Wednesday, August 17, 2022

    The best credit cards for students of January 2022

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    Updated

    2021-12-30T23:14:02Z

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    Best student credit card Editor’s rating Best for Intro bonus Learn more

    Bank of America Bank of America® Customized Cash Rewards Credit Card for Students

    Bank of America® Customized Cash Rewards Credit Card for Students

    A five pointed star 4.2 /5

    Best cash-back welcome bonus

    $200 cash rewards bonus after making $1,000 in purchases in the first 90 days from account opening

    Learn More

    Bank of America Bank of America® Travel Rewards Credit Card for Students

    Bank of America® Travel Rewards Credit Card for Students

    A five pointed star 4.3 /5

    Best for travelers

    25,000 online bonus points after spending $1,000 in purchases in the first 90 days from account opening (redeemed as a $250 statement credit toward travel and dining purchases)

    Learn More

    Chase Chase Freedom® Student credit card

    Chase Freedom® Student credit card

    A five pointed star 4 /5

    Best for travel and purchase protection

    $50 Bonus after first purchase made within the first 3 months from account opening

    Apply Now

    Deserve Deserve® EDU Mastercard for Students

    Deserve® EDU Mastercard for Students

    A five pointed star 4.2 /5

    Best for international students

    one year Amazon Prime Student subscription ($59 value) after spending $500 in the first three billing cycles on the card

    Apply Now

    Discover Discover it® Student Cash Back

    Discover it® Student Cash Back

    A five pointed star 5 /5

    A tooltip

    Our editor’s ratings are primarily based on 3 things: simplicity, affordability, and value. Our credit card editor takes those factors into account, and comes up with a rating to best reflect how the card performs in that criteria – relative to other products we’ve reviewed.

    Best for rotating bonus categories

    Unlimited Cashback Match – Discover will automatically match all the cash back you’ve earned at the end of your first year with no minimum spending or maximum rewards

    Apply Now Rates & Fees

    Capital One Capital One SavorOne Student Cash Rewards Credit Card

    Capital One SavorOne Student Cash Rewards Credit Card

    A five pointed star 4.2 /5

    Best for dining, groceries, entertainment, and streaming

    N/A

    Apply Now

    Discover Discover it® Student chrome

    Discover it® Student chrome

    A five pointed star 4 /5

    A tooltip

    Our editor’s ratings are primarily based on 3 things: simplicity, affordability, and value. Our credit card editor takes those factors into account, and comes up with a rating to best reflect how the card performs in that criteria – relative to other products we’ve reviewed.

    Best rewards for gas and dining

    earn 2% cash back at Gas Stations and Restaurants on up to $1,000 in combined purchases each quarter

    Apply Now Rates & Fees

    Capital One Journey Student Rewards from Capital One

    Journey Student Rewards from Capital One

    A five pointed star 4 /5

    Get rewarded for on-time payments

    N/A

    Apply Now

    Petal Petal® 2

    Petal® 2 “Cash Back, No Fees” Visa® Credit Card

    A five pointed star 4 /5

    Best for building credit

    N/A

    Apply Now

    The best credit cards for students of January 2022

    Applying for your first credit card is an exciting milestone regardless of age, but young adults can find it hard to get approved with limited income and credit history. Some parents add their children as credit card authorized users while they’re still minors to get a head start on building credit, but this strategy isn’t a good fit for everyone.

    If you’re a student without established credit, there are still plenty of credit cards that you can qualify for. Then, once you’ve improved your credit score by using a credit card responsibly, it can be easier to upgrade to more lucrative rewards credit cards.

    Some of the major banks offer credit cards that are specifically geared to students, and many don’t require a deposit like secured credit cards (although those are an option for young adults, too). The very best student credit cards offer rewards for your spending, along with welcome bonuses, travel and purchase protections, or incentives for paying on time.

    Read more: Guide to best starter credit cards

    Here are the top student credit cards to consider if you’re new to credit — but if you’ve already got a good credit score and a credit history under your belt, you may want to check out our guides to the best cash-back credit cards and best no-annual-fee credit cards as well.

