International students often struggle to pay for their education. From high tuition fees to living expenses, international students have to pay a lot of money. And not everyone qualifies for financial aid or scholarships. So, if you are an international student, having an international credit card is a must.
International student credit cards allow students to pay for books and supplies, food, housing, and other expenses. With these types of cards, there is no need to carry cash or take out money from a bank machine. And the best part is that many of these cards have relatively low interest rates. Normally, international students pay an annual percentage rate (APR) of 17%-19.9%.
An international student’s credit card offers a lot of perks to international students. In this article, we are going to talk about their advantages and disadvantages. This article will be really helpful for international students.
What is an International Student Credit Card?
International student credit cards are a type of card that is only available to students outside of their home country. They provide support to students as they look for opportunities to build their financial history. It allows students to pay for expenses such as books and food.
When you have, use and repay money on a credit card, lenders are more likely to see that you are capable of repaying your debt. International student credit cards are beneficial for students in this way because they help to build their credit score. They provide an important tool to build a successful financial profile in the country they are studying in.
What are the benefits of having an international student credit card?
As an international student, there are many benefits of having one. Here are some of the benefits:
1. Easy to apply
Many students can easily get approved for international student credit cards because it’s often quite easy to apply for them. You can apply for international student credit cards online and receive a response within minutes. If you want to be able to use your cards as soon as possible, you should definitely apply for an international credit card.
2. Rewards Program
With international student credit cards, it’s really easy to earn rewards for daily spending. All you have to do is sign up for a rewards card and then use your credit card to pay for all of your expenses. Many international student credit cards offer different types of rewards such as cashback, airline miles, and retail discounts.
3. Builds Credit Score/History
Having a student credit card allows students to build their financial profile in the country they live in. This makes it easier for them to buy a house or car once they graduate. Building credit history starts with a credit card. It is a great way to start building a good financial profile.
4. Fraud protection
International student credit cards provide fraud protection which means that you won’t be held responsible for fraudulent charges that appear on your statement as long as you report it within a certain time period. For example, if your credit card is stolen and someone uses your account to make a purchase, you won’t be held responsible as long as you report that fraudulent charge within 30 days.
What are the Disadvantages of having International Student Credit Cards?
Everything good comes with a price! Although there are many benefits to it, there are also some disadvantages. Here are some of the disadvantages:
International student credit cards tend to have high fees. It is because credit card companies do not believe that students will pay their balances in full every month. They can charge higher interest rates sometimes which end up increasing the cost of borrowing money. Some international students’ credit cards have a yearly fee that is required to be paid once you open the account.
2. Foreign Transaction Fees
International student credit cards charge a foreign transaction fee every time a purchase is made outside of the registered country or if an international ATM request is used (for example if you used the card when visiting your home country during your vacation). When you use your card outside of the country, this will translate into a 3% to 5% charge. This usually occurs because international credit card companies have the power to access the wholesale rate for currency conversion.
3. Credit Limit
International student credit cards often have a low credit limit. This means that you will not be able to use your credit card for large purchases.
Secured Credit Cards Vs Unsecured Credit Card
A secured credit card is a type of loan that requires the borrower to place collateral against the funds. Most international student credit cards are unsecured because they don’t require collateral. Some banks might require collateral if your international credit score isn’t ideal.
Eligibility Criteria for International Student Credit Cards
1. Student Status: To qualify for it, you must be a full-time international student.
2. 18 Years of Age: Most companies give credit cards to students who are at least 18 years old.
3. Annual Income: You will not be able to get approval for it if your annual income is below the limit set by the issuer.
4. Valid Address: You must have a permanent address where you can receive your credit card statement each month.
5. Social Security Number (Not every credit card issuer requires it): A SSN is required to apply for many cards. Without one, you will may be able to get approved.
6. Valid Phone Number: Most credit card companies require an international phone number as well as a home address to confirm the identity of the person applying for a student credit card.
How to apply for International Student Credit Cards?
There are many different credit cards that you can apply for. However, it is important to do your research first before applying for one. Here are some tips that will help you apply for suitable international student credit cards:
1. Open up a bank account:
Before applying, first, open up a bank account with the bank that you choose. Take some time to look at all of the different credit cards and compare their rates and fees. This is very important because it will give you a better idea of which one to choose.
2. Check your eligibility:
You should always check your eligibility. It isn’t always clear before you apply, but if you can see from the criteria that you will not qualify, it will do your credit history more damage to apply and be rejected..
3. Research various credit card companies
Look for customer reviews online and read everything about the credit card issuers who are offering you the card. Make sure that the company is reputable and has been in business for a long time.
4. Look at fees and rewards
Make sure to look at all the fees associated with the card. Compare different cards and see which one offers you the lowest interest rate. Also, consider looking for a card that offers rewards.
5. Get a cosigner
If you are unable to find a suitable card on your own, consider asking for a cosigner. Sometimes, banks will give you a higher chance of being approved if you have someone vouching for you. Just make sure that the person who is willing to cosign for you is a stable source of income and has a good credit history.
6. Apply online
Applying online is the easiest way to apply for a card because it usually requires less paperwork and also takes less time. All you have to do is fill out an application, wait for approval, and access your account.
Top International Student Credit Cards
1. Capital One Platinum Credit Card: This company offers a low-interest rate of 9%. It also charges no annual fee. It has an APR of 26.99% (variable). You can quickly and easily apply for this credit card online.
2. Discover it for Students: This card is perfect for students who often travel outside of the United States. It charges no annual fee and has a low-interest rate. The maximum APR that you can be charged is 12.99%-21.99%. You can quickly and easily apply for this credit card online.
3. Chase Student Visa Credit Card: With no annual fees, you can easily apply online for this card. You will be given a credit limit that is equal to half of your annual income or less. The APR is very low at 14.99% (variable).
4. Deserve EDU: There is no annual fee as well as foreign transaction fee. The APR is 18.74% (variable). It doesn’t require any SSN to apply. You can also apply online for this card.
5. Capital One SavorOne Student Cash Rewards Credit Card: It’s easy to apply for a cashback credit card. It has a $0 annual fee and a variable APR of 26.99% (Variable). There is no foreign transaction fee and it is accepted worldwide.
1. Make sure to do your research before applying for an international student credit card so you can compare different offers and find the best one for your needs.
2. Always check your eligibility before applying for a credit card because some credit cards will not approve certain applicants based on their circumstances.
3. Keep good credit so you can increase your chances of being approved for an international student credit card in the future.
4. When filling out an application, answer all questions truthfully and pay close attention to detail because if there are any errors, your application might be rejected which will take more time to reapply for the credit card.
5. Monitor your credit card activity so you can avoid being charged with over-limit fees or late payment fees.
6. Always read the fine print of any credit card offer before signing up for any credit card because it will help you know exactly what to expect once the account is opened.
Applying for an international student credit card is easy as long as you know what to do. By following these top tips, you can easily apply for a great card that will suit your needs and help you build good credit history.