Why Is My New Credit Card Not Showing on My Credit Report?

Quick Answer

A new credit card should appear on your credit report 30 to 60 days after the issuer grants it to you. The card may not show up if there’s an error in your personal data, or if the card’s activity isn’t reported to the credit bureaus.

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Your new credit card might not appear on your credit report right away due to a delay in credit reporting, incomplete personal information or the fact that your card company doesn't report to the credit bureaus at all.

It's important to figure out why your credit card isn't showing up so you can solve the problem and put the card to use building a good credit score. Here's when to expect a new credit card to be listed on your credit report, and what you can do when there's a holdup.

How Long Does It Take for a New Credit Card to Show on a Credit Report?

You can expect a new credit card to appear on your credit report 30 to 60 days after the date it was granted to you, depending on the issuer and when the card's billing cycle ends. (Contact your credit card issuer to learn your billing cycle's end date.)

It's up to the credit card company to send information about the account to the three major credit bureaus: Experian, TransUnion and Equifax. When the bureaus receive account information, they will begin to include it in your credit reports. Then, roughly every month, the credit card company will report new information to the credit bureaus with your most recent balance and payment activity.

But this process can take time at first. Each credit card company sets its own due dates and payment cycles and updates the bureaus at different times of the month. That includes when it first notifies the bureaus that you've been issued a new credit card.

Reasons Why an Account May Not Appear on Your Credit Report

While a delay in a new account showing up on a credit report is often due to a card issuer's credit reporting timeline, there are a few other potential explanations. They include:

Identification Errors

It's possible that your name and Social Security number were not entered correctly when you applied for the credit card. In that case, the account won't be properly associated with your credit file, so it won't be connected to you.

Your Issuer Doesn't Report to the Credit Bureaus

In some cases, a credit card issuer won't report account information to all the credit bureaus. That could be due to the issuer's choice to report to just one or two of the credit bureaus, or it may be related to the type of card you've chosen. In either case, it means your account activity on the card won't help you build credit.

Card types that typically don't allow for consumer credit reporting include prepaid credit cards, prepaid debit cards and some business credit cards. Most traditional credit card issuers do report activity to the credit bureaus, but some choose to work with only one or two of the bureaus, or even opt out entirely. It's wise to check with a card issuer to make sure you understand their credit reporting process before you apply for the card, especially if you're aiming to build credit with the account.

The Card Appears Under a Different Company's Name

It's also possible your new credit card is on your report after all, but isn't showing up as you'd expect. If you opened a retail credit card, it may be listed under the name of the bank that issues the card and oversees the account rather than the store name. Check the date the account was issued, the credit limit and other identifying data on your credit report to confirm whether an account you don't immediately recognize is, in fact, the retail card you opened.

What to Do if Your Credit Card Still Isn't Showing Up

Don't panic if the credit card you opened is not appearing on one of your credit reports. It may be listed on one of the other two bureaus' reports. Here's how to check, and what to do if you spot an issue.

  1. Pull your free credit reports from all three credit bureaus. You can access them weekly for free from AnnualCreditReport.com; you can also get your Experian credit report for free anytime directly from Experian. Read them over. Hopefully your card will appear on at least one of them.
  2. If the card is not on your report, call the card issuer. Your credit card issuer may not send your account activity to any of the bureaus. Call the company to double-check. If you want your activity to show on your credit report, ask if you can convert the credit account to one that does report activity and will help you build credit. If that's not possible, think twice before canceling the account altogether, since that could lead to a temporary dip in your credit score. But if it's a new card, closing it won't have as large an impact as closing a long-standing credit account would.
  3. In the event you spot other issues, such as identification errors, take action to fix the problem. Call the credit card company and update your identification information. To make sure lenders get the full picture of your payment history, you'll want all your accounts to show up accurately on your credit report and factor into your credit scores.

The Bottom Line

Having a history of on-time payments in your credit file is one of the top ways to build and improve credit. So first look into why your credit card isn't showing up; if there's no way to make it appear on your credit report as you hoped it would, you have other options.

Consider adding other types of information to your credit report, perhaps by applying for a credit-builder loan or a secured credit card. Or sign up for a free feature like Experian Boost®ø, which lets you add positive utility and cellphone payment history to your credit report to potentially improve your credit.