Want to Get A Credit Card The Surest Way?

Do banks always decline your credit card application? If you wish to get a credit card the most straightforward way, then check out this post.

To get approved for a credit card may be a challenge for you. It’s up to the bank whether to issue one.

The good news is there is an alternate way to get a card without going through the eye of a needle. How? Grab an SCC!

If you are already fed up and would like to get your first card with 100% approval, then read on!


On December 17, 2015, I ditched UnionBank, and I transferred my savings to BPI. I signed up for a passbook account with them.

Since BPI declined my CC application for whatever reason, I decided to get a credit card through their Express Start Program.

What is Express Start?

It’s a program for us or for new and existing BPI account holders who wish to get a credit card without submitting the usual papers. The primary requirement is collateral by holding a certain amount in a savings or time deposit (TD) account.

The purpose of the collateral is to secure a card that BPI will issue or solely for their peace of mind.

The standard contract duration is one year. After that, you can request the release of your held fund and a regular credit card without collateral.

If you wish to build a credit history, but gets denied by banks or lending companies, your alternate option is SCC.

Please note that if you have an unpaid balance, BPI has the right to recover, charge or deduct your debt including interest and penalties from your account. They have the right as well to terminate your card if there’s a violation. It’s on the contract.

Tip: Secured credit card or SCC is the usual term for a card released through this kind of program.


A Savings or Time Deposit account – Passbook or BPI Express Teller ATM card (regular or payroll).

The minimum hold-out amount is 10,000 pesos if you will use a savings account. If Time Deposit, it’s PHP50,000.

You can sign up for an account and a credit card at the same time. If you want to know more about the process, check out this guide.

A photocopy of your valid ID – UMID (Unified Multi-Purpose ID), Driver’s License, Passport, etc.

A fully-accomplished Deed of Assignment and BPI Express Start application form – The first one must be filled out in three copies. It’s the contract.

Alien Certificate of Registration (ACR), work permit or embassy accreditation papers – This applies to foreigners only.

Age – You should be 18 or above.

See? No Certificate of Employment (COE), BIR Form 2316, payslips, or whatever.

Where to Apply

You can only sign up at any BPI or BPI Family Savings Bank in the country.

Approval and Credit Limit

If BPI approves your application, they will provide you a credit limit up to 90% of your frozen fund.

For example, if your hold-out amount is 10,000 pesos, BPI will provide you a credit limit of up to 9,000.

BPI will hold the remaining amount, and you can’t use it. The approval rate should be 100%, but I would say 99% because it is still subject to approval.

When I signed up for my card, I am 100% sure that my application will be approved and it was!

Approval Confirmation and Card Delivery

BPI told me that the time frame is 21 days, and they will call me about my application. They never did though.

For reference, here’s the timeline of my experience:

■ December 17, 2015 (Day 1) – I signed up for a credit card at one of the BPI branches in Ortigas.

■ December 28, 2015 (Day 12) – I called customer service (89-100) to follow up my application. The representative confirmed that it was approved. She told me that my credit card information might be posted late to my EOL account due to holidays.

■ January 5, 2016 (Day 20) – BPI uploaded my account details. At 1:33 p.m. on the same day, I received a text message from “BPIDelivery” about the delivery of the card within 5 to 10 business days.

■ January 13, 2016 (Day 28) – I have no idea where the card is, so I called customer service again. I requested to forward it to the BPI branch near my place, and they advised me to wait another six business days for the update. :(

■ January 15, 2016 (Day 30) – BPIDelivery told me through text message to pick up the card.

■ January 18, 2016 (Day 33) – I successfully claimed the envelope.

It took a month, but still, it was worth the wait.

BPI delivers a card through LBC and Air21.

Please note that the card that BPI will issue to you is pre-activated. There’s no need to call them up. You can use it asap.

If you have an existing EOL account and you wrote your registered email address on the application form, BPI will automatically associate your card details.

