Surge Mastercard Credit Card Review

Having a less-than-stellar credit score can make it hard for you to get approved for an unsecured credit card. Fortunately, you’ll find credit cards for consumers with bad credit or limited credit history, such as Surge Mastercard. 

It’s good for credit card applicants with substandard credit history and poor credit scores (FICO score below 670 or VantageScore below 600) who can’t secure a standard bank-issued credit card because they are unable to meet the minimum credit score requirement. It can also help you build or improve your credit. However, the huge caveat is that it comes with steep APR, annual fees, and monthly maintenance fees. So, before you apply for this card, you need to consider it carefully.

Despite these disadvantages, the Surge Mastercard is a great tool to help you establish or rebuild your credit score. Once you’ve reached a good credit score, it’ll be easier for you to get approved for a more conventional bank-issued credit card with lower APRs and more perks, such as cash backs and rewards. Not only that, a good credit score will help you secure lower interest rates on loans. It’ll also make finding an apartment and even a job a lot easier than having a poor credit score. 

So, before you apply for this card, you need to consider the pros and the cons of using a Surge Mastercard for credit building. If you have a good credit history and you’re not looking to rebuild your credit, then you may qualify for credit cards that offer rewards, cashback and low interest rates, such as American Express’ Blue Cash Everyday, Credit One Platinum, and Jasper Mastercard. Keep in mind that applying for a Surge Mastercard isn’t your only option when rebuilding credit. You can improve your credit score by practicing responsible borrowing, such as paying your bills on time, keeping your credit utilization ratio low, paying off your debt, or becoming an authorized user on a credit card that’s owned by a close friend or family member who has a good payment history.  

In this article, let’s talk about what you need to know before submitting an application for Surge Mastercard.

What is a Surge Mastercard?

Surge Mastercard is issued by Celtic Bank. Continental Finance markets this credit card to consumers who are looking to repair or rebuild their credit. It reports the cardholder’s payments to all three major credit reporting bureaus (TransUnion, Experian, and Equifax). Even though it comes with high annual and monthly fees, and it lacks rewards, it remains a good tool if you’re looking to rebuild your credit. If you’re not sure if Surge Mastercard is for you, you may want to check out similar credit cards, such as The Indigo Platinum Mastercard, Petal 2 Visa Credit Card, and Credit One Bank Platinum Visa card.

Your initial credit limit ranges from $300 to $1,000. Your credit limit may increase if you pay on time during the first 6 months of using the card.

What are the pros of using Surge Mastercard?

  • Easy access to an unsecured credit card even with limited or bad credit.
  • Your initial credit limit may reach up to $1000.
  • You may be eligible for a credit increase after 6 months of paying on time.
  • Your payment activities are reported to the major credit bureaus, which will help establish or rebuild your credit.
  • With a $0 fraud liability, you’re not responsible for any unauthorized charges on your credit card.
  • You can get free access to your VantageScore via TransUnion if you sign up for its e-statements.

The cons of using Surge Mastercard?

  • It comes with high annual fees (up to $99) and monthly maintenance fees (which could reach a total of $120 annually in your second year).
  • There’s a one-time charge of $30 for every additional card you request under your account.
  • Penalty charges reach up to $40 for missed payments.
  • Penalty charges for returned payments run up to $40.
  • You may be required to make a security deposit from $50 to $500 if you don’t qualify for an unsecured Surge Mastercard. The security deposit will be used to pay off your balance in the event that you failed to pay what you owe.
  • The APR on purchases ranges from 24.99% to 29.99%.
  • It doesn’t offer any rewards (points or cashback on purchases).
  • You’ll pay $5 or 5% per cash advance (depending on which one is greater) and a 3% fee for every foreign transaction made.

How to apply for a Surge Mastercard?

You can apply for a Surge Mastercard online or call 1-866-513-4598. You need to provide basic information, such as your full name, Social Security number, birth date, and physical address. There will be a soft pull on your credit report if ever you decide to go through a Surge Mastercard pre-qualification process. It won’t affect your credit score but it doesn’t guarantee that you’ll be approved if you applied.

How Long Does it Take to Get Approved for a Surge Mastercard?

It’s easy to get approved for a Surge Mastercard. After applying online, you may receive an immediate decision. There are cases when it’ll take up to 30 days before you can get a decision, especially if you were asked to provide more information or supporting documents. You may also check the status of the application by calling 1-866-449-4514.

