menu-nav menu-nav

Extra Card: No Credit Check, Debit Card that Rebuilds
REVIEW

Advertiser Disclosure
Picture of Extra Card
star ratingstar ratingstar ratingstar ratinghalf star rating
Apply Here apply here
By : Mr Credit Card

At A Glance

The Extra Card is a total game changer in the world of rebuilder cards. It is the only debit card we know of that actually reports to the major credit bureaus and helps you build or rebuild your credit. There is no credit checks and no hard inquiry. You simply sign up for Extra with no credit checks. Extra will connect to your bank account (they can connect to more than 10,000 banks). Once your bank account is connected, Extra will give you a spending limit (called Spend Power) based on your bank account (with no credit checks). At the end of each month, your transactions are tallied and reported to Experian and Equifax as credit worthy payments. It will show up on the 15th of the following month in your credit report. Extra charges an annual fee of $149. This card is the easiest card to get and arguably one of the best cards to get for rebuilders.

In this review, we will explain the Extra Card in detail, how the application process works (it involves ID verification and linking of bank account), how Extra gives you your Spend Power (or credit limit) and how it reports to the Credit Bureaus. In addition, we will provide evidence (based on study and cardholders review) of how effective is Extra in increasing your credit score and also the limitations of the card. Read on to find out more.......


Cardholders Reviews

I do not normally write reviews but Extra is one of the best customer friendly companies I have had experience with. I generally am skeptical about using credit and do not like to owe any money. But in our world, you need credit in order to get a "good credit score" so you can get the "best mortgage rates". So Extra is perfect for me because I use it for things which others use a credit card for. I did not get the version with the rewards because my other debit cards have cash back rewards. The Extra is used for regular purchases.



I am a student and I absolutely love my Extra Card. It is perfect for someone like who is on a tight budget and not willing to get into any sort of debt. This company has the best customer service ever. Their member concierge is so quick to respond to any questions that I have. And I love that I get all the little alerts like my balance, increase in spend power. I also like it that your "spend power" is closer to your bank balance. It keeps my spending in check.



I like the idea of Extra as a debit card that helps you rebuild your credit because it keeps you from overspending. If you happen to be low on cash, it stops you from overspending. There were a couple of times when I went into an overdraft and my "daily spending power" fails and all that happens is that Extra will temporarily freeze your card until you have sufficient funds again.



I like the rewards program. They have got some unique products and they change monthly. I was able to get a few interesting stuff all for free just from using my card. They even have target gift cards which is very useful to me.



Extra is a great tool for people like me who have trouble remembering to pay my bills on time. It is one of my weaknesses. With Extra, I do not have to think about it because they will take the money out of my bank account the next day. My score has already increased 120 points and Extra was instrumental in taking me from a poor to fair credit.



The Customer Service is the best I have ever experienced. They were very helpful, friendly and knew their stuff. They answered all my questions where they were trivial or difficult complex ones in detail. Best customer service ever.



Why Get Extra Debit Card

Here is why many people have chosen the Extra Debit Card to build their credit.

  • No Risk of Getting into Debt while rebuilding - Debit cards by nature do not extend you credit so you will never get into debt. Extra Debit Card actually extends credit to you for a day (more on this later) and they also give you a limit which you can spend based on your cash flow patterns in your checking account so you are very unlikley to overspend and go over your limit. And because payment is made a day after your purchase, you will never get into debt with the Extra Card.

  • No Risk of Payment Problems with Regular Credit Cards - Many rebuilders encounter all sorts of payment problems with regular subrpime credit cards that it actually hinders and set back their rebuilding progress. Issues like credit card companies not receiving your check on time, payment holds, online or app payment not processing or clearing can result in late fees and late payment reporting to credit bureaus. These problems are largely elimiated by having a debit card like Extra.

  • Excellent Customer Service - Unlike most subprime credit card companies, customer are delighted and rave a lot about Extra's customer service. They are called "Member Concierge" and they respond really quickly and knowledeably.

