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How long does it take to get a credit card?

Information verified correct on April 27th, 2017

Your credit card application's just been approved, so what happens next? Find out when you'll get your new credit card here.

After taking time to compare credit card offers and apply for one that suits your needs, it’s exciting to find out your application is approved. But then comes the hard part: waiting for the card to actually arrive.

So how long does it take before you can start using your new credit card? Here, we explain when you can expect to receive your card and what happens after your application is approved. You can also find out what you'll need to do when you get your new card, compare credit cards with 60-second approval and get answers to frequently asked questions so that you can be as prepared as possible when it finally arrives.

When will I get my new credit card?

Compare the application length and waiting period for new credit cards by provider to find out how long you may have to wait to get your next credit card.

ProviderApplication length (approx)Standard waiting period
American Express10 minutes5-10 working days
ANZ5 minutesWithin 5 business days
Bank Australia (bankmecu)10-15 minutes7-10 business days
Bank of Melbourne15 minutes5-7 business days
Bank of Queensland20 minutes7-10 working days
BankwestMinutes5-7 working days
Citi15 minutes7-10 working days
Commonwealth Bank15-20 minutesWithin 10 working days
Diners Club10 minutesUp to 21 days
Latitude Financial Services10 minutes5-10 working days
HSBC10 minutes7 working days
NAB15 minutesWithin 5 business days
St.George10-15 minutesAround 5-7 business days
Suncorp10 minutes5-7 business days
Virgin Money10 minutesWithin 10 working days
Westpac10 minutesWithin 7 business days
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What happens after I've applied for a credit card?

ccf-man-application-Shutterstock-250x250After you submit your credit card application, the credit card issuer will assess your credit history and current finances in order to determine whether or not you are eligible for the card. They also use this process to determine how much credit they will offer you (in the form of your credit limit).

Providing you meet all the key application criteria, you could get conditional approval for the card within 60 seconds of submitting an online application. If not, you may get a follow up call or email from the credit card issuer asking for further information.

Providing supporting documentation

When you receive conditional approval for a credit card, the issuer may also ask you to submit supporting documents to complete the application process. The sooner you provide this information, the faster you'll get your card. The documents you'll need may vary between providers, but generally include some or all of the following:

  • A copy of your driver’s licence
  • A copy of your passport
  • Recent payslips
  • Recent bank statements
  • Your most recent Tax Assessment Notice or PAYG summary
  • Your employment contract
  • A letter from your employer or accountant verifying your employment and/or financial details

The credit card issuer will let you know what documents you need to submit for your individual application. Usually you can submit them through a secure online service, via email or by post or fax. You may also be able to provide your supporting details by visiting a nearby branch. After the issuer receives these documents, your application approval will be finalised and they can issue your new credit card.

What do I need to do when I get my credit card?

After completing the whole application process, your credit card will usually come in the mail within the timeframe outlined by your provider. In some circumstances you may also be asked to go to your nearest branch to pick it up for security reasons.

Your new credit card issuer will also put together a "welcome pack" for you containing valuable information about the bank, the credit card and its terms and conditions of use. The welcome pack will either arrive before the card or come with it. Make sure you read through the provided information thoroughly before you start using your new credit card.

How do I activate my credit card?

Depending on the issuer, you may be able to activate your new credit card online, over the phone or in person. Information about card activation will also be included in your welcome pack and usually takes just a few minutes to complete.

Remember to sign your card

The signature panel on your new credit card gives you the legal authority to use the it and protects you against unauthorised transactions if it’s lost, stolen or compromised. So make sure you sign it when you first activate the card.

While it is exciting to be approved for a new credit card, there are a few more steps you need to know about before you can start using it. Being prepared for this process means you can tick all the boxes along the way and start using your credit card as soon as possible.

