Which credit card for a 19 year old is the best choice?

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mikemikemike
 
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Which credit card for a 19 year old is the best choice?

Postby mikemikemike » Mon Aug 29, 2011 9:17 pm

Okay, I'm 19, currently have my first "real" job, (ive had internships and summer jobs before).

I only have the internet bill in my name which has always been paid on time, and I did overdraft at my bank about a year ago but I got it settled and paid off.

I just opened a bank account and am starting to save money up. I'm not in college right now and I'm working about 20-25 hours a week. I will be in college next semester though.

So basically I'd prefer a credit card with maybe rewards on gas but it's not a deal breaker. I'm just wondering whats a good credit card I should get for someone who doesn't have too much credit and doesn't earn too much.

I just want something so I can have to hold me over until I get paid because sometimes I gotta put gas in and don't have enough in cash until I get paid and stuff like that. Though I'd like to use it for clothes or going to dinner every once in a while.


JNK
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Postby JNK » Tue Aug 30, 2011 1:20 am

Before giving a recommendation, I would actually recommend that you take a good look at your credit report first (you can get a free one at Annual Credit Report for example) and make sure that it's clean of inconsistencies and to see if there's anything negative posted on it. Provided that everything is good, here is what I would recommend:

For Ease of Use and Greatest Acceptability with Decent Rewards:

- Citibank Dividend Platinum Select for College Students - (why: decent rewards program overall even though it has rotating categories, decent APR - even if it's high-ish at first - CAN be lowered if you show good credit usage habits and card loyalty, it is a VISA or a Mastercard which means it is widely accepted, and because it is a student card, the chances of a new credit user being approved is higher)

- Journey Student Rewards from Capitol One - (why: okay rewards program, additional incentive for maintaining good credit, widely accepted VISA, is a student card so new credit users will be approved more easily, BUT has a higher APR)

For Rewards Specifically on Gas (and Eating Out) but May Not Be As Accepted:

Discover for College Students - (why: it gives you cashback, it has a decent APR (which can be lowered if you show good credit habits and card loyalty, and because it is a student card the chances of a new credit user getting approved is higher)
Let me explain my choices a little more clearly (though obviously, it's entirely up to you to do as you please and pick and choose as you please and everyone's going to have their own opinions and recommendations!).

As someone new to credit, as tempting as it may be to aim high and apply for something with better rewards or better terms, it is BEST in my opinion to aim for something that is more within reach.

Being reasonable about your first credit card or two is important because the LAST thing you want is to have a series of credit inquiries on your credit report and without any approvals.

Bearing this in mind, I recommended all student-oriented cards.

Student-oriented cards are aimed at new credit users who are usually beginning on their credit journey and are also usually college students like yourself. These companies know that students will be starting out with okay or fair to good credit and won't be expecting your credit to be excellent. They also tend to be more willing to 'help' you if you have questions or concerns.

Also, the student cards - provided you do well with them - CAN usually be converted to the 'non student/regular' version when the time comes and so if you can get a decent card NOW as a student card, you might be able to still find use for it later on when it's time for the card to convert.
Personal Collection:

AMEX: Everyday (MR), Macy's (cobranded)
MASTER: Citibank Dividend Platinum Select (non-World version)
VISA: Chase Amazon Signature, Chase (bank issued)
GE: Care Credit (medical expenses), Macy's (store), JCP (store)


Business Collection:

AMEX: Costco True Earnings
MASTER: None
VISA: Chase Ink Cash

nwcdrfinancial
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Postby nwcdrfinancial » Tue Aug 30, 2011 1:33 pm

Wait until you start college so that you have the student card option for many different credit card companies. Then compare different benefits, interest rates etc. And don't open more than 1 for now. You don't want to get into debt at an early age.

PBristolJr
 
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Joined: Tue Dec 27, 2011 9:08 pm
Location: Indiana

Best first "cards". 19, Student, Working.

Postby PBristolJr » Tue Dec 27, 2011 9:48 pm

I don't have any credit currently but was approved for the Discover More card at a $500 cl. I've read that 30% or lower of your cl is where you should be if you want to maximize your score. Being at $150 I can use this card for lunches throughout the month and that will about cover it. I do another few hundred in spending monthly that I would hate to waste (not use to build credit.) Therefore I'd like to get a second card for other spending. I've heard of the AmEx Zync card is supposedly decent. I also have the ability to go through USAA to get their college mastercard.

TIA,
Peter

DO92
 
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Joined: Tue Feb 14, 2012 3:17 pm
Location: Los Angeles

19 year old Student. i need credit card advise!