SCC from Other Banks

Aside from BPI, you can also apply for an SCC from UnionBank, RCBC, etc.

Please note that policy and procedure might change without prior notice.

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P.S. Should you need assistance, feel free to email me here. Make sure that your email address is valid if you want to hear from me. If you want, you can also inquire through the comments section below. You may also read the inquiries from other readers.

96 replies on “Want to Get A Credit Card The Surest Way?”

For the express start, need ba tlgang byaran ung balance in full everytime na darating ung statement ? or pwedeng minimum amount due lang? and also possible ba sa express start, for instance bbli ka sa sm na worth 10k and nagfall sya sa 6 mons 0%, pde din ba ung sa express start? Thanks in advance

Nope. It’s up to you. Ok lang if minimum. And yes, you can use it for installment as long as your balance or available credit is equal to or more than the purchase amount.

Hi, already a credit card holder with a limit of 75k. We moved into another location and plan to change my card from the blue one to the gold one. May I do/request it at any branch? My CC is just that one with “holdmoney” so I need to fill-up something for that I suppose.

You can even do it online. Once logged in, just choose “Other Services > Credit Card Services > Conversion”, Fill-out the form and submit. Conversion takes around 1-2 weeks max. This method applies to both Non-secured and Secured CCs.

for example i want a thing that cost 15k payable in 6 mos using a credit card, can I get that option eventhough my cc is not a regular credit card and just a scc?? btw my hold amount only is 10k?? can I get that option as well?? hope that this can be answered soon… thank you!!!

I would like to ask if bpi express start is possible for gold express credit card if I hold out my account worth 55k?

So happy with this blog, very helpful; I applied for BPI secured credit card (Ayala, Cebu City) – after 13 days or 2 weeks, I got the card.

Hi Jerry,

Thanks for this blog. It really helps a lot. Just to give you some background, I had some unpaid balance in my previous card (not that much though) and there’s this urge to reapply for a new CC to several different banks and as expected I was declined. However when I tried applying online through BPI, they have sent me a letter stating that I can apply for SCC with a holding amount of just 10K so I grab it. Brought with me my 2316 and COE, I was then informed that I can open a savings account and the application for SCC will still be subject for approval. Waited for the said approval and lucky enough, it only took me two weeks to received the card and have been using it now. Hope they can convert it to CC after a year.

Hi. Can I request my SCC to convert in a regular credit card and release the amount they held? I have a good standing. I paid my bills on time. If I request a regular credit card, do I need to pass the requirements (proof of income)? because I resigned from my previous job and now I’m working in a different BPO company. I know that some banks do not approve credit card if you are in a BPO industry. You must have at least 2-5 years in a company, right?

Hello. I applied for an Express CC last August 25th, that one with collateral. I haven’t received any messages yet if it’s approved or what. They just said, I will wait for the card. Does that mean, there’s no way they will decline my application? How long should I wait? I’m expecting messages from them -_-

I submitted my application last August 15.

Still not approved, I guess?

I was told by the guys at BPI Robinsons Tacloban that the processing time is usually 1 to 2 weeks since I already have an account with them. Sadly, it’s been almost 4 weeks and still no calls regarding the card.

I sent an inquiry using my expressonline account and apparently, they don’t have me yet on their system. Weird, I know!

So, I called up their phone banking team, and I was told the same thing. No application yet has been found on their system.

What a joke!

So, I called the branch and asked why. According to the branch manager, his staff was not able to submit all the documents I had submitted to them! What incompetence! I am really frustrated on how BPI is handling my application right now! Seriously!

I didn’t submit any documents. They offer me that CC in which they have to hold my money. They said it’s only two weeks. But I’m not receiving any messages yet. Like, your application is approved, we are delivering your card, etc. etc. SO long………

Hi Jerry,

Do I need to open an account first before applying for Express Start CC? or do I just go there and apply for Express Start CC?


