When looking to get a new credit card, you might be overwhelmed by the abundance of choices you have. The different cards come with different rewards, benefits, and advantages, and it can be difficult choosing the one that suits your needs best.
Luckily, you cannot go wrong with a Visa credit card. Many banks and credit unions offer VISA® cards to their clients, and whether you have an excellent credit score or a poor one, you should be able to find a suitable VISA® for you.
Let’s take a closer look at VISA® card offers and see what they have to offer.
What is VISA® Card?
With a VISA® card, you can easily make purchases in person and online almost anywhere in the world. VISA® cards are accepted in over 170 countries around the globe, and it is by far the most popular credit card company in 123 of them.
Currently, there are over 336 million VISA® credit cards in the USA and an additional 771 million of them are in circulation in other countries around the world. VISA® popularity is on the rise, and you’ll rarely come across a merchant that doesn’t accept this credit card.
With such a large number of people relying on VISA® credit cards, you can rest assured that you’re making a good choice if you go for one of these cards yourself.
Is Visa a Card Issuer or a Card Network?
When it comes to choosing a credit card, you will have to find a good card network and a reliable card issuer who is partnered with the said network. Card issuers and card networks perform different jobs and are completely different concepts.
A card issuer is the bank or credit union that you can take your credit card from. They are partnered with card networks and are responsible for accepting your credit card application, for setting the terms and conditions of your contract, deciding on your rates and fees, etc. Since credit cards are essentially loans, it’s the card issuer that loans you the money.
Card networks, on the other hand, are responsible for facilitating the transactions between a buyer and a merchant. They control where their credit cards can be accepted, and which issuers can offer the cards.
So, Visa is a card network. When you apply for a VISA®, you will have to contact a bank or credit union that is partnered with it so that they can issue you the card. You will not send your credit card application directly to VISA® company.
If you have problems with your VISA® credit card or have questions about your interest rates and fees, you will address your concerns with your credit issuer.
Traditional? Signature? Infinite?
There are 3 types of Visa credit cards that all come with different perks and advantages. Your credit cards can be:
- Visa Traditional
- Visa Signature
- Visa Infinite
If you already have a VISA® credit card and would like to know which type of card it is, you can typically see in on the card itself. Right next to the Visa logo on your card, you will see “Signature” or “Infinite”, and if you see just the logo itself, it’s likely that you have a “Traditional” VISA® card. If you’re still unsure, you can always check with your bank issuer.
What Are VISA® Card Benefits and Rewards?
The different types of VISA® credit cards offer different benefits. However, it’s important to note that these are mostly dependent on your card issuer. While VISA® does offer certain benefits to cardholders, it’s the issuers that decide whether they will provide the same benefits. In most cases, they do, but sometimes the issuers offer their own benefits and rewards either instead of or on top of other VISA® benefits.
Traditional VISA® Benefits
Visa Traditional credit card can include some of the following:
- Cardholder inquiry service
- Lost/ stolen card reporting
- Emergency card replacement/ emergency cash disbursement
- Auto rental collision damage waiver
- Zero liability
- Roadside dispatch
Signature VISA® Benefits
- All of the Visa Traditional benefits
- Extended warranty
- Year-end summary
- Travel and emergency assistance services
Infinite VISA® Benefits
- All of the Visa Signature benefits
- Return protection
- Purchase protection
- Travel protections
You can learn more about the benefits of VISA® credit cards online, or through your credit card issuer.
How Can I Contact VISA®?
- VISA® contacts – send an email or live chat (not a 24/7 service) – click here.
- VISA® Report Stolen/ Lost Card or How to cancel Visa credit card — check this page.
- VISA® website – visa.com
- VISA® Global Customer Assistance Services Toll-free Numbers (Download PDF)
Which Credit Card Should You Choose?
When it comes to choosing a credit card, your primary considerations should be the rates and fees, as well as the rewards and benefits. These depend on your credit card issuer, and not on a credit card network such as VISA®.
