- Understand what happens after applying for a credit card.
- Learn the difference between instant and conditional approval of a credit card.
- Compare credit card providers and their approval and dispatch times.
What happens after your application is submitted and how long before you get your credit card? This usually depends on the documentation required by the banks and their various approval processes.
Some banks offer instant approvals and conditional approvals, which means that you will receive an automated verdict on your application after 60 seconds. This approval is conditional. If all your supporting documents are in order, then the credit card application will be approved and mailed to you. But, how long will this take?
Read on to find out.
Check what the latest offers are before you apply. Compare credit cards with Finty.
Coming up next
- What happens after I have applied for a credit card?
- What is a conditionally approved credit card application?
- When will I get my credit card?
- What are instant approval credit cards?
- Are there credit cards with immediate access after approval?
- Can you use a credit card number without a physical card?
- Are credit cards valid if they are not signed?
- The bottom line
What happens after I have applied for a credit card?
Once you have applied for a credit card, the credit card issuer will evaluate your credit score and current financial standing. Based on these two factors, the credit card issuer will decide whether you are eligible for the credit card.
Once your eligibility has been verified by the card issuer, they will allocate a credit limit based on your credit score and finances.
You could gain conditional acceptance for the card within 60 seconds of filing an online application if you meet all of the main application conditions.
If you don't, you might get a call or an email from the credit card company asking for more information or documentation.
You may have to upload supporting documentation to complete the application process.
You will get your card sooner if you upload the documents as early as possible. You would need to upload the following:
- A copy of your passport or driver licence
- Payslips from the past few months
- Bank statements from the previous few months
- Your most recent tax assessment notice or PAYG summary
- A letter from your employer confirming your employment
What is a conditionally approved credit card application?
The credit issuer doesn’t entirely approve conditionally approved credit card applications. Once you send in your credit application, you receive a response within 60 seconds confirming whether or not you qualify for a credit card.
This system is used to filter applicants before moving on to the next step of requesting supporting documents. They will look at your employment status, bank accounts, and your current debts.
Providing all your documentation meets the criteria set out by the credit issuer, you will receive full approval for your credit card application and your card will be mailed to you.
When will I get my credit card?
The following table compares credit card application waiting times of different credit issuers and banks.
|Issuer||Minimum approval time||Maximum approval time||Maximum card despatch time|
|American Express||Instant||10 days||14 days|
|ANZ||Instant||5 days||5 days|
|Australian Military Bank||Instant||1 day||5 days|
|Auswide Bank||1 day||1 day||1 day|
|B&E Personal Banking||2 days||2 days||7 days|
|Bank Australia||2 days||2 days||2 days|
|Bank of Melbourne||Instant||1 day||2 days|
|BankSA||Instant||1 day||2 days|
|BankVic||1 day||1 day||5 days|
|Bankwest||Instant||2 days||2 days|
|bcu||2 hours||12 hours||10 days|
|Bendigo Bank||1 day||5 days||1 day|
|Beyond Bank||1 day||1 day||3 days|
|BOQ||5 days||5 days||5 days|
|Citi||5 days||5 days||1 day|
|CommBank||Instant||Same day||1 day|
|Community First Credit Union||2 days||2 days||5 days|
|CUA||1 day||1 day||7 days|
|Defence Bank||4 hours||4 hours||7 days|
|ECU Australia||2 days||2 days||2 days|
|First Option Credit Union||1 day||1 day||10 days|
|G&C Mutual Bank||1 day||1 day||5 days|
|Heritage Bank||1 day||1 day||1 day|
|Holiday Coast Credit Union||Same day||1 day||Same day|
|Horizon Credit Union||Same day||1 day||5 days|
|HSBC||Same day||5 days||2 days|
|Hume Bank||Same day||1 day||3 days|
|Hunter United||1 day||1 day||5 days|
|IMB||1 day||1 day||1 day|
|Intech Credit Union||1 day||1 day||5 days|
|Jetstar||Same day||Same day||1 day|
|Latitude Financial Services||Instant||5 days||7 days|
|Macquarie Bank||Same day||2 days||1 day|
|Macquarie Credit Union||2 days||2 days||7 days|
|ME Bank||2 days||2 days||2 days|
|MyState||1 day||1 day||1 day|
|NAB||2 days||5 days||Same day|
|Newcastle Permanent||2 days||3 days||1 day|
|Northern Inland Credit Union||1 day||1 day||10 days|
|P&N Bank||4 hours||4 hours||5 days|
|People’s Choice Credit Union||1 day||1 day||1 day|
|Police Bank||2 days||2 days||1 day|
|Qantas Money||5 days||5 days||1 day|
|QBANK||1 day||1 day||2 days|
|QT Mutual Bank||1 day||1 day||1 day|
|Qudos Bank||2 days||2 days||5 days|
|Queenslanders Credit Union||1 day||1 day||1 day|
|SCU||1 day||1 day||10 days|
|Select Encompass Credit Union||Same day||1 day||4 days|
|SERVICE ONE Alliance Bank||1 day||1 day||2 days|
|St.George Bank||Same day||1 day||2 days|
|Summerland Credit Union||2 days||2 days||2 days|
|Suncorp Bank||Same day||3 days||1 day|
|Teachers Mutual Bank||Same day||1 day||10 days|
|UniBank||Same day||1 day||10 days|
|Victoria Teachers Mutual Bank||1 day||1 day||5 days|
|Virgin Money||2 days||7 days||2 days|
|Westpac||Instant||1 day||2 days|
|Woolworths Employees Credit Union||Instant||1 day||5 days|
What are instant approval credit cards?
Instant credit card approval streamlines the credit application process for those who want their credit cards quickly. When you apply for a credit card online, the credit issuer performs a preliminary credit check and sends an automated response within a few minutes.
This saves plenty of time in the process because once you have been conditionally accepted, you can proceed almost immediately by uploading your supporting documents.
Generally, instant credit cards are only for those with high credit scores since that is the deciding factor for conditional approval. If your credit score isn’t high enough, you need to improve it for instant approval.
Otherwise, you can also go the general route of applying for a credit card. Only certain banks offer instant credit cards.
Are there credit cards with immediate access after approval?
Several banks now offer virtual credit cards that are available immediately after your application has been approved. This is how it works.
- After applying, the bank decides whether or not to approve your application.
- Immediately after approval, a virtual card is made available in the bank's app or online banking.
- You can add the card to your phone's digital wallet, e.g. Apple Pay or Google Pay, and start using it.
- The physical card — if there is one — will arrive several days later.
Can you use a credit card number without a physical card?
You can use a credit card number without the card, especially for electronic payments. However, you will also need to add other card details, such as the cardholder’s name, expiry date, and the card verification value (CVV) number.
If you go to the store and forget your credit card, you might be able to use your credit card number and a form of identification. However, this is not advised because you should avoid giving anyone your credit card information. In this instance, it is best to use your physical card.
Are credit cards valid if they are not signed?
Most credit card companies, such as Visa, consider unsigned credit cards as invalid. Signing your credit card is a necessary security precaution if your card is stolen.
Traders need to check that your signature matches the signature on the till slip. Merchants aren’t required to process a payment with an unsigned card. Therefore, it is best to sign your credit card.
The bottom line
Applying for a credit card is a relatively straightforward process. You should have no problems getting a credit card if you have a decent credit score and have all your supporting documents in order.
If you want instant approval, you may require a higher credit score. Overall, getting a credit card is exciting as it gives you some financial freedom and the opportunity to improve your credit score.