How to Increase Your ABSA Credit Card Limit?

By Tevait Feanle •  Updated: 05/05/24 •  4 min read

The initial total balance you are offered on a credit card is not set in stone forever. If you show good credit behavior, pay at least the minimum payment on time, every time, and generally show your creditworthiness, you will be offered (or can apply for) a limit increase over time. Today we will look at how to increase your ABSA credit card limit, and other key information you should know before deciding that a balance increase is right for you.

How Can I Increase My ABSA Credit Card Limit?

It is less common than it used to be for banks like ABSA to regularly upgrade your credit limit. It can also no longer be done automatically but must be approved by the borrower (that’s you) every time the chance is on offer. Typically, provided you show good management of the card and don’t immediately max out your balance every time, you will be able to apply for a credit limit increase after a year. Except for unusual circumstances, no lender will grant 2 permanent credit limit increases in a single year, although you may be able to apply for a temporary limit increase in an emergency if your salary and history suggest you can pay it off timeously. 

Often, the bank will approach you to ask if you want a credit limit increase. This will not bypass the need for a thorough credit check and does not count as immediate approval. You will be asked to supply up-to-date documents, like your latest payslips, before they increase the limit, too. If it has been over a year since your last limit increase, and ABSA has not approached you, you can apply for a credit limit increase through the ABSA banking app or via the call center. Again, credit checks and other verifications will have to be done before the limit increase will apply. 

Can I Withdraw Money From My ABSA Credit Card?

You can withdraw money from an ABSA credit card the same way as you would a normal debit card, through an ATM. However, the fees you are charged for doing so may be higher than using a traditional cash-backed banking debit card. To keep fees as low as possible, be sure to use an ABSA ATM, so you don’t attract the SASWITCH fees for using a different bank’s ATM.

Can Increasing Your Credit Card Limit Increase Your Credit Score?

Increasing your credit card limit may increase your credit score, but it is highly dependent on your current credit card position as well as your behavior after the limit increase.

We have mentioned before that credit utilization is a small part of your credit score. This means how much of your credit you have used out of the total limit available to you. While it isn’t weighted as heavily as things like your monthly payment record, it can account for 10-15% of your overall credit score. Lenders like to see some balance use, so look for about 30% of the balance used, but will penalize you if that strays over the 50% mark, as you begin to look reliant on credit to fund your lifestyle.

So if your credit card is currently over 50%, and your new balance increase adjusts that into the 30%-50% range lenders like, it will improve your credit score. If, however, you take the limit increase as an excuse to go on a spending spree, you may actively harm your credit score. Now you have a higher balance that is still maxed out! Especially if you get lax about paying your monthly payment due to the new strain. Additionally, people who manage their credit cards very well and pay off their balance in full every month will not see a change in their credit score. 

How Do You Qualify For An ABSA Gold Card?

The qualification criteria for the ABSA Gold Credit Card are: a salary of R4000 a month or more, consenting to the credit check needed, not being in active debt counseling or insolvency proceedings, and being a South African citizen or legal resident with an ID. You must also be over 18 years of age. It will also help if your credit score is over 640 or so, as this is the minimum credit score needed to access most types of credit in South Africa. 

Building up a larger line of credit on your credit card can be an invaluable tool when used correctly. However, it is also a very tempting ‘bait’ that could lure you into worse spending habits if you aren’t careful. Deciding whether or not increasing your ABSA credit card limit is right for you is a very personal decision. Hopefully, you now feel empowered to make the right choice for your specific circumstances.

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