Credit Cards

Does Applying For Multiple Credit Cards

Does Applying For Multiple Credit Cards

The modern age has made it all too tempting for people to apply for multiple credit cards. With a range of offers available and various rewards associated with each card, who wouldn't want to maximize their benefits? But have you ever wondered if there's a catch to this seemingly sweet deal? Does applying for multiple credit cards affect your credit score or your financial health in the long term? In this article, we’ll take a deep dive into this common question, addressing the pros and cons of multiple credit card applications, and whether it's truly worth it.

The effect of multiple credit card applications on your credit score

When you apply for a credit card, the issuer conducts a "hard inquiry" on your credit report to determine your creditworthiness. This inquiry may temporarily lower your credit score by a few points. Applying for multiple credit cards in a short span increases the number of hard inquiries, which can have a more significant negative impact on your credit score.

Relevance of hard inquiries to your credit score

  • Hard inquiries directly affect 10% of your FICO score calculation.
  • Multiple hard inquiries increase the risk of financial troubles and may be interpreted as financial desperation.
  • Hard inquiries remain on your credit report for about two years, but their impact lessens over time, typically within six to 12 months.

Understanding the pros and cons of multiple credit card applications

While there are benefits to having multiple credit cards, there can also be drawbacks. It's essential to assess the potential advantages and drawbacks before deciding if applying for multiple credit cards is right for you.


  • Maximize rewards - Having multiple credit cards with different rewards programs allows you to optimize your rewards earning, whether through cashback, points, or miles.
  • Lower credit utilization rate - The credit utilization rate is the percentage of available credit that you use monthly. A lower utilization rate can positively affect your credit score. Having multiple cards increases your overall credit limit, which can lower your utilization rate if managed responsibly.
  • Back-up cards - In case one card is lost or has limited acceptance, having an additional card can be beneficial and avert payment issues.


  • Negative impact on credit score - As mentioned earlier, applying for multiple credit cards results in multiple hard inquiries, which can temporarily hurt your credit score. Furthermore, the average age of your credit accounts decreases when you open a new card, which can negatively affect your credit score.
  • Increased risk of debt - With multiple accounts, it can be challenging to keep track of your spending and due dates, potentially leading to missed payments or excess spending.
  • Annual fees - Having multiple cards may mean you have to pay annual fees for each, creating an additional financial burden.

Does Applying For Multiple Credit Cards Example:

To illustrate this, let's consider a scenario where John has a credit score of 720 and applies for three different credit cards within six months. The multiple hard inquiries on his credit report lower his score by 45 points to 675. John eventually gets approved for two cards, which increase his overall credit limit, but he struggles to manage his spending and ends up with a high credit utilization rate. Consequently, his credit score continues to suffer.

While applying for multiple credit cards can be tempting, it is vital to weigh the pros and cons and consider the potential impact on your credit score and financial health. Multiple credit card applications should be approached with caution, and it's crucial to be disciplined and responsible with any card you do add to your wallet. If you think having multiple cards is right for you, space out your applications and always use them wisely. Don't forget to share this article with friends and family who may be considering applying for multiple credit cards, and for more valuable personal finance insights and resources, be sure to explore other guides here on Flik Eco!


About Jermaine Hagan (The Plantsman)

Jermaine Hagan, also known as The Plantsman is the Founder of Flik Eco. Jermaine is the perfect hybrid of personal finance expert and nemophilist. On a mission to make personal finance simple and accessible, Jermaine uses his inside knowledge to help the average Joe, Kwame or Sarah to improve their lives. Before founding Flik Eco, Jermaine managed teams across several large financial companies, including Equifax, Admiral Plc, New Wave Capital & HSBC. He has been featured in several large publications including BBC, The Guardian & The Times.

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