If you do not have a steady source of income, you can still consider a secured credit card, a co-signer, or become an authorized user.

How can you get a credit card without a job?

Each of us is faced with difficult situations in life from time to time, and the temporary absence of work is one of them. If you are currently not working, you probably want to know if you can get a credit card, and the answer is yes. Note, however, that even if you do not have to be employed in order to get a credit card, you still need to show that you have a regular income.

Also note that you should be very careful if your finances are tight at the moment, as you may face missed payments and it will negatively affect your credit history.

Listing income on your application

Please note that according to the Credit Card Accountability Responsibility and Disclosure Act of 2009, card issuers must consider the applicant’s ability to make regular payments before opening a new credit card account. Therefore, card issuers ask about the applicant’s debts and other financial obligations before deciding whether to approve a new credit card. Also, the issuer usually requests the applicant’s total annual income for approval of the application.

However, please note that there are other options that can qualify as a source of income:

  • Self-employment income. If you have your own business and receive regular payments, then you can indicate this income in your application for a credit card
  • Unemployment benefits. Even if you are temporarily unemployed and receive unemployment benefits, this can also qualify as a source of income.
  • Shared household income. This type of income can include money that your partner or parents make.
  • Pension payments. Please note that this type of income can include both payments from a retirement account and payments from social security.

Important! If you are under 21 years old, then you may need proof that you can pay off the debt yourself. For example, you can include any job or part-time job here, as well as money from someone else: who regularly transfers it to your bank account.

How can you get a credit card out of work?

If at the moment you do not have a permanent source of income or you have not received pre-approval for the card you were interested in, there are still several options you can consider:

  • Secured card

You may not know this, but a secured card can be a good option to access credit even if you have limited or atypical income. However, please note that in order to open a secured credit card account, you’ll need to put down a refundable security deposit as collateral. Thus, the deposit is a kind of guarantee for the card issuer if you miss payments. Typically, the minimum amount you need to deposit is equal to your credit limit. Of course, a secured card comes with certain risks, but it can help you improve your credit profile if the issuer reports payments to the credit bureaus.

  • A co-signer

Alternatively, you can reach out to a friend or family member and ask to co-sign your credit card account with you. If you have a co-signer then the chance of getting approval is much higher, especially if you are building or rebuilding your credit. Also with a co-signer you can get more favorable terms than yourself. However, remember that if you do not make timely payments, then a co-signer will be responsible for your debt.

  • Authorized user

The last option you should consider is to become an authorized user of a friend’s or family member’s credit card account. You will most likely have your own credit card linked to the existing account, but the owner of the main account will also be responsible for making payments.