What is the best card to start with to build credit? My son never had a card but has no debt either. Just needs to establish credit. Thinking about Chase Freedom for Students. Does it have a signup bonus?

Answered on October 04, 2018
Updated on October 04, 2018
The content is accurate at the time of publication and is subject to change.
Amy Miller Amy Miller

Starting credit history from the very beginning is always better than improving it and credit card issuers are not too captious.
Look into credit cards for those with limited/no credit history: these cards are created for newbies. The cards have quite high APRs and fees. However it is possible to find a card with 0 intro APRs or without annual fee. Also some cards offer bonus programs: you can earn points or cash back on purchases you make.
If your son wants a bonus credit card, Chase Freedom® Student credit card is not the best option as it has no bonus. The only you get is $20 Good Standing Rewards sertificate after each account anniversary for up to 5 years. Instead, you can apply for the Discover it® Student Cash Back to get rewards at any gas station. This card will give you a dollar-for-dollar match of all the cash back you've earned at the end of your first year provided you are a new cardmember. This card has reasonable APRs, no annual fee and a cash back bonus program.
Remember that every credit card has its pluses and minuses, which will suit your son more depends on his preferences.

All rates and fees, and other terms and conditions of the products mentioned in this article/post are actual as of the last update date but are subject to change. See the current products' Terms & Conditions on the issuing banks' websites.

User Comments about This Question


Sadly, we don't have any information about credit history required to be eligible for AARP credit card. I wouldn't recommend applying for this card if your credit score is in the fair range. There are many other credit cards that are created to help people raise their credit score. If your credit score is not where it needs to be, you can apply for one of these cards for fair credit and use it to bring your credit score back to a place where you want it to be.
You can choose one of the credit cards for limited credit to make your credit profile better. Or you can consider secured credit card. Some card offers have no annual fee and pretty nice rewards programs. Thus, you may save more money than spent on the security deposit. For example, you can apply for the Discover it® Secured card. This card offers no annual fee and gives you up to 2% cash back at restaurants & gas stations on up to $1,000 in combined purchases and 1% cash back on all your other purchases.
You can apply for a secured credit card. For example, consider the the Discover it® Secured, you won't pay annual fee at all. Also, you will earn up to 2% cash back at restaurants and gas stations on up to $1,000 in combined purchases every quarter, automatically and 1% cash back on all other purchases. By the way, Discover matches all cash back you've earned first year (provided you are a new cardmember). So, you can earn more than you spent on security deposit. Another option for you is to apply for a personal loan. They have different terms, but usually offer higher...

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There is a credit card for any credit and for any purpose. Whether you want to start building your credit from scratch or earn rewards on purchases, save on gas or travel for free, you can find a good credit card offer for that.