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How to Destroy a Metal Credit Card
Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It may not have been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuer. This site may be compensated through a credit card issuer partnership.
Getting rid of a plastic credit card can be as easy as snipping it up with scissors or running it through the shredder — but a metal credit card is harder to destroy. We’ve got some tips to help you do so effectively.
How to destroy a metal credit card
3 ways to dispose of a metal credit card
- Mail it back to the issuer. You can likely request a prepaid envelope from your card issuer for this purpose.
- Take it to a bank branch. If the financial institution that issued the card has physical bank or credit union branches, you may be able to take the card to one of those and turn it in. But first, call the number on the back of your card and ask if you can do this, to make sure you’ll get the in-branch assistance you need.
- Cut it up using tin snips. Regular scissors likely won’t get the job done, depending on what kind of metal your card is made from and how thick it is. However, tin snips are designed for cutting metal — if you go this route, cut the card up thoroughly enough that you destroy the magnetic stripe and EMV chip for maximum security.
What not to do with a metal credit card
For one thing, don’t try to run your metal credit card through the shredder. You’re more likely to damage the shredder than destroy the credit card. The same holds true for trying to cut the card up with scissors.
You also shouldn’t turn to a third-party service to destroy your card — this is worth noting for all credit cards, whether metal or plastic. If someone is trying to get your credit card, there’s a high likelihood it’s a scam.
Why destroy your metal credit card?
Destroying old credit cards is a smart step to protect you from identity theft. You’ll also want to consider how to close the credit card account — which can be done by calling the number on the back of your card and talking with a customer service representative.
Some consumers may worry closing a credit card account hurts your credit score. If you’re carrying a balance on other cards, closing one account can cause your score to dip by affecting your overall utilization ratio. But if you keep utilization low and use your other cards responsibly, your score should rebound. Plus, if the closed account was in good standing, that history stays on your credit reports for up to 10 years.
How to get a metal credit card
Metal credit cards are more common and accessible now than they once were. Here are a few metal credit cards with valuable rewards programs and no annual fee or low annual fees:
U.S. Bank Altitude® Go Visa Signature® Card
Rewards: Earn 4X points on dining, takeout, and restaurant delivery, 2X points at grocery stores, grocery delivery, gas stations, EV charging stations and on streaming services. Plus, a $15 credit for annual streaming purchases like Netflix, Hulu, Spotify®, Apple Music, Disney+, HBO Max and more! And earn 1X points on all other eligible purchases.
Sign-up bonus: Earn 20,000 bonus points when you spend $1,000 in eligible purchases within the first 90 days of account opening.
Annual fee: $0
Regular APR: 18.74% - 27.74% (variable)
Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
Rewards: Earn 5x on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®, 3x on dining and 2x on all other travel purchases.
Sign-up bonus: Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.
Annual fee: $95
Regular APR: 18.99% - 25.99% variable
Capital One Savor Cash Rewards Credit Card
Rewards: Earn unlimited 4% cash back on dining, entertainment, and popular streaming services, 3% at grocery stores and 1% on all other purchases.
Sign-up bonus: Earn a one-time $300 cash bonus once you spend $3,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening .
Annual fee: $95
Regular APR: 18.99%, 23.99% or 26.99% (variable)
The information related to the Capital One Savor Cash Rewards Credit Card has been independently collected by LendingTree and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of this card prior to publication.
History of metal credit cards
Metal cards were first introduced by American Express in 1999 with the debut of the Centurion card. This luxury card already had an exclusive status due to being invite-only, but Amex elevated the hype by making the card out of titanium. Over the years, metal cards have become increasingly popular and less exclusive.
Some metal cards, of course, are luxury cards with exclusive benefits and expensive annual fees. But there are also popular travel and cash back cards made of metal with low annual fees or no annual fee. Though metal cards aren’t as rare as they once were, consumers may still enjoy them because they’re noticeably heavier and sturdier than flimsy plastic cards, and might inspire conversation when splitting a bill.
Many card issuers these days enhance the design of their cards by using titanium, stainless steel and embedded metals. Some cards may be solid metal, while others may be metal covering a plastic core.