Check If Credit Card is Active [How to Check Credit Card Status]

To make purchases or pay bills through your credit card, it has to have a good standing, and of course, be active. If you’ve been issued a new credit card, to be able to use it, you’ll need to follow the bank’s instructions to activate it. How to check if a credit card is active and can be used?

There are various ways to check if your credit card is active. You can do any of the following:

  1. Visit the website listed at the back of your credit card
  2. Call the phone number on the back of the credit card
  3. Visit the issuing bank
  4. Swipe your card for a purchase
  5. Check your registered e-mail for notifications

Read on to learn more on how to check if your credit card is active and valid, and if it isn’t active, how to activate it.

Check if Credit Card Is Active

check if credit card is active

Credit cards make our life easier. It’s convenient, and it’s safer to carry around than cash. When you use a credit card, your credit score also increases, making it easier for you to get a loan from the bank when needed. In the US, more than 60% of the population use cards.

It happens quite often where a credit card goes inactive, and you find out when you try to purchase. The credit card will be declined. This is a possible unpleasant experience. You’ll need to know how to check if your credit card is active or not.

Below are the various ways to check if your credit card is currently active:

1. Visit the Website on the Back of the Credit Card

Nowadays, it’s easy to check online banking either through an app provided by your bank or through the bank’s website.

How to check if a credit card is active online? Most credit cards have a website on the back to check the status of the credit card. When you visit the website, follow the instructions to check if the credit card is currently active.

If you’ve never done an online check for your credit card, call your issuing bank and ask for their website or smartphone app. A few clicks will let you know if the credit card is active or not.

2. Call the Phone Number on the Back of the Credit Card

If you can’t access the internet to check your credit card’s status, you may call your bank’s customer hotline. Most banks will have 24/7 customer service. You can ask a representative for the status of your credit card. It’s best to have all your credit card details ready before you call their customer service.

3. Visit the Issuing Bank

One other way to check if your credit card is active is by visiting your bank that issued your card. They’ll be able to quickly check if your credit card is valid and can be used.

4. Swipe Your Card for a Purchase

This should probably be your last option to check if your credit card is active. What you can do is use your credit card for either an online or in-store purchase. However, if you are not sure that your card is active, be prepared that your card may be declined, so best to have the cash to pay for the item.

5. Check Your Registered E-mail for Notifications

Another way to check if your credit card is valid and active is through e-mail notifications. It’s standard for credit card companies to ask for an active e-mail when registering for the card. The bank will usually send a monthly report or billing statement to your e-mail. The report will often contain other information like your credit score, credit card number, and the validity of your card.

If your card has become inactive, they will let you know through e-mail notification. If this happens, reach out to your credit card company to resolve the issue.

How To Keep Your Credit Card Active

check if credit card is valid

To ensure that your credit card is always active, here are some tips that you can follow:

1. Always Pay on Time

When you always pay on time, you establish your credibility with the credit card company. When you make late payments, it shows that you are not a reliable borrower. If you’re someone who tends to forget payments, set the alarm on your phone or write it down on your planner.

You can also arrange automatic monthly bank payments to ensure that your credit card gets paid on time. A credit card that gets paid on time will remain active.

2. Try to Pay off Your Credit Card

If you can pay off your debt on your card, your credit utilization rate will go down. A maxed-out credit card will not look good with the credit bureaus. If you keep your credit card balance at zero or close to zero, you’ll get a better credit score.

3. Pay Other Lenders You Owe Regularly and on Time

You might think that your other loans do not affect the standing of your credit card. But, most lenders usually check your credit standing, and they notice if you haven’t paid your other loans. This includes student loans, car loans, mortgages, and other loans. Even if you pay your credit card on time but running late on your other loans, your credit card company will know.

If you don’t pay your other loans on time, it affects your credit score, and a low credit score can be a reason for the credit card company to cancel your card. It’s important to show the credit card company that you can manage your financial commitments well.

4. Agree to Your Credit Card’s New Terms If They Create Any

Sometimes, your credit card company will change its terms and conditions and let you know by sending you a copy via e-mail or regular mail. They can change anything from the annual percentage rate to basic credit card benefits. You’ll be given a certain number of days to agree or reject the new terms.