  • Credit Limit depends on your bank account - Most subprime credit cards either have very low limits that do not increase (for example, many have $300 credit limits that hardly increases), the credit limit you get on Extra will depend on your bank balance. Though you may start with a low limit, using the Extra Card regularly will increase your credit limit and eventually up to 80% of your bank balance.


Requirements

There requirements to get the Extra Debit Card are pretty simple.

  • 18 years of age
  • Must have SSN or ITN number
  • US Address - no P.O. Boxes
  • US/Canadian based bank account


How Extra Debit Card Works?



Let's now get into the nitty gritty details of how the Extra Debit Card works.

Sign up by connecting your bank account and verify identity - Once you sign up for Extra and download their app, you will be a given an explanation of how the card works, the fee choices you have and how to link your bank account. You will then link your bank account to Extra. This is done by PLAID (which is now the defacto industry standard). To see if you bank account is compatible to PLAID, you simply have to type in your bank name in the app and if it is PLAID compatible, it will show up. If it is not, Extra will send you to a link to open a PLAID compatible bank. There are more than 10,000 banks that are compatible with PLAID so most of you will have a bank account that will connect with Extra.

Once you have connected your bank to PLAID, you will then have to go through an ID verification process. This involves uploading a government ID (more details at the end of the review). Some of you may be asked to take a selfie video and upload it as well. Extra assures us that the verification process is safe and that they will only ask you to upload your documents either to the Extra app or through Persona, a third party ID verfication vendor which Extra has partnered with. For the most parts, the ID verification process is instant but if it goes through a manual review, it may take up to 3 business days to complete the process.

After ID has been verified and your bank account linked with Extra, you will be asked to select your membership plan and pay the fee. You need to have your ID verified and paid the fee from your bank account before you can use the Extra Card. Once you have paid the fee, Extra will send you the physical card (which may take 7-10 business days to reach you). In the meantime, you can use a virtual card from the app. The Extra Debit Card is also compatible with your digital wallet.

Fees and Membership Levels

Extra has two membership levels, the "Credit Building" and "Credit Building + Rewards". As far as fees are concerned, you can choose to pay monthly or pay annually. Paying annually will save you a lot of money as it is way cheaper.

Credit Building Membership Fees - The Credit Building Membership Level has no reward program. If you choose to pay the fee monthly, it is $20/month which works out to $240 a year. If you choose to pay the fee annually, the annual fee is $149. This is a $91 savings over paying monthly so I would definitely recommend choosing to pay the fee annually.

Credit Building + Rewards Membership Fee - The Credit Building + Rewards Membership Levels have a monthly fee of $25/month. This works out to $300 a year. If you choose to pay annually, the annual fee is $199, which will save you $101 versus paying monthly. So, like the Credit Building membership level, it is better to pay the fee on an annual basis rather than a monthly basis. We will examine in more details the Rewards Program later.

Spend Power and Using Your Extra Card

Based on your activity in your bank account and the amount you have, Extra will give you a credit limit which they call "Spend Power". Your spend power will be your daily credit limit and it is provided by Lead Bank (working through Extra). When you make a purchase with your card, Extra will spot your purchase. That means they will pay for your purchase. They will then withdraw the money from your bank account the next day via ACH. And it will take about 3 days for the money to be processed and paid to Extra. So while Extra is giving you a one day credit line, in reality, it feels like you are getting a 3 day credit line. While this payment is being processed from your bank account to Extra, your app will show "funds in transit".

How to Increase Your Spend Power?

The "Spend Power" that you will be given may be low to start with. But once you start using your Extra regularly and do not get into a bank overdraft situation, your "Spend Power" will increase. Most people and even customer support from Extra have said that once you have make 5 transactions, your Spend Power will increase. And it will keep increasing until your Spend Power reached 80% of your bank balance if you use your Extra Card regularly. Here are some cardholders experience on credit limit increases.

I have been using Extra for 2 months and my score has already increased by 100 points. They started me off with a $100 credit limit. Then after using the card about 10 times, my limit was bumped up to $300, then $500, then $1,100. Eventually, I noticed that my credit limit was about 80% of my bank account. However, it takes a while of using your card for it to bump up to this 80% level. After a transaction, Extra will pay for you and then take the money out of your bank account the next day. But the whole process takes 3 days to clear so in effect, you get a line of credit for about 3 days.



