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Milestone Gold Mastercard Review: Build Good Credit

Our review of the Milestone Gold Mastercard looks at the card's fees and benefits that are mainly designed to help you build good credit.

Getting a credit card with poor or limited credit history can be a catch-22.

You need positive credit history to get approved for a card. But you need a credit card to build a positive credit history.

The Milestone Gold Mastercard is designed to help you get around that obstacle.

This card offers the benefits of a Mastercard for people with limited or poor credit. And unlike most secured credit cards that help to rebuild bad credit, you don't need to pay a security deposit.

If you're trying to get your credit back on track or simply start building credit history, the Milestone Gold Mastercard could be right for you.

Our review covers the card's main features and benefits to help you decide.

Milestone Gold Mastercard Pros & Cons

Pros Cons
  • Build good credit history with responsible card use
  • Reports monthly to the three major credit bureaus
  • No security deposit required
  • Annual fee applies, varies based on credit
  • Regular variable purchase APR is on the higher side/li>

Main Highlight: Build Credit With No Security Deposit

Secured credit cards allow you to build credit over time.

Here's how they typically work:

  • You apply for a card and are approved.
  • You give the credit card company a cash deposit.
  • This security deposit serves as your card's credit limit.
  • You make purchases, then pay them off.

Some secured cards will refund your deposit. But this usually hinges on how you're using the card.

The Milestone Gold Mastercard is a credit-building card. But it doesn't require a security deposit upfront to open an account.

That's a plus if you haven't been able to qualify for an unsecured card and you don't have cash for a secured card deposit.

You can get pre-qualified for this card without impacting your credit score. Ordinarily, applying for a credit card would require a hard credit pull which could cost you a few points.

For those who don't have the best credit

In terms of who this card is for, it's geared toward people with less-than-perfect credit. So if you have fair credit, bad credit or even a past bankruptcy you may still be able to qualify.

The Milestone Gold Mastercard reports account activity to the three major credit bureaus:

  • Equifax
  • Experian
  • TransUnion

Assuming that you're using the card responsibly, it could help you to build a positive credit history. That means paying on time and keeping your balance low.

If you're able to improve your credit enough, you could use this card as a stepping stone to qualify for premium cards later.

Full Mastercard Benefits

If you're approved for the Milestone Gold Mastercard, certain Mastercard benefits are included free of charge.

The top benefits include:

  • Mastercard ID Theft Protection: This benefit provides identity monitoring covering your social security number, email addresses, debit cards, credit cards, bank accounts and website logins.
  • Zero Liability Protection: You have $0 liability protection against fraud in case your card is lost or stolen. So you don't have to worry about paying for unauthorized purchases.
  • Mastercard Global Service: Enjoy 24-hour worldwide assistance with lost and stolen card reporting, emergency card replacement and emergency cash assistance.
  • Mastercard Airport Concierge: Take advantage of a 15% discount on airport Meet and Greet services at over 700 destinations worldwide.

You don't have to do anything to activate these benefits, since they're included automatically.

Card Fees

The Milestone Gold Mastercard does charge an annual fee. The fee you pay depends on which version of the Gold Mastercard you qualify for.

Here's how the fees add up:

  • Gold-V: $35 the first year, then $35 each year thereafter
  • Gold-W: $59 the first year, then $59 each year thereafter
  • Gold-X: $75 the first year, then $99 each year thereafter

The card features and benefits are the same. What's different is the annual fee.

Again, this is based on your creditworthiness. And here's one more thing to know about the annual fee: It's billed upfront.

All Milestone Gold Mastercards offer a $300 credit limit to start.

So if you pay a $35 annual fee, your available credit will be $265 initially. Or if you have a $75 annual fee, you'll have $225 in available credit.

That's not unusual for credit-building cards. But it's important to know so you're aware of how much credit you have to begin with.

Milestone Gold Mastercard vs. Other Credit Building Cards

The Milestone Gold Mastercard is one possibility for building or rebuilding credit. But there are other cards that could help you do the same thing.

Here are three other cards to consider for establishing credit.

Capital One Platinum Card

Capital One Platinum Card Pros & Cons

Pros Cons
  • Good for people who have fair credit and want to start rebuilding their score
  • No annual fee
  • Offers many tools and features to help you stay on top of your credit and paying your bills
  • No fee for balance transfers or foreign transactions
  • Instantly enrolled in Capital One perks which includes roadside assistance and warranty protections
  • Does not offer any rewards or travel miles
  • APR tends to be higher since it's designed for people with lower credit

The Capital One Platinum Card is designed for people with fair credit. Like the Milestone Gold Mastercard, you can get pre-approved without impacting your credit score.

This card has no annual fee or foreign transaction fees. It does have a fairly steep variable APR for purchases though.

You can get free credit monitoring through CreditWise. Capital One reviews your account periodically to see if you're eligible for a credit limit increase.

You might consider this card in place of the Milestone Gold Mastercard if you'd rather avoid an annual fee.

Read the full editor's review of the Capital One Platinum Card.

Capital One QuicksilverOne Cash Rewards

Capital One QuicksilverOne Cash Rewards Card Pros & Cons

Pros Cons
  • Good for people who have fair credit and are looking to increase their score
  • Rewards points for cash back never expire
  • Can earn unlimited cash back on all purchases
  • Access to higher credit line if you make your first 5 payments on time
  • Free tools to help you better manage your bills and track your credit score
  • $39 annual fee
  • Not the best card if you're looking to earn rewards or cash back

The Capital One QuicksilverOne Cash Rewards Card is another card option that's designed for people with fair credit.

With this card, you can earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on purchases.

So you can earn cash back when you buy groceries, get gas, shop online or book travel. The more you spend, the more you could earn in rewards.

There is an annual fee for this card but it's pretty reasonable, at $39 a year.

You also get some of the same benefits offered with the Capital One Platinum Card, including CreditWise monitoring and automatic credit limit reviews.

If you have some credit history, you might be able to qualify for this card. But keep in mind that applying for this one will impact your credit score.

Read the full editor's review of the Capital One QuicksilverOne Cash Rewards Credit Card.

Capital One Secured Mastercard

Secured Mastercard from Capital One Pros & Cons

Pros Cons
  • Start with a refundable minimum security deposit as low as $49
  • Automatic credit line reviews
  • No annual fee
  • High purchase APR

The Capital One Secured Mastercard is a credit-building card that requires a cash deposit to open.

This card is specifically aimed at people who want to rebuild credit. You can get pre-approved without impacting your credit score.

There's no annual fee. But you'll need to pay a deposit of $49, $99 or $200 to open an account.

If you make the minimum deposit, your initial credit line is $200. You can increase your credit line by making a larger deposit.

This deposit is refundable as a statement credit. So if you're paying on time and using the card wisely, it's possible you could get the deposit back.

Capital One offers automatic credit line reviews and CreditWise monitoring. And you get the same benefits that are included with the Platinum Card.

Read the full editor's review of the Capital One Secured Mastercard.

Final Verdict: Should You Apply for the Milestone Gold Mastercard?

The Milestone Gold Mastercard could help you build or rebuild credit over time.

This card could be right for you if:

  • You have a poor or bad credit history, including a previous bankruptcy
  • You have a limited credit history or none at all
  • You want to build credit without a security deposit but don't mind paying an annual fee

You won't get a rewards program the way you could with some credit cards for fair credit. But if your main goal is improving your credit scores, this card could help you do it.

Just keep the annual fee and the regular purchase APR in mind. If you carry a balance month to month, the APR could make the things you charge more expensive.

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