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Review

2020 Review: The First PREMIER® Bank Credit Card – High Risk, Little Reward

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By Evan Zimmer Jun 23, 2020 | Updated Oct 14, 2020
Our rating
Min. credit level: Bad
Annual Fee: Up to $125 the first year, up to $49 each year after that
Regular APR: 36.00% Fixed

Our Rating: 1 Out of 5 Stars

We give the First PREMIER® Bank Credit Card one out of five Stars. It’s designed to rebuild credit for people with very few options, but you should explore those other options first.

Why We Like it

  • No need for good credit scores — it can be acquired by nearly anyone with a bank account

Why It Could Be Better

  • High APR
  • Lots of fees
  • No benefits
  • No shopping or travel protections

First PREMIER® Bank Credit Card

Our rating
Min. credit levelBad
Details
Annual FeeUp to $125 the first year, up to $49 each year after that
Regular APR36.00% Fixed
Apply Now

securely on the issuer's website

  • Must have a checking account to qualify
  • Only you can build a good credit history. Make your payments on time each month, and keep your balance low relative to the credit limit, for positive marks on your credit reports each month
  • Your First PREMIER Bank credit card activity is reported to the Consumer Reporting Agencies each month
  • Track your progress. Your quarterly FICO Score is provided for free on your monthly billing statement
  • Credit scores are used to represent the creditworthiness of a person and may be one indicator to the credit type you are eligible for. However, credit scores alone do not guarantee or imply approval for any First PREMIER® Bank product

The First PREMIER Bank Mastercard should only be considered by people with severely damaged credit. This card is intended to help rebuild your credit, but it’s a subprime product with relatively unfriendly terms.

Although there’s a credit check involved, less-than-perfect credit scores aren’t a barrier to entry. Basically, all you need is a bank account to get this card. But you’ll instantly be subjected to multiple fees and limitations. There’s a very steep APR and no benefits or protections attached.

We recommend looking at our top choices for secured cards first. They provide a path towards positive credit without bogging you down by a plethora of fees.

Insider Advice: Getting the Most Out of Your Card

  • Improve your credit scores: Build a positive credit history by paying your bill on time, every time.
  • Pay your statement balance in full: Be sure to pay your statement balance in full each month to avoid having to pay interest. Additionally, it’ll help keep your credit utilization low which in turn can help your credit scores.
  • Know the facts: Read your card terms, as there are many fees to be aware of. There’s a program fee, monthly fee, annual fee, authorized user fee, copy fee, express delivery fee, and more.
  • Avoid the fees: Opt for paperless statements, don’t lose your card, and limit the number of authorized users on your account. If you get a credit limit increase (which has a fee of 25% of the amount of the increase) but don’t want it, you can reject it by contacting customer support.
Insider tip

Looking for more information on rebuilding your credit scores? Here’s our in-depth guide!

The Terms & Fees

Purchase APR Balance Transfer APR Cash Advance APR
36.00% Fixed None 36.00% Fixed
Annual Fee Foreign Transaction Fee
Up to $125 the first year, up to $49 each year after that 3%
Balance Transfer Fee Cash Advance Fee
None 5%, $8 minimum
Penalty APR Late Fee Returned Payment Fee
None Up to $38 Up to $38

The size of the annual fee, monthly fee, and program fee will be determined by the size of your available credit. It’s important to note that the program fee must be paid to open the account, and the annual fee will be deducted from your initial available line of credit.

Here’s a table to show how your account fees might scale:

Credit Limit Program Fee Monthly Fee Annual Fee Initial Available Credit
$300 $95 (one-time) $0 for one year, then $6.25 monthly ($75 yearly) $75 for one year, then $45 $225.00
$400 $95 (one-time) $0 for one year, then $6.25 monthly ($75 yearly) $100 for one year, then $45 $300.00
$500 $95 (one-time) $0 for one year, then $10.40 monthly ($124.80 yearly) $125 for one year, then $49 $375.00
$600 $75 (one-time) $5.85 monthly for one year $70.20 yearly), then $8.25 monthly ($99 yearly) $79 for one year, then $49 $515.15
$700 $55 (one-time) $8.00 monthly for one year ($96.00 yearly), then $10.40 monthly ($124.80 yearly) $79 for one year, then $49 $613.00

There are a few more fees associated with the First PREMIER Bank card that aren’t mentioned above, which most credit cards don’t charge.

