How to get preapproved for a Wells Fargo credit card

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Wells Fargo has quite a few popular credit cards, including travel, business and cash back credit card options. Some of their rewards credit cards even let you avoid interest on purchases and balance transfers for a limited time, and none of their consumer credit cards charge an annual fee.

Still, you may be wondering if you can get approved for the Wells Fargo credit card you want, and you might prefer to find out without having to apply and face a new hard inquiry on your credit report.

Fortunately, Wells Fargo credit card preapproval is not that difficult to get. This is especially true if you have good or decent credit as well as a stable income that shows you can pay your bill.

What is credit card preapproval and how does it work?

Credit card preapproval takes place when a credit card issuer makes a soft pull on your credit report, which is different from a hard inquiry. A soft pull lets banks and lenders check whether you meet some basic criteria that could help you qualify for one of their financial products. For example, a credit card issuer might do a soft pull to see your credit score, check your payment history or make sure none of your other accounts are in collections.

In some cases, like when you receive a preapproved credit card offer in the mail, a soft pull has taken place without your request. However, there are some ways you can initiate a soft pull on your own credit to see if you’re eligible to be preapproved or prequalified for a credit card you want.

If you’re wondering why you would want to get preapproved, there are several reasons to consider it. Beyond the fact you can see potential card options without a hard inquiry on your credit report, there are instances where prescreened credit card offers are better than what you can find elsewhere online. For example, you may find you’re prequalified for a rewards credit card with a higher bonus offer, a promotional earning rate or additional perks.

Just keep in mind that credit card preapproval does not guarantee you’ll be approved if you take the steps to apply. The preapproval process ensures you meet basic criteria for eligibility, which is set by individual card issuers.

How to get preapproved for a Wells Fargo credit card

There are multiple ways to get Wells Fargo credit card preapproval, so consider the options below if you have your eye on one of their rewards credit cards.

Check for offers on Bankrate’s CardMatch tool

The easiest way to gauge Wells Fargo preapproval for credit cards is through Bankrate’s CardMatch™ tool. This free tool lets you input information like your name, address and the last four digits of your Social Security number to see prescreened credit card offers that are tailored to your profile.

Not only will you see Wells Fargo credit cards on the CardMatch tool, but you might also be matched with superior offers from other card issuers like Chase or American Express.

Prequalify on Wells Fargo’s website

Unfortunately, Wells Fargo doesn’t offer a specific page on their website to help you get prequalified for their cards. However, existing Wells Fargo customers can log in to their online account management page and check the “Products & Offers” tab to see if they have any preapproved offers, including offers for a credit card.

Additional ways to prequalify for Wells Fargo credit cards

In some cases, you might also receive a preapproved credit card offer from Wells Fargo in the mail. This means they did a soft pull on your credit report and that you meet their basic minimum requirements to be approved.

Best Wells Fargo credit cards for prequalified offers

You may be able to get preapproved for any number of Wells Fargo credit cards, yet some of their best offers are worth considering either way. If you’re trying to get preapproved, these card options are good ones to shoot for.

Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa® card: Best for earning cash back

  • Earn a $150 cash rewards bonus when you spend $500 on your card within three months of account opening, plus earn 1.8 percent cash rewards on digital wallet purchases (including Google Pay and Apple Pay) during your first 12 months from account opening
  • Unlimited 1.5 percent cash back on every purchase
  • No annual fee
  • 0 percent intro APR on purchases and qualifying balance transfers for 15 months, followed by a variable APR of 14.49 percent to 24.99 percent

The Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa® card is an easy option if you’re hoping to earn cash back but don’t want to pay an annual fee. You can earn the initial bonus of $150 in cash rewards when you spend just $500 within three months of account opening, but you’ll also rack up a flat 1.5 percent cash back for each dollar you spend. Other benefits include an introductory 1.8 percent cash rewards rate on digital wallet purchases for your first 12 months as well as an introductory APR offer, cell phone protection, emergency card replacement and zero fraud liability.

Wells Fargo Platinum card: Best for balance transfers

  • 0 percent intro APR on purchases and qualifying balance transfers for 18 months, followed by a variable APR of 16.49 percent to 24.49 percent
  • No annual fee
  • Free FICO score with your account

If you need to consolidate and pay down high-interest debt, the Wells Fargo Platinum card is a top balance transfer credit card option to consider. You’ll get an introductory 0 percent APR on both purchases and qualifying balance transfers for a full year-and-a-half (16.49 percent to 24.49 percent variable APR thereafter), which could give you plenty of time to make a dent in your balances or pay them off completely. This card doesn’t charge an annual fee, and you’ll get surprising benefits like secondary auto rental coverage, travel accident insurance, cell phone protection and more.

Wells Fargo Cash Back College℠ Card: Best for students

  • Earn 3 percent cash back on up to $2,500 spent on gas, grocery and drugstore purchases for your first six months; unlimited 1 percent back on all other purchases
  • No annual fee
  • 0 percent intro APR on purchases and qualifying balance transfers for six months, followed by a variable APR of 11.15 percent to 21.15 percent

Students who want to earn rewards while they build credit should consider the Wells Fargo Cash Back College Card. This student credit card doesn’t charge an annual fee, but it does report to the three credit bureaus to help you build valuable credit history. In addition to the rewards you can earn, you also get an introductory low interest rate and other perks like cell phone protection, roadside dispatch and travel and emergency assistance services.

The information about the Wells Fargo Cash Back College℠ Card has been collected independently by Bankrate.com. The card details have not been reviewed or approved by the card issuer.

How to increase your chances of getting preapproved

If you want to boost your chances of getting preapproved, you’ll need to take some simple steps to improve your credit score. For example, you should make sure to pay your credit card bill and other bills early or on time each month. Considering your payment history is the most important determinant of your FICO score, this is easily the most important thing you should do when it comes to your credit.

Since the amount you owe in relation to your credit limits is the second most important factor that makes up your FICO score, you should also strive to pay down debt. Doing so can decrease your credit utilization rate, which shows lenders you’re not at risk of overextending yourself.

Other steps you can take to improve your credit include refraining from opening too many credit card accounts and keeping old credit cards open—even if you’re not using them.

The bottom line

Getting preapproved for a credit card can be smart since you get the chance to gauge your eligibility before you put in the effort to apply. Not only that, but some preapproved offers are a better deal than what the general public sees. Either way, a Wells Fargo preapproval only requires a soft pull that won’t hurt your credit score. That’s good news if you’re considering a new credit card and are ready to explore your options but not quite ready to apply.

The information about the Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa® card has been collected independently by Bankrate.com. The card details have not been reviewed or approved by the card issuer.

Written by
Holly D. Johnson
Author, Award-Winning Writer
Holly Johnson began her career working in the funeral industry, which may make you wonder why she works in personal finance now. Yet, the funeral industry taught the author everything she needs to know about the value of one's money and time. Johnson left the mortuary business a decade ago in order to explore her passion for personal finance and travel the world, and since then, she and her husband have built a debt-free lifestyle that has them on the path to retire very wealthy in their 40s. Holly's love of budgeting also led to the creation of her debt payoff book, “Zero Down Your Debt: Reclaim Your Income and Build a Life You’ll Love."
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