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What is a Credit Score?

What is a Credit Score?

Your credit score is one of your most important financial tools. Understanding your credit score can help you plan for the future and is a strong indicator of your likelihood of being approved for a credit card. This guide will help you understand your credit score, from how it’s calculated to some few simple ways to manage it and increase your borrowing options.
 

Credit Score explained

What is a credit report?

Your credit report is a record of your borrowing and repayment behaviours. Any time you apply for a financial product or service, your prospective lender will check your credit history with major credit bureaus. That history is used to give you a unique, personal credit score, which lenders will be able to see when deciding on your applications for new products.

What does my credit score say about me?

Your credit score is an important measure when creditors decide whether to lend you money, let you open an account or take out a credit card. When a lender looks at your credit score they are looking to see how reliable you are when it comes to paying your bills and repaying debt. This information helps all lenders decide whether or not to take you on as a customer.

Who can view your Credit Report?

With your consent, your credit report can be viewed by lenders, car dealers, realtors and landlords, insurance providers, certain government agencies, employers and, of course, you. As a responsible lender, American Express reviews credit reports of our customers on a regular basis. The information reflected on credit reports is taken into consideration to manage your account.

How do I improve my Credit score?

Some things that lenders consider when reviewing your credit report are:

  • Timeliness of bill payments
  • Total outstanding balances
  • Total usage of credit lines
  • Negative public records

The easiest way to build a good credit record is to stay on top of your finances and make your payments on time.

You should also check your credit report annually to ensure the accuracy of your information, and you are entitled to do so without charge. Remember to inform your lender and the Credit Bureau immediately if you notice any inaccurate information in your credit report.

Review your Credit Report

Visit these websites to find out more about your credit report or request a copy of it.

 

Choosing a Card to suit your needs

When you’re choosing a credit card it’s important to think of your spending habit:

  • Credit cards allow you to carry a balance from month to month, as long as regular minimum repayments are made on time. However, carrying a balance will mean you will pay interest charges on your spending.
  • Charge cards, on the other hand require you to pay the full balance every month.

Find out more about our selection of Credit Cards and discover the one that suits your financial needs.

Choose a Card Type
 

Frequently Asked Questions

What is my minimum payment on my American Express Credit Card?

The minimum payment due is the payment required to avoid your account going past due. The Minimum payment due is displayed on the Account Summary page within Online Services and is also displayed on your statement. For more details on payments, please refer to your Cardmember Agreement.

When is interest charged?

If you always pay your balance in full so that we receive your payment by the payment due date, interest will not be applied to any of your purchases. If you choose to carry a balance or if we receive your payment late, interest charges are calculated and charged to your account. Interest is always charged on balance transfers and funds advances starting from the day the transaction occurs.

How to manage interest charges?

The best way to reduce your interest charges is to make your payments early or pay your balance in full and on time. Remember, the processing time varies by financial institution and by method of payment (Internet, mail, telephone and bank branch). Confirm with your financial institution to ensure we receive your payment by the due date.

Pre-Authorized Payment Plans are a great tool to help you maintain your preferred interest rate. Click here to learn more.

 

Credit and Charge Cards Explained

Has talk of interest, annual fees, rates and percentages left you feeling confused?

Our simple Credit and Charge Card guides are a great place to start.

How to apply for a Card

Learn More

What Card fees am I expected to pay

Learn More

What is Card Interest

Learn More

How to pay off your Card

Learn More

What is Credit Limit

Learn More

What is a Charge Card

Learn More

Using your Card Abroad

Learn More

Where is American Express accepted

Learn More

How Credit Cards and Charge Cards work

Learn More
 

American Express Benefits

FRAUD AND SHOPPING PROTECTION

Your security and protection are our priority. Our technology has been designed to give you peace of mind when using your card

Learn More about Fraud Protection

WORLD CLASS CUSTOMER SERVICE

Access to our customer service is available 24/7 by phone, text or email.

Learn More about Customer Service

CONTACTLESS PAYMENTS

Contactless is the quick, easy and secure way to make payments - Simply touch your American Express Card on the reader, wait for the beep and you're done. What's more, with Amex pay and Apple PayTM you can even pay with your phone.

Learn more about Contactless Payments
 

Explore Our Credit Cards

American Express Offers a range of Credit Cards with different rewards and benefits tailored to your lifestyle and interests.