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Credit Sesame Review: Best Budget Credit Monitoring Service

Credit Sesame doesn’t offer as much coverage as more expensive credit monitoring services, but it’s still a great and inexpensive option with positive customer reviews.

Overview

Credit Sesame is a great choice if you want to monitor your credit but don’t have a lot of extra cash on hand. It offers good credit monitoring at a low monthly price, and there’s even a free option—it’s less thorough, but it’s better than no credit monitoring at all.

Credit Sesame pros and cons

Pros

  • Free and low-cost monitoring plans
  • Affordable monthly updates from all three credit bureaus
  • Basic ID monitoring services with higher-tier packages
  • More positive customer reviews than most other services

Cons

  • Less identity theft protection than competitors
  • No bank/credit account monitoring
  • No phone number or online chat to customer service

Compare Credit Sesame membership plans

Free membershipAdvanced CreditPro CreditPlatinum Protection
PriceFree$9.95/mo.$15.95/mo.$19.95/mo.
Credit monitoring1 bureau1 bureau3 bureaus3 bureaus
Monthly credit score1 bureau3 bureaus3 bureaus3 bureaus
Monthly full credit report3 bureaus3 bureaus3 bureaus
Daily credit score (1 bureau)
24/7 help—credit report
24/7 help—lost/stolen wallet
Social Security number monitoring
$50,000 identity theft insurance
$1 million identity theft insurance
View planView PlansView PlansView PlansView Plans
Price
Credit monitoring
Monthly credit score
Monthly full credit report
Daily credit score (1 bureau)
24/7 help—credit report
24/7 help—lost/stolen wallet
Social Security number monitoring
$50,000 identity theft insurance
$1 million identity theft insurance
View plan
Free membershipAdvanced CreditPro CreditPlatinum Protection
Free$9.95/mo.$15.95/mo.$19.95/mo.
1 bureau1 bureau3 bureaus3 bureaus
1 bureau3 bureaus3 bureaus3 bureaus
3 bureaus3 bureaus3 bureaus
View PlansView PlansView PlansView Plans

*Data effective 02/14/2019. Offers subject to change.

Price

Credit Sesame offers lower prices than a lot of its competitors. Its plans aren’t as comprehensive as more expensive options like IdentityForce, but Credit Sesame’s plans still cover the basics and then some.

Free membership

Credit Sesame’s free membership includes some basic perks that make it a good fit for someone who wants to casually monitor their credit or is just starting to establish their credit.

It’s a good way to introduce yourself to what credit means, check your credit, and understand how your financial situation can affect your credit score.

What you get

  • Basic credit monitoring
  • A glimpse into your loan standing
  • Monthly credit score reports (TransUnion only)
  • $50,000 in identity theft insurance

Advanced Credit plan

At $9.95 a month, the Advanced Credit membership goes just a bit deeper. You’ll get access to daily credit score updates and credit monitoring, both from one credit bureau.

You’ll also get a monthly report from all three bureaus, making it a great choice if you need to keep track of your credit reports after an identity event.

What you get

  • Everything from Free plan
  • Daily credit score updates (1 bureau)
  • Credit score monitoring (1 bureau)
  • Monthly credit score and report (3 bureaus)

Pro Credit plan

We like Credit Sesame’s Pro Credit membership plan best, and it will work well for most people.

At $15.95 a month, Credit Sesame’s Pro Credit plan is still relatively inexpensive, especially compared to the comparable plans from other brands: IdentityForce’s lowest-priced plan is $23.95 per month. And Experian CreditWorks’s lowest-cost plan is $24.99 per month.

What you get

  • Everything from Advanced Credit plan
  • 3-bureau credit monitoring
  • Monthly credit score from all 3 bureaus
  • 24/7 access to live experts to resolve inaccuracies

Platinum Protection plan

Finally, there’s the Platinum Protection plan. You’ll get the perks of the Pro Credit plan, plus all the extras like lost or stolen wallet protection, Social Security number and public records monitoring. It also increases the identity theft insurance amount to $1 million.

What you get

  • Everything from Pro Credit plan
  • Lost or stolen wallet protection
  • Social Security number monitoring
  • Public records monitoring
  • $1 million in identity theft insurance

Credit Sesame features

Credit Sesame’s main focus is credit monitoring. The Platinum Protection plan offers some identity theft protection, covering up to $1 million in fees to restore your identity if you’re ever a victim of identity theft. But Credit Sesame is less comprehensive in terms of protecting your identity before its stolen.

ASecureLife’s recommendation: If you want a service that helps you take proactive steps to protect both your identity and your credit, we recommend these more thorough identity theft protection services.

What we like

Signing up for an account with Credit Sesame is super easy. You enter a bit about yourself—name, address, the last four digits of your Social Security number—choose a password, and instantly get access to your credit standing.

We also like that all three paid Credit Sesame subscriptions give you a monthly credit score and credit reports from all three bureaus: Experian, Equifax and TransUnion.

Plus, the Pro Credit and Platinum Protection plans include daily credit monitoring from all three credit bureaus. Both these perks make checking your credit and keeping an eye on your finances relatively easy.

ASL Insider Tip

FICO vs. FAKO

Credit Sesame reports two types of credit scores: FICO and VantageScore. Free credit scores are generated by TransUnion, which provides FICO scores. Paying members receive a VantageScore score. VantageScore was developed by the three major credit bureaus (Equifax, Experian and TransUnion)—as an alternative to FICO.

You may see the term FAKO score thrown around too. A FAKO score is any score that’s neither FICO or VantageScore. FAKO scores are used for educational purposes and might not reflect your actual credit score.

Credit Sesame app

Credit Sesame’s mobile app is highly rated in the Apple App store and the Google Play store with over four stars on average.

The app is user-friendly and offers the same useful services as the Credit Sesame website in mobile form. You can check your credit score and debt-to-income ratio; keep track of student, home, and auto loans; and get tips to improve your credit score.

Credit Sesame App Screenshot
Credit Sesame App Screenshot

Customer service

Overall, customers are satisfied with Credit Sesame’s offerings. The majority of online reviews are positive, and customers are especially impressed with Credit Sesame’s lack of runaround.

The company does exactly what it promises: provides you with your credit score and advice on improving it.

Availability

In terms of reaching customer service, Credit Sesame offers only a page of resources and an email form—there’s no direct phone number, and there’s no option for online chat. Fortunately, customer service responds in a timely and helpful manner via email.

Contracts and cancellation policies

Cancelling is pretty straightforward for free memberships. For paid memberships, you have to send a request to member support, explaining why you want to cancel your subscription, and wait until the end of your monthly billing period.

Our recommendation

ASL Our Choice

Credit Sesame is great for credit monitoring on a budget. It gives you the tools to check and improve your credit, with options for daily or monthly credit monitoring.

Overall, we recommend Credit Sesame’s Pro Credit plan. It’s fairly inexpensive, but it comes with some great perks: updates on any loans you have, credit monitoring from all three bureaus, a monthly credit score from all three bureaus and a daily credit score.

Plus, it offers 24/7 assistance if you have any questions or concerns about your credit score.

>>Get your money right. View Credit Sesame’s subscription plans.

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