Have you ever made a credit card payment and then waited impatiently for it to be applied to your account? Perhaps you needed to free up some credit to make a large payment, or you're hoping to lower your balance in preparation for a credit report update.
Your credit card payment's timing and method have an impact on how quickly it is applied to your account.
The time it takes for a payment to appear on your credit card account is determined by how and when you pay, as well as your credit card issuer and bank.
Which payments are the quickest to post?
Electronic payments made on a business day and during business hours, whether made online or by phone, will post to your credit card account faster than a mailed check. When you use electronic payments, you don't have to wait for your credit card issuer to receive your payment in the mail.
Because payment posting and processing times vary by credit card issuer, contacting your credit card issuer is the best way to find out when your credit card payment will post to your account. They'll be able to provide you with a precise response. If you have a pending payment, your card issuer can tell you when that payment will be posted to your account and reflected in your available credit.
When Will Your Online or Phone Payments Be Approved?
Electronic payments are faster, but they aren't instantaneous. An online or phone payment can take one to three business days to post to your credit card account and reflect in your available credit. This is because payments made with a checking account and routing number are processed in batches overnight rather than in real time. Payments made late on Friday or over the weekend may not appear in your account until the following business week.
You can call or check your online account after you've made your payment to see if it's been posted, as well as your current balance and available credit.
When Does a Mailed Payment Become Effective in Your Account?
The time it takes for mailed credit card payments to post to your account is the longest. Your credit card payment must be sent to your credit card company. Following that, the payment processing center must open hundreds of envelopes, retrieve payments, and post them to each account.
Increased mail volume and postal holidays may cause mailed payments to be delayed during the holiday season. If you're mailing a credit card payment, keep this in mind.
Checking and credit card accounts that are linked
Your credit card payment will post to your account the same day if your credit card is linked to your checking account, which means both accounts are with the same bank. This is the case, for example, with Bank of America. 1 Of course, you'll want to double-check that the funds are in your checking account.
Payment Posting vs. Paying on Time
Even if your credit card payment does not appear in your available credit right away, your payment will be considered on time if you submit the payment information online (or by phone) by the cut-off time on the due date. If your bank returns the payment, for example, because you don't have enough money in your account, you'll be charged a $40.2 returned check fee.
Obtaining Credit in a Specific Timeframe
It's best to make your payment a few days before you need the available credit to ensure that it posts to your account by a certain date. Alternatively, if you require a specific amount of credit to make a purchase, contact your credit card issuer and request that a phone payment be applied to your account immediately.
When you require additional credit for a larger purchase, you may wish to request an increase in your credit limit. If you've used your credit card responsibly, have a good credit history, have enough income to support a higher credit limit, and it's been a long time since your credit limit was increased, you might be eligible. Alternatively, if you've already made a payment that's yet to post to your account, your credit card issuer may allow you to temporarily exceed your credit limit for the purchase.
Most Commonly Asked Questions (FAQs)
What is the status of my credit card payment?
When you pay with a credit card, the transaction is usually marked as "pending" until your bank processes it and transfers the funds from your account.
What is the procedure for canceling a pending credit card payment?
A pending payment can usually be canceled until your bank begins processing the transaction. If you made the payment online, you can cancel it through the website or the mobile app. If you paid by check or over the phone, you'll need to contact the credit card company.
When should I use my credit card to make a purchase?
Your payment deadline will be determined by your due date and the time it takes your credit card company to receive and process payments. Many credit card companies will let you pay on the same day as the due date as long as you meet the deadline. If you're mailing the payment by regular mail, it should arrive at least a week before the due date.