Posted by William Charles on February 10, 2016
Credit Cards

Published on February 10th, 2016 | by William Charles


17 Things Everybody Should Know About Wells Fargo Credit Cards

Wells Fargo didn’t used to be a big player in the credit card space, then they introduced their 5x cards and the Propel series and have been steadily getting more popular. They are quite strange when it comes to credit cards, so read this before you think about applying for one of their cards.


The List

  1. Wells Fargo usually want you to have an existing relationship with them before approving you for a credit card. The easiest way to get a relationship with them is to set up a checking account with them, you can currently get a $100 bonus for setting one of those up.
  2. Wells Fargo won’t normally approve you if you’re not a permanent resident. Not sure why, but another one of their quirks.
  3. If you’re denied for a Wells Fargo card, call their reconsideration department. It’s not the easiest card issuer to turn a denial into an approval, but still worth a try (especially if you’ve followed #1 & #2). Tips for dealing with reconsideration departments can be found here.
  4. Wells Fargo cards are churnable, we have at least a few data points this is the case. They don’t have a lot of cards worth signing up for, so the fact you can get the bonus more than once is great.
  5. They will merge multiple inquiries if made on the same day. Although it’s usually difficult to get approved for two cards on the same day anyway.
  6. There isn’t a hard limit on the number of Wells Fargo credit cards you can have.
  7. They do not offer a referral program. Referral programs seem to be more and more out of favor with credit card issuers, probably due to compliance issues.
  8. It’s not possible to check for pre-approval or pre-qualified offers online. One of the few card issuers that doesn’t let you do this.
  9. Wells Fargo allows you to request a credit limit increase. I’d recommend doing this by phone and finding out if it’s a hard or soft pull before doing it, as there have been mixed reports in the past.
  10. Reallocating credit limits with Wells Fargo is unfortunately always a hard credit pull.
  11. They do allow you to change your existing card into another Wells Fargo card. It might be worth product changing to one of their cards with no annual fee so you can keep the phone insurance they offer.
  12. As far as I know, they don’t offer any type of retention bonus for cards with an annual fee.
  13. Wells Fargo reports your statement balance as your credit used to the credit reporting agencies. Credit utilization is one of the major scoring factors for the FICO score, so make sure to pay large balances before your statement closes.
  14. Wells Fargo lets you change your statement closing date by calling in. Might be useful with the above information (e.g if your pay falls at a certain time and you want to pay off your card before the statement closes).
  15. For minimum spending requirements, the time you have to reach that requirement is based on card approval and calendar months.
  16. Wells Fargo says that they don’t report balances from business credit cards to the credit bureaus which is useful for keeping your credit report cleaner.
  17. You can check your credit card’s application status online.

Things We’re Aren’t Sure About

Final Thoughts

This is our last post in this series, we’ve now covered all the major credit card issuers. If you’d like to see similar information about smaller credit card issuers or you know some information we’ve listed above that we aren’t sure about then please let us know in the comments below. If you’d like to discuss any of these, don’t refer to them as their numbers as these sometimes change. You can view other posts in this series by clicking the links below.

38 Responses to 17 Things Everybody Should Know About Wells Fargo Credit Cards

  1. Do they waive small balances of say $1.99

  2. Mark O says:

    Can you buy GC for the airline credit on the propel?

  3. Tyler says:

    Do you have a post in the series for Barclaycard?

  4. Foolish says:

    They also have a limit on how many WF Rewards accounts you can have. For example, I already had the WF Propel World Amex, then later applied for the WF Rewards Visa Signature with 5x bonus categories for six months. Upon receiving and using the WF Rewards Visa Signature and not receiving 5x rewards points, I was told that I was not eligible for the 5x offer because I already had an existing rewards account that had a promotion applied (the WF Propel World Amex). I have had a banking relationship with WF for over 20 years, way before I ever had WF issued credit cards. No disclosure was given when the Visa application was submitted; wasted a hard pull.

    • Anybody else have similar experience? Never heard of this before.

      • Ryan says:

        Same thing happened to me. Did not get the 5%, but the value of the points for flight redemption went up on my Propel points because of the signature card point structure. I would recommend getting the Propel, canceling and then applying for the WF rewards signature.

  5. D says:

    Why aren’t you going to do Barclays? I thought that Barclays would be more relevant to us than Wells Fargo.

  6. James says:

    Tried to grab the World Propel. Opened the checking account (got $100 bonus already) a few weeks ago and applied for the card shortly after. Denied due to the fact I was a new customer and they couldn’t determine my activity and what type of customer I am…pretty frustrating I thought I’d be set since I started the relationship with the checking..recon is impossible, they won’t budge at all to reconsider an app. I tried with 10 different reps.

    Will keep the checking open and hopefully apply again and get the card 6-12 months from now

  7. David says:

    “Wells Fargo won’t normally approve you if you’re a permanent resident. Not sure why, but another one of their quirks.”

    You mean not a permanent resident, right?

  8. Mike says:

    Any reason Barclays wasn’t profiled?

  9. J T says:

    How about a “things you should know about Barclaycard” post?

