Recently a forum member received an application in the mail for the Bryant State Bank Show MasterCard. She wanted to know if it was worth applying for?
Well, it’s definitely not for me! But let’s see if it makes sense for you…
Who’s it for?
It’s an offer that’s marketed to people with no/bad credit. There are reviews/comments from people recently out of bankruptcy (like 18+ months) receiving “pre-approved” offers in the mail for the Show credit card. And once you see the terms and conditions for yourself, you’ll understand why!
What’s the offer?
Bryant State Bank is reportedly offering the Show credit card in a couple different tiers, each with different APRs and fees. Both of them are unsecured.
- Offer #1: For a $50 annual fee, this card comes with a 21.99% interest rate and “at least a $500 credit limit.” After the account is opened – with good credit/payment history over time – you may qualify for credit limit increases up to a maximum of $2,500.
- Offer #2: I’ve seen this one mentioned the most. For a $75 annual fee you get a whopping 35.9% interest rate and “at least a $300 credit limit.” Over time the limit can be raised up to a max of $1,500.
Although not quite as bad, the second version of the Show MasterCard appears to have taken a page out of the First Premier playbook – an issuer who is notorious for their credit card offers which give a measly $300 credit limit in exchange for a $75 annual fee (plus other fees).
As far as rewards, don’t expect any of that jazz. This is a very basic no-frills card. As you can see from the terms and conditions, it’s obviously for people who have bad credit and are unlikely to qualify for something better.
The answer is both yes and no
Depending on which camp you fall under, it may or may not be a bad idea to apply for a Show MasterCard account.
- The first offer with better terms is actually quite good, all things considered, if you’ve recently come out of bankruptcy and have a credit score that’s in the toilet. Paying $50 per year for a $500 minimum credit limit isn’t a bargain, but I don’t think it’s a ripoff.
- The second offer is hard to justify. The annual fee is 50% more and the APR is over 60% higher. To add insult to injury, the minimum credit limit is only $300. If that’s all you’re being promised, then you might as well get a secured credit card for rebuilding credit that comes with a relatively low annual fee of $29-39. Sure, it won’t be unsecured like the Show MasterCard is, but then again, scrounging up $300 for a security deposit isn’t that out of reach for most people.
Review written or last updated Jan 2013