Credit cards have almost become an essential part of modern life. There will be countless occasions when you will need to use a credit card. There will be several times when you cannot make a much needed purchase if you do not have a credit card. They are seen as safer than ever before, and certainly much safer than carrying that amount of cash around with you.
People who are over 18 with an employment or regular income and a good credit history should, in theory, have no trouble in getting accepted for a credit card. If you meet these criteria then your chances of getting a card are much improved. Even if you have missed payments on another card, or bill, or have marked your credit record in some small way, you may still be approved.
In fact, the credit history is probably the most important thing when a credit card company is deciding whether to give you a card or not. Almost every transaction you make impacts your credit history in some way. Loans that you already have are recorded here. Your mortgage record is to be found here. How good you are at paying your bills on time is also written in your credit report. If you have missed the old payment through no fault of your own, then this may not be important. But if you are a persistent late payer of bills, or if you have already missed several payments, then it will mar your credit report.
A credit card issuer will carefully examine this report to look for evidence about how good a risk you will prove to be for them. Other people also consult your credit report like insurance companies or even a potential employer. So keep your credit history clean!
If you have been refused a card, you could ask the company about why they have refused you. It may be helpful to you to get a co-signor. This is someone who is willing to stand as guarantor for you. What this person is saying is that if you miss a payment, then they will be willing to pay it for you. This is a good way to repair a poor credit record. If you can find a parent, partner or sibling who is willing to help you to get a credit card by being a joint applicant then it will really help.