How to Choose the Best Student Credit Card

by : Scott Stadler

Choosing the best student credit card certainly doesn't have to be a complicated process. Sure, there are a few things every applicant should keep in mind, but most of the credit card offers made available to college students these days are pretty decent. So how do you choose the best student credit card?

It's not all About Free T-Shirts!

If you take one thing away from reading this article, please make it this piece of advice - don't choose a student credit card solely on fact that they're giving away a free t-shirt or other trinket to those that sign up. That's a really major "gotcha" right there. The key to choosing the best student credit card is actually comparing several good deals side by side in order to make the most educated decision on what is best for you and your finances. Signing up for any old card because of a silly freebee just won't do.

Investigate the Interest Rate.

Hopefully, you'll be able to pay off the balance in full every month on your new student credit card. If this is the case, you'll never need to even worry about the interest rate. But in the real world, the notion of never carrying a balance is sort of unrealistic. Average student cards frequently come with high APR's in the 20 percent plus range - that's a real ouch factor. If you expect to carry a balance from time to time, know the best student credit cards will beat that interest rate substantially.

Rewards are a Great Bonus.

As long as you're swiping that credit card, you might as well get some payback for it, right? Well that's exactly what you can expect with the best student credit cards - those that offer rewards programs. Look for rewards that best suit your own needs. Common credit card rewards give you a percentage of each and every purchase back in the form of cash, airline miles, gas rebates, or other desirable merchandise. Those rewards really add up fast for typical students who purchase college books and pay for other school related expenses with their student rewards credit card.

Avoid the Annual Fee.

Charging annual fees is a fairly common practice for credit cards geared towards students. If you're getting good rewards and a decent interest rate, there's not much shame in paying a minimal annual fee (such as $20 per year). But do read the fine print first and avoid cards that charge excessive annual fees just to be a cardholder. You can do better. Credit card companies are always looking to attract lifelong customers from the student demographic group. The very best student credit cards appreciate this fact and will have no annual fee at all.

So rest assured, you'll find the perfect card to fit all of your needs in little or no time at all. Just do the research and card comparisons and you'll be well on your way to choosing the best student credit card possible!