Who knew that credit cards could be so rewarding? With a college student credit card, you can earn awesome perks and rewards on money you’d spend anyway. Plus, having a student credit card can help establish your credit score, which will be helpful down the road. The thought of graduation is scary enough — arming yourself with a great credit score is a sure fire way to start your post-grad life off on the right foot.
With a student credit card, you won’t need a cheat sheet to know how to get all the best rewards. These cards pay back on common student expenses like textbooks, restaurants and even music. Take a look at NerdWallet’s top picks for the best student credit cards.
Journey® Student Rewards from Capital One®
To be fair, the Journey® Student Rewards from Capital One® is Capital One’s only student credit card, but it’s still a pretty good offering. You receive 1% cash back on all your purchases, plus 0.25% back when you make your monthly payment on time, for a grand total of 1.25% cash back. That isn’t too bad, especially for a student card. The annual fee is $0, and your rewards will never expire. Since this is a student credit card, Capital One will be more forgiving of a short credit history.
Discover it® for Students
Like its grown-up counterpart, the Discover it for Students offers 5% cash back on a broad range of categories, up to $1, 500 spent a quarter, plus an unlimited 1% cash back everywhere else. But what sets the Discover card apart from other student cards isn’t what it has, but what it doesn’t: No penalty interest rate, and a waived first late payment fee. Look, you’re in college, you do some dumb stuff sometimes — it’s nice to know your rates won’t be jacked up if you miss your first-ever credit card payment. As an aside, if you’re going to study abroad, the Discover it® for Students might be a good traveling companion: Though it’s only accepted in certain countries, the card has no foreign transaction fee, which can set you back 3% of whatever you spend overseas with other cards.