    Best cash-back welcome bonus: Bank of America® Customized Cash Rewards Credit Card for Students

    Regular APR

    13.99% – 23.99% Variable

    Featured Reward

    $200 cash rewards bonus after making $1,000 in purchases in the first 90 days from account opening

    Intro APR

    0% intro APR on purchases and balance transfers for 15 billing cycles

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  • Pros & Cons
  • Details
  • Pros
    • Generous welcome bonus for a student credit card
    • No annual fee
    • Flexible rewards earning – you can pick the category in which you earn the most cash back each quarter
    Cons
    • Foreign transaction fees
    • Few benefits compared to other rewards credit cards
    • Card only earns 1% cash back outside of bonus categories
    • Online $200 cash rewards bonus after making at least $1,000 in purchases in the first 90 days of your account opening
    • 3% and 2% cash back on the first $2,500 in combined choice category/grocery store/wholesale club purchases each quarter, then earn 1%
    • 1% cash back on all other purchases
    • Cash rewards don’t expire and for future purchases, you can change your choice category online or through the mobile app
    • 0% introductory APR on purchases and balance transfers for 15 billing cycles (balance transfers must be made within 60 days from account opening)
    • No annual fee
    • Access your FICO® Score updated monthly for free, within your Mobile Banking app or in Online Banking

    Card type: Unsecured

    Annual fee: $0

    Pros: Generous welcome bonus, earns 3% cash back in a category you choose from a list and 2% back at grocery stores and wholesale clubs (up to $2,500 in combined spending per quarter, then 1%), introductory APR offer 

    Cons: Foreign transaction fees, few extra benefits

    The Bank of America® Customized Cash Rewards Credit Card for Students offers one of the most generous welcome bonuses of any student credit card. Like its grown-up equivalent (the Bank of America® Customized Cash Rewards Credit Card), new cardholders can earn a $200 cash rewards bonus after making $1,000 in purchases in the first 90 days from account opening.

    Read more: I helped my newly adult children get their first credit cards, and we’re going for affordability and value over fancy rewards

    The card’s other compelling feature is the ability to customize the category in which you earn the most rewards. You can choose to earn 3% back on gas, online shopping, dining, travel, drugstores, or home improvement/furnishings on up to $2,500 in spending (combined with the 2% categories of groceries and wholesale clubs, then 1%) each quarter, and you can change your 3% category selection once per month. 

    New cardholders receive an introductory 0% APR on purchases and cash advances (made in the first 60 days of account opening) for the first 15 billing cycles (then a 13.99% – 23.99% Variable APR). That’s handy if you’ve got a lot of upfront expenses you need to pay off over time, like dorm decor or textbooks — but be sure you have a plan and means to pay off the balance before the intro 0% APR period expires.

    Best for travelers: Bank of America® Travel Rewards Credit Card for Students

    Regular APR

    13.99% – 23.99% Variable

    Credit Score

    Good to Excellent

    Featured Reward

    25,000 online bonus points after spending $1,000 in purchases in the first 90 days from account opening (redeemed as a $250 statement credit toward travel and dining purchases)

    Intro APR

    0% intro APR on purchases for 15 billing cycles

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  • Pros & Cons
  • Details
  • Pros
    • Generous welcome bonus for a student credit card
    • No annual fee or foreign transaction fees
    • Earns flexible points you can use toward a wide variety of travel purchases
    Cons
    • Other travel rewards cards have higher earning rates
    • Few travel-related benefits compared to other travel cards
    • 25,000 online bonus points after spending $1,000 in purchases in the first 90 days from account opening (redeemed as a $250 statement credit toward travel and dining purchases)
    • Unlimited 1.5 points for every $1 spent on all purchases everywhere, no expiration on points
    • No annual fee or foreign transaction fees
    • 0% introductory APR on purchases for 15 billing cycles

    Card type: Unsecured

    Annual fee: $0

    Pros: A welcome bonus worth $250 in travel, no foreign transaction fees, straightforward rewards earning of 1.5x on all purchases, wide variety of eligible travel purchases for redemption, introductory APR offer

    Cons: No other travel-related benefits

    Students who love to travel — especially overseas — should have a look at the Bank of America® Travel Rewards Credit Card for Students. Just like the non-student version (Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card) it comes with a welcome bonus of 25,000 online bonus points after spending $1,000 in purchases in the first 90 days from account opening (redeemed as a $250 statement credit toward travel and dining purchases). Each point is worth 1 cent when you redeem for statement credits toward travel purchases, including airfare, hotels, rental cars, campgrounds, and even certain tourist attractions.