Pictures: Shutterstock

Compare credit cards with 60-second approval

Rates last updated April 27th, 2017
Purchase rate (p.a.) Balance transfer rate (p.a.) Annual fee
ANZ Platinum Credit Card - Exclusive Offer
Receive a low introductory offer of 0% p.a. on purchases for 3 months and 0% p.a. on balance transfers for 12 months. Also, enjoy an annual fee waiver in the first year.
0% p.a. for 3 months (reverts to 19.74% p.a.) 0% p.a. for 12 months $0 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($87 p.a. thereafter) Go to site More info
Virgin Australia Velocity Flyer Card - Balance Transfer Offer
Earn 2 Velocity Points on top of the standard earn rate per $1 spent within the first three months. Plus, save with a long-term balance transfer offer and a reduced annual fee in the first year.
20.74% p.a. 0% p.a. for 18 months with 1.5% balance transfer fee $64 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($129 p.a. thereafter) Go to site More info
NAB Low Fee Card
Enjoy a low annual fee card with a low introductory rate of 0% p.a. on balance transfers for 18 months.
19.74% p.a. 0% p.a. for 18 months with 3% balance transfer fee $30 p.a. Go to site More info
HSBC Platinum Qantas Credit Card
Receive 60,000 bonus Qantas Points on eligible spend within 3 months. Enjoy access to premium benefits and complimentary insurance.
19.99% p.a. $199 p.a. Go to site More info
Qantas American Express Discovery Card
Earn 1 point per $1 spent plus enjoy 0% p.a. on balance transfers for 12 months, all for a $0 annual fee.
20.74% p.a. 0% p.a. for 12 months with 1% balance transfer fee $0 p.a. Go to site More info
ANZ Low Rate
Take advantage of 0% p.a. for 16 months on balance transfers and a low ongoing interest rate on purchases.
12.49% p.a. 0% p.a. for 16 months with 2% balance transfer fee $58 p.a. Go to site More info
Virgin Australia Velocity Flyer Card - 0% Interest Offer
Receive 0% p.a. for 12 months on purchases, 0% p.a. for 6 months on balance transfers and an exclusive $129 Virgin Australia Gift Voucher each year.
0% p.a. for 12 months (reverts to 20.74% p.a.) 0% p.a. for 6 months $129 p.a. Go to site More info
ANZ Rewards Travel Adventures card
Pay no overseas transaction fee on purchases, earn up to 1.5 for every dollar spent on eligible purchases, plus receive complimentary domestic return flight and lounge passes each year you hold the card when you spend $500 on eligible purchases within the first three months.
20.24% p.a. $225 p.a. Go to site More info
St.George Vertigo Visa
Introductory offer of 0% p.a. for 12 months on balance transfers and 0% p.a. for 6 months on purchases, plus a low annual fee.
0% p.a. for 6 months (reverts to 13.24% p.a.) 0% p.a. for 12 months $55 p.a. Go to site More info
St.George Vertigo Platinum
A platinum card with a balance transfer offer of 0% p.a. for 12 months and an introductory purchase offer of 0% p.a. for 6 months.
0% p.a. for 6 months (reverts to 12.74% p.a.) 0% p.a. for 12 months $99 p.a. Go to site More info
St.George Amplify Card
A low interest rate of 0% p.a. for 12 months on balance transfers and a purchase offer of 0% p.a. for 6 months.
0% p.a. for 6 months (reverts to 19.49% p.a.) 0% p.a. for 12 months $79 p.a. Go to site More info
St.George Amplify Platinum
This card features a 30,000 bonus points offer and introductory interest rates on balance transfers and purchases.
0% p.a. for 6 months (reverts to 19.49% p.a.) 0% p.a. for 12 months $99 p.a. Go to site More info
St.George Amplify Signature
Receive 30,000 sign-up bonus points with low introductory interest rates on purchases and balance transfers.
0% p.a. for 6 months (reverts to 19.49% p.a.) 0% p.a. for 12 months $279 p.a. Go to site More info
BankSA Amplify Card
The BankSA Amplify Card is a brand new rewards credit card that allows you to earn more Qantas Points combined with low purchase and balance transfer offers.
0% p.a. for 6 months (reverts to 19.49% p.a.) 0% p.a. for 12 months $79 p.a. Go to site More info
ANZ Platinum Credit Card
Enjoy platinum card benefits with $0 annual fee in the first year and complimentary overseas travel and medical insurance.
19.74% p.a. 0% p.a. for 16 months with 2% balance transfer fee $0 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($87 p.a. thereafter) Go to site More info
ANZ First Visa Credit Card
Enjoy 0% p.a. balance transfer rate for the first 16 months, a low annual fee, interest-free days on purchases and a low minimum credit limit.
19.74% p.a. 0% p.a. for 16 months with 2% balance transfer fee $30 p.a. Go to site More info
NAB Low Rate Credit Card
A low rate card which offers 0% p.a. on balance transfers for the first 18 months combined with a low annual fee.
13.99% p.a. 0% p.a. for 18 months with 3% balance transfer fee $59 p.a. Go to site More info
NAB Rewards Classic Card
Receive 40,000 bonus points when you spend $1,500 on everyday purchases within 90 days from card approval, earn rewards points per $1 spent, and enjoy a $0 annual fee for the first year.
19.99% p.a. 4.99% p.a. for 6 months $0 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($95 p.a. thereafter) Go to site More info
NAB Rewards Platinum Card
Enjoy 80,000 bonus points when you spend $2,500 on everyday purchases within 90 days from card approval. Benefit from $0 annual fee for the first year and a range of platinum features.
19.99% p.a. 4.99% p.a. for 6 months $0 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($195 p.a. thereafter) Go to site More info
ANZ First Student Card
An ideal credit card for students with 44 days interest-free on purchases with $0 annual fee in the first year. Access your account on the go with the goMoney™ app.
19.74% p.a. $0 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($30 p.a. thereafter) Go to site More info
St.George Vertigo Platinum - Online Only Balance Transfer Offer
Enjoy a long-term balance transfer offer of 3% p.a. for 36 months when you apply online, plus complimentary insurance covers and a personal concierge service.
12.74% p.a. 3% p.a. for 36 months $99 p.a. Go to site More info
NAB Premium Card
Take advantage of platinum credit card benefits including higher credit limits and travel insurance, combined with 0% p.a. interest rate on balance transfers for the first 24 months.
19.74% p.a. 0% p.a. for 24 months with 3% balance transfer fee $90 p.a. Go to site More info

