Building up a good credit is a must-have for people from all walks of life, whether you’re a student, an adult or someone who hasn’t touched a credit card before. There’s only one problem, though- there are hundreds of credit cards you can apply for, each with their own pros and cons. Which one is the best for people who want to build up their credit history?
Here are the best entry-level credit cards you can get right now:
1. Discover It For Students
Discover It For Students is one of the top starter credit cards around, making it an excellent fit for college students and people who have bad credit. Perhaps the most remarkable feature of this credit card is that successful applicants won’t be penalized for having limited credit or no history of credit at all. What’s more, the rewards cash back program is similar to that of top-tier cards for seasoned cardholders.
Users get 5 percent cash back for categories that change per quarter, i.e., wholesale clubs, restaurants, gas, etc. New card members can get double cash back rewards once you reach the end of their 1st year of using the card, which means you can effectively get 2 percent cash back for all qualifying purchases that year. The amount of savings you can get is unmatched in terms of starter credit cards.
Discover cards and the Discover It For Students allow users free access to their FICO score, which can be very helpful if you’re trying to track your credit progress. Having access to FICO can also teach you how credit score works, such as how your credit goes down when you constantly reach your credit limit. Best of all, Discover It For Students has a $0 annual fee.
2. BankAmericard Cash Rewards For Students
BankAmericard Cash Rewards For Students works extremely well for individuals who want to have a card for buying basic necessities. Users can get 3 percent cash back for gas purchases and 2 percent cash back for groceries and wholesale clubs for up to $2,500 in combined charges per quarter. For everything else, you can get 1 percent cash back without limits. Also, the points earned using this card will never expire, which means you won’t be pressured to use your card or lose the reward points.
If you have a balance on other cards and you want to get a lower APR, the BankAmericard Cash Rewards card can help. Balance transfer offers are available during the first 12 months of opening the card account. Combined with the promotional 0% APR on the first year, you’ll have the chance to pay down the balance without worrying about interest fees. This works especially well if you’re on the path to building up a good credit history. The no annual fee feature and the $150 bonus is icing on the cake. Last but not the least, you get 10 percent bonus each time you redeem your points using a Bank of America savings or checking account.
3. Capital One Journey Student Rewards
Love traveling around the world? The Journey Student Rewards from Capital One is your best option.
First off, it’s unlike other credit cards that charge extra whenever you use them outside the U.S. The Journey Student Rewards credit card won’t charge you any fee when you use it on any foreign country, which is a perfect fit for students or individuals who travel or do work outside the United States.
The card also teaches users how to build up a good credit by providing an incentive for paying on time. Aside from the 1 percent cash back for all purchases, Capital One Journey Student Rewards ups the cash back percent to 1.25 when you pay on time. While there are better cash back programs on entry level cards, you’re primarily restricted to getting rewards on restaurants, groceries or travel. This card can be handy if you have a different spending habit.
4. Discover It Secured Card
Discover It Secured Card with No Annual Fee was specially designed to help people with no credit or low credit score get a chance to build their credit up to respectable levels again. It’s the perfect entry-level card for those who are looking to use a credit card for the first time.
Like most top cards in the market, the Discover It Secured Card offers cash back opportunities for its users. You can get 2 percent cash back for gas and restaurant purchases on a $1,000 limit per quarter. You also get 1 percent cash back for all other purchases.
Secured credit cards work in a way that applicants must place a security deposit as part of the requirements for opening an account. This collateral is the risk financial companies may take since they won’t be checking your credit score in the application process. Once granted, your credit line will be lower or equal to that of your security deposit. For the Discover It Secured Card, the minimum deposit needed is $200. This card has a zero annual fee and history is reported to all three major credit bureaus. Maintain a history of good payment and you’ll see your credit shoot up in no time.
5. BankAmericard Travel Rewards For Students
Got a limited credit history that you want to build on? The Travel Rewards credit card from BankAmericard is a good starting point. For starters, you get up to 1.5x cash back points per dollar spent anywhere you use the card. The travel aspect means you won’t ever get charged foreign transaction fees each time you use the card outside the U.S. You can take advantage of the 20,000 bonus if you spend at least $1,000 in purchases during the first 90 days, which translates to around $200.
The BankAmericard Travel Rewards For Students pairs up nicely when you have a deposit account from Bank of America. You can link them up and enjoy a 10 percent bonus for your cash back program, with up to 75 percent bonus depending on your Bank of America Preferred level of membership. If you qualify for the 75 percent bonus the BankAmericard Travel Rewards will probably be your favorite go-to credit card for many, many years.