    Read more: The best credit cards with no foreign transaction fees

    This is a good card if you don’t want to mess with complicated award charts or blackout dates, and its earning structure is simple — 1.5 points per dollar on all purchases, with no categories to keep track of. You’ll also get an introductory 0% APR on purchases for the first 15 billing cycles (then a 13.99% – 23.99% Variable APR) and no foreign transaction fees when you use the card on your adventures abroad.

    Best for travel and purchase protection: Chase Freedom® Student credit card

    Regular APR

    14.99% Variable

    Credit Score

    Good to Excellent

    Featured Reward

    $50 Bonus after first purchase made within the first 3 months from account opening

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  • Pros & Cons
  • Details
  • Pros
    • $20 Good Standing rewards (2,000 points) after each account anniversary year for the first five years
    • Potential to earn a credit limit increase after making on-time payments
    • Solid benefits for a no-annual-fee student card, including purchase protection, extended warranty, and trip cancellation/interruption insurance
    Cons
    • Only earns 1% cash back on most purchases
    • Foreign transaction fees
    • Some student cards offer a higher welcome bonus
    • $50 Bonus after first purchase made within the first 3 months from account opening
    • Earn 1% cash back on all purchases
    • No annual fee
    • $20 Good Standing Rewards after each account anniversary for up to 5 years
    • Earn a credit limit increase after making 5 monthly payments on time within 10 months from account opening when meeting credit criteria
    • No minimum to redeem for cash back. Cash Back rewards do not expire as long as your account is open.
    • Free credit score with Chase Credit Journey

    Read Our Review Read Our Review A looong arrow, pointing right

    Card type: Unsecured

    Annual fee: $0

    Pros: Earns Chase Ultimate Rewards points you can redeem for cash back, travel, gift cards, and more, purchase protection, extended warranty, trip interruption and cancellation insurance, bonus rewards on Lyft rides, DoorDash DashPass benefits, annual $20 good standing reward, opportunity to increase credit limit with on-time payments

    Cons: Foreign transaction fees

    The original, iconic Chase Freedom® card isn’t available to new applicants anymore, but its younger sibling — the Chase Freedom® Student credit card — lives on. New cardholders can earn a $50 Bonus after first purchase made within the first 3 months from account opening, and 1% cash back (1 point per dollar) on all purchases.

    Each year your account is in good standing, you’ll receive a $20 bonus (2,000 points), and you can earn a credit limit increase after making five monthly payments on time within 10 months from account opening (when you meet credit criteria).

    Read more: Chase Freedom Student card review

    The Chase Freedom® Student credit card has surprisingly good benefits for a no-annual-fee student card. When you use your card to pay for an eligible purchase, you’ll get the warranty extended by one year on manufacturer’s warranties of three years or less, and coverage against damage or theft on new items for up to 120 days (up to $500 per claim and $50,000 per account). You also receive trip interruption or cancellation insurance when you pay with the card — up to $1,500 per person and $6,000 per trip for pre-paid, non-refundable travel (like if you get sick and have to cancel or shorten your trip, or if it’s canceled due to severe weather).

    You’ll also get other unexpected perks, including 5% back on Lyft rides (5x points) through March 2022, and three months of complimentary DoorDash DashPass membership, which gets you $0 food delivery fees and reduced service fees on orders of $12 or more with DoorDash and Caviar. After that, you’ll receive a 50% discount on your DashPass membership for the next nine months (activation is required by March 31, 2022). These same perks are offered on the Chase Freedom Flex℠ and Chase Freedom Unlimited®, too.

    Best for international students: Deserve® EDU Mastercard for Students

    Regular APR

    18.74% Variable

    Credit Score

    Limited, No Credit

    Featured Reward

    one year Amazon Prime Student subscription ($59 value) after spending $500 in the first three billing cycles on the card

