Kohl’s Credit Card Review (2017)

Store Credit Card

Ashley Dull
By: Ashley Dull
Posted: November 8, 2017
Opinions expressed here are ours alone, and are not provided, endorsed, or approved by any issuer. Site may be compensated through the issuer affiliate programs.

If you live in the United States, there’s a very good chance you live near a Kohl’s department store. The company has 1,100 locations in 49 states (sorry, Hawaii). The first Kohl's Department Store opened in 1962, selling groceries alongside its other goods.

Today, the retailer is best known for its selection of clothing, shoes, and accessories, but Kohl's also has a robust offering of housewares, kitchen products, and gifts. For regular shoppers, the store’s credit card is a decent choice. It has the potential to save frequent Kohl’s customers a lot of money — but getting maximum value out of the card can be complicated.

Kohl's Card Overall Rating: 4/5.0

The store’s credit card is called the Kohl’s Charge. It’s a “closed-loop” store card, meaning you can use it only at Kohl’s. The interest rate is quite high — 21.9% as of February 2017 — so you may want to avoid carrying a balance on your Kohl's card.

Many store cards, such as the Amazon Prime Store Card, offer cardholders a discount on every purchase. The Kohl’s card is different. Instead of knocking off 5% or so at checkout, Kohl’s runs regular promotions and “secret sales” to give cardholders extra opportunities to shop at a discount, advertising at least 12 special offers a year. You can even stack Kohl's coupons and promo codes for extra savings.

Kohl's Credit Card

  • APR: 24.99% - 27.99% as of Nov 2017
  • Annual Fee: $0
  • Rewards: Earn 2% cash back at Kohl's stores
★★★★ 4/5.0

The discounts, too, can be significant. Budget-conscious shoppers who wait for sales and get lucky with an especially good scratch-off coupon can buy clothes for a fraction of what the price tags say. The initial signup bonus can also be quite lucrative, providing 30% off your first Kohl's Charge Card purchase.

Having a Kohl’s Charge makes shopping there easier. Returns are smooth, even without a receipt, because the sales associates can look up your purchase history in their database. Forgot your card at home? They can verify your account information, check your ID, and let you charge things anyway.

Approval Requirements & Application

The Kohl's Charge Card has relatively flexible credit requirements, with reviewers reporting being accepted with even poor credit scores. You can apply for the Kohl's card in your local store, or head online using the link below.

Better Cards to Use at Kohl's

If you don’t shop at Kohl’s very often, or don’t want to deal with all the sales and gimmicks, there are other credit cards out there. Our top-rated cash back and travel rewards cards will give you perks no matter where you shop and can be redeemed for a wide range of rewards – not just rewards at Kohl’s. Check out our expert’s top picks.

Cash Back

A good cash back program is like a coupon that’s valid everywhere your credit card is accepted, giving you a percentage of your purchases as a statement credit or gift card. When it comes to comparing cash back offers, the main factor to consider is the nature of the cash back program.

CASH BACK RATING

★★★★★

5.0

OVERALL RATING

5.0/5.0
  • Unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase — it's automatic
  • Earn a $150 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening
  • 0% Intro APR for 15 months from account opening on purchases and balance transfers, then a variable APR of 15.99-24.74%. Balance transfer fee is 5% of the amount transferred, $5 minimum
  • No minimum to redeem for cash back
  • Cash Back rewards do not expire as long as your account is open
  • No annual fee
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
0% for 15 months
0% for 15 months
15.99% - 24.74% Variable
$0
Excellent/Good

0% APR

If you’ve been taking good care of your finances, and have earned a good credit report, you are likely eligible for one of these three top low-APR offers. Use them to pay less interest on your purchases.

0% INTRO APR RATING

★★★★★

5.0

OVERALL RATING

4.7/5.0
  • $0 Introductory balance transfer fee for transfers made during the first 60 days of account opening
  • 0% Introductory APR for 15 months on purchases and balance transfers
  • Monthly FICO® Score and Credit Dashboard for free
  • No Penalty APR – Paying late won't raise your interest rate (APR). All other account pricing and terms apply
  • $0 Annual Fee
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
0% for 15 months
0% for 15 months
15.99%-24.74% Variable
$0
Excellent Credit

Travel Rewards

Travel rewards cards are a good option for those who want to use the same rewards card to purchase their hotel accommodations as they do their airline tickets. The best travel rewards cards on the market offer sizeable signup bonuses that could have you on your way to the beaches or slopes in no time.

AIR MILES RATING

★★★★★

5.0

OVERALL RATING

4.9/5.0
  • Enjoy a one-time bonus of 50,000 miles once you spend $3,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening, equal to $500 in travel
  • Earn unlimited 2X miles per dollar on every purchase, every day
  • Fly any airline, stay at any hotel, anytime
  • Travel when you want with no blackout dates
  • Miles won't expire for the life of the account and there's no limit to how many you can earn
  • No foreign transaction fees
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
N/A
N/A
13.99% - 23.99% (Variable)
$0 intro for first year; $95 after that
Excellent, Good

If you shop at Kohl’s often, chances are this card will save you some money. The discounts come frequently and are fairly substantial, and if you plan ahead to use them for bigger purchases they can get very valuable. Otherwise, we would recommend one of these alternative cards as the Kohl’s card can be used in-store only, as it’s not co-branded with a major card network.

What Others Say About the Kohl's Credit Card

Wondering what others who have used the Kohl’s card are saying about their experience? We’ve gathered some of the top reviews around the web below.

CreditKarma.com
A review from CreditKarma.com says:

This was worse mistake of my life. I opened the card to get the discount. I paid it off in the store. Now a year later I find out that they have been charging my card since April. I just had to pay an outrageous amount of money to get this card off my credit. The phone people blamed it on me. They never once sent a bill informing me I owe money. I have closed my card and will never open anything with Kohls again. — CreditKarma.com

★★★ 2.6/5.0
WalletHub.com
A review from WalletHub.com says:

No complaints! Loving it so far the couple months I’ve had it, great rewards perks. Credit line is low though but I'm okay with that since it's less temptation to spend. As long as you pay off your balance each month the interest isn't a worry, all rewards cards at least for stores have high interest rates. — WalletHub.com

★★★★ 4.0/5.0
NerdWallet.com
A review from NerdWallet.com says:

If you want your credit score to take a hit use this card. I have paid the balance on time always but I missed one payment (due to the site and auto pay) issues, it got immediately reported to the credit bureau and my credit score suffered immensely. This is the second time it happened and I am cancelling my card right away. Not to mentioned that the late fees is $37 apart from your credit score dinged. Stay away from this card! — NerdWallet.com

★★★ 3.4/5.0

Is the Kohl's Card Right for You?

This card is best for regular Kohl’s shoppers who are also in possession of an additional credit card with a reward structure and more reasonable interest rate. It may be worthwhile to apply for this card if you think you’ll use the 12 coupons that being a cardholder will get you. If MVC status and its additional coupons are valuable enough in your estimation to justify spending $600 or more on the card each year (money that could be earning rewards if you used a cashback card), make sure to pay off your balance in full each month to avoid the high interest rates.