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In the past, the best way to get a decent first US credit card was to apply throughAmerican Express Global Transfer Program. As an Amex card holder from Canada (or any other country), Amex may use your credit history with a company in your country of origin to approve you for credit cards in the United States.
There is currently one service that offers an arguably smoother process for applying for your first credit card:New Credit.
What is NovaCredit?
Nova Credit is a third party service that allows you to use your credit history in Canada (and many other countries) to approve a credit card in the United States. Nova Credit makes this possible through partnerships with American Express and certain other credit card issuers in the United States, as well as with credit bureaus in countries around the world.
They use data from credit bureaus in your country to convert your international credit score to an equivalent US credit score. This score is then available to U.S. financial institutions to assess your credit score and seemingly grant you a loan from scratch. All your history abroad is also translated into a report called "Credit Passport".
While our main focus at Frugal Flyer is credit cards, Nova Credit also helps US beginners access credit products such as car loans, cell phones, student loans and more by providing institutions with a translated credit score and credit card.
Who is eligible for Nova Credit?
Eligibility for Nova Credit generally depends on the credit product you are applying for. In general, as a non-US foreigner applying for a US credit card, to complete your card application through Nova Credit you will need:
- Credit history in your current country.In Canada, for example, you must have a good credit score and be on time at TransUnion, a Nova Credit partner office in Canada
- ID card issued by a foreign government. Generally, a passport is enough.
- US address.This could be your home address, your school address if you're studying in the US, or the address of a friend or family member who has agreed to receive your mail. We have tooUS to Canada mail forwarding listit might work.
- US bank account.Most major Canadian banks offer accounts specifically for people who frequently travel between Canada and the United States. If you already bank with one of the Big Five - BMO, CIBC, RBC, Scotiabank or TD - ask about their cross-border accounts. I've heard particularly good things about himBMO Harris.
Once all this is sorted out, you should have no problems completing the following application process at Nova Credit.
How to apply for a US credit card with Nova Credit
For Canadians, Amex is pretty much the only note issuer currently working with Nova Credit. There are two ways to get a credit card from Amex U.S. apply.
Method 1: Apply directly at AmericanExpress.com
First, open the app for everyonepersonal(no business cards!) American Express credit card. We can use itAmerican Express Hilton Honors credit cardfor example.
When viewing the application fields, you will be asked to enter your US address followed by your Social Security number.
Instead, you want to check the box "I have no credit history in the US, but I had a credit card or loan in Australia, Brazil, Canada, Dominican Republic, India, Kenya, Mexico, Nigeria, or the United States. Kingdom."
If you see a prompt to register for the simpler application process, you should ignore it in this case as it will initiate the global transfer process instead.
After submitting your application to AmericanExpress.com, you will be redirected to the Nova Credit Portal page where you can enter additional information.
- Foreign country where you have a credit history (in this example we assume Canada).
- Information required to access your credit records, including your name, date of birth and address.
- Verified by answering three identity questions from your TransUnion (Canada) file.
- Additional financial and employment information.
- Foreign government-issued identification such as a passport or driver's license.
Then you can submit your final application. At this point, you may be automatically approved, but you'll likely also be asked to provide additional supporting documents, such as: B. Photographs of your passport or bank statement proving your US address. It's all normal.
Eventually, if all goes well, you'll be approved and your new US credit card will be on its way to your US address (shipping time depends on which card you applied for).
Method 2: Apply on NovaCredit.com via your referral link
In general, if you use friend orplayer 2If you have a US credit card referral link, we recommend method 1. Alternatively, you can apply via aReferral link for Nova Credit(which we conveniently have😉).
If you apply via Nova Credit Referral, you will receive an Amazon.com Gift Card. The amount changes from time to time, I have seen a high of $50 and a low of $10.
With this method you initialize the applicationNovaCredit.com. You will immediately be asked to enter your country of origin as well as your email address to receive your Amazon gift card with referral bonus.
Next, a list of credit cards from the issuer that Nova Credit has worked with will be displayed. Make sure you select the filters "No SSN or ITIN required" and "Accepts foreign credit history". Essentially, only American Express cards remain.
From there, you can select any of the listed tabs and click Apply Now.
Nova Credit will then present you with a landing page that will redirect you to continue your application on the American Express website.