Your credit card should suit your lifestyle. If you enjoy shopping at various locations and want to have a card that you can use almost anywhere, having a Visa credit card is your best choice. If you use your credit card at a select few locations, you can choose any of the other credit card networks.
Visa Vard Offers Alternatives
Visa Cards Frequently Asked Questions
There’s a wide variety of Visa cards, and the type of card that you can get will depend entirely on your card issuer. Visa itself offers 3 types of cards, or 3 levels of membership – Traditional, Signature, and Infinite.
These cards come with different rewards and benefits for the cardholders, with Visa Traditional having the fewest benefits, and Infinite having the most. Whether you get all of the benefits offered will depend on your credit card issuer. Certain issuers will have their own benefits instead or might add a few benefits to the ones offered by Visa.
If you have poor credit or little/ no credit history, you might be able to get a Visa network card, but once again, this depends on the issuer. It’s banks and credit unions that set the requirements for cards, so the success of your application will depend on them alone.
There are many secured Visa offers, guaranteed approval, student cards, etc. that you can get with poor credit, but Visa doesn’t set the terms and conditions.
You should do your research and compare and contrast different issuers to find a card that will be suitable for you. Some issuers will have fewer requirements, and you will be more likely to get approved with a bad score.
Visa is available in over 170 countries worldwide. In 123 of those countries, it is the preferred card network. You will most likely be able to use it during your travels abroad. Any merchant who accepts Visa will have a it logo, as will any ATM that you decide to use for cash advances.
If you use your card abroad, you should consider the currency conversion fees and the foreign transaction fees (FX fee) (unless your card is a no FX fee credit card). You might have to pay very high fees if you use your card abroad, so make sure you consult with your credit card issuer about the possible charges that you might encounter.
Visa cards come with numerous rewards and benefits for cardholders. For example, if you use it while traveling, you might be offered special deals and discounts, since Visa is partnered with many hotels and airlines. However, while Visa itself offers some of these rewards, ultimately, it’s up to your credit card issuer to decide whether it will include them in the offer.
If you’re hoping for certain cashback, travel, or other rewards, you will have to check with your credit card issuer and see whether you can get them. Of course, the better your credit score, the better your card rewards.
If you’re having issues with your Visa card, you should contact the bank or credit union that issued you the card. Whether you have questions about your card’s terms and conditions, fees, credit card statements, card limits, or anything in between, you should always contact your card issuer.
A card network such as Visa is responsible for facilitating the transaction between buyers and merchants, and for controlling where the card can be used. Everything else in regards to your card is controlled by your card issuer. If you ever encounter a problem with your Visa card, get in touch with your bank or credit union.
Yes, you can use your Visa card for shopping online, as well as for paying your bills online, although you might encounter a fee when you pay your bills online. If you’re shopping online, you will have the option to choose your payment method. If that e-commerce website accepts Visa, you will see a Visa logo on the site.
A word of caution, however. If the merchant is located outside of the United States, or if your transaction goes through a foreign bank while online shopping, you might be charged a foreign transaction fee. Unless you have a no foreign transaction fee credit card, any time your transaction goes through a foreign bank you will be charged this fee.
Card networks such as Visa are not the ones who decide on the rates and fees that you will have to pay. It’s your bank or credit union that sets these charges. Visa can come with certain fees, such as a 1% fee on all transactions, but your issuer might decide to cover some of the fees imposed by the card network.
It’s your card issuer that offers no foreign transaction fee cards, low-interest, no annual fee, and other type cards. Visa has no influence on the type of credit card you will be offered and on the types of charges that you might have to cover.
The card issuer will take into account your credit score when deciding on your rates and fees, and different issuers will charge you differently.
If you want to apply for a Visa credit card, you should look for a credit issuer (a bank or credit union) that is partnered with it. If you get a card from an issuer partnered with Visa, you will see the Visa logo on your card. Since it is just a credit card network and not a card issuer, you cannot get your card directly from Visa.
A bank or credit union that offers Visa cards will decide whether your card application will be accepted or denied, and your credit card terms and conditions will depend entirely on your issuer.