If you want to add authorized users to your account, it’ll tack on another $29 to your annual fee, per card.

A $35 express delivery fee applies if you’ve lost your card or it’s been stolen, and you’d like the replacement delivered to you via express mail. A $3 copy fee applies when you request a copy of your statement or any other document.

And, in order to increase your credit line, there’s yet another fee: It’ll cost you 25% of the amount of the increase. First PREMIER will consider your eligibility for a credit limit increase 13 months after you open your credit card account. There might be more fees for additional services, like wire transfers.

So you’ll end up having to pay quite a bit for this card. And while it is hard to put a price on rebuilding your credit, you can do it for far less than what the First PREMIER Bank Mastercard asks.

The Bottom Line

The First PREMIER® Bank Credit Card should only be considered as a last-ditch option. With its staggering APR, numerous fees, and no benefits, it’s a risky choice that shouldn’t be made lightly.

There are other cards available with the sole purpose of restoring credit which might prove to be better options. Many of them are secured credit cards, which usually require an initial deposit, but overall they’ll probably be less expensive than the First PREMIER card. Some of them feature benefits and protections, and a few will even provide rewards.

You should go over all of your available choices for rebuilding credit before settling here.

Insider tip

Have you heard of credit builder loans? They’re like reverse loans, which let you easily add a positive loan account to your credit reports, which in turn can boost your credit scores.

How Do I Apply for the First PREMIER Bank Credit Card?

Just select the Apply Now button to be directed to the credit card issuer’s website. From there, follow the links to the application. You’ll be asked for certain personal information, and you should typically get a decision instantly.

What Credit Scores Do I Need to Qualify for the First PREMIER Bank Credit Card?

The First PREMIER Bank Credit Card is not hard to qualify for: It’s designed for people with poor credit.

If you’re within 300–579 for FICO or 300–649 for VantageScore, you’re considered to have bad or poor credit.

Although First PREMIER is very accepting, credit card issuers take other factors besides credit scores into account when determining your creditworthiness, like income. In the end, it comes down to First PREMIER Bank’s discretion.

Qualifications and Requirements

  • Must be 18 to apply
  • Personal information: Name, date of birth, Social Security number
  • Address and contact information: Address, phone number, email, type of residence, time at residence

First PREMIER® Bank Credit Card

Our rating
Min. credit levelBad
Details
Annual FeeUp to $125 the first year, up to $49 each year after that
Regular APR36.00% Fixed
Apply Now

securely on the issuer's website

  • Must have a checking account to qualify
  • Only you can build a good credit history. Make your payments on time each month, and keep your balance low relative to the credit limit, for positive marks on your credit reports each month
  • Your First PREMIER Bank credit card activity is reported to the Consumer Reporting Agencies each month
  • Track your progress. Your quarterly FICO Score is provided for free on your monthly billing statement
  • Credit scores are used to represent the creditworthiness of a person and may be one indicator to the credit type you are eligible for. However, credit scores alone do not guarantee or imply approval for any First PREMIER® Bank product

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I increase my credit limit?

Yes, you may be given a credit limit increase after 13 months, but you’ll be required to pay 25% of the amount of the increase. This is extremely unusual: Most credit card issuers won’t charge you for increasing your credit limit. There are more fees beyond that you should also be aware of.

You can reject the credit limit increase and have the fee reversed if you contact First PREMIER within 30 days of getting the billing statement that shows the increase.

Is the First PREMIER Bank Mastercard a secured credit card?

No, the First PREMIER Bank Mastercard is an unsecured credit card designed to help people with poor credit.

Secured credit cards are another good option if you need to improve your credit.

Was this helpful?

Alternatives to the First PREMIER Bank Mastercard

OpenSky® Secured Visa® Credit Card

Our rating
Min. credit level Limited Credit History
Details
Annual Fee $35
Regular APR 17.39% Variable
Apply Now

securely on the issuer's website

The OpenSky® Secured Visa® Credit Card (Review) is an easily accessible secured credit card.

What makes it so easy to get is that it doesn’t require a credit check in order to qualify. That’s pretty helpful if your credit scores are in rough shape. It’ll still require an initial security deposit to form your starting credit limit, the minimum being $200 and the max capped at $3,000.

