One of the best starter credit cards for students is the Discover it Student chrome card because it has a $0 annual fee and offers 1%-2% cash back on purchases. Cardholders get 2% back on up to $1,000 in gas and restaurant purchases per quarter, and 1% back on everything else. Plus, Discover doubles all the rewards new cardholders earn the first year and gives a $20 annual bonus to students who carry a 3.0 GPA or higher (for up to 5 years).
Those same bonuses can also be found on Discover’s other student card, the Discover it Student Cash Back card. And it too comes with a $0 annual fee. The difference is that it offers 5% cash back up to $1,500 spent in select categories every quarter and 1% back on everything else. So it’s a contender, too. A lot comes down to spending habits and preference.
Nearly all student credit cards qualify as starter credit cards because you can get approved for them with limited or no credit history. That’s true of both Discover student credit cards, as well as the Capital One Journey Student Rewards Card, the Wells Fargo Cash Back College Card – both of which are great options – and countless others. Citi’s Student Card is the only prominent example of a student credit card that’s not for beginners. It requires good credit for approval.
In general, students credit cards are the best starter credit cards because they’re easy to get without prior experience yet offer far better terms than an inexperienced applicant would ordinarily command. That’s because lenders want to appeal to students in the hope of gaining a long-term customer who may land a well-paying job upon graduation.