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  • Pros & Cons
  • Details
  • Pros
    • Good welcome bonus for a student card (if you use Amazon)
    • International students don’t need a Social Security Number to apply
    • Mastercard Platinum benefits including cell phone protection and car rental insurance
    Cons
    • Other cash-back student cards offer a higher rate of return
    • Receive one year of Amazon Prime Student on Deserve after spending $500 in the first three billing cycles with your EDU card (Lifetime Value of $59).
    • Earn 1% Cash Back on all purchases with your Deserve EDU Mastercard. Once approved, you’ll automatically start earning cash back on all purchases.
    • Feel secure with cell phone protection up to $600.
    • No deposit required. No annual fees.
    • No international transaction fees on purchases abroad so you can travel with confidence.
    • No Social Security Number required for international students to apply.
    • Refer A Friend Program: Refer anyone to Deserve using your personal referral code. Upon approval, card activation and use, you’ll receive $30 and so will your referral. Referral bonuses are unlimited!
    • Manage and track your spending, set automatic payments and securely freeze your card all through one easy to use app.
    • See if you prequalify with no impact to your credit score in minutes.
    • Deserve Mastercards are issued by Celtic Bank, Member FDIC.
    • Enjoy Mastercard Platinum Benefits intended to make your life easier like Mastercard ID Theft Prevention™ and Master Rental®.

    Card type: Unsecured

    Annual fee: $0

    Pros: Available to international students without a Social Security Number, straightforward cash-back earning, useful welcome bonus if you make Amazon purchases, cell phone protection, no foreign transaction fees

    Cons: Other cards offer more rewards for spending

    The Deserve® EDU Mastercard for Students doesn’t offer remarkable rewards earning, but it’s unique in that you don’t absolutely need a Social Security Number to apply. That makes it an excellent pick for international students who wouldn’t otherwise qualify for a US-based credit card. New cardholders can earn a free one year Amazon Prime Student subscription ($59 value) after spending $500 in the first three billing cycles on the card.

    Read more: My credit history vanished when I moved to the US, so I took 4 steps to start building up my credit all over again

    The card earns 1% cash back on all purchases, but it comes with a number of valuable benefits, including cell phone protection when you use the card to pay your bill — you’ll be covered for damage or theft up to $600 with a $50 deductible, up to $1,000 per year. The Deserve® EDU Mastercard for Students also offers rental car insurance and no foreign transaction fees.

    Best for rotating bonus categories: Discover it® Student Cash Back

    Regular APR

    12.99% – 21.99% Variable

    Featured Reward

    Unlimited Cashback Match – Discover will automatically match all the cash back you’ve earned at the end of your first year with no minimum spending or maximum rewards

    Intro APR

    0% intro APR for 6 months on purchases

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  • Pros & Cons
  • Details
  • Pros
    • Earns 5% cash back at Grocery Stores and Fitness Club & Gym Memberships on up to $1,500 in purchases after enrollment from January 1 to March 31, 2022, then 1% (excludes Walmart and Target purchases)
    • Discover matches your cash back after the first year
    Cons
    • Not the most rewarding cash-back card for non-bonus purchases
    • Intro Offer: Unlimited Cashback Match – only from Discover. Discover will automatically match all the cash back you’ve earned at the end of your first year! So you could turn $50 cash back into $100. Or turn $100 into $200. There’s no minimum spending or maximum rewards. Just a dollar-for-dollar match.
    • Earn 5% cash back on everyday purchases at different places each quarter like Amazon.com, grocery stores, restaurants, gas stations and when you pay using PayPal, up to the quarterly maximum when you activate. Plus, earn unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases – automatically.
    • Earn rewards while building your credit history that can help you after graduation. And, get your free Credit Scorecard that includes your FICO® Credit Score and important details that help make up your score.
    • No annual fee. No late fee on first late payment. No APR change for paying late.
    • Refer-a-Friend: Once you become a Discover it® Student cardmember, you can earn a statement credit each time you refer a friend and they’re approved. Over half a million students got Discover Cards from their friends’ recommendations.
    • Freeze It® on/off switch for your account that prevents new purchases, cash advances & balance transfers in seconds.
    • Get an alert if we find your Social Security number on any of thousands of Dark Web sites.Activate for free.
    • Discover is accepted nationwide by 99% of the places that take credit cards.
    • 0% intro APR on purchases for 6 months, then the standard variable purchase APR of 12.99% – 21.99% applies.
    • Click “Apply Now” to see rewards, FICO® Credit Score terms, Cashback Match™ details & other information.