Frequently asked questions

If I apply online for my credit card can I go back later to finish it?


Yes, most banks do have a feature that allows you to save an application and complete it at a later date. Just check first to see how long they will store your application and make a note of any reference number you may need to provide when you want to complete the application.

What is my credit card application number? Where can I find it?


Credit card issuers usually assign you an application number when you apply for a credit card online, and will be shown on the application page. It may also be emailed to you once you have submitted your details. This number can be used to complete the application later, check your application status or upload supporting documentation.

What kind of information will I need to provide on the application?


As with any loan-based product, you will need to give details about your income and expenses along with your personal information.

If I ordered an additional card will that need to be activated too?


Yes, all cards issued will need to be activated before they can be used. This is done to verify that they were delivered to the correct person.

Can I pick up my new credit card at the branch?

This will depend on the bank you are getting the card through. Some prefer to mail it as a way of confirming your physical address.

It’s been more than 10 business days and my card hasn’t arrived. What should I do?

If you haven’t received your card in the specified time frame, call the issuer and let them know. They will be able to review your account details and provide you with information on the status of the card and when you should receive it.

I only make purchases online with my credit card, do I still have to sign it?

Yes, an unsigned credit card is not considered valid. Plus, you want to be protected in the event of a theft.
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Related Posts

ANZ Platinum Credit Card - Exclusive Offer
ANZ Platinum Credit Card - Exclusive Offer

Interest rate

19.74

Annual fee

87
St.George Vertigo Platinum
St.George Vertigo Platinum

Interest rate

12.74

Annual fee

99
NAB Low Rate Credit Card
NAB Low Rate Credit Card

Interest rate

13.99

Annual fee

59

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16 Responses to How long does it take to get a credit card?

  1. Default Gravatar
    lewis | December 21, 2016

    Hi How do I find out if my card has been delivered to branch without actually going in as its quite a drive

    • Staff
      May | December 21, 2016

      Hi Lewis,

      Thanks for your question.

      You may ring the bank to check whether your card is already available. Usually, if you’re applying for a credit card, once you’re approved, you need not go to the branch to pick it up. The bank will send the card right to your indicated address instead.

