You’ve just received notice that your credit card application has been approved… So what happens next?
After taking the time to compare credit card offers, choosing the right one, and filling out the application, getting word that you’ve been approved is very exciting. Now all you have to do is wait for it to arrive so you can start using it. This may seem like a drawn out process, but if you know what steps you need to take first, the only hard part will be staying patient while you wait for the card.
How can I get approval?
After submitting your application for a credit card to the bank, they will assess your credit history and current finances in order to determine whether or not you are eligible for credit. This also helps in determining how much credit they are willing to offer you. For an Australian who has a perfect credit rating, the bank may offer you instant approval. For everyone else, you may get a follow up call or email from the bank asking for further details about the marks in your credit history.
You may also be asked to confirm your income information or current balances on other credit products. This can usually be handled by faxing or emailing the appropriate documents to the bank. However, this is not the norm, and with most applications online a response is given in just minutes.
How will I receive my card?
You will have a few days to start making your shopping list once you’ve gotten word that your application has been approved. The bank needs to process your application and create your account before the new credit card can be issued.
Once your application has made it past all of the necessary departments in the bank or financial institution, a “welcome pack” will be put together for you. This contains valuable information about the bank, the credit card and its terms and conditions of use. Make sure you read through that information thoroughly before you make any purchases using the card, which is also included in the welcome pack. Now all that is left is to wait for the Australia Post to deliver it to your mailbox, which could take anywhere from five to ten business days depending on where you live.
How do I activate my card?
By far the easiest step in the process – besides using it – is activating your credit card once it has arrived. This will involve a quick call to the bank to verify who you are and that the correct card has been issued to you. Try to call during off-peak hours, as you may be left on hold waiting for up to 30 minutes when the bank is busy.
The last thing you need to do is sign the back of your credit card in the white strip centered down the middle. This protects you against anybody else being able to use the credit card. Merchants are responsible for verifying your identity when making a purchase based on your signature on the back of the card.
|Allow up to 5 business days|
|Within 5 business days|
|Within 10 working days|
|5-10 business days|
|5-10 working days|
|5 business min 10 max|
|7 to 10 calendar days|
|Up to 21 Days|
Have you had a look at these cards?
Cards from HSBC
If you would like to get a new credit card from HSBC, there is a good chance that you will have to wait up to ten days before receiving it. Even with that ten day window, HSBC reserves the right to wait an additional seven days before sending it to you.
Activation is a one-call process (provided you are the cardholder,) but it can take up to 17 days to receive your card after approval.
Cards from Commonwealth Bank
If you want to get a new credit card from Commonwealth bank, your wait will probably be a bit shorter than with HSBC. Their policies are detailed fairly clearly on their website.
Basically, once you have completed your application and sent it or handed it to them, if you are accepted and your application goes through, you should get your card in the mail within 10 days.
As mentioned before, that in come cases additional information may be needed for them to process your application, and if this is the case they will write to you within 5 days of receiving your application.
You will find this is all pretty standard, and although different lender’s terms will vary, they will not vary very much.
HSBC lists a possible extra seven-day waiting period, Commonwealth does not do so. They are also explicit in explaining waiting times for additional materials.
If you haven’t been contacted for more information within that time frame, either you were rejected and should apply with a different company, or you were approved and can expect your card within the allotted time.
In other words, different companies have different procedures and, consequently, different wait times to receive them. If you are conscientious about providing the company to which you apply with all the information they request, you will expedite the process and get your credit card within the minimum amount of wait time allotted by the company.
Otherwise, be patient. If you’re approved, you will get your new credit card in the mail in due time.
Frequently asked questions
If I apply online for my credit card can I go back later to finish it?
Yes, most banks do have a feature that allows you to save an application to be completed at a later date. Just check first to see how long they will wait before deleting the details.
What kind of information will I need to provide on the application?
As with any lending product you will need to give details about your income and expenses along with your personal information.
If I ordered an additional card will that need to be activated too?
Yes, all cards issued will need to be activated before they can be used. This is done to verify that they were delivered to the correct person.
Can I pick up my new credit card at the branch?
This will depend on the bank you are getting the card through. Some prefer to mail it as a way of confirming your physical address.
I only make purchases online with my credit card, do I still have to sign it?
Yes, an unsigned credit card is not considered valid. Plus, you want to be protected in the event of a theft.