Postby DO92 » Tue Feb 14, 2012 3:32 pm

A little bit about myself, I am a 19 year old student in college, with a part time job
(getting paid $8.00 plus tip as a pizza boy). I am also a musician in a band with high hopes of being successful. Recently I received financial aid, so I'm looking to invest in a Laptop and a Bass guitar. I really don't want to apply for store credit for two reasons:

1) I am afraid of being denied, and i heard being denied affects your credit score.
&
2) i keep reading that bank credit cards look better when it comes to building up your credit score.

So my question is, which credit card would be best for me to apply for?

Also, I've had an account at Wells Fargo since 2003. Not sure if that would affect my chances of getting approved for a bank credit card.

Celestine
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Postby Celestine » Tue Feb 14, 2012 7:06 pm

DO92 wrote:A little bit about myself, I am a 19 year old student in college, with a part time job
(getting paid $8.00 plus tip as a pizza boy). I am also a musician in a band with high hopes of being successful. Recently I received financial aid, so I'm looking to invest in a Laptop and a Bass guitar. I really don't want to apply for store credit for two reasons:

1) I am afraid of being denied, and i heard being denied affects your credit score.
&
2) i keep reading that bank credit cards look better when it comes to building up your credit score.

So my question is, which credit card would be best for me to apply for?

Also, I've had an account at Wells Fargo since 2003. Not sure if that would affect my chances of getting approved for a bank credit card.


I'm not putting you down, just the fact, but music bands or musicians are bounded by luck. It is one of those make it or break it situations. So don't take the music part seriously for now. Concentrate on your studies.

1) Usually how many hours do you work each week?

2) DO NOT USE USE FINANCIAL AID MONEY TO BUY A LAPTOP AND A BASE GUITAR - That is one of the common mistakes financial aid awardees do. The refund that you receive is still part of that financial aid-federal/private student loan(s). That is part of your loan balance that was not used for that semester or year; you still need to repay that amount. It is not "free" money. Open a separate savings or checking account for that refund or financial aid money so you can use it later if you need additional money for school.

3) Since you are only working part-time, try applying for your bank's credit card.

My advice is... Don't worry or pay attention to those rewards points for now. Build your credit from ground up. Have decent continuous income first before you worry about those rewards cards.

Stick to secured cards for now or with your bank's credit card.

Avoid store branded credit cards... it destroys your credit more than building your credit.
"Nearly all men can handle adversity, but if you really want to test a man's character - give him power." - Abraham Lincoln

DO92
 
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Location: Los Angeles

Postby DO92 » Wed Feb 15, 2012 2:09 am

Yea i decided that I'm not going to buy a bass and focus mainly on my studies. I'm planning on applying for the Wells Fargo student credit card soon.

oh, and i work about 20 hours a week. sometimes 25.

Celestine
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Postby Celestine » Wed Feb 15, 2012 10:24 pm

DO92 wrote:Yea i decided that I'm not going to buy a bass and focus mainly on my studies. I'm planning on applying for the Wells Fargo student credit card soon.

oh, and i work about 20 hours a week. sometimes 25.


For now, settle with your bank's credit card. Don't worry, it is better to not have rewards points today then accumulate it later on when you are earning more compared to accumulating rewards points today but living paycheck to paycheck.

I am sure there will be better credit cards and or charge cards later on that you can benefit from.

Good luck with your studies then... :D
"Nearly all men can handle adversity, but if you really want to test a man's character - give him power." - Abraham Lincoln

JerryW
 
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Location: Newburgh, IN

Postby JerryW » Mon Feb 20, 2012 10:38 am

My daughter is 19 and has never had credit and just issued a Discover card with a credit limit of $ 3900. She is not a student either. Kind of shocked me, but she will take good care of her credit.

woodward
 
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Joined: Tue Apr 03, 2012 5:12 pm
Location: U.S.A.

First card?

Postby woodward » Tue Apr 03, 2012 5:25 pm

I'm 19 and in college, and very considerate of my future finances. I have never had a credit card, since my debit card has been just fine for me. I am wanting to get a credit card to build up credit. I'm not the type of person who will abuse the card, and I will be paying it off every month.

I don't really understand how interest rates work, do you have to pay an interest rate on every purchase? or only if you don't pay it off at the end of the month? and I've read that some have different grace periods, so whats that about?

Also, a low credit limit wouldn't upset me because I don't spend much a month anyways, plus I have savings if I need too. I would prefer a card that doesn't have many different fees, but I guess I would take whatever is best.

So I guess I am just looking for any advice, and any recommendations on what card to get. There are so many choices that I am a little overwhelmed and would love some suggestions as to which cards are right for me.



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