Credit Bureau Reporting

Extra reports to both Equifax and Experian on the 15th of each month. Because Extra technically extends you a loan for just one day, chances are that your credit utilization will be very low when it is reported to the credit bureaus. As credit utilization is a very important component of your credit score, this will help boost your credit score over time.

At this moment, Extra does not report to TransUnion though they are working on this.


How Does Reward Program Work?

As we have mentioned earlier, Extra has two types of plan. One has a reward program and one does not. Let's look at the membership with the reward program in greater detail. There are two types of rewards that you can earn if you sign up for the Credit Building + Rewards Membership Level. This is how the reward program works.

Earning Reward Points

For every $1 that you spend with the Extra Card, you earn 5 reward points. 5 reward points are worth up to 1 cent depending on what you choose to redeem at the Extra store. From time to time, Extra may have promotions where you can earn even more points.

Earning Tokens

You can also earn what Extra calls Tokens. Tokens are earned through watching videos and other features in the Experiences Tab in the Extra App.

What Can Reward Points Be Redeemed For?

Reward Points can be redeemed for products in the Extra Rewards Store. On Extras' website, they mentioned that there are products like Apple Airpods so we can assume that there will be products that you will want to redeem. Cardholders have mentioned that the new rewards are introduced every month and there quite a few and unique and quirky rewards. Reward points can also be redeemed for tokens.

I like the rewards program. They have got some unique products and they change monthly. I was able to get a few interesting stuff all for free just from using my card. They even have target gift cards which is very useful to me.



I find the reward program ok. But they do have target gift cards which I find very useful.



What Can Tokens Be Redeemed For?

Tokens can be used to enter awesome giveaways and exciting experiences. These can be found in the "Experience Tab" in your Extra App.


Credit Score Improvement of Typical Extra Debit Card Holders

This is the question all of you have in mind. And that is how much can my credit score increase if you have the Extra Debit Card? Well, Extra actually commissioned Brandata (a brand management consultancy firm) and Experian (the credit bureau) to analyze this question. Experian was able to provide more than 2,000 data points across more than 10,000 consumers which were separated into an Extra Cardholder group and a random sample group.

This study was also able to identify what user behavior achieved the best results with Extra. “Successful” Extra cardholders are members who use the product as recommended, have no 30-180 day delinquencies reported in the last 6 months of membership, had no trade lines with a maxed out balance ratio >= 100 in the last 3 months of membership, and started their Extra membership with a credit score of 650 or less.

Extra boosts 'successful cardholders’ credit scores by up to +99 points, on average. For all Extra customers, the average credit score increase was 20 points during the study period, compared to a 1-point gain in the random group cohort. The most successful Extra cardholders saw an average credit score increase of 48 points during the study . Those who started with a credit score of 500 or less upon signing up for Extra saw an impressive 99-point average credit score gain.

Extra cardholders were more than 2x as likely to take out an auto loan or lease during their Extra Membership than average consumers (26% vs. 12%, respectively), nearly 3x more likely to take out a mortgage (11% vs. 4%), and 1.5x more likely to open a credit card (63% vs. 43%). Overall, most (54%) Extra cardholders opened the majority of their open trades within the last 12 months compared to only 40% of the random sample consumer group.

Here are a couple of cardholders review and how their credit scores improved after using the Extra Card.

I signed up on February 2022 and my FICO score was 567 for both TransUnion and Equifax. After using it everyday for 4 months, my TransUnion score stayed the same while my Equifax score is now 50 pts higher at 617.



I opened this card and have been using it for 6 months and saw my score increase 80 points for both Equifax and Experian. TransUnion has remained the same, maybe 5 points higher.



I was really skeptical about Extra at first. But 5 weeks in, it has already reported to credit bureaus and my credit score has increased close to 50 points. They have the most user friendly app ever with large fonts and member concierge responds really fast to any questions I have.