    Read Our Review Read Our Review A looong arrow, pointing right

    Card type: Unsecured

    Annual fee: $0

    Pros: Earn 5% cash back in categories that rotate every quarter, Discover Cash Back Match, no late fee on first late payment, get $50 for referring a friend, introductory APR offer, no foreign transaction fees, choose from a variety of colorful card designs

    Cons: Card only earns 1% back on non-bonus categories, no welcome bonus

    The Discover it® Student Cash Back can put a lot of cash in your pocket — if you’re willing to do a little work for it. When you activate the bonus, you’ll earn 5% cash back in categories that rotate each quarter on up to $1,500 in combined spending (then 1%), and 1% back on everything else. Discover’s 5% cash-back categories often include popular merchants or types of purchases, like grocery stores, restaurants, and Amazon (from January 1 to March 31, 2022, you can earn 5% cash back at Grocery Stores (excluding Walmart and Target) and Fitness Club & Gym Memberships on up to $1,500 in purchases after enrollment, then 1%).

    Read more: Discover it Student Cash Back card review

    While the card doesn’t offer a welcome bonus, Discover will match all the cash back you’ve earned at the end of your first year. You’ll also receive a $50 statement credit if you refer a friend and they’re approved. 

    With the Discover it® Student Cash Back, you’ll get a 0% intro APR for 6 months on purchases on purchases (then a 12.99% – 21.99% Variable APR), and if you accidentally slip up and make a late payment, there’s no fee the first time it happens (afterward, it’s up to $40).

    Best for dining, groceries, entertainment, and streaming: Capital One SavorOne Student Cash Rewards Credit Card

    Regular APR

    26.99% (Variable)

    Credit Score

    Average, Fair, Limited

  • Pros & Cons
  • Details
  • Pros
    • Strong 3% cash back earning in popular everyday spending categories for students like dining, entertainment, eligible streaming services, and grocery stores (excluding superstores like Walmart® and Target®)
    • No annual fee or foreign transaction fees
    • You can be automatically considered for a higher credit line in as little as six months
    Cons
    • No welcome bonus
    • High APR (26.99% Variable) if you need to carry a balance
    • Whether you’re at a 4-year university, community college or other higher education institution, this card might be an option for you
    • Earn unlimited 3% cash back on dining, entertainment, popular streaming services and at grocery stores (excluding superstores like Walmart® and Target®), with 1% on all other purchases. Plus, earn 8% cash back on tickets at Vivid Seats through January 2023
    • Enjoy no annual fee, foreign transaction fees, or hidden fees
    • You can help build your credit with responsible use of a card like this
    • No rotating categories or sign-ups needed to earn cash rewards; plus, cash back won’t expire for the life of the account and there’s no limit to how much you can earn
    • Be automatically considered for a higher credit line in as little as 6 months
    • $0 fraud liability if your card is ever lost or stolen
    • Set up Autopay for your account and your payments will be made automatically every month

    Read Our Review Read Our Review A looong arrow, pointing right

    Card type: Unsecured

    Annual fee: $0

    Pros: Student-friendly 3% cash-back categories, solid benefits for a no-annual-fee card, no foreign transaction fees

    Cons: Only earns 1% back on non-bonus categories, no welcome bonus

    Although it doesn’t offer a welcome bonus, the Capital One SavorOne Student Cash Rewards Credit Card is a great pick for students who spend a lot on dining, groceries, entertainment, and eligible streaming services. You’ll earn 3% cash back in these categories with no limits, and 1% cash back on all other purchases. 

    Read more: Capital One SavorOne Student Cash Rewards card review

    The Capital One SavorOne Student Cash Rewards Credit Card also offers very good benefits for a no-annual-fee student card, including:

    • Price protection
    • Extended warranty
    • Car rental coverage
    • Roadside dispatch
    • Complimentary concierge services

    Best rewards for gas and dining: Discover it® Student chrome

    Regular APR

    12.99% – 21.99% Variable

    Featured Reward

    earn 2% cash back at Gas Stations and Restaurants on up to $1,000 in combined purchases each quarter

    Intro APR

    0% intro APR for 6 months on purchases

    Chevron icon It indicates an expandable section or menu, or sometimes previous / next navigation options.

