Visa Credit Cards
Two of the names that are emblematic to the world of credit cards are Visa and MasterCard, though in fact they are actually payment systems, not a single credit card. Instead of issuing credit cards themselves, Visa and MasterCard use issuers all over the world, who issue cards that use the Visa and MasterCard systems, respectively. This clarification is necessary because when one sees the names of Visa and MasterCard on a credit card, the first idea that comes to his or her mind is that this is a credit card brand, which is not exactly the case. Although Visa and MasterCard are not the only credit card payment systems, they are the two most important.
Visa is an alliance of 21,000 financial institutions that issue Visa cards. Sure, you can imagine how many different varieties of cards are offered under the Visa brand! Visa cards include debit cards, credit cards and prepaid cards. Each of the three types of cards has many varieties. For instance, all types of credit cards, like student cards, platinum cards, gold cards, secured cards, rewards cards and so on are offered under the Visa brand.
All the 21,000 financial institutions that own the Visa system can issue debit cards, credit cards and/or prepaid cards with their own brand and their own terms, provided that they comply with the general rules of the Visa system in regards to security, transactions processing, fraud protection, etc. This means that every Visa card has to meet certain requirements, no matter when, where and by whom it has been issued.
As a truly international payment system that operates in over 160 countries, Visa offers many benefits to its card holders. The global Visa alliance offers virtually all types of credit, debit and prepaid cards, although in certain countries and regions that all types and varieties of credit cards are offered. So, when you are applying for a Visa credit card, check with your local agents what is offered on your market.
When you apply for a Visa credit card, you can do it with many issuers all the time, although it is highly recommendable that you don't apply with more than three issuers at the same time. If you get rejected by one institution, you can still apply with another. The fact that Visa is an alliance (and not a single company) allows you to apply with as many Visa issuers as you wish. Additionally, although the major requirements and conditions are the same, each Visa issuer has its own requirements and conditions, so you need to check these in advance and see if they are beneficial for you or not.
Visa offers all types of credit cards. The most basic credit card is Visa Classic and it is good for starters. Visa Platinum and especially Visa Gold are for customers with outstanding credit history. Both Visa Platinum and Visa Gold offer higher credit limits and more rewards than Visa Classic but there are also more requirements in order to qualify for them. Visa Secured is suitable for people with bad credit because it helps them to reestablish good credit history. The reward credit cards come also in many varieties - frequent flier points, Disney credit cards, etc.