Hi. Can I request my SCC to convert in a regular credit card and release the amount they hold? I have a good standing. I paid my bills on time. If I request a regular credit card, do I need to pass the requirements (proof of income)? because I resigned from my previous job and now I’m working in a different BPO company. I know that some banks do not approve credit card if you are in a BPO industry. You must have at least 2-5 years in a company, right?

Hi, I applied for a BPI SCC. I opened a BPI account, but was told that the branch will hold my passbook and I will not be able to get the passbook unless the SCC has been terminated. Is this really the normal process or it depends on the branch? I was also told that if I have to deposit/save, it is better to open a new account. :( Thank you so much.

For real? O.O Is BPI losing clients? This is not the normal process I know. That shouldn’t be unless they really changed their policy. If they did, I can’t think of a reason for holding a passbook when the collateral can’t be withdrawn easily. [smh]

Hi, Jerry, unfortunately that’s my case. I even explained to them that other banks usually just freeze the collateral amount but still issue the ATM or passbook. I also raised my concern on how I’m able to check my balance and they said that I can always inquire at the teller. Really sad! I haven’t received my SCC yet and I was having thoughts of cancelling my application/closing my account, if it is still possible without any penalty. :(

Waaaa. Haven’t you tried in another branch before filing the application? Not really sure if this is a new standard procedure. :( As far as I know, there’s a fee to close the account within a month from opening date. BPI website said 500 pesos.

Woah. That shouldn’t be it. I also have applied for SCC and that’s not the process. I have applied in their Cash Carry Mall branch. Better raise it to their hotline or Twitter.

Hello Jerry, I have a BPI express credit, I am just wondering because yesterday was my first time to use it, upon checking my BPI account online, I saw that it was deducted to the money that’s on hold. Is it really like that? How am I gonna pay a bill if it’s zero because they deducted it already from my money on hold. Hope you can answer this, Thank you!

I have cancelled my BPI Express Start Credit Card after a year and a half. When can I withdraw the amount I’ve deposited? Thanks Sir :)

Can we use the Secured Card for Installment basis on Appliances? And were there cases here that after sometime, it was converted into a Regular CC? This are my Prio Questions before getting this card. Hoping this can be Answered. Thanks

YES on installment as long as you have enough credit available.
YES it can be converted to a regular credit card as early as 1 year, as long as you have a good credit standing. You will also be asked to submit proof of income or 2316 form or SOA from other credit cards.

I requested to have my BPI express start card to be converted to a regular card after a year. I did not have any late payments and I even try to pay in advance whenever I have extra cash because I really wanted to establish a good credit standing. However, My branch of account informed me that I was disapproved from getting a regular card so I just cancelled. Before cancelling my BPI express start card, I used it as a reference in applying for cards with other banks… Now I got 6 cards(gold and platinum) with even higher limit compared to my card with BPI.

Question: Did you sign something before your BPI card was cancelled? In my case, wala. They just cancelled it right away. But prior to the cancellation, they told me na they will require me to sign something sa bank. Pero wala pa ako pinipirmahan, nacancel na agad.

Hi Jerry! I would like to know if your card has been changed to a regular Cc already for the reason that I am willing to ask BPI to unhold my deposit account since it has been over a year that I have been using the card itself. Should it have the same credit limit once I asked to. Thanks.

YES it can be converted to a regular credit card as early as 1 year, as long as you have a good credit standing. You will also be asked to submit proof of income or 2316 form or SOA from other credit cards.

Hi Kirk, have you tried converting your SCC to a regular CC? How long does it takes before it is converted? What are the procedures? Thanks.

I applied for a BPI blue mastercard express start program. I haven’t received any calls or text but a credit card account popped out on my EOL account showing my CL and card number. Does that mean my application was approved?

Hi Jerry, I just cancelled my BPI Express CC. Did you know how long will it take my 10k Collateral Savings Balance to be available for withdrawal?, or unhold my 10k?

Once the card has been completely cancelled, the collateral is okay to be withdrawn. If there are balances, they will be deducted from the collateral.