  • Pros & Cons
  • Details
  • Pros
    • Earns 2% cash back at gas stations and restaurants on up to $1,000 in combined purchases each quarter and 1% cash back on all other purchases
    • Discover matches cash back after your first account year
    Cons
    • Low cap for earning 2% cash back (up to $1,000 per quarter in combined purchases at gas stations and restaurants)
    • Other cards offer better cash-back rates
    • Intro Offer: Unlimited Cashback Match – only from Discover. Discover will automatically match all the cash back you’ve earned at the end of your first year! So you could turn $50 cash back into $100. Or turn $100 into $200. There’s no minimum spending or maximum rewards. Just a dollar-for-dollar match.
    • Earn 2% cash back at Gas Stations and Restaurants on up to $1,000 in combined purchases each quarter. Plus, earn unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases – automatically.
    • Earn rewards while building your credit history that can help you after graduation. And, get your free Credit Scorecard that includes your FICO® Credit Score and important details that help make up your score.
    • No annual fee. No late fee on first late payment. No APR change for paying late.
    • Refer-a-Friend: Once you become a Discover it® Student cardmember, you can earn a statement credit each time you refer a friend and they’re approved. Over half a million students got Discover Cards from their friends’ recommendations.
    • Freeze It® on/off switch for your account that prevents new purchases, cash advances & balance transfers in seconds.
    • Get an alert if we find your Social Security number on any of thousands of Dark Web sites.Activate for free.
    • Discover is accepted nationwide by 99% of the places that take credit cards.
    • 0% intro APR on purchases for 6 months, then the standard variable purchase APR of 12.99% – 21.99% applies.
    • Click “Apply Now” to see rewards, FICO® Credit Score terms, Cashback Match™ details & other information.

    Read Our Review Read Our Review A looong arrow, pointing right

    Card type: Unsecured

    Annual fee: $0

    Pros: Straightforward rewards, Discover Cash Back Match, no late fee on first late payment, get $50 for referring a friend, introductory APR offer, no foreign transaction fees, popular 2% back categories, choose from a variety of colorful card designs

    Cons: Only earns 1% back on non-bonus categories, no welcome bonus, low spending cap on 2% categories

    The Discover it® Student chrome is almost identical to the Discover it® Student Cash Back, with one key difference. Instead of offering 5% rotating quarterly cash-back categories, you’ll earn 2% cash back at Gas Stations and Restaurants on up to $1,000 in combined purchases each quarter. All other purchases earn a flat 1% cash back.

    Read more: Discover it Student Chrome card review

    The spending cap on the 2% categories is quite low ($1,000 per quarter, or about $333 a month), but if you’re able to maximize this bonus, it’s worth an extra $20 per quarter. Students who don’t spend a lot in these categories or who want better rewards across the board will likely do better with a different card.

    Get rewarded for on-time payments: Journey Student Rewards from Capital One

    Regular APR

    26.99% Variable

    Credit Score

    Average, Fair and Limited

  • Pros & Cons
  • Details
  • Pros
    • When you pay on time, your cash-back rate is boosted to 1.25% for the month
    • No annual fee and no foreign transaction fees
    • You can be automatically considered for a higher credit line in as little as 6 months
    Cons
    • Other student cards offer more cash back
    • Earn 1% cash back on all your purchases. Pay on time to boost your cash back to a total of 1.25% for that month
    • Earn $5 per month for 12 months on Select Streaming Subscriptions when you pay on time. *Exclusions Apply
    • Enjoy no annual fee and no foreign transaction fees
    • You can help build your credit with responsible use of a card like this
    • Pick the monthly due date that works best for you
    • Be automatically considered for a higher credit line in as little as 6 months
    • $0 fraud liability if your card is ever lost or stolen
    • Monitor your credit profile with the CreditWise® app, free for everyone

    Read Our Review Read Our Review A looong arrow, pointing right

    Card type: Unsecured

    Annual fee: $0

    Pros: Earn 1.25% on cash back each month you pay on time, get statement credits for streaming purchases when you pay on time, no foreign transaction fees, automatic consideration for higher credit limits starting at six months

    Cons: No welcome bonus, earning rate before on-time bonus is only 1% cash back

    Most credit cards penalize you if you make late payments, but the Journey Student Rewards from Capital One takes a slightly different approach. While the card still tacks on late payment fees (up to $40), it also incentivizes you to pay on time by offering bonus rewards for doing so.

    Read more: Capital One Journey Student Credit Card review

    Normally, you’ll earn 1% cash back on all purchases, but you’ll get a .25% bonus (for a total of 1.25% cash back) each billing cycle if your account is not past due. There’s no sign-up bonus, but — again, only if you pay on time — you can get $5 per month in credit when you use your card to pay for eligible streaming subscriptions in the first 18 months of account opening (for a possible total of $60).

