The Ultimate Guide to Credit Cards
Wednesday, February 26, 2020

10 Credit Cards without SSN Requirements

10 Credit Cards without SSN Requirements

credit card advice

Anna Baluch
By: Anna Baluch
Posted: January 28, 2020
Advertiser Disclosure

If you’re a new immigrant to the U.S, an international student, or other noncitizen, you may be on the lookout for credit cards without Social Security number (SSN) requirements. While these cards aren’t widely available, they do exist.

They can allow you to spend easily, earn rewards, build credit, protect against fraud, and enjoy several other perks. Let’s dive deeper into nine credit cards without SSN requirements that are sure to make your financial life easier.

Consumers | Businesses | Students
How to Apply | FAQs & Ranking Methodology

Consumer Cards without SSN Requirements

If you don’t have a Social Security number, it’s highly likely that you have no credit or very limited credit history. Fortunately, a few issuers may approve you despite your credit situation and lack of a SSN.

You can easily apply for them online with your Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) or your nine-digit passport number in lieu of a SSN and receive an approval decision quickly.

  • Pay no annual fee
  • Get access to a higher credit line after making your first 5 monthly payments on time
  • Fraud coverage if your card is lost or stolen
  • Use online banking to access your account, even from your smartphone, with our mobile app
  • Pay by check, online or at a local branch, all with no fee - and pick the monthly due date that works best for you
  • Get access to your account 24 hours a day, 7 days a week
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
N/A
N/A
26.99% (Variable)
$0
Average, Fair, Limited

If you make several of your first monthly payments on time, the Capital One® Platinum Credit Card may give you access to a higher credit line. You can choose the monthly payment date that works best for you and pay online, via check, or at a local branch.

In addition, there’s no annual fee and you’ll be backed by fraud coverage if your card gets lost or stolen. With the Capital One® Platinum, you can build your credit and meet your future financial goals.

NO/LIMITED CREDIT RATING

★★★★★
4.5

OVERALL RATING

4.5/5.0
  • Earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase, every day
  • Earn cash rewards without signing up for rotating categories
  • Get access to a higher credit line after making your first 5 monthly payments on time
  • Monitor your credit profile with the CreditWise® app, free for everyone
  • $0 fraud liability if your card is ever lost or stolen
  • No limit to how much cash back you can earn, and cash back doesn't expire for the life of the account
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
N/A
N/A
26.99% (Variable)
$39
Average, Fair, Limited

The Capital One® QuicksilverOne® Cash Rewards Credit Card will reward you with 1.5% cash back on every purchase. You won’t have to sign up for rotating categories and can start earning right away. There’s no limit to how much cash you can earn, and your rewards won’t expire for the life of your account.

As a Capital One customer, you’ll also receive access to the CreditWise® app, which can help you keep track of your credit. This is especially beneficial to those who are new to credit and learning the ropes.

NO/LIMITED CREDIT RATING

★★★★
4.4

OVERALL RATING

4.0/5.0
  • 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
  • Access to an authorized bank account is required to make your $49, $99 or $200 refundable security deposit
  • Make the minimum required security deposit and you'll get an initial credit line of $200. Plus, deposit more money before your account opens to get a higher credit line
  • 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
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
N/A
N/A
26.99% (Variable)
$0
Limited, Bad

You’ll find it easy to build credit with the Capital One® Secured Mastercard®. It differs from a prepaid card because it reports to the three major credit bureaus on a regular basis.

As long as you make the minimum security deposit, you’ll get a $200 credit line to start. Once you make several timely payments, you may qualify for a higher credit limit. The Capital One® Secured Mastercard® does not come with an annual fee and can be used at millions of locations globally.

4. CreditStacks Mastercard®

The CreditStacks Mastercard® was created specifically for professional immigrants, and applicants can be approved up to 60 days prior to relocating to the United States.

CreditStacks Mastercard®

  • No SSN required
  • A full-featured mobile app allows you to review your account activity and schedule payments
  • Credit limits up to $5,000 available
  • Pay no annual fee

The card also features competitive interest rates and standard Mastercard features, such as $0 fraud liability, and added perks that include a one-year extended warranty and price protection on eligible purchases.

Business Cards without SSN Requirements

If you own or manage a business but don’t have a SSN, no worries, because a few business cards don’t require one for approval. They instead allow you to apply with your ITIN or Employer Identification Number (EIN).

And, if you own a business, you may already have your EIN. This is great news if you need a credit card to fund a variety of business-related expenses.

