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Finding Best Credit Card for College Students

18 December 2008 by CreditCardsCo™

As a college student and young adult, finding a credit card that suits you best is usually very difficult. During your search, you'd have to wade through countless cards to find the right one. Problems you'll likely to face are: credit cards that don't offer you as much credit, very high APRs, no additional card benefits whatsoever, and poor customer services. All these problem you must counter else you'll probably compound your problems in the long run.

Know your Credit Worthiness

The first thing you want to do is find out what your credit worthiness is (go to Free Credit Report page or request a free copy of your credit report from annualcreditreport.com). You're just starting out and are likely to have an unfavorable rating. Nevertheless, knowing where you stand allows you plan ahead.

Card Features to Watch For

0% Intro APR:

Incurring no interest on purchases during your first few months in charge lets you adjust to the world of using credit cards. Besides you only pay how much you spend throughout this period.

Availability of a Card Rewards Program:

Credit card rewards program have benefits you could use to your advantage. When purchasing from a partner or accredited retailer, they cut back your expenses. As you purchase items, you earn points which are redeemable for a freebie at no extra cost.

Excellent Customer Service:

Ensure the card issuer has an assurance of excellent customer service. Just to make sure, you might want to get the opinion of persons already using the cards you have in mind. Good customer service is needed in situations, for example when your statement reveals a disputable charge, or when canceling a purchase order you just made.

No Annual Fee:

Annual fees are generally a pain in the neck. You don't really need a credit card with an annual fee since you're likely to find another card offering similar features without it. Even where an annual fee is charged, it should be minimal, and shouldn't throw you off balance.

Flexible Spending Limits:

As a college student, your expenses might not be the same throughout. A cost effective way of ensuring you have enough funds for the rainy day is to get a credit card with flexible spending limits. This way you can restrict yourself when there's not much to spend on, and make more money available when you need it. Spending limits are an excellent way of ensuring you stick to a budget.

No Minimum Income Required:

Some cards will require that you already earn an income before applying. Other cards do not have this requirement, but you'll have to let them know where you'll be getting the money to pay off the balance. In any case go for a credit card that suits your situation.

Fraud Protection:

Identity theft is one of the many issues credit card holders have to worry about. With fraud protection, you're kept safe from the hands of thieves who might use your credit card information to purchase items without your consent.

Online Account Management:

Although this feature is not remembered by a lot, online account management helps you monitor your expenses and stay within budget (which we remember you do). If a credit card doesn't offered online access, it's probably not worth your attention.

Apply as soon as you can

Once you've created a list of favorable cards. Go over the details on each one. Read each cards' card agreement or terms and conditions. Check and verify the details you've seen before. Ensure there are no charges you aren't already aware of.

After all this, you're ready to pick out a credit card that's best for you.

Don't know where to start?

Our list of popular student cards could help you out. Click a link for a comprehensive review:

Advice

Are you thinking a credit card will solve all your financial problems?

You're probably wrong. As a young adult with limited credit, you might want to watch out and be careful how you spend else you'll worsen your chances of getting credit in future.

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