After using the Extra Card for 3 months, my credit score increased from 500 to 600. Also, just wanted to highlight that Extra reports as a revolving credit in both Experian and Equifax.



What Extra Cannot Do

There are certain limitations which you have to be aware of with the Extra Debit Card. It cannot do the following (which you have to use your banks' debit card):

  • Cannot use Extra Card to withdraw or transfer funds - The Extra Card cannot be used at ATM machines for withdrawal or to transfer funds. For that, you have to use your bank accounts' debit card. It also cannot be used for Money Orders, person-to-person transfers or any cash transfers

  • Cannot Direct Deposit into Extra Card - You have to do direct deposit with your banks'a account and not Extra.

  • Cannot Be Used Outside the US - While you can use Extra to buy products from International merchants and vendors, you cannot conduct in-person international transactions.

  • Cannot Prevent Payment Holds From Car Rentals, Hotels Bookings etc. - When you book a car rental or hotel using the Extra Card, some payments may be withheld whether you use a credit card or a debit card like Extra. Using Extra does not prevent this from happening.

  • Cannot Prevent Gas Station Pay-At-Pump Payment Holds - When you are at the gas station, Extra recommends that you pay inside with the cashier rather than "at-the-pump" because gas stations very often put a payment hold of more than the amount that you refuel. That results in a decrease in your credit limit and may affect whether you go over-the-limit. This payment hold takes 2-3 days to clear and within this time frame, Extra may shave off your credit limit by $70.


Pros: What we like?

  • No credit checks - Extra Card does not check your credit report or do any hard inquiries. Instead, they check your bank accout via PLAID and will give you a credit limit based on your bank account balance. Hence, those with no credit or bad credit can build or rebuild their credit with this card.

  • Reports to Experian and Equifax - Extra Card is the only debit card we know that reports your purchases and payments to Experian and Equifax as uncapped loan.

  • Credit Limit (Spend Power) Up to 80% of Bank Balance - The more often you use your Extra Card, the greater the likelihood that your "spend power" will increase. In fact, Extra may eventually give you a "spend power" of up to 80% of your bank balance.

  • No Chance to get into debt - Because money is taken out of your bank account to pay the previous days purchase and transaction, there is no chance of you getting into more debt. You simply have to make sure you have enough 'Spend Power' by checking your app before you make a purchase to avoid any bank overdrafts.

  • Excellent Customer Service - Cardholders simply rave about Extra's customer service. In constrast to other subprime or credit building cards, Extra's customer service department (called Member Conciege in their app) really stands out.

  • No need for security deposit - Because Extra Card is a debit card, there is no need to put up a security deposit like a secured credit card. In fact, you do not even have to pre-load your card.

  • Can use Extra Card to pay rent - If your landlord allows you to pay your rent through a third party service, then you can use Extra to pay your rent. However, please be aware that most third party payment systems for rent charge a fee for this service.

  • Available in digital wallet - Extra is available to be saved in your digital wallet.


Cons: What we don't like

  • Does not report to TransUnion - This is honestly a minor quibble and I am sure they will report to TransUnion over time. We hope Extra resolves this asap because many lenders use TransUnion and some only use TransUnion exclusively for hard inquiries.

  • Cannot be used overseas - While you can make purchases with international vendors, you cannot use the card when you are travelling abroad outside the US.

  • Does not prevent payment holds when you pay-at-the-pump - Many gas stations will withhold an amount from your credit card or debit card that is larger than the amount you spend filling your gas. Having the Extra Card does not make you immune to such practices and Extra suggest you pay inside at the cashiers whenever you go to a gas station to prevent such payment holds (which can take 24-72 hours for the funds to be released).


Our Take: The Extra Debit Card Is Worth It

The Extra Debit Card is a great card and tool for rebuilders and those looking to build their credit history. It is unique because it is the only debit card we know that helps you build your credit by reporting to both Equifax and Experian (they are working on reporting to TransUnion). By using a debit card rather than a credit card, you run no risk of getting into further debt because you have to pay Extra one day after the transaction (you do however have to make sure you have enough funds in your bank account to avoid an overdraft and this can be done by checking your "spend power" in your Extra app ). And in the event that you get into a bank overdraft situation, Extra will simply freeze your card until your balance is topped up.

