The Green Dot primor® Visa® Gold Secured Credit Card offers the basics you need from a secured credit card. You can qualify with poor credit, and with regular use and payments, the card will help improve your credit score. It also has a low APR of . However, its $49 annual fee makes it a hard sell when compared to secured cards with lower or no annual fees, and it doesn’t earn cash back or rewards like a handful of secured cards.

Green Dot primor® Visa® Gold Secured Credit Card Quick Review

Here are the highlights of the Green Dot primor® Visa® Gold Secured Credit Card:

Annual Fee: $49

APR: 

Sign-Up Bonus: None

Benefits:

  • Qualify even with poor credit
  • APR is lower than most secured credit cards

Minimum Payment:

The greater of:

  • 2% of your new balance plus all interest charges
  • $25

Plus, all past due amounts, any late fees, and any amount in excess of your credit limit.

Other Fees:

  • $200 minimum security deposit
  • $29 for an additional card
  • Up to $29 for late payments
  • Up to $29 for returned payments
  • 3% for foreign transactions
  • The greater of $5 or 5% for cash advances

Why Apply for the Green Dot primor® Visa® Gold Secured Credit Card

If you’re in the market for a secured credit card, there are a few reasons to apply for the Green Dot primor® Visa® Gold Secured Credit Card.

You need to improve your credit score

The most obvious reason to apply is to start rebuilding your credit score. Even if you have a poor credit score, you can get the Green Dot primor Visa. You simply have to make a $200 security deposit, which is less than the deposit many secured card issuers require. If you use theGreen Dot primor Visa and pay your bill promptly each month, the bank will report that information to credit bureaus, and your score will slowly increase.

You want a low interest rate

You should always try to pay your credit card bill in full every month to avoid paying interest charges. Credit card interest can pile up quickly, sending you into a debt spiral of debt that’s difficult to escape.

Even so, if you have to carry a balance on your card, the Green Dot primor® Visa® Gold Secured Credit Card has a low APR compared to most secured cards. That makes it a good choice for people who carry a balance occasionally

Green Dot primor® Visa® Gold Secured Credit Card: Drawbacks and Downsides

The Green Dot primor® Visa® Gold Secured Credit Card does have a few drawbacks.

Hefty fees mean you’ll pay to use the card

One of the biggest downsides of secured credit cards is the relative cost. Since people with poor credit are desperate to get access to credit and rebuild their scores, many lenders often take advantage by charging high fees. The Green Dot primor card carries a $49 annual fee and numerous other fees, meaning you’ll pay a lot to improve your credit with this card.

No path toward an unsecured card

You don’t want to keep a secured credit card forever. Ideally, you’d get your deposit back and acquire an unsecured credit card after improving your credit. Some secured card issuers offer a clear path to a deposit refund and converting to an unsecured account. Unfortunately, the Green Dot primor card doesn’t offer any path toward an unsecured credit card. If you want to pick up an unsecured card and get your deposit back after improving your credit, you’ll have to apply for a different card and close your Green Dot primor card.

Green Dot primor® Visa® Gold Secured Credit Card Alternatives

If you’re considering the Green Dot primor® Visa® Gold Secured Credit Card, check out these alternatives.

Capital One Secured Mastercard

If you want a secured credit card with no annual fee, consider applying for the Capital One Secured Mastercard. You’ll no annual fee for a higher interest rate compared to the Green Dot primor® Visa® Gold Secured Credit Card. When you open the Capital One card, you’ll receive a $200 credit limit. After five months, the credit limit will increase. As another bonus, the required security deposit can be as low as $49—a boon for people who don’t have much cash on hand.

Citi Secured Mastercard

If you want a card that offers a clear path toward an unsecured credit card, the Citi Secured Mastercard is a great choice. This card has a notably higher interest rate than the Green Dot primor card, but only requires a deposit of just $200 to open and it doesn’t charge an annual fee. Once you’ve had the card for 18 months, Citi will automatically assess your account. If you’re in good standing with a history of on-time payments, Green Dot could upgrade you to an unsecured card.

Other Things to Know

Here are some other things you should know about the Green Dot primor® Visa® Gold Secured Credit Card.

Can you be turned down for a secured credit card?

Yes, you can be turned down for a secured credit card if the card issuer is worried that you won’t pay the bill. It’s especially possible if you have a bankruptcy on your credit report. While secured cards are easier to get than unsecured cards, they aren’t guaranteed.

Will a Green Dot card help your credit?

Yes, a Green Dot card will help your credit, but only if you use the card well. That means paying your credit card bill on time every month and making sure that you don’t max out your credit limit.

Is Green Dot a major credit card issuer?

Green Dot issues many prepaid cards, but has recently begun to offer credit cards, too. The Green Dot primor® Visa® Gold Secured Credit Card is one of its first credit cards, and it targets people looking to build or rebuild their credit.

Bottom Line: Should You Apply for the Green Dot primor® Visa® Gold Secured Credit Card?

Given the alternatives available, there’s not much reason to apply for the Green Dot primor® Visa® Gold Secured Credit Card. It can help build your credit, but other cards do the same thing without all the fees. Choose a card that’ll help you boost your credit score without emptying your wallet.