BUSINESS CARD RATING

★★★★★
4.5

OVERALL RATING

4.5/5.0
  • Earn unlimited 1% cash back for your business on every purchase, everywhere, no limits or category restrictions
  • No annual fee
  • Build and strengthen credit for your business by using this credit card responsibly
  • $0 Fraud Liability if your card is lost or stolen
  • Free employee cards, which also earn unlimited 1% cash back on all purchases
  • Rewards won't expire for the life of the account, and you can redeem your cash back for any amount
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
N/A
N/A
24.49% (Variable)
$0
Average, Fair, Limited

The Capital One® Spark® Classic for Business rewards you with an unlimited 1% cash back on every business purchase. Best of all, you don’t need to have the best credit to qualify, and there’s no annual fee.

You can provide your employees with cards for free and maximize your rewards. In addition, the Capital One® Spark® Classic for Business does not charge foreign transaction fees and offers $0 fraud liability for your peace of mind.

BUSINESS CARD RATING

★★★★★
4.9

OVERALL RATING

4.8/5.0
  • Earn 80,000 bonus points after you spend $5,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $1,000 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • Earn 3 points per $1 on the first $150,000 spent on travel and select business categories each account anniversary year
  • Earn 1 point per $1 on all other purchases - with no limit to the amount you can earn
  • Points are worth 25% more when you redeem for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards
  • Redeem points for travel, cash back, gift cards and more - your points don't expire as long as your account is open
  • No foreign transaction fees
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
N/A
N/A
17.49% - 22.49% Variable
$95
Good/Excellent

While the Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card does require good credit, it offers three points per $1 on the first $150,000 you spend on travel and select business categories each year. The card also comes with a one-time bonus if you spend a certain amount of money within the first three months your account is open.

You can redeem your points for travel, cash back, and gift cards any time you wish.

Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card Review

at the issuer'ssecure website

BUSINESS CARD RATING

★★★★★
4.9

OVERALL RATING

4.6/5.0
  • Earn $500 bonus cash back after you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening
  • Earn 5% cash back on the first $25,000 spent in combined purchases at office supply stores and on internet, cable and phone services each account anniversary year
  • Earn 2% cash back on the first $25,000 spent in combined purchases at gas stations and restaurants each account anniversary year
  • Earn 1% cash back on all other card purchases with no limit to the amount you can earn
  • 0% introductory APR for 12 months on purchases
  • Employee cards at no additional cost
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
0% Intro APR on Purchases 12 months
N/A 12 months
14.74% - 20.74% Variable
$0
Good/Excellent

With the Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card, you can earn 5% cash back on the first $25,000 you spend at office supply stores and on internet, cable, and phone services each year. The card also offers 2% cash back on the initial $25,000 you spend at gas stations and restaurants. You’ll earn 1% cash back on everything else.

Although you do need good credit to get this card, it will accept your ITIN instead of a SSN.

Student Cards without SSN Requirements

If you’re an international student, you may want a credit card you can use while you study in the U.S. Fortunately, you have a few great options available to you.

They don’t require stellar credit or even a SSN to apply. You can use one of these cards to build your credit and earn rewards in the process.

STUDENT RATING

★★★★★
4.8

OVERALL RATING

4.2/5.0
  • Earn 1% cash back on all your purchases. Pay on time to boost your cash back to a total of 1.25% for that month
  • Enjoy no annual fee and no foreign transaction fees
  • Get a head start and build your credit with responsible use
  • Get Eno®, your Capital One® assistant, to manage your account via text, receive alerts, and shop safer online
  • Pick the monthly due date that works best for you
  • Get access to a higher credit line after making your first 5 monthly payments on time
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
N/A
N/A
26.99% (Variable)
$0
Average, Fair, Limited

The Journey® Student Rewards from Capital One® offers 1% cash back on all your purchases. If you make timely payments, the rate will increase to 1.25% for that month.  You’ll also have access to the CreditWise® app so you can monitor your credit.

Additionally, you won’t have to worry about an annual fee or foreign transaction fees.

9. Deserve Edu Mastercard® for Students

Specifically designed for international students who want to build credit in the U.S., the Deserve Edu Mastercard® offers an unlimited 1% cash back on every purchase.

Deserve Edu Mastercard®

  • No SSN required
  • One-time credit for Amazon Prime Student for one year
  • 1% cash back on all purchases
  • Cellphone protection
  • Pay no annual fee

While the Deserve Edu Mastercard® doesn’t require a SSN, you will need to prove that you attend a college or university.

10. Chase Freedom® Student credit card

The Chase Freedom® Student credit card — the first student offer from Chase — comes with a one-time $50 bonus after you make your first purchase within three months of opening your account.