While there are hardly any benefits attached to this card, there aren’t very many fees either. So it’s pretty easy to get, and won’t cost you an arm and a leg while you’re trying to improve your credit.

The card issuer states the OpenSky Visa comes with “all the benefits of a Visa card,” but doesn’t explicitly list those benefits aside from mentioning fraud protection and global acceptance.

  • Security deposit: $200–$3,000
  • Purchase APR: 17.39% Variable
  • Annual fee: $35
  • No credit check necessary to apply. OpenSky believes in giving an opportunity to everyone.
  • The refundable* deposit you provide becomes your credit line limit on your Visa card. Choose it yourself, from as low as $200.
  • Build credit quickly. OpenSky reports to all 3 major credit bureaus.
  • 99% of our customers who started without a credit score earned a credit score record with the credit bureaus in as little as 6 months.
  • We have a Facebook community of people just like you; there is a forum for shared experiences, and insights from others on our Facebook Fan page. (Search “OpenSky Card” in Facebook.)
  • OpenSky provides credit tips and a dedicated credit education page on our website to support you along the way.
  • *View our Cardholder Agreement located at the bottom of the application page for details of the card.

Discover it® Secured

Our rating
Min. credit level Bad
Details
Annual Fee $0
Regular APR See Terms

The Discover it® Secured (Review) is probably the most rewarding secured credit card available.

Not only can it help you repair your credit, but you’ll earn cash back while doing it. However, you’ll need a key to unlock those rewards (and to get the card in the first place).

Because this is a secured card, that key is in the shape of a one-time refundable security deposit. The minimum you can deposit is $200, while the maximum is $2,500, determined by your creditworthiness. Your initial line of credit will be equal to your deposit.

On top of the rewards, you’ll get a few useful benefits such as the ability to check your FICO Score 8, based on your TransUnion credit report. But anyone can access Discover’s credit monitoring tool, not just cardholders, so even if you have the First PREMIER credit card you can still keep tabs on your score.

Spending Rewards
  • 2% cash back on up to $1,000 spent per quarter at:
    • Gas stations
    • Restaurants
  • 1% cash back on all other purchases
Introductory Bonus Offer
  • Cashback Match: Double all cash back earned in the first year; awarded at the end of the first year
  • FICO Credit Scorecard: Access your FICO Score 8 whenever you’d like for free, based on your TransUnion credit report.
  • Free Social Security number alerts: Discover searches for your Social Security number on thousands of risky dark web sites and will alert you if your information was compromised.
  • New account alerts: Get notified of credit inquiries and new accounts on your Experian credit report.
  • Cash at Checkout: At eligible retailers you can get cash at checkout. The extra cash will be counted as part of your purchase.
  • Refer a Friend bonus: Earn a $50 statement credit bonus for every friend you refer who’s approved, up to 10 friends per year. If your friend makes a purchase within three months of opening the account, he or she will earn a $50 bonus too.
  • Security deposit: $200–$2,500
  • Purchase APR: See Terms
  • Balance Transfer APR: See Terms for See Terms, then See Terms
  • No foreign transaction fee
  • Annual fee: $0

The information related to Discover it® Secured has been collected by Credit Card Insider and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer or provider of this product.

Secured Mastercard® from Capital One

Our rating
Min. credit level Bad
Details
Annual Fee $0
Regular APR 26.99% (Variable)

The Secured Mastercard® from Capital One (Review) is a secured credit card that carries few fees.

The security deposit you’re asked to make works differently with this card. You’ll need to deposit one of three amounts from a bank account, based on your creditworthiness:

  • $49
  • $99
  • $200

But your starting credit limit won’t necessarily be equal to your deposit. Instead, despite what you’re asked to deposit, you’ll begin with a $200 limit. But you won’t be stuck there forever; you can increase it up to $1,000, but you’ll have to increase your security deposit to do so.

After six months, Capital One may choose to upgrade you to a higher credit line, without asking you to make another deposit. And, if your creditworthiness improves, Capital One will consider upgrading you to an unsecured card.

So there’s room for improvement without being bogged down by a plethora of fees, no fixed high APR, and you’ll get added benefits and protections to boot. But, remember that if you’re paying your statement balance in full each month, you won’t have to pay any interest on purchases — no matter how high your APR is.