YES. as long as the your Express Start credit card is more than a year and has transactions. I got approved from different banks after 2 years of using my Express Start CC.

You can perpetually waive the annual fee as long as you are able to maximize your expenses using your card. Simply put:
Annual total expenses > credit limit.
Just call or email them. Normally, they waive it. Just make sure that you don’t have any skip payments or late payments.

I just want to share that I have received a letter today from BPI about my CC application stating that it will have to be declined if not to avail Express Start offer. I dont know the reason why I was not approved. For me, I have met the requirements. In fact, I have an existing credit card with other bank. Anyway, I will try to apply again to another bank.

Hi Jerry. Thank you for this very useful and very informative blog. I will actually drop by today at BPI near our house to check the requirements, but yo nailed it! Thank you :)

Hi Jerry,
I really enjoyed reading your post! After a month of deep thinking, I finally went today to apply for a BPI SCC. The application went smoothly fine and was told to wait for at least 3 weeks for my card to be delivered. Hope to get it soon!

This is a very helpful post.

Though I preferred another bank for an SCC as they give the account holder 100% of the hold out amount, BPI still is a very powerful credit institution for applying other cards and loans. Other big banks would prefer a BPI CC as reference card. Normally, a very high approval rate if you have a BPI cc. I have a friend who has been issued a Gold MC by another bank using her SCC from BPI. She only has a CL of 30-ishK and been using the card for just 4 months. She tried applying for an unsecured card and voila, in a weeks time hello Gold MC with a limit of 70K.

Though I’m unsure why or if ever there are declined SCC applications. Haven’t heard anything like that from anyone just yet.

Very informative thread :). Would you know the process on how to cancel the application and reverse back the amount to my account, and how long will it take to reflect. :) thanks

Hi Jerry, I also have a BPI Express Start Credit Card. By any chance, would you know how soon will your credit limit increase after you added money to the account and sign a new DOA request? A customer service rep from their hotline told me it’s just 1-2 days but the teller at the branch said 1-2 WEEKS. I contacted their customer service hotline again and I was told they don’t know the answer. It’s kind of frustrating to be honest.

Would you know what happens if they decline your application? Does the hold out amount in your account automatically unfreeze or do you have to go back to the bank branch to file for a release?

If I purchase an item through installment, say 24 months, will they still release the hold-out amount after a year or if the item is fully paid?

You would have to request for your SCC to be converted to a regular credit card. Once approved, your hold-out amount can be withdrawn in full. If declined, however, you have the option to cancel the card and withdraw the hold-out amount (less the remaining CC balance+5% pre-termination fee), OR wait until your 24 month installment is paid in full.

Hi! I would like to ask if they accept more than the minimum hold out amount they are requiring. At least 20k or more. Hoping for your response. Thanks!

Hi! Felt so great upon reading this article. I’m not really familiar with how CC works. Just got confused with the credit card limit which is around 9k only. So, I can only purchase a certain gadget with a price that would fit with the CC limit? What if I’m going to purchase a laptop amounting to 25k? Is it not possible? Can u explain to me how it works? I really don’t know anything about CC but I’m so desperate to have one.

Thanks for dropping by. By default, you may spend your total limit. If not enough, you may pay the rest with cash or with another payment method supported by the store or merchant. I actually haven’t tried purchasing beyond my limit yet. So, I’m not sure if BPI charges an overdraft fee, or they allow it. If I’m not mistaken though, they have a program where you can spend beyond your CL. Something that will stretch your fund. [Experts should correct me on this].

Thanks for your quick response. One more question though. It’s gonna be one year for the hold out amount, right? What will happen after one year? Can we apply for a regular credit card without a hold out amount? What will happen to our 10k?

Hi! Just to shed some light and help, I think what he means by his question is if the credit card’s limit is only 9k, therefore he can’t purchase an item worth 25k. So I clarified this with BPI, you can actually spend 90% of your hold money. For example, I set my hold money as 80k, therefore my credit limit will be 72k. So yes, at anytime you can request to increase your credit limit and you can purchase your 25k laptop IF your hold money is big enough.