Chase Freedom® Student credit card

  • Can apply with an ITIN instead of a SSN
  • Earn 1% cash back on all your purchases
  • $20 Good Standing Rewards after each account anniversary, up to five years
  • Pay no annual fee

You may be eligible to receive a credit limit increase when you make five monthly payments on time within 10 months of account opening. Applicants must apply for this card in person at a Chase bank branch.

How to Apply for a Credit Card without a SSN

The easiest way to apply for a credit card without a SSN is to get an ITIN. To do so, you’ll need to complete an IRS Form W-7.

The form will ask you to provide your proof of identity through a passport or a government-issued ID from your home country. You can also use the Alien Registration Number from your green card, student ID, or work visa.

Once you submit your W-7 by mail or through an appointment at an IRS Taxpayer Assistance Center (TAC), you’ll get your ITIN within seven weeks. Only specific TACs provide W-7 documentation review. You can call 844-545-5640 to schedule an appointment.

Here’s a brief overview of the forms of ID that popular credit card issuers may accept.

ID Requirements by Issuer

A prepaid card is another option if you’re still unable to get approved for a credit card. These cards allow you to make purchases online and everywhere else credit cards are accepted, but you load the money you spend onto the card — it isn’t a traditional line of credit.

Alas, it won’t help you build credit, which is a big downfall of prepaid cards when you’re trying to establish a credit history.

Can a Non-U.S. Citizen Apply for a Credit Card?

If you move to the U.S. for school, work, or indefinitely, you may wonder if you can apply for a credit card. Since you probably don’t have a SSN, your choices will be limited, but several credit cards may be available to you.

The Capital One® Platinum Credit Card, Capital One® Spark® Classic for Business, and the Journey® Student Rewards from Capital One® are a few examples.

Keep in mind that while you may not need a SSN, you will have to provide another form of ID, such as an ITIN or passport number. Each credit card issuer has its own rules for non-U.S. applicants, so do your research before you apply.

Going to a bank branch and speaking with a representative directly to help answer your questions may be a good option if there’s a local branch to you. Otherwise, you can call customer service for assistance.

How Can Immigrants Build Credit?

One of the best ways to build credit as an immigrant is through a credit card. As long as you make payments on time and in full, you can build a strong credit history.

FICO Credit Score Factors

Why is it important to build credit?

Whether you’re in the U.S. for a short period or for several years, there will likely come a time when you need to purchase a car, a home, or take out a personal loan for any other reason. A solid credit history will help you get approved for a loan if you don’t have the cash to pay upfront.

When you have limited credit or no credit at all, lenders will view you as a risk and may be less likely to lend money to you. You’ll also pay higher interest rates and fees on the very same loan that a person with good credit would.

In short, bad credit is expensive and makes loan and credit approval more difficult.

Another way immigrants can build credit is by paying other bills, such as rent and utilities, on time. Sometimes, landlords and service providers can report payment history to the credit bureaus, which will help establish a credit history.

Another option is to get a credit-builder loan, which is essentially a savings account you pay into each month, and your payments are reported to the credit bureaus. After you make your final payment as agreed to in your loan terms, your total payment sum will be given back to you. This is a great way to build savings and credit.

Read this article for other ways to build credit without a credit card.

Can an ITIN Number be Used as a SSN?

You may be able to use an ITIN instead of a SSN on a credit application. Many credit card issuers, such as Capital One and Chase, will accept your application if you have an ITIN, or an EIN if you’re applying for a business credit card.

You should understand, however, that an ITIN is not the same thing as a SSN. ITINs were created in 1996 by the IRS so that foreign individuals can pay their taxes.

An ITIN will also allow you to open bank and credit accounts, secure a driver’s license, and can serve as proof of residency.

A SSN differs from an ITIN in that it’s used to keep track of your lifetime earnings and number of years you work. You can apply for a SSN if you’re a U.S. citizen or an eligible U.S. resident.

Ranking Methodology 

Our list of credit cards without SSN requirements first looks at banks that allow individuals to apply for a credit card without a Social Security number. We then evaluated factors such as the APRs and terms of each card, the rewards offered, the ability to build credit through credit bureau reporting, and overall customer satisfaction. Our editorial integrity process ensures our rankings are not compromised by advertiser influence.

You should consider credit cards without SSN requirements if you’re from a different country yet want to thrive financially in the U.S. They can make it easy for you to fund one-time and daily purchases, establish a credit score, and earn rewards for your spending habits.