From now on, the process takes place in exactly the same order as inMethod 1.
Nova Credit is an efficient process for obtaining a US credit card as a non-US citizen or new US person who is new to the US financial system. For frugal flyers, Nova Credit is our recommended way to startAmerica's first credit card. You don't need to have an Amex history as with the global transfer method, which can be especially problematic for those who have immigrated overseas to Canada.
There are even data points you can use Nova Credit to get more than one US credit card! However, in the long run, you want to get an Individual Tax Identification Number (ITIN) to make switching credit cards in the US more sustainable and switch to other credit card issuers. An ITIN can be easily purchased for a small fee through our specially designed websiteITIN service.
Frequently asked questions
Can I apply for more than one US American Express card with Nova Credit?
Yes, many people have reported being able to apply for multiple US Amex ID cards through Nova Credit. Most of the successful people applied in a timely manner.(Video) What Should I Use My Credit Card For? | Credit Intel by American Express
You can also try applying via both Global Transfer and Nova Credit. If anyone has data points on this, we'd love to hear them in the comments below!
Which credit bureau does Nova Credit use in Canada?
Nova Credit uses your Canadian TransUnion credit file to help American Express US determine your creditworthiness.
In which countries is Nova Credit available?
Nova Credit is available to consumers in the United States who have a credit history in one of the following countries: Australia, Brazil, Canada, Dominican Republic, India, Kenya, Mexico, Nigeria, Philippines, South Korea, Spain, Switzerland and United Kingdom.
Can I use a referral link when applying for a credit card with Nova Credit?
Yes, you can of course use your credit card referral link to launch the app, which is an advantage with many American Express credit cards. If you don't have a map-specific referral link, you can also apply using itReferral link for Nova Credit, which gives you an Amazon.com gift card as a bonus.
Is Nova Credit resulting in a difficult query in your credit file?
No, Nova Credit will only result in a soft application and not a hard application in your TransUnion Canada credit file. This may also be the case in other countries.
I already have an ITIN and/or US credit history. Should I apply to Nova Credit?
This depends on whether you have a US ITIN credit history and how long it lasts. If your US credit file is more than six months old, you may not be eligible for Nova Credit's international credit report. However, with American Express US you don't have to think too much about this as Amex automatically checks your US credit file before transferring you to Nova Credit (see next question).
What if the application does not redirect to Nova Credit, but immediately asks for more information by phone?
For some applicants, there were data points where Amex would approve you based on your existing US credit history if the system could identify you, instead of directing you to the Nova Credit portal. For example, if you already have a credit card with a cross-border banking service, this can happen. Just keep calm, call the number provided and show regular ID if needed.
Was the Credit Passport powered by Nova Credit?
Credit Passport™ is the American equivalent of a credit report prepared by Nova Credit when translating credit information from countries outside the USA. Includes US-equivalent credit score estimates, discredit ratings, aggregate statistics, trade lines, and application history.
What if my international credit is bad? Should I still apply?
It's hard to say and really depends on how bad the outcome is. If you find that you rarely qualify for cards in Canada, you should consider other options.(Video) SUPERCHARGED US Credit Card Bonuses! (Amex Green 50K, Amex Gold 60K, Chase 80K)
If you have an American Express card in your overseas country, it may make sense to apply through Amex US Global Transfer where only your Amex history is considered for your credit score.
Otherwise, you might consider getting itTO Wand apply for a secured card first.
Most major credit cards, including Amex, Chase and Capital One, offer credit cards for non-residents, including immigrants and students. Gather your paperwork, including passport information and proof of income. From there, you can apply for a credit card and start building your U.S. credit history right away.How to get a credit card in USA without SSN? ›
The best way to secure a credit card without an SSN is to apply for an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN). An ITIN is a tax processing number issued by the Internal Revenue Service to non-U.S. citizens who cannot obtain a Social Security number.How to get a U.S. credit card immigrant? ›
- Open a bank account in an international bank in the US. ...
- Show evidence of positive credit in your home country. ...
- Visit a bank to open checking and savings accounts. ...
- Find a co-signer. ...
- Get a job.
How to use your foreign credit report to get credit in the U.S. Newcomers to the United States can use their foreign credit history to apply for U.S. credit cards, loans, housing and more—rather than needing to start all over.