Hi Jerry, I wanted to ask if you can use the Express Start CC for installment basis for 24 months with a cost of, let’s say, 55k?

Nice article, Jerry. I’ve been reading up about secured credit cards and have been interested in getting one although at this point I’m still unsure about which bank I want to apply to. I want an assurance that the bank will issue me a VISA card before I actually apply just so I won’t waste my time. May I ask, did they let you pick the type of card (VISA, Mastercard, JCB) you’re going to get, or does the bank decide it? I would greatly appreciate a response!

You may choose in the application form. XD They didn’t ask which card I prefer, though I already have one in mind. Since I have a cool skin tone [haha not kiddin’], I chose the basic blue MasterCard. But yeah, you may choose one, but clarify with the bank the minimum held fund. Some cards require higher amount.

Hi! I just want to ask if I will have the chance to get approved for a secured credit card if I happen to have bad credit history? Will I get approve despite that?

Why not? Lol. Not really sure. I can’t really say “yes” or “no”, however let me just share that a friend got approved for a non-SCC card from another bank even if she has a huge debt from a couple of years ago. Also, if my memory serves me right, there’s a post from someone in PEx that I’ve read before who shared that he got approved for an SCC card despite the debts he has as well.

Thanks for this info, Jerry! Looks promising. Since I also have unpaid credit card debt from another bank, I will try applying for this soon.

Hi. I don’t have an account with BPI, but planning to get this secured CC and I read somewhere that I need to bring a utility bill? If so, what if it’s not under my name as I’m only renting at the moment?

Hey! I just visited BPI today to open an account. I told her that I have an existing account with BPI (ATM), but I just wanted to open a new one for the Express Start. She started printing something on her end and waited for her to return. But when she got back, she said that it would be for approval and I need to wait for the call first until Thursday.

If in case that I didn’t receive a call that means that my application was declined. At that moment, I was already confused. She did not even ask me to sign up anything to open an account or deposit the money first or whatsoever. So technically, I don’t have any application since I didn’t sign up for anything. I felt that I just wasted my time in visiting their branch. Would that mean that I cannot open an Express Start if I didn’t receive a call as a sign that I am declined?

Just an update. Yesterday, as suggested also by the representative from their hotline, I visited another BPI branch. This time I went to BPI Gateway Cubao (G/F) and again asked them about Express Start which is displayed also from the tarps inside. So, I’m confident that they know about it. She was nice and polite. However, she said that they have zoning policy already which means that you can only open an account from the BPI branch nearest you or that covers your location. Sad, but at least clear and complete info was provided. So, I went out of the branch and was about to meet a friend when I remembered that there is another BPI Gateway branch located at the 3/F near LRT station. Only a few knows about it because it’s located at the very corner and cannot be seen easily. I hurriedly went there before they close at 6 p.m. Again, they have the tarps about the Express Start. I told them what I wanted and about the zoning policy but still they said YES and accepted my deposit and application. I was asked to wait for 2 to 3 weeks for the delivery of the card. I didn’t open a new account since I already have an existing ATM savings account. They used it instead to save me from the hassle of signing all the forms and submitting all the docs. No one informed me that it’s possible to use an existing account. They’ll hold the deposit there. So, the waiting game has started. Let’s see what will happen next.

What happened to your application? How long did it take for the card to be delivered? Just submitted my application today and the hold-out amount is already freezed. Is that also normal on your end? Thanks.

I just read your about me section, and what a coincidence. I’m also an introvert with SAD :) I know it’s weird putting a smiley face there hehe, but it’s comforting to meet someone with the same personality/condition as me.

Hi Jerry!
Thanks for this helpful information. I also inquired with them and the lady said it’s still subject for approval. I’m worried that if I deposit the minimum amount for the passbook (say, 10k), I might have less chances of getting approved :/ I hope not!

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