The Merit Platinum Card is a store card option for loyal Horizon Outlet store shoppers. The card’s approval requirements are low and you get $750 unsecured credit to use without interest on your purchases. But it’ll cost you $14.95 monthly. That’s almost $180 a year — higher than many reward credit cards.
As a part of your membership program, you get access to My Privacy Protection, My Universal RX, My Roadside Protect and My Legal Assistance programs. If you use any of these, paying for the card may be worth it.
Merit Platinum Card Details
|Product Name||Merit Platinum|
|Card type||Store card|
|Balance transfer APR||N/A|
|Late payment fee||$20|
|Returned payment fee||$25|
Merit Platinum Card Features
- Bad Credit, No Credit? No Problem!
- Reports to Major Credit Bureau
- Fast and Easy Application
- No Employment or Credit Check
- $750 Credit Limit
Merit Platinum Card Application Requirements
|Recommended minimum credit score||300|
|Minimum age||18 years of age|
Merit Platinum Card Fees
While the Merit Platinum card has no annual fee and an annual percentage rate (APR) of 0%, cardholders must pay a range of high fees in other areas.
Most notably, the Merit Platinum card charges a monthly membership fee of $24.95. There is also a $6 monthly maintenance fee, which is waived as long as you enroll in the membership plan.
Other fees include:
|Type of Fee||Amount|
|Late payment or NSF||$20|
|Residential delivery fee||$2|
|Delivery signature verification fee||$3.50|
|Returned check fee||$25|
|Card activation fee||$5|
Merit Platinum Card Benefits
- No credit check. The card provider won’t do a credit check or employment check when you apply. This means you can be approved even if you have poor credit or no credit score at all.
- High credit limit. You start off with a $750 credit limit, which is decent for this type of card.
What are the membership programs you get with this card?
You get access to:
- My Universal RX. Get up to 40% off of covered prescriptions in local participating pharmacies.
- My Roadside Protect. Get up to three service calls or towing requests within a 12-month period for up to 15 miles that don’t exceed the $50 operator fee. Anything above that and you’re liable for the cost. Also, you can’t ask for more than one towing or service call within 30 days and no more than three service calls.
- My Legal Assistance. Get toll free and Internet access to legal resources. Get one free 30-minute consultation with a legal professional in your area specializing in the area you need counseling in.
Pros and Cons of the Merit Platinum Card
The Merit Platinum credit card has few benefits and several drawbacks. Here’s what you need to know.
- Reports to one credit bureau – Horizon states that it reports payment activity to at least one major credit bureau. However, there are other credit cards marketed toward people with bad credit that report to all three credit bureaus.
- Easy to get – Because Horizon doesn’t pull your credit or ask your credit score, it’s easy to get approved for a card.
- Member benefits – If you enroll in the membership plan and pay $24.95 per month, you get access to benefits like free roadside assistance, prescription benefits, legal assistance and privacy protection.
However, the benefits are subject to numerous restrictions, and you can probably find similar benefits from other providers at a more affordable price.
- Limited uses – Unlike a Visa card, Discover card, or Mastercard, you can only use the Merit Platinum card to make purchases at the Horizon Outlet store online.
- High fees – When you apply for a card, Horizon will automatically enroll you in its $24.95 a month membership plan. This adds up to nearly $300 per year, which is more than you’ll pay for a more flexible secured credit card.
- Low credit limit – The Merit Platinum card has a maximum available credit limit of $500. While some reviewers say they received a credit limit increase, it’s unclear how cardholders can get a credit increase or how long they need to have a card to qualify for one.
Who is the Merit Platinum card for?
The Merit Platinum card is one that has limited uses and benefits. Its $500 credit line can only be used at the online department store, Horizon Outlet. For Horizon Outlet fans, this card is worth considering. However, for the majority of the population, this card is not very beneficial, especially given its high price.
This card claims to help build credit. However, it only reports to one of the three major credit bureaus, making its use somewhat restricted. For those looking to build credit, there are many other appealing options that have far broader uses, larger rewards, and significantly more affordable prices.
Merit Platinum Card Reviews
While it’s difficult to find reviews for the Merit Platinum card, there are plenty of online reviews for the Horizon Outlet store. Because many of Horizon’s cards have identical or similar terms, you can get a good idea of what users think by taking a look at these reviews.