Extra also has a track record of increasing your credit limit over time. In fact, using the card frequently is the best way to prove your credit worthiness to Extra and get regular credit limit increases (which you can see in your app). You can expect to get a credit limit of up to 80% of your bank account over time. Because Extra in effect gives you a credit limit of only a day, when your activities are reported to the credit bureaus every month, it is very likely that your credit utilization ratio will be very low during the reporting period.

Whether you want to go for the regular membership or the one with the rewards program is really up to you. I guess it really depends on how large is your bank account (because it will ultimately determine what is your spend power and credit limit) and whether you have other cards that have better reward programs. You can always start with the regular membership and upgrade later on.

Extra cardholders have also raved about their customer service (called Member Concierge) and often mention that it is such a contrast to the shoddy customer service they have experienced with other subprime credit cards.

However, not everyone should get the Extra Card. The cheapest membership level is the one with rewards where you choose to pay the fee annually at $149. If your bank balance consistently low (like just a few hundred dollars), then it may not be worth it if your credit limit is barely more than the fees that you are going to pay. But other than this reason, you should definitely consider getting the Extra Card. Experienced rebuilders consistently recommending have 5 tradelines to rebuild your credit the most efficient way (that boost your score the fastest). So even if you already have a secured card, a credit builder loan and perhaps your student loan, you should still consider adding the Extra Debit Card to your arsenal of rebuilder cards (especially if you have a decent bank balance).

To sum up, based on our evaluation and review, we have decided to give the Extra Card a 4.5 out of 5 star for easy approval with no hard inquiry, track record of their cardholders getting credit limit increases, track record as a rebuilder and excellent customer service. The fact that is presently does not report to TransUnion and it cannot be used abroad prevents us from giving it a higher rating. We highly recommend the Extra Debit to the rebuilder who has very challenging credit and really bad credit scores and also to those who are adverse to getting a credit card due to not wanting to get into debt again. Even if you already have other cards like secured credit cards or credit builder loans, adding the Extra Card as a tradeline may help your rebuilding efforts even more.


Tips On the Extra Debit Card

Here are some tips about getting and using the Extra Debit Card

  • Using it Frequently To Increase Your Chance of Credit Limit Increases - What many find is that their initial credit limit may be lower than expected based on their bank account. However, if you use your Extra Debit Card daily for everyday purchases even in very small amounts, your credit limit will increase very quickly. This is born out by many cardholders like the one below.

    I thoughts that my initial "credit limit" was a littel bit low. However, once i started using the card regularly, the spending limit (or what Extra calls 'Spend Power") increases very quickly. So I would suggest putting small purchases on the card and using it regularly as your main payment method. I do not blame Extra for starting me off with a lower limit. They are probably playing it safe and making sure that their customers do not get into an overdraft situation.


  • Get Your Govt ID Ready when you apply - When you apply for the Extra Card, you have to download their app, link your bank account and also upload a document for ID verfication purposes (see below in the "How to Apply" section). Only after your identity has been verified and you have paid your fee will your virtual card be activated and the physical card sent to you. Many folks are surprised about having to upload ID documents during the application process. But this is just the way Extra works.

  • Choose to pay the fees annually over monthly - It is cheaper to pay the Extra Fees annually than on a monthly basis because it is cheaper.

  • Check your spend power regularly - To avoid the risk of a bank overdraft because you exceed your spend power (and this can happen if you happen to make two big purchases close to each other before the ACH transfer from your bank to Extra is processed and cleared), it is best that you check your Extra app what your spend power is before you make any big purchases.


Extra Card Application

Application for the Extra Card is relatively straight forward. You have to fill in your mobile number and email and you will get a code on your mobile phone to proceed.

You will then be asked to download their app. Once you download their app, you will be told how the card works, what the fees are and how to link to your bank account.