      Cheers,
      May

  2. Default Gravatar
    Sam | October 28, 2016

    What does it mean when your application has been finalize

    • Staff
      May | October 28, 2016

      Hi Sam,

      Thank you for your question.

      For credit card applications, after you have submitted the pertinent documents to the bank and they have already reviewed them, usually, if they consider your application, they will finalise your application approval and you will soon receive your credit card.

      Cheers,
      May

  3. Default Gravatar
    Paul | August 1, 2016

    I applied for a debit card with ANZ on the 7/16/2016 and received an email saying that my debit card should arrive within 5 business days. But it has been almost three weeks since i received anything from the bank, I check my mail and email everyday and still nothing. Any advice?

    • Staff
      May | August 2, 2016

      Hi Paul,

      Thanks for your comment. Please note that you’ve come through to finder.com.au we are an Australian financial comparison website and general information service, not actually ANZ.

      Just to confirm, you have applied for an ANZ Debit Visa card? If so, usually, when you’re approved, the account will be active within 2 days and the card will be delivered to your home address.

      As for the ANZ credit card, usually, you would receive a response in 60 seconds, with an online application reference number. Once you’re approved, you will usually receive your card and welcome kit within five business days. If you have not received any but you’re sure you were approved, please contact ANZ directly to inquire.

      Cheers,
      May

  4. Default Gravatar
    p.karthikraja | August 7, 2015

    i need my new credit card status application no.X

    • Staff
      Jonathan | August 10, 2015

      Hi P, thanks for your inquiry!

      Please note that you have reached finder.com.au and not a lender. To allow us to assist you further could you please state which bank/ lender your application is with?

      Cheers,

      Jonathan

  5. Default Gravatar
    Lorry | December 24, 2014

    I applied for my credit card last Tuesday and it was approved on Monday and sent on Yesterday. If I am in Sydney, why would the Commbank take 5-10 working days to receive it when I am already local? The bank agent said it was sent yesterday morning shouldn’t I get it sooner than 5-10 days? I am in Penrith

    • Staff
      Elizabeth | December 24, 2014

      Hi Lorry,

      Thanks for your question.

      Five to ten working days is an estimate Commonwealth Bank gives, allowing for posting time, slight delays, etc. As you’re local it might arrive sooner than five days, but you should allow for this amount of time.

      I hope this has helped.

      Thanks,

      Elizabeth

    • Default Gravatar
      Sachie | March 14, 2015

      Two weeks ago I lost my card and I stopped my bank for few days and the bank emailed me and they said they sent a new card for me about 10 days ago and still the card didn’t arrive. Should I call bank?

    • Staff
      Jonathan | March 16, 2015

      Hi Sachie, thanks for your inquiry!

      Mailing a new credit card can take up to 10 working/ business days. If it has been a considerable amount of time since the banks notification of sending the new card it would be best to contact them directly.

      Cheers,

      Jonathan

  6. Default Gravatar
    Lotus | December 23, 2014

    I recently opened a Westpac choice youth account and went into my local branch to order my debit card. The woman said she would have ordered it that day and it would come within 5 working days. It’s been 10 days since I ordered it. How long does it take??

    • Staff
      Elizabeth | December 23, 2014

      Hi Lotus,

      Thanks for your question.

      If Westpac advised that the card would arrive within five days, then it should have arrived in that time frame. You might want to get in contact with Westpac directly to ensure you card hasn’t been lost in the mail and that it has been sent.

      I hope this has helped.

      Thanks,

      Elizabeth

  7. Default Gravatar
    Scottie | July 22, 2014

    I applied for a HSBC credit card online and got a conditional approval for $5000. In the email I was asked to fax drivers licence and a copy of a bill. I have done so it’s been a week since I faxed. How long does it normally take to get a reply to see if I was approved or not?

    Thank you

    • Staff
      Shirley | July 23, 2014

      Hi Scottie,

      Thanks for your question.

      Unfortunately you’ve come through to creditcardfinder.com.au, an online comparison service. We don’t handle any personal information or applications for HSBC.

      Please speak to the customer service team at HSBC regarding your enquiry. Application times vary from case to case.

      Cheers,
      Shirley

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