Will I Get an Unsecured Card?

One of the primary Surge Mastercard highlights is that it offers consumers with bad credit a way to get an unsecured credit card with an initial limit that ranges from $300 to $1,000. It’s an attractive option for people who can’t afford to provide a security deposit. Unfortunately, applying for a Surge Mastercard doesn’t guarantee that you’ll get an unsecured credit card. Depending on your creditworthiness, you may be offered an unsecured (does not require a security deposit) or secured credit card (backed by a security deposit).

If you get a secured credit card, Surge Mastercard did not provide any guideline on when or how you can upgrade it to an unsecured credit card. However, your account will be reviewed for a possible credit limit increase after six months since its opening.

How Long Before I Receive my Surge Mastercard Credit Card?

Once your Surge credit card application has been approved, you can expect to receive your new credit card by mail within 3 business days. Activating the card is also simple. Just visit the website, create an account, and activate your card. You can also call Surge Mastercard customer service at 1-866-449-4514 to activate your card within 30 days after receiving it in the mail. You can call the same number for other concerns regarding your account. But their customer support is limited and available only from Monday to Friday (7 a.m. to 10 p.m. ET) and Saturday (9 a.m. to 4 p.m. ET).

How Can I Increase my Credit Limit?

With Surge Mastercard, you may be eligible for a credit limit increase if you make timely payments during your first six months of using the card. Aside from that, you will increase your chances of securing a higher credit limit if you don’t max out your card and if you pay off your debt as soon as you can.

What are the Fees Associated With Surge Mastercard?

Interest RateThe Surge Mastercard comes with a high APR on purchases which range from 24.99% to 29.99%. If you decide to apply even after knowing that it charges steep interest rates, be sure not to carry a balance because the interest charges will easily accumulate.
Annual FeeThe annual fee you need to pay depends on your creditworthiness but it usually ranges between $75 and $99.
Monthly Maintenance FeeYour creditworthiness also determines the monthly maintenance fee you need to pay. It ranges from $0 to $10. The monthly maintenance fee is assessed on your second year of using the card.
Your monthly maintenance fee is billed at $10 per month, which means you’ll spend as much as $120 yearly on your second year of using the card and may even reach up to $219 a year after that. If you want to request another card for an authorized user of your account, you need to pay a $30 one-time fee.
Transaction FeesThere are no transaction fees during the first year after you opened an account. But after the first 12 months, you will pay a $5 or 5% cash advance fee and a 3% foreign transaction fee.

How to Use a Surge Mastercard?

If you want to make the most out of your Surge Mastercard, you have to make small purchases only every month when you’re using this credit card. This way, it’ll be easier for you to pay off your balance in full. It’s best not to carry a balance on this type of credit card because of its steep interest rate. Also, you should only use this credit card as a short-term way to improve your credit score. Once you’ve reached a good credit rating, you can switch to another credit card with a lower APR, better terms, more rewards, and minimal fees.

How Do I Manage my Surge Mastercard Account?

You can manage your account online or download the Continental Finance mobile app on your Android or Apple device. From there, you can view your past and current transactions, pay your bills, edit your profile and contact information, or report a stolen or lost card.

Why Build Your Credit?

Using a Surge Mastercard is only one of the many ways to build your credit. You can do a DIY credit repair, which includes the following:

  • Checking your credit report regularly.
  • Disputing any error you find in your credit report.
  • Paying your bills on time.
  • Paying off your credit card balances.
  • Settling your past due accounts.
  • Applying for new credit only when needed.

Working with a credit repair company, such as Ovation Credit Services, Sky Blue Credit, or Credit Saint, is another option. It comes with its own set of pros and cons. If you have the cash but don’t have the time, resources, or patience to fix your credit, then a credit repair service may be worth considering. But keep in mind that there’s nothing a credit repair company can do that you can’t. You can save on the fees and avoid the possibility of getting scammed by shady people claiming that they can fix your credit by going the DIY credit building route.


The Surge Mastercard is a good option if you’re looking for a credit card that can help you establish or rebuild your credit. Even though it doesn’t offer any reward, you can build your credit and get more spending power with responsible credit card use. However, you need to remember that this type of credit card for bad credit comes with high annual fees, monthly maintenance fees, and APR. Because of these disadvantages, it’s best to choose this option if you only plan to use it as a short-term credit rebuilding tool.