The mistake is easy enough to make, but the difference is significant. Instant decision credit cards vary from instant approval cards in that unbeknownst to you the credit card company sometimes conducts a credit check. This can affect your ability to get approved and delay the time it takes to get your card if you are in fact approved.
The process of applying for a credit card can be tedious and lengthy, so the appeal of an instant anything credit card is understandable. Furthermore, getting an instant decision on a credit card application means not having to schedule meetings with bankers or credit card representatives. Particularly if you need a card right away, for say a trip or unexpected expense, this is a good option to know whether or not you have been approved rather than having to check the mailbox everyday for that piece of plastic. As we know, numerous credit checks can negatively impact your credit score, so avoid applying for several instant decision credit cards at the same time. There are very few people who meet the extremely high requirements for instant approval of a credit card, so do not be dissuaded if your instant decision does not translate into an instant yes.
Try to improve your chances of approval by applying for a credit card that is geared toward your rating bracket. And if you are truly in need of an immediate card, be sure to apply for an instant approval rather than an instant response card. Either way, be sure to read both the big and the fine print.
Applying online for an instant decision credit card is a great way to safely and quickly get a response; however, instant response does not mean instant approval.