Credit Cards That Offer Instant Access and Numbers

Credit Cards

Having an instant card number can be convenient, as it allows you to start using your new credit card right away, without having to wait for the physical card to arrive in the mail.

Amex Platinum Edge

In this article, we’ll take a closer look at the benefits of having an instant card number, as well as the different credit cards that offer this feature. Whether you’re in the market for a new credit card or simply want to learn more about this convenient feature, you’ll find the information you need here.

Benefits of Instant Credit Card Numbers

Instant credit card numbers are a convenient feature offered by some credit card companies, revolutionizing the traditional waiting period associated with new credit card applications. Traditionally, after approval, you would need to wait for the physical credit card to arrive by mail, a process that can take anywhere from a few days to a couple of weeks. However, with the advent of instant card numbers, this waiting period is significantly reduced, offering numerous advantages:

Immediate Access and Convenience

  • Instant purchasing power: As soon as your credit card application is approved, you receive a card number, allowing you to start using your credit immediately. This is particularly beneficial in urgent situations or for taking advantage of time-sensitive offers.
  • Digital wallet integration: Instant card numbers can typically be added to digital wallets like Apple Pay, Google Pay, or Samsung Pay. This means you can make contactless payments using your phone or other digital devices at stores or online merchants that accept these payment methods.

Enhanced Flexibility in Emergencies

  • Emergency readiness: In case of unexpected expenses or emergencies, having immediate access to a credit line can be a lifesaver, especially if you’re awaiting the arrival of your physical card.
  • Immediate over-the-phone transactions: For services or transactions that require immediate payment over the phone, an instant credit card number allows for swift and efficient handling.

Credit Utilization and Limitations

  • Initial credit limit: While the instant card number offers immediate access to funds, it’s important to note that some issuers may set a temporary credit limit. This limit is often a portion of your total approved credit limit and is in place until you activate your physical card.
  • Full access upon physical card activation: Once you receive and activate your physical card, you generally gain access to the full credit limit, along with any additional features or benefits associated with the card.

Streamlining Online and Phone Purchases

  • Ease of online transactions: For avid online shoppers or those who prefer the convenience of e-commerce, having an instant card number ready can streamline the purchasing process, allowing for immediate transactions without the need for cash or debit cards.
  • Security features: Despite being an instantly issued number, these credit card numbers are secured with the same robust encryption and fraud protection measures as physical cards, offering peace of mind for online transactions.

Credit Cards That Offer an Instant Credit Card Number upon Approval

Find out which credit card companies offer instant approval credit cards and which ones don’t. Some make it quick and easy to access your credit line via an instant card number, while others may make you jump through a few hoops.

We’ll tell you how to get started with each major credit card issuer, so you know exactly what you have to do to start using that new card as soon as possible.

American Express

American Express is one of the best options for getting an instant card number after getting approved.

You can apply for any American Express card, although some customers report mixed results on how often the offer is available. If it is available to you, you’ll be prompted by the online system, asking you if you want your card number instantly.

Furthermore, realize that the number AmEx gives you is just a temporary one. While the card number will likely be the same as the one you receive in the mail, your CVC code and expiration date will probably change.

So, don’t use it to set up automatic billing services because you’ll just have to switch it when you activate your actual card. Additionally, if you don’t receive an offer for an instant card number, you might actually receive a bonus for a future statement credit.

If you’re applying for a co-branded American Express card, such as a Hilton Card, you may only be able to use the number with the co-branded company. American Express should let you know of any usage restrictions at the time of releasing your account number.

Here are some American Express cards that provide an instant card number:

  • American Express Cash Magnet Card
  • American Express Gold Card
  • American Express Green Card
  • Amex EveryDay Credit Card
  • Blue Cash Preferred Card from American Express
  • Delta SkyMiles Blue American Express Card
  • Delta SkyMiles Reserve American Express Card
  • The Platinum Card from American Express

Bank of America

Unfortunately, most Bank of America cards do not offer instant card credit numbers. While there are some reports of getting a number upon approval, there is simply no consistent policy to go by.

However, you can typically receive a card number when you’re approved for the Bank of America co-branded Alaska Airlines credit card.

Bank of Missouri

Bank of Missouri is a small regional bank that has partnered with SoFi. You can immediately add the SoFi Credit Card to a digital wallet and start making purchases with it on your mobile device.


Most Barclays cards do not offer an instant card number. However, if you apply for one of their co-branded cards, you can get an instant card number and begin using for purchases on the co-branded company’s site. The following is a list of cards that offer it.

  • Frontier Airlines World Mastercard
  • Hawaiian Airlines World Elite Mastercard
  • The JetBlue Card
  • Priceline Rewards Visa Card
  • Princess Cruises Rewards Visa Card

Capital One

Capital One used to offer instant access to your card number through their mobile app. However, it’s now a hit-or-miss situation with cards like the Capital One Venture and Capital One Quicksilver. However, the new Capital One Walmart Rewards Mastercard does offer it.

You can link your card to the Walmart Pay app and use it to make purchases at any Walmart store or before the card arrives.


Most credit cards offered by Chase don’t come with an instant card number. However, you can usually add Chase credit cards like the popular Chase Sapphire Reserve and Chase Sapphire Preferred to a digital wallet like Apple Pay, Google Pay, Samsung Pay, well before they send you the physical card.

Furthermore, if you apply for a Southwest Airlines or United Airlines credit card during checkout, and you’re approved, you can pay for your flight with your card before it arrives.


The Citi Custom Cash Card gives you instant access to a credit card number.

Citi also offers a couple of co-branded cards that give you a card number upon approval. They are the AAdvantage Platinum Select World Elite Mastercard from American Airlines card and the AT&T Access Card.

