Upgrade Cash Rewards Visa® review: Potential for a lower APR

A woman in a yellow sweater holds her mobile phone and credit card while shopping online.Image: A woman in a yellow sweater holds her mobile phone and credit card while shopping online.
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  • Potential for a high credit limit
  • Ability to prequalify
  • Chance for a lower APR


  • Not a traditional credit card
  • Mediocre rewards rate
  • Earn rewards on payments instead of purchases
From our partner

Upgrade Cash Rewards Visa®

4.1 out of 5

From cardholders in the last year

See details, rates & fees

Upgrade Cash Rewards Visa® core features

The Upgrade Cash Rewards Visa® card offers a revolving credit line with some of the same benefits you can get with a traditional credit card. Here are some of the most important aspects of this card and how they work.

It’s a personal line of credit

Unlike traditional credit cards, the Upgrade Cash Rewards Visa® card offers a revolving credit line that works more like a personal loan. Once approved, you can use your line of credit to pay for purchases or have cash deposited into your bank account — and you’ll make predictable, set payments each month on your balance.

Minimal rewards on payments, not purchases

With most traditional rewards credit cards, you’ll earn cash back, points or miles when you make a purchase. With this card, you don’t earn rewards until you pay back your purchases. Then your rewards will be applied to your balance as a statement credit.

Also this card’s reward rate is 1.5%, which isn’t great (you might see different offers through Credit Karma). If you’re looking to maximize your rewards, you might want to consider other cash back credit card options.

Potential for a high credit line

Upgrade offers credit lines ranging from $500 to $25,000, though many will be $15,000 or less. What’s more, you can get an idea of what your credit line might be without a hard credit check.

But heads up on the APR: It ranges from 14.99% - 29.99% depending on your credit history and other factors. The lowest rate requires autopay.

What else you need to know about the Upgrade Cash Rewards Visa®

Beyond the basics of how the card works, here are some other details to know about the Upgrade Cash Rewards Visa® card.

  • The card doesn’t charge an annual fee.
  • New cardholders can earn a $200 cash bonus when they make three debit card transactions within 60 days of account opening (you might see different offers through Upgrade directly or through Credit Karma).
  • Payments made on non-purchase transactions, such as withdrawals to your bank account, don’t qualify for cash-back rewards.

Who this card is good for

The Upgrade Cash Rewards Visa® card could be a good option for someone who wants a little more flexibility with their everyday spending card. While you can use the card as you would a traditional credit card for in-store and online purchases, you can also withdraw funds from your line of credit directly to your bank account without additional fees.

That said, because you’re paying off purchases over a fixed amount of time, your monthly payments may end up being higher than a standard credit card minimum payment.

Not sure this is the card for you? Consider these alternatives.

If you’re unsure about the Upgrade Cash Rewards Visa® card, take some time to consider other options that might be a better fit for you. You could also consider a personal loan, since this card works in a similar way. But if you’re in the market for a card, depending on your needs and preferences, here are some alternatives.

About the author: Ben Luthi is a personal finance freelance writer and credit cards expert. He holds a bachelor’s degree in business management and finance from Brigham Young University. In addition to Credit Karma, you can find his wo… Read more.