[Update: Some offers mentioned below have expired. You can view the current offers from our partners here — Capital One QuickSilverOne, Capital One Quicksilver and Chase Freedom Unlimited. Disclosure: Cards from our partners are mentioned below.]
We set out to find an ideal everyday credit card. The credit card that never lets you down. Not a flashy credit card or one that garners you massive rewards points or luxury accommodations just for carrying it. No, we wanted to find the credit card equivalent of the comfy sweater, the faded blue jeans — a credit card you could qualify for even without excellent credit that would be there for you and even grow with you over time.
There are a lot of quality contenders, for certain, but we finally boiled it down to just one card that really shines for its simplicity and usability: The Capital One QuicksilverOne Rewards card.
First, the Quicksilver One is for people with average credit. And although it has an annual fee of $39, the card’s 1.5% cash back on every purchase with no limit on how much you can earn, and no changing categories, can more than make up for it. Another nice feature of the QuicksilverOne is that rewards don’t expire, and you can redeem your cash back for any amount at any time.
The card also has an introductory 0% interest rate for all purchases and balance transfers for the first nine months. After that, your purchase APR will be a variable 23.24% (more on that in a minute.)
While you may not qualify for a high credit limit initially, you can get access to a higher credit line after making your first five monthly payments on time. That can be especially attractive if you want to build or improve your credit. The QuicksilverOne also comes with Platinum MasterCard benefits, including:
- Free extended warranty protection on items purchased using the card
- Auto rental insurance
- Travel accident insurance
- 24/7 travel assistance services in case your card is lost or stolen
- 24/7 roadside assistance
- Price protection should you find a lower price on an item you purchased with the card (within 60 days of purchase)
Another perk of the QuicksilverOne is that it gives you access to its big brother, the Capital One Quicksilver card. The standard Quicksilver (you can see a full review here) is reserved for people with excellent credit, but using the QuicksilverOne responsibly can get you there. Capital One’s upgrades program is available to QuicksilverOne cardholders, and, once your credit is worthy enough, upgrading involves just a simple modification to your existing account. That means customers receive their new plastic with the same account number, but new CVV/expiration date, a spokesperson for the bank said. If you choose to upgrade to the Quicksilver card, you’ll still get the same 1.5% cash back on all purchases, but there’s no annual fee and your APR could be lowered to 13.24%.
The Drawbacks of Capital One’s QuicksilverOne
The standard interest rate for this card, 23.24%, at the time of this writing, is higher than that offered by the most competitive non-rewards cards, so carrying a balance on this card could offset any cash-back rewards benefits it offers. And, again, there is a $39 annual fee so if your credit score is already in good shape, you may want to aim for a higher-end card. There are 1.5% cash back credit cards out there without an annual fee, like the standard Quicksilver and the Chase Freedom Unlimited.
Remember, it’s important to read the terms and conditions of any card you’re considering carefully to be sure it’s the right one for you. It’s also a good idea to check your credit ahead of time so you know what types of cards you may qualify for and don’t risk incurring a hard inquiry (via the credit card application) as the result of a rejection. You can see where your credit stands by pulling your credit reports for free each year at AnnualCreditReport.com and viewing two of your credit scores, updated every 14 days, for free on Credit.com.
At publishing time, the Capital One QuickSilverOne, Quicksilver and Chase Freedom Unlimited credit cards are offered through Credit.com product pages, and Credit.com is compensated if our users apply and ultimately sign up for these cards. However, this relationship does not result in any preferential editorial treatment.
Note: It’s important to remember that interest rates, fees and terms for credit cards, loans and other financial products frequently change. As a result, rates, fees and terms for credit cards, loans and other financial products cited in these articles may have changed since the date of publication. Please be sure to verify current rates, fees and terms with credit card issuers, banks or other financial institutions directly.