If you’re already a Costco member or have been thinking about joining, you can take advantage of instant access once you’ve been approved for the Costco Anywhere Visa Card issued by Citi.

However, for instant access, you’ll have to apply in-store. There is no annual fee with your paid Costco membership, and it can only be used in-store.

In addition to the number, you’ll receive a barcode that you can scan at checkout. This is also a great option for business owners who need help with cash flow and need restaurant supplies or even a new laptop or printer.

First Nation Bank of Omaha

Stuck in Vegas with no cash left in your pocket? Ok, hopefully, that isn’t your emergency, but you can get an instant FNBO credit card number from the M Life desk at any MGM resort.

They can print out your card information for you, so you have that extra financing available, should you require it. Just be sure to keep walking past the slot machines on your way out.

Goldman Sachs

The Apple Card offered by Goldman Sachs allows cardholders to use the card instantly upon approval via the Wallet app on your iPhone.


HSBC allows you to use your card instantly after approval. However, they do not provide your card’s CVV number or expiration date.


Synchrony has many store cards that offer an instant card number that you can use while in the store.

For online-specific purchases, try one of these cards from Synchrony to get started right away: Ebates, PayPal, or eBay. You can use the Ebates card either on the website or anywhere a Visa is accepted.

For the PayPal or eBay MasterCard, you can make an online purchase of up to $250 via PayPal. Depending on what you would like to charge, this could be a suitable option for you.


Members of the military and their families can become members of USAA and then apply for a USAA credit card. When you do, you’ll automatically receive your card number, CVC code, and expiration date for instant use.

You’ll only be allowed to spend up to $1,000 with this information, and then you’ll move up to your full balance limit once your physical card arrives in the mail. They have a rewards program, and there is no annual fee on either of the credit cards you can choose from.

U.S. Bank

U.S. Bank has started issuing instant credit cards for mobile or online use for some of their cards. This credit card company has plans to roll this out to all of their cards in the near future.

Wells Fargo

The Bilt Mastercard issued by Wells Fargo provides you with access to your credit card number instantly if you use the Bilt mobile app.

List of Instant Co-Branded or Store Cards

First, it’s important to remember that while some stores offer co-branded cards like Visa and MasterCard that you can use anywhere, many limit purchases to the actual store itself. So think about how you want to use the card before you get too far down the rabbit hole.

You can apply online or in person for store credit cards. When you apply in person and are approved, you often get a temporary number so you can start shopping immediately.

Target RedCard

Take the Target RedCard, for example. How many times have you been asked, “Would you like to save 5% today by opening a Target RedCard?” They want to offer you the incentive to buy more and save more, and take advantage of those savings immediately.

Best Buy, Macy’s, and Cabela’s

Some stores don’t even require a credit card to be present if you can verify your identity. Retailers like Best Buy and Macy’s check your driver’s license and have you enter your Social Security number to access your credit card account.

It’s a quick and easy way to start shopping without having to wait for the card to come in the mail. On top of that, some stores like Cabela’s even have physical cards on hand to give you right away.

Here are several other co-branded and store cards that offer instant access:

  • Amazon Prime Rewards Visa Signature Card
  • Amazon Prime Store Card
  • Amazon Rewards Visa Signature Card
  • Amazon Store Card
  • Apple Card
  • Bloomingdale’s Credit Card
  • Costco Anywhere Visa Card by Citi
  • Walmart Rewards Card

Which card issuers don’t offer card numbers upon approval?

Some credit card companies just don’t offer card information before the physical card arrives in the mail. The major credit card issuers you won’t see this service from include: Alliant Credit Union, Discover, and Navy Federal Credit Union.

While their policies may change in the future, as of right now, you’ll have to wait at least a few days until you’re approved to start using your account.

Bottom Line

Always remember that approval is based on credit history and credit scores. So make sure your credit score is in order before you apply to avoid dinging your credit for nothing.

Applying for a credit card doesn’t have to mean waiting an entire week or two for your card to show up before you can actually start using it. By browsing the credit card offers above and focusing on the ones you’re most likely to get approved for, you can receive immediate access to your credit card.

Just pay careful attention to whether you need to do something specific to get your instant card number, or if there are restrictions on your spending. Now you can be prepared if you have a financial emergency or simply want to take advantage of card member benefits quickly.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are instant use credit cards?

Instant use credit cards are a type of credit card where the cardholder is provided access to their credit card number immediately after approval, without having to wait for the physical card to arrive in the mail.

This feature allows for the immediate use of the credit card for purchases, both online and in stores where digital wallets are accepted. Instant use credit cards are particularly useful in emergency situations or for urgent purchases, offering the convenience of immediate access to credit. The card number provided is typically temporary and may have certain limitations, such as a reduced credit limit, until the physical card is received and activated.

How do I get an instant credit card number?

You can get access to instant credit upon approval by signing up for a service provided by your credit card issuer, such as the “virtual account numbers” offered by some banks. You may need to log in to your online account to access this service.

Can I use an instant credit for in-store purchases?

Instant credit is typically only available for online or phone purchases. However, when you apply for a co-branded or store credit card at the point of purchase, either online or in-store, you can immediately start using it. In most cases, they’ll give you a temporary card number or barcode on your receipt that you can use to make purchases at that specific retailer.

How long does the instant card number remain valid?

The instant card number typically remains valid until you receive and activate your physical card. The validity period can vary by issuer, but generally aligns with the estimated delivery time of the physical card.

Can I use the instant card number for international purchases?

Yes, in most cases, instant card numbers can be used for international transactions, as long as the merchant accepts the card brand. However, always check with your card issuer for any specific restrictions.

Lauren Ward
Meet the author

Lauren is a personal finance writer who strives to equip readers with the knowledge to achieve their financial objectives. She has over a decade of experience and a Bachelor's degree in Japanese from Georgetown University.