If your colorful credit history makes it a challenge for you to get a credit card, the Milestone Gold MasterCard may be a tempting option.

It has a relatively low interest rate for its class and there’s no security deposit required. But its annual fee is high, so you may be better off going with a secured credit card if you don’t want to pay an arm and a leg just to own this card.

Read on to find out if the Milestone Gold MasterCard is right for you and, if it isn’t, we’ll recommend some others that might be a better fit.

ALSO READ: CardCruncher’s Complete Guide to Improving Your Credit Score

Milestone Gold MasterCard Review

Here’s what you need to know about the Milestone Gold MasterCard.

  • Annual Fee: Between $35 and $99. Some offers give you a discounted annual fee for the first year but typically include an account opening fee. All of these offers work out to a $75 fee in total for the first year.
  • APR: 23.90% for purchases, 29.90% for cash advances, 29.90% penalty APR if you make a late payment
  • Starting Credit Limit: $300
  • Benefits:
    • Have the bank do a pre-qualification before you apply to see if you are likely to get approved without a hard credit inquiry
    • No cash advance fee the first year
    • No security deposit required
  • Minimum Payment: If your balance is under $40, then the full balanceIf balance is $40 or more, then $40
  • Other Fees:
    • $27 for first over limit and late or returned payment fees and $38 for any subsequent late or returned payment or over limit fees within six months of the first
    • Cash advance transaction fee equal to $5 or 5% of the cash advance, whichever is greater (maximum $100)

Why to Apply for the Milestone Gold MasterCard

If any of the following fits you, you might want to get a Milestone MasterCard.

Your credit is bad, but you don’t want to pay a security deposit: There are few unsecured credit cards available to consumers with poor credit. The Milestone Gold MasterCard is one of this elite pack, and it can provide a little extra spending power for someone who really needs the help but can’t afford a security deposit.

You might need to carry a balance: The Milestone Gold Card’s 23.90% interest rate is pretty affordable compared to other subprime credit cards. Ideally, you won’t have to carry a balance from month to month, but if you do, this card won’t penalize you as much.

Milestone Gold MasterCard: Drawbacks and Downsides

Take these issues into account before signing up for the Milestone Gold MasterCard.

You’ll pay a lot to own the card: The $99 annual fee will eat a significant hole in your $300 credit limit, leaving you with just $201 for purchases. Such a low limit can make it a challenge to build up a record of responsible transactions and thereby raise your credit score.

You won’t earn rewards: Credit card rewards have become the norm, but the Milestone Gold MasterCard has neither cash rewards nor a point system. If you’re interested in rewards and you can’t qualify for a traditional rewards card, you’re better off looking into some of the top secured credit cards.

Milestone Gold MasterCard Alternatives

If you’re interested in a card that offers equivalent benefits but fewer drawbacks, try one of these.

If you’re looking for a credit card that doesn’t require a great credit score, try the Capital One Platinum Credit Card. This is another unsecured credit card that accepts individuals with subprime credit. It has no annual fee and if you make your first five monthly payments on time, your credit limit will go up. Its APR is a little higher at 24.99%, so carrying a balance will hurt a little more.

If you’re looking for a low APR, try the OpenSky Secured Visa Credit Card. You’ll have to make a deposit equal to the card’s credit limit (you get to pick a number between $200-$3,000), but the APR is a mere 18.89% and the annual fee is a much more affordable $35. There’s no credit check on this card, so it’s an option for folks with even the poorest credit history.

Bottom Line: Should You Apply for the Milestone Gold MasterCard?

If you really need a credit card and your credit history gets you declined by most banks, the Milestone Gold MasterCard is one option to help you turn that around. But as soon as your credit score is high enough to get you access to better cards, drop this one like a hot potato.

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