  • Access to a higher credit line: After six months you may be automatically reviewed for a higher credit line.
  • Capital One CreditWise: Monitor one of your VantageScore 3.0 credit scores, based on your TransUnion credit report.
  • Travel protections: Access travel assistance services, and get covered by rental car insurance and travel accident assurance.
  • Shopping protections: Get extended warranty and price protection.
  • Security deposit: $49, $99, or $200, up to $1,000
  • Purchase and Balance Transfer APR: 26.99% (Variable)
  • No foreign transaction fee
  • Annual fee: $0

The information related to Secured Mastercard® from Capital One has been collected by Credit Card Insider and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer or provider of this product.

Citi® Secured Mastercard®

Our rating
Min. credit level Bad
Details
Annual Fee $0
Regular APR 22.49% (Variable)
Apply Now

securely on the issuer's website

The Citi® Secured Mastercard® (Review) is another secured card with an interesting feature.

With this Citi card, you don’t need to have a bank account to make the security deposit, which runs from $200 to $2,500. As long as you apply for the card at a Citibank location, you can pay cash. That’s pretty rare for secured cards, and makes it easier to get than most.

After showing responsible use with all of your credit products, like making payments on time, Citi may refund your deposit and upgrade you to an unsecured card.

You’ll gain purchase protection, and can check your FICO Bankcard Score 8, based on your Equifax credit report. So you’ll have a few more bells and whistles with the Citi Secured card than the First PREMIER card, without all of the fees.

  • Free FICO credit score: See your Equifax-based FICO Bankcard Score 8 on statements, online, and by mobile app.
  • Purchase Protection: If an eligible item you buy with your Citi card is damaged or stolen, Citi will repair the item or reimburse you for the loss.
  • Citi Identity Theft Solutions: Citi will help should you become a victim of identity theft.
  • Security deposit: $200–$2,500
  • Purchase and Balance Transfer APR: 22.49% (Variable)
  • Annual fee: $0
  • The Citi® Secured Mastercard® is a no annual fee credit card that helps you build your credit when used responsibly.
  • Unlike a debit card, it helps build your credit history with monthly reporting to all 3 major credit bureaus. Once available, you will also have free access to your FICO score online.
  • Use your card anywhere Mastercard® is accepted — worldwide.
  • A security deposit is required. Once approved, your credit limit will be equal to your security deposit (minimum of $200).
  • Get help staying on track with Auto Pay and account alerts.
  • With Flexible Payment Due Dates, you can choose any available due date in the beginning, middle or end of the month.
  • Manage your account 24/7 online, by phone, or in our mobile app.
  • The standard variable APR for Citi Flex Plan is 22.49%. Citi Flex Plan offers are made available at Citi’s discretion.

The information related to Citi® Secured Mastercard® has been collected by Credit Card Insider and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer or provider of this product.

First PREMIER® Bank Credit Card

Our rating
Min. credit levelBad
Details
Annual FeeUp to $125 the first year, up to $49 each year after that
Regular APR36.00% Fixed
Apply Now

securely on the issuer's website

  • Must have a checking account to qualify
  • Only you can build a good credit history. Make your payments on time each month, and keep your balance low relative to the credit limit, for positive marks on your credit reports each month
  • Your First PREMIER Bank credit card activity is reported to the Consumer Reporting Agencies each month
  • Track your progress. Your quarterly FICO Score is provided for free on your monthly billing statement
  • Credit scores are used to represent the creditworthiness of a person and may be one indicator to the credit type you are eligible for. However, credit scores alone do not guarantee or imply approval for any First PREMIER® Bank product

Do you use the First PREMIER Bank Credit Card? Have you been able to improve your credit scores? Have you run into any problems? Let us know in the comments below!

At a glance

The First PREMIER Bank Mastercard wants to help people with poor credit, but may end up doing the opposite. It has a staggering APR, no benefits, and numerous fees. We recommend looking at other, more useful, options before turning here.

Credit Card Insider receives compensation from advertisers whose products may be mentioned on this page. Advertiser relationships do not affect card evaluations. Advertising partners do not edit or endorse our editorial content. Content is accurate to the best of our knowledge when it's published. Learn more in our Editorial Guidelines.

The information related to Discover it® Secured, Secured Mastercard® from Capital One, and Citi® Secured Mastercard® have been collected by Credit Card Insider and have not been reviewed or provided by the issuer or provider of these products.

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