Are you a Canadian looking to get your hands on a US credit card? You're not alone! US credit cards can offer fantastic rewards, travel benefits, and lower fees than their Canadian counterparts. But how do you go about acquiring a US credit card as a Canadian? In this Flik Eco blog post, we'll dive deep into why you might want a US credit card, the requirements for Canadians, and the steps to take to get one. So, let's jump right in!
USA Credit Cards For Canadian Table of Contents
Why should Canadians consider a US credit card?
There are some good reasons why Canadians might want a US credit card, including:
- Higher rewards and sign-up bonuses: US credit cards often have more generous offers and sign-up bonuses compared to Canadian cards. This can lead to maximizing cashback, travel points, or other loyalty rewards.
- Better travel benefits: Many US credit cards have specific perks for travellers, such as priority boarding, airport lounge access, or fee waivers for checked luggage. These perks can make frequent cross-border travel more enjoyable.
- Easier transactions in US: Holding a US credit card can make shopping and travelling in the US more convenient, offering better exchange rates and avoiding foreign transaction fees on purchases.
- Building US credit history: If you have plans to move or invest in the US, having a US credit card can help establish a credit history, eventually allowing you to qualify for lower-interest loans or mortgages.
Requirements for Canadians to get a US credit card
Though it's possible for Canadians to get a US credit card, there are requirements and steps you'll need to follow:
1. Have a US mailing address: You'll need a US mailing address to apply for a US credit card, but this could be a close friend or family member's residence if you don't have one. Some Canadians also use mailbox-forwarding services.
2. Get an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN): An ITIN is a tax processing number issued by the US Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and is required for any potential earnings from the card.
3. Open a US bank account: Opening a US bank account will make it easier for you to make card payments and handle rewards.
4. Have a US credit history: While not always necessary, it's certainly helpful, as many US credit card issuers still consider Canadian credit history ineligable. An option is to apply for a small loan or secured credit card from an issuer that allows it, and use that responsibly to build history.
How to get a US credit card for Canadians
Follow these steps to successfully apply for a US credit card:
1. Research and choose a card: Research various US credit cards and compare their rewards, fees, and specific advantages for Canadians. Look for cards with cross-border benefits, or cards from financial institutions that operate in Canada.
2. Prepare necessary documents: Your Canadian passport, driver's licence, ITIN, proof of US mailing address, and bank statements from your US bank account will be required for the application process.
3. Choose the right issuer: Some credit card issuers, like American Express, have dedicated options for cross-border applicants. They may allow you to apply for a US card using your Canadian credit history or a Global Card Transfer service.
4. Apply for the credit card: Complete the application process for your chosen card issuer, either online or over the phone, providing all necessary documentation and information.
USA Credit Cards For Canadian Example:
Imagine a young Canadian professional named Alex, who frequently travels to the US for work and vacations. Seeing the advantages of having a US credit card, Alex decides to apply for one. Alex opens a US bank account with TD Bank, since TD has branches both in Canada and the US, making transactions easier. They obtain an ITIN using W-7 form and visit the US for a holiday, opening a mailbox-forwarding service. They find a credit card that suits their travel needs with great rewards. Using their ITIN, US mailing address, and Canadian credit history, Alex successfully applies for a US credit card that they can now use for work, travel, and online shopping.
Well, folks, that's it! You're now equipped with all the knowledge you need to secure a US credit card as a Canadian. Remember, choosing the right card for your individual needs is vital, so keep researching and comparing different cards until you find the perfect one. If you found this information valuable, be sure to share this article with your friends and explore other guides on Flik Eco. Happy card hunting!