Should you decide to reject the terms, the credit card company will most likely cancel your credit card. Read everything in the new terms, especially the fine print. If you deem that the changes are acceptable, agree to the new terms, and your credit card will remain active.

5. Keep Your Credit Cards in Your Wallet and Rotate Using Them

Many people hold multiple credit cards. If you’re one of them, make sure that each one stays active and rotates using them. You may have a particular card that you like to use for various reasons but use your other cards too, even for small purchases, to keep them active. To make sure that you do this, you’ll need to bring these cards with you. So, keep your credit cards in your wallet.

6. Place a Small Auto-charge Bill on Your Credit Card

If you want to ensure that your credit cards stay active, an effective way is to use them for a small recurring charge, as payment for your internet, Netflix, or Spotify. You can then have an automatic payment for that credit card from your bank account to ensure that you never miss a payment for that credit card.

7. Pick a Card to Use for Online Shopping

If you do online shopping regularly, choose a card to use for these online purchases. You can also use different credit cards for different shopping sites to ensure that your cards don’t get closed for inactivity.

Why It Is Important To Keep Your Credit Card Active

check credit card

1. Build a Solid Credit Score

The main reason for keeping your credit card active is for building a solid credit score. Credit scores are taken from your financial activity, and this is closely studied when you apply for a loan. Your credit card history is a factor in this score. A good credit card history boosts your score tremendously.

2. Track Spending Amount

Another reason is, with an active credit card, you can track your spending amount. You see every purchase and every bill you paid on your credit card statement. So, if you’re tied to a budget, it will be easier to see where you spend most of your money and where you can cut back on expenses.

3. Credit Card Companies Give Rewards to Active Card User

One other reason is that most credit card companies will give rewards to active credit card users. The rewards may come as points, travel rewards, or sometimes in freebies like getting a free coffee at Starbucks. Whatever the reward is, it’s always nice to get a free perk from your credit card company.

To keep your card active, the card company needs you to use their line of credit to profit from the interest. You also need to keep your card active to use it for purchases and even for emergency purposes.

4. Credit History

Keep your longest credit card open because that will be a basis for the credit bureaus to determine the length of your credit history. If you’ve had it for years, closing it down can impact your credit score. If you truly have no use for your other credit cards, choose closely what credit card you want to close. Definitely, do not close down a credit card that has a balance.

If you need to, transfer the balance first to a different card. Doing this will incur a fee, which is about 3 to 5% of the amount. Basically, it is not a good thing to cancel a credit card. However, one good reason to cancel a credit card is when a credit card has a high annual fee, and you rarely use that card.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Long Can Your Credit Card Be Inactive Before It Gets Closed?

Credit cards will go inactive when there aren’t any new purchases for a certain period of time. It will differ from company to company. It could be anywhere from nine days to two years. Sometimes, they state this in their policy. Check with your card company to learn more about this.

What to Do if Your Credit Card Goes Inactive?

To check if your credit card is active, you can check online or call customer service. But what do you do if you find out the credit card is inactive?

Credit card companies can close your card because of inactivity. They also can do this without giving you any notice that they will close it. This could be due to various factors, but inactivity is the main reason. To avoid the risk of having your credit card closed, make a purchase or a bill payment on your credit card every so often.

If you find out that your card has been rendered inactive and decide that you want to keep using it, you can contact your credit card company and ask that they reconsider the cancellation. Many credit card companies will reinstate the account pending a new credit check. If you choose not to have your card re-opened, ask for a copy of your credit report to ensure that the card has indeed been closed.

Conclusion: Check if Credit Card is Valid

An active credit card will help boost your credit score immensely. To check if your credit card is active, you have the following options:

  1. Visit the website on the back of the credit card
  2. Call the phone number on the back of the credit card
  3. Visit the issuing bank
  4. Swipe your card for a purchase
  5. Check your registered e-mail for notifications

To keep your card active, here’s what you can do:

  1. Always Pay on Time
  2. Try to Pay off Your Credit Card
  3. Pay Other Lenders You Owe Regularly and on Time
  4. Agree to Your Credit Card’s New Terms If They Create Any
  5. Keep Your Credit Cards in Your Wallet and Rotate Using Them
  6. Place a Small Auto-charge Bill on Your Credit Card
  7. Pick a Card to Use for Online Shopping