Credit Cards with No Preset Spending Limits – What’s the Point?

Many credit card issuers offer credit cards with no preset spending limits for unlimited spending on your credit card.

However, when you look at the fine print, the unlimited credit line restrictions clearly inhibit your spending.

If the virtue of no preset spending limit credit cards is to provide high-end customers with an unlimited line of credit, then the policies of these credit cards create a paradox that makes no preset line of credit cards pointless.

No Preset Spending Limits – Reading the Fine Print

Here’s an example of the fine print from the Bank of America Visa Signature Card, which features no preset spending limit.

“Important Notice: This credit card has no pre-set spending limit. This does not mean that all transactions will be approved. We will consider transactions for approval on an individual basis, including transactions in excess of the Revolving Line (referred to above as your Credit Line).”

This single statement is so full of contradictions that it defies intuition.

First of all, no preset spending limit cards do have a preset spending limit, which is known as your Credit Line or Revolving Line, just like any other credit card that has a set line of credit that you can access.

The only difference with no preset spending limit cards is that you can occasionally exceed this Credit Line, although the specific circumstances under which you would be allowed to do this aren’t exactly clear.

They indicate themselves that “This does not mean that all transactions will be approved.”

So how exactly does a customer know which transactions will be approved, and are customers supposed to simply attempt to make purchases that exceed their credit limit with the hope that a particular transaction will be approved?

Since the issuer will “consider transactions for approval on an individual basis,” this really leaves the customer in the dark on whether any individual transaction will be approved.

Customer Example for No Preset Spending Limit Cards

A high-end customer is on vacation and decides to charge an extra $5,000 on their credit card to take an extra special private scuba diving excursion with their family for a few days. However, this $5,000 charge will exceed his standard Credit Line. Since the approval of this charge is in the hands of the credit card issuer, the charge may be denied and the customer unable to take the trip, and all of this will be decided at the point of sale during the credit card transaction.

This could have bigger implications for credit card charges that take place after a service is provide or in emergency situations, where money in excess of your Credit Line is needed in a hurry.

It also begs the question of what criteria credit card issuers are using to make their decision on whether to approve any given transaction.

It is possible that restrictions could be placed on certain types of transactions in excess of the standard Credit Line, so the purchase of an automobile may be approved, but excessive spending at a casino in Las Vegas could be denied, thereby giving the credit card issuers the ability to make choices that interfere with the free will of their customers.

The policy of no preset spending limit credit cards is simply designed to entice the not-so-rich into thinking they could spend more than they can afford if they wanted, but it’s like giving someone the keys to the city and then changing the locks.

Most people will probably never try to spend more than their limit allows, and the banks would most likely turn them down if they do.

But it sure does feel good to have unlimited spending power, even if it’s just in theory, although it’s a little like winning the lottery, but losing the ticket.

What about you? Have you ever had an experience with a no preset spending limit credit card? Have you ever used your card in excess of the spending limit? We’d love to hear your experiences in the comments section below.

No Preset Spending Limit Credit Cards

Here’s a list of some credit cards with no preset spending limits.

If you’re not just looking for the rush that comes with unlimited spending, you may also be interested in these Top Rewards Credit Cards, some of which also have no preset spending limits.

Visa Signature Credit Cards with No Present Spending Limits

Visa Signature Credit Cards

No Pre-Set Spending Limit Policy

With Visa Signature you have the flexibility to exceed your credit limit should you ever need the additional purchasing power. So you’ll have peace of mind knowing that you’ll have additional spending flexibility because of a no pre-set spending limit.

Certain restrictions and exclusions may apply. Individual transactions are evaluated by your card issuer based on factors such as suspected fraud, account history, credit record, payment resources, revolving balances, prior cash advances, and safety and soundness considerations. If your card issuer authorizes a transaction that causes you to exceed your revolving credit line, then you must pay, as part of your monthly minimum amount due, the amount by which your new balance exceeds your revolving credit line.

American Express Credit Cards with No Present Spending Limits

American Express Credit Cards

No Pre-Set Spending Limit Policy

The American Express Card has no pre-set spending limit, which gives you purchasing power that adjusts with your use of the Card and other factors. No pre-set spending limit does not mean unlimited spending. Purchasing power adjusts with your use of the Card, your payment history, credit card record and financial resources known to us, and other factors.

Take advantage of these credit cards with no spending limits if you just can’t live within the budgets of your life.

Review additional Credit Card Information for credit card articles, card reviews, and more details about credit cards.

Please feel free to let us know what you think about credit cards with no preset spending limits.


  1. d says

    Ridiculous article. First, NPSL cards aren’t just given to “high-end” customers. Second, why does your hypothetical “high-end” customer only carry one credit card? Third, awesome snark with “Take advantage of these credit cards with no spending limits if you just can’t live within the budgets of your life.”

    • says

      Hello d,

      Thanks for your comment. I guess the term “high-end” is sort of subjective, and everyone that is approved for a card with no preset spending limit may not necessarily be considered a high-end customer.

      It’s also true that many people carry more than one credit card, and especially a high-end customer. However, my example was being used to illustrate how you could be denied a purchase when using a NPSL credit card and the potential negative impact of not knowing your real credit limit before making a purchase. Even if you do have another credit card available to back up your purchases in the case of a denial, I personally wouldn’t want to go into any transaction without knowing for sure whether my purchase would be approved or denied. I do believe you could call most credit card issuers to check before you make the purchase, just to make sure it would be approved.

      I am glad you liked my snark though and I appreciate you reading.

      Thanks for visiting, Max

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