    Subscriptions must be billed monthly (not annually) to trigger the credit, and only certain services are eligible. That said, most popular subscriptions are on the list, including Amazon Music Unlimited, Hulu , Netflix , Prime Video, and Spotify.

    Capital One will also automatically review your account to see if you’re eligible for a credit limit increase, as soon as six months after you open the account.

    Best for building credit: Petal® 2 “Cash Back, No Fees” Visa® Credit Card

    Regular APR

    12.99% – 26.99% variable APR

    Credit Score

    Excellent, Good, Limited History, No History, Limited, No Credit

  • Pros & Cons
  • Details
  • Pros
    • No fees
    • Earn 1% cash back on every purchase, and 1.5% cash back after 12 on-time monthly payments
    • Helps you build or repair credit
    Cons
    • No fees whatsoever. No late fee, foreign transaction fee, annual fee, or any-other-kind-of-fee, fee
    • Up to 1.5% cash back on eligible purchases after making 12 on-time monthly payments
    • 1% cash back on eligible purchases right away
    • 2% – 10% cash back at select merchants
    • $300 – $10,000 credit limits
    • Variable APRs range from 12.99% – 26.99%
    • No credit score? No problem. If eligible, we’ll create your Cash Score instead
    • See if you’re pre-approved within minutes without impacting your credit score
    • Build credit alongside hundreds of thousands of Petal Card members
    • Petal reports to all 3 major credit bureaus
    • No deposits required
    • Card issued by WebBank, Member FDIC

    Card type: Unsecured

    Annual fee: $0

    Pros: Earn up to 1.5% cash back when you pay on time, no fees for anything, bonus cash back at select merchants, possible to get approved with no credit history, reports to all three credit bureaus to help you build credit

    Cons: No welcome bonus, earning rate before on-time bonus is only 1% cash back, no balance transfers or cash advances allowed

    While not technically a student credit card, the Petal® 2 “Cash Back, No Fees” Visa® Credit Card is a good option for young adults with very limited or no credit history. The issuer doesn’t just rely on traditional credit scores for approval — it will also look at other factors, like banking history, income, and savings. What’s more, once you have the card, it’s reported to all three major credit bureaus, which can give your credit score a boost over the long term.

    Read more: Most people probably haven’t heard of Petal, the new credit card that helps people build credit from scratch

    This is another card that gives cardholders an incentive to pay on time. Starting out, you’ll earn 1% cash back on purchases, but after making six on-time payments, you’ll earn 1.25% back. After 12 months of paying on time, you’ll get a bump up to 1.5% back. You’ll also have the opportunity to earn bonus cash back (up to 10%) at select merchants.

    Another bonus: The Petal® 2 “Cash Back, No Fees” Visa® Credit Card doesn’t charge any fees, including for foreign transactions or late payments. However, the card doesn’t offer balance transfers or cash advances like most others do.

    Jasmin Baron is an editor at Insider, responsible for credit card coverage on Personal Finance Insider. She is also a Certified Educator in Personal Finance (CEPF).Before joining the Insider team, she was a senior editor at The Points Guy and Million Mile Secrets, covering credit cards, points and miles, and loyalty programs. Her expertise in maximizing travel rewards grew from over two decades of experience in the aviation industry, including 18 years working as a pilot and flight instructor in her native Canada.You can reach Jasmin at jbaron@insider.com. Learn more about how Personal Finance Insider chooses, rates, and covers financial products and services »

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    For rates and fees of Discover it® Student chrome, please click here.

    Disclosure: This post is brought to you by the Personal Finance Insider team. We occasionally highlight financial products and services that can help you make smarter decisions with your money. We do not give investment advice or encourage you to adopt a certain investment strategy. If you take action based on one of our recommendations, we get a small share of the revenue from our commerce partners. This does not influence whether we feature a financial product or service. We operate independently from our advertising sales team.

    Please note: While the offers mentioned above are accurate at the time of publication, they’re subject to change at any time and may have changed, or may no longer be available.

    Enrollment required.

    Disclosure: This post may highlight financial products and services that can help you make smarter decisions with your money. We do not give investment advice or encourage you to adopt a certain investment strategy. What you decide to do with your money is up to you. If you take action based on one of our recommendations, we get a small share of the revenue from our commerce partners. This does not influence whether we feature a financial product or service. We operate independently from our advertising sales team. Read our editorial standards.

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    For rates and fees of Discover it® Student Cash Back, please click here.

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