit when used responsibly, with regular reporting to the 3 major credit bureaus
  • You will get an initial $200 credit line after making a security deposit of $49, $99, or $200, determined based on your creditworthiness
  • Get access to a higher credit line after making your first 5 monthly payments on time with no additional deposit needed
  • Easily manage your account 24/7 with online access, by phone or using our mobile app
  • It's a credit card accepted at millions of locations worldwide
Credit Needed No Credit
Regular APR 24.99% (Variable)
Annual Fee $0
Purchase Intro APR N/A
Balance Transfers Intro APR N/A

We give kudos to the Capital One Secured MasterCard for not charging an annual fee and being one of the only secured cards that potentially lets you deposit less than your credit limit.

If you can’t afford a $200 security deposit all at once, Capital One Secured is a great option for its installment plan. This makes the Capital One card a solid choice for someone trying build (or rebuild) their credit history.

Discover it® Secured Card
Card Details
  • No Annual Fee, cash back on every purchase, and helps you build your credit with responsible use.
  • Your Secured Credit Card requires a refundable security deposit up to the amount we can approve of at least $200 which will establish your credit line.
  • You will need to provide your bank information when submitting your security deposit.
  • We will automatically begin reviewing your account starting at 8 months to see if we can transition you to an unsecured line of credit.
  • Earn 2% cash back at restaurants & gas stations on up to $1,000 in combined purchases each quarter. Plus, 1% cash back on all your other purchases.
  • Get a dollar-for-dollar match of all the cash back you've earned at the end of your first year, automatically.
  • New! Receive Free Social Security number alerts-Discover will monitor thousands of risky websites when you sign up.
Credit Needed No Credit
Regular APR 23.99% Variable
Annual Fee $0
Purchase Intro APR N/A
Balance Transfers Intro APR 10.99% for 6 months

If you have a bank account but limited or poor credit history, the Discover it Secured Card is a terrific choice to help build your credit and earn cash-back rewards, too.

We also like that you can quickly graduate to an unsecured Discover card with just eight months of good payment behavior.

USAA Secured Card® American Express® Card
Card Details
  • Best for members rebuilding or establishing credit.
  • Determine your own credit limit ($250 to $5,000) with an interest-earning CD.
  • No foreign transaction fees when you travel outside the United States.
Credit Needed No Credit
Regular APR 10.90%-20.90% (Variable)
Annual Fee $35
Purchase Intro APR N/A
Balance Transfers Intro APR N/A

If you or a loved one will be deployed soon, the USAA Secured Card American Express could prove a real help. Think about applying for this card before you head overseas so you can take advantage of the generous benefit offered active-duty military personnel.

The card has a special low APR for deployed members of the U.S. armed forces — much lower than standard credit card interest rates — and, unlike most other unsecured cards, offers travel and auto protections and extended warranty coverage.

EDITORIAL NOTE

Opinions expressed here are author's alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines, or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.