Jane Parker, WalletHub Credit Card Advisor
The highest credit card interest rate in recent memory was 79.9% on a card offered by First Premier Bank in 2010. That offer’s not available anymore. The current highest credit card interest rate is 36%. That’s on the First PREMIER® Bank Credit Card. The next highest credit card interest rate seems to be 35.99%, charged by the Total Visa® Card and the First Access Visa® Card. These rates are very high when you consider that the average interest rate is only around 18%.
Legally, there actually is no highest credit card interest rate that’s possible. Credit card companies are allowed to charge any interest rate. But they must clearly state what that rate is in the card’s terms and conditions. And companies that would like to charge outrageous interest rates are limited by what people are actually willing to pay. You should always make sure you know a card’s interest rate before applying. Otherwise, it may come as a nasty surprise.
Here are some of the highest credit card interest rates:
- Highest historical credit card interest rate:9% APR on the old First Premier Bank Credit Card. This card is no longer available. It was for people with bad credit.
- First PREMIER® Bank Gold Credit Card: 36% APR. The card is unsecured and for bad credit. It has an annual fee of $50 - $125 1st yr, $45 - $49 after that. Plus, there’s a $55 - $95 one-time processing fee.
- Total Visa® Card: 35.99% APR. The card is for bad credit. It has an annual fee of $75 1st yr, $48 after It has a $89 one-time processing fee.
- First Access Visa® Card: 34.99% APR. This card is for bad credit. It has an annual fee of $75 1st yr, $48 after that. It has an $95 one-time processing fee.
As you can see, the highest credit card interest rates are found on cards for people with bad credit. The better your credit is, the better your chance of getting a lower interest rate. But don’t forget that no matter how high or low your interest rate is, it will never affect you unless you carry a balance between months. If you always pay off your bill in full, you’ll never pay any interest unless you take out a cash advance. So, if you don’t spend beyond your means, interest rates shouldn’t be a huge consideration when you’re picking a credit card.
But if you’re not confident about your ability to pay in full, you should prioritize low interest rates in your search. Many cards will even offer you 0% interest for a number of months to start. But you’ll usually need at least good credit to get a 0% intro APR.
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Louis V, Member
As of 2022, the highest purchase APR on a credit card issued in the U.S. is 39.99% on the Curacao credit card, a store card issued by Curacao (department chain store) for applicants in California, Nevada and Arizona.
Keira Johnson, Member
I remember seeing a 30% APR on a credit card somewhere.
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Barbara Fleischer, Member
You most likely will never have to face it, but I know First PREMIER® Bank Credit Card can have some nasty APR's, like 36%. But if you get approved with that interest rate, much better to just cancel, and find something less expensive.
Did we answer your question?
@Bitholov: Now is 36.99%..........................................
As of 2022, the highest credit card interest rate is 39.99% on Curacao credit card (store card) issued by Curacao (retailer) for applicants in California, Nevada and Arizona.