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Just wondering whether I should apply for a credit limit increase, or a new card that I'll never use. I have one card with good rewards that I use regularly, always pay in full and only spend what I have in the bank. But I hear credit utilization affects FICO scores, and I sometimes break 50 percent of the credit limit.

So I'm wondering, can I apply for a different card and not use it to bring the utilization factors down, or is a high utilization on one card still a red flag?

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You can either ask for higher limit on the existing card, or get a new card that you many not use. The utilization is on the combined limit and combined spend.

It makes sense though for other purpose to have another card [typically if existing one is Visa the other one can be Master]. This would help in;

  • If one card the lost, the exposure is not much. Plus you have other card to use in the time being.
  • If one of the networks [visa/Master] is facing issue, the other one helps, though this is not often.
  • There are different deals that Master & Visa have with Merchants.
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