You will also be asked to go through an identity verification process where you will be asked to upload a document to prove your identity. The documents are either uploaded directly to the Extra app or to Persona, a third party verification site. You can upload one of the following:

  • Drivers License or State ID Card
  • Passport or Passport Card
  • Permanent Residency Card
  • Work Authorization Card
  • Military ID
  • Veterans Health Card


The following documents are NOT ALLOWED.

  • Any expired ID
  • Non-US ID
  • US non-government-issued ID (school ID, bank card, company badge, etc.)
  • Social Security card
  • Temporary paper Driver’s License or State ID
  • Any photocopies, electronic replicas, or screenshots


You will have to go through the verification process and have the fee taken out of your checking account first before you can use their virtual card (before the physical card arrives in the mail). Some of you might to asked to take a video selfie (don't ask me why Extra request this as a verification tool but they have asked some applicants to upload a selfie video).

application application application


FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

plus sign
When do I receive my Extra Debit Card?

minus sign
When do I receive my Extra Debit Card?

Once you have gone through the identification process, your card will be created and you will get an email notification when the card has been shipped. You should get your card during 7-10 business days.

plus sign
Does Extra have fraud alerts?

minus sign
Does Extra have fraud alerts?

Extra sends you real-time notification when a charge is made to your card.

plus sign
Can I freeze my card if I lose it?

minus sign
Can I freeze my card if I lose it?

Yes, you can freeze your card from the app. If you still cannot find it, then contact member concierge to get a replacement card.

plus sign
How do I report a fraudulent transaction?

minus sign
How do I report a fraudulent transaction?

If you find a fraudulent transaction, freeze your card immediately via the app. Then click on that transaction is fraudulent and click member concierge at the bottom of the page and members of the conceirge team will assist you.

plus sign
Why does my transaction show that it is pending?

minus sign
Why does my transaction show that it is pending?

Pending transactions that take over 48 hours are typically either holds at airlines, hotels, rentals, or they are disputed transactions with the merchant.

plus sign
Why is the pending transaction amount different from the amount that I paid?

minus sign
Why is the pending transaction amount different from the amount that I paid?

Restaurants, gas stations, hotels, or other service merchants may place a hold larger than the transaction amount to allow for tips or adjustments. This is to ensure you have enough funds to cover the final amount.

plus sign
Is Extra FDIC insured?

minus sign
Is Extra FDIC insured?

No it is not. However, that should not be an issue because no money is loaded on your card. Instead, money is drawn from your bank account a day after a transaction is made.

plus sign
Is there a hard inquiry when I apply for Extra?

minus sign
Is there a hard inquiry when I apply for Extra?

No there is no hard inquiry of credit checks.

plus sign
Where can I use Extra?

minus sign
Where can I use Extra?

Anywhere that Mastercard is accepted.

plus sign
Can I use Extra Card outside the United States?

minus sign
Can I use Extra Card outside the United States?

No, you cannot. Having said that, you can use the Extra Debit Card to pay an international vendor online.

plus sign
Does Extra store any of my banking information?

minus sign
Does Extra store any of my banking information?

No, it does not.


Contact Information

You can contact Extra customer from their app. You have to tap "Member Concierge" tab on your app.

Other contact information.

Email: hey@extra.app

Press Inquiries: press@extra.app

Partnerships: partnerships@extra.app


Disclaimer: The Aligned Company d/b/a Extra (“Extra”) is a technology company, not a bank. Banking services provided by Evolve Bank & Trust or Patriot Bank, N.A. (Member FDIC), pursuant to a license from Mastercard International. This Card can be used everywhere Debit Mastercard is accepted. Extra reports on time and late payments, which may negatively impact your credit score. Credit scores are independently determined by credit bureaus based on a number of factors, including your other financial transactions. Extra reports to Experian® and Equifax®. Rewards points only available with rewards plan.

*The Extra Debit Card is issued by Evolve Bank & Trust or Patriot Bank N.A. (Member FDIC), pursuant to a license by Mastercard International. Line of credit provided by Lead Bank. Extra is responsible for credit reporting and reports on time and late payments, which may impact a credit bureau’s determination of your credit score. Rewards points only available with rewards plan.