    Unless I just missed it, that seems to be the only “major” issuer missing from the list.

  10. edvin says:

    Do they still ask to send in proof of income(pay stubs…..)????

    I know that on sd there was a ton of people reporting they were required to send in proof of income.
    I have not seen this done before by any other cc company. When their card first came out almost everyone on sd reported this.

    what is the case now?

    • Haven’t applied recently, can anybody confirm they still ask for this info?

    • Lela says:

      I got a Wells Fargo Signature Rewards card, arrived in mail yesterday 3/8/16. No income proof was required. I do have perhaps more than 20 years banking history. I applied in branch right after I applied for a checking account. Another person I know got his/her card 4 months ago and also did not have to provide income proof. Also had 10+ years banking history.

  11. Tabitha says:

    We didn’t have to send in pay stubs when applied back in October.
    Another point, that may be irrelevent now. Is that because the Propel World is an AMEX we linked it to our Serve and was able to fund the money, both getting points and meeting minimum spending. This is different than most amex cards in my experience, because points were actually earned for spending.

  12. albocaj says:

    You must have at least $100 available liquid in your accounts for better chances for approval. Also, I think you can have expedited shipping, as long as you have a good reason.

  13. jnrfalcon says:

    Is there any DP showing non-resident people getting approved for their non-secured credit cards? There is not so many third party Amex available and US Bank is too famous for their annoying downgrade… Besides there is just a handful of cards support Chip+Pin and WF is one of the bank that offers.

  14. John says:

    Here’s my datapoint for the WF/Amex. I applied today online and was accepted right away. No recon, no hassle.

    I had seen some posts around the internet that said that Wells Fargo would often deny (regardless of credit score) if a person had opened more than a few credit cards in the last 12 months. I had opened four cards in the last 10 months (going from 3 to 7) so I was prepared for the possibility of denial.

    I tried to mitigate that by having a 1-2% utilization with the majority of my cards showing a $0 balance. I do have a high FICO which of course must have helped (over 800).

    To address the issues other people in the thread raised:

    * My relationship with Wells Fargo is very new. Opened the checking account about 25 days ago with plans to get the bonus.

    * I did have over $100 in my checking account when I applied for the Propel. ($110) People who are applying to get the checking account bonus might conceivably have far less in their account, since the bonus only requires a bunch of possibly tiny debit card purchases and these also meet the monthly fee waiver. It’s probably worth advising people to make sure they have at least $102 in their account for a few days before applying for the card. If I had realized that this could have been an issue I would have made sure I had a lot more.

    * I live in GA and the hard pull appears to be with TU.

  15. alex says:

    Okay So I Applied And My Application Says Pending, But If I Do Have To Provide Proof What Will I Need To Bring ? And Do I Have To Have Money In My Account For Them To Apprve Me?

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  17. Matthew says:

    Just signed up for Propel World after getting checking account in-branch with $250 offer, and they asked me when I wanted my payment date during the application process. You may not need to call in after getting the card.

  18. TravellerAtoZ says:

    Annual fee just posted to my propel world and I was told I have 90 days to cancel the card. Now I’m looking for confirm whether I can double dip on the $100 airline fee per card year..

  19. Sparky says:

    Got a Wells Fargo Business Platinum Credit Card about 11/2016 via a targeted offer. Took a few calls and emails to finally get awarded the 30,000 promotional points (equal to $300 check). Could be because I never did any spending on the following months after the first month. After redeeming online you get an email that says get a 10% discount on points for redeeming online.

  20. Anna says:

    Don’t know if this will help but…just got a $1500 CLI after talking with a representative. He said that a message would’ve popped up if a HP was needed and that I could’ve cancelled the request. Asked for income (monthly before taxes) and had to verify expiration date and 3 digit security number on the card.

  21. BonusHero says:

    I have a checking and credit card with Wells Fargo. If I close my checking, would having a credit card still count as prior relationship to get approved for the next card whenever I apply? Any DPs on this?

  22. MJ says:

    Just providing a counter DP to the claims you “must” have $100+ in your WF account(s) at time of credit card app…
    As a brand-new WF customer, I opened a Checking account 17-Oct and funded $50 via credit card (Chase FU coded as purchase)… yesterday I made some Amazon reloads so my balance was down to $48.50 and when I applied online today (24-Oct) for the Cash Wise card I immediately got the “pending review”, but after calling in (1-800-967-9521) to check app status about an hour later, the auto-line told me I was approved with $XX credit line.

  23. Richard says:

    Just a data point that DW applied for a Wells Fargo credit card and got declined due to ‘too many recently opened accounts’

    So if that is actually true, I wonder if WF is copying Chase in implementing its own version of the 5/24 rule. They did not provide me a specific detail with how many is too many and how long is ‘recently’

  24. Bradley says:

    DP here: I opened the Propel World Amex on 11/1/17 before 3 PM PST and, after speaking with an agent that said the card can be expedited because of travel or emergency expenses, the card should arrive by 11/4/17. Despite it being an Amex, no instant number was generated but that’s more than likely a product of a phone application.

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