How long does it take for credit limit typically to be raised? I'm planning a trip in 3 months (South America) and I need a 1200 GBP credit card deposit for renting a car. I've never needed a credit card before thus I have no credit history, but I managed to get a card with a very small credit limit of 500 GBP last month. Do you think it's feasible that I'll get that increase in that time frame? I'll try to max it out and pay it full every month, if that helps.

Note: I'm solvent and could easily afford a ten-fold deposit if it was in cash. I'm based in the UK

  • Are you from the UK travelling within the UK? Are all of these values in GPB (or GBX...)? These things may or may not be relevant dependent upon the answers.
    – MD-Tech
    Commented Oct 10, 2017 at 16:03
  • Would you be able to pre-pay the credit card by 1200 prior to the booking? Not sure if that works for someone doing a credit check rather than actually pulling a payment directly. Commented Oct 10, 2017 at 16:05
  • I'm afraid the credit card doesn't allow paying more than the spent money... I found it very strange. Although it's a retailer credit card. Commented Oct 10, 2017 at 16:06
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    You could try calling your customer representative and request a temporary increase, explaining your situation.
    – 0xFEE1DEAD
    Commented Oct 10, 2017 at 17:25
  • @ 0xFEE1DEAD I will do that when my time for leaving approaches however I wanted to have as much information e.g. someone's experience at hand before doing so. If I do it outright now they will tell me no. Why else will they have not granted me a larger credit since the beginning. Commented Oct 13, 2017 at 14:06

2 Answers 2


The actual act of increasing your credit limit, once they agree to do so, is instantaneous. However, depending on the bank in question and their IT infrastructure, it could take up to 24 hours as they may have batch processes that run overnight to update all the required systems.

But I suspect what you are asking is how long does it take for a bank to agree to increase your limit. That is not possible to answer as it will vary from bank to bank and depend on your personal circumstances. The bank will increase your limit if they think you are a safe bet, ie they are not going to be exposed to the risk you won't repay the money. You will need to ring them and ask them, good luck!

It's quite possible they would have given you a bigger limit when the account was opened in any case, in which case there shouldn't be any issue. If this is the case the timeframe you've had the account isn't relevant.

(I use to work for a bank including in their credit and IT departments)

  • Thanks David, I'm obviously interested in how long will it take them to agree to increase it. Most credit card providers conditions read: that if you've managed your account well for a few months. you'd be able to request an increase in your credit limit. I am thus looking for actual experience of someone having had their limit increased by x hundread pounds in y months after a spending/pay pattern z e.g. How do they evaluate that I'm not a risk to them? Commented Oct 13, 2017 at 14:00
  • @Koenig Lear - Most banks will regularly evaluate their customers on an annual basis but they can do this at any stage, just ring them and ask. They can only say no! They will check your credit history using Experian, Equifax and also see if you have been servicing your account well, ie keeping within limits and making timely payments.
    – davidjwest
    Commented Oct 13, 2017 at 14:10
  • Bear in mind that I just got the credit card I haven't even made the first payment. They obviously didn't grant me a larger credit because they didn't find any previous credit history. I've checked the experian report and there's nothing wrong other than I have never been granted credit before never needed it as I stated before. Commented Oct 13, 2017 at 14:14
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    Did you ask for the initial £500 limit or did they set it at that level? Your only real option is to ring them and discuss it with them. You may be better off waiting a couple of months so you will have made some payments and they have some kind of history to look at.
    – davidjwest
    Commented Oct 13, 2017 at 14:27
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    Nobody can say for sure but I personally would wait until you've made a couple of payments at least. You could put a credit onto your account as suggested above.
    – davidjwest
    Commented Oct 13, 2017 at 14:55

I was unable to increase my credit in 3 months with the original card (retailer). Probably a 6 month period is more reasonable time to expect for a limit increase (provided you make good use of the card and make your payments).

However, in my particular case the payments during those 3 months to the original card were good enough to re-request a card with my everyday bank and get accepted (previously rejected) with a significant credit line (compared to the retailer credit card).

Furthermore I was able to rent the car (in South America) without a credit card by using the same company that I use in the UK (Although when I contacted them; they were unable to give the answer this via e-mail or by phone). I was able to find out until the day I took the car.

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