Several users give Horizon a positive review. For example, one reviewer states that Horizon helped improve their credit score and gave them a credit limit increase to $1,000.
I have been a member since Oct 2017 And I am satisfied after a customer service/sales exp_ They increased my Imit to Sl ,000_ Nothing was/is misleading. I will vouch for the credit service my scores have improved. I never have had or want a darn credit card. I Will agree The corporation needs to expand its inventory of all Items in stock and add alot more NEEDED Items. LIKE SMC specialty merchandice corp
So far I haven’t had any problems the customer service has been very helpful. Haven’t had any problems using my card when I shop.
Merit Platinum Card VS Competitors
|Card||Monthly Fees||Upfront Fee||APR||Credit Checks||Credit Reporting||Credit Lines|
|Merit Platinum||$24.95||N.A.||0%||No Credit Check||1 Credit Bureau||$750|
|Net First Platinum||$24.95||N.A.||0%||No Credit Check||1 Credit Bureau||$750|
|Freedom Gold Card||$24.95||N.A.||0%||No Credit Check||1 Credit Bureau||$750|
|Horizon Gold Card||$24.95||N.A.||0%||No Credit Check||1 Credit Bureau||$500|
|Unique Platinum||$24.95||N.A.||0%||No Credit Check||1 Credit Bureau||No Credit Check|
|Fingerhut||$0||N.A.||See Website*||Yes||3 Major Bureaus||$200-$1,000|
Alternatives to the Merit Platinum Card
If you have bad credit, you may think you have few options when it comes to getting a credit card. However, there are several credit cards on the market designed to help even those with poor credit get the second chance they need to raise their score.
1. Capital One Secured Mastercard
The Capital One Secured Mastercard is a secured card, but you have the option of choosing a direct deposit that fits your budget. You can make a down payment of $49, $99, or $200.
The Capital One Secured Mastercard has no annual fee. While the 26.99% APR is on the high end, you can avoid paying interest as long as you pay your balance in full each month.
If you make your payments on time for a minimum of five months, Capital One will increase your credit limit without requiring an additional security deposit.
2. Citi Secured Mastercard
The Citi Secured Mastercard requires a security deposit of at least $200, but you have the option to put down as much as $2,500 if you prefer a higher credit limit.
With an APR of 22.49%, the Citi Secured Mastercard’s interest rate is lower compared to many other credit cards, including unsecured cards. The card has no annual fee.
3. OpenSky Secured Visa Credit Card
The OpenSky Secured Visa credit card has a $35 annual fee, but it offers an 18.95% APR, which is quite low for a credit card, secured or unsecured. The minimum security deposit required is $200.
OpenSky doesn’t pull your credit when you apply, so the card is available to nearly anyone. It also reports to all three credit bureaus.
Merit Platinum Card FAQs
Is there a Merit Platinum Card cash back or rewards program?
No, Merit Platinum Card does not offer a rewards program.
What are the relevant APRs for Merit Platinum Card?
According to the Federal Reserve Board, the average interest rate is 15% for all credit cards and 17% for accounts that carry a balance. Merit Platinum Card has lower than average purchase APRs.
Merit Platinum Card has a variable purchase APR of 0%.
Does Merit Platinum Card have an introductory APR offer on balance transfers?
No, Merit Platinum Card does not come with an introductory APR offer for balance transfers.
Does Merit Platinum Card have an introductory APR offer on new purchases?
Merit Platinum Card does not offer an introductory rate on new purchases.
|Purchase Intro APR Period (months)||N/A|
What are the fees for Merit Platinum Card?
The following fees apply to Merit Platinum Card:
|Returned Payment Fee||$25|
|Late Payment Fee||$20|
Does Merit Platinum Card report your account activity to credit bureaus?
Yes, Merit Platinum Card reports your account activity to the following credit reporting agencies:
Making regular on-time payments to a creditor that reports to one or more credit bureaus will demonstrate your financial responsibility and may help improve your credit.
How to apply for Merit Platinum Card
- Visit the Merit Platinum Card website.
- Fill in the application form. You will typically need to provide general financial information, such as your Social Security Number, address, and annual income.
- Check the information is accurate and submit your application.
Although a decent choice, the Merit Platinum has many drawbacks that give it mixed reviews. The many hidden fees paired with limited benefits make the card unhelpful. Furthermore, its severely limited use decreases the size of the prospective audience. For those considering this card, you should thoroughly weigh its positives and negatives.