Top 3 Starter Credit Cards

Are you new to credit or never taken out a credit line such as a personal loan or credit card? Or do you have an extensive credit history riddled with bad marks that pull down your credit score? If so, then you may want to consider applying for a starter credit card. 

Starter credit cards are meant to help borrowers with zero or poor credit build their history so they can eventually upgrade to a better line of credit. They are also ideal for immigrants and university students (both from home and abroad). 

Compared to other credit cards, starter cards are relatively easy to secure. The downside is that this type of credit card usually doesn’t offer the same level of rewards or affordable interest rates. Additionally, they typically have a smaller credit limit, usually around $200 or $300. Some also have an annual fee, which can range from $49 to $89 or higher.

But that isn’t to say that all starter credit cards don’t offer these benefits. Some allow borrowers to earn 1% on their purchases without a hefty annual fee. You may still be hard-pressed to find one with low interest rates, as most have 20% APR or higher.

As you search for the best starter credit card, your goal should be to find one with the least amount of fees and interest. These will make it easier to pay your monthly statement off on time and subsequently build your credit.

The number of starter credit cards available on the market is growing, so to make things easier, WalletHub researched each one and selected their favorites. Hopefully, their recommendations will help you decide on the perfect beginner’s credit card for you.

Capital One Platinum Credit Card

Purchase Intro APR: Not available

Transfer Intro APR: Not available

Regular APR: 26.99% (variable)

Annual Fee: $0

Rewards Rate: None

Credit Requirements: Good for those with limited history

 

With the Capital One Platinum credit card, you automatically receive fraud protection if your card is lost or stolen. This credit card ranks at the top of WalletHub’s list since there’s no annual fee, and you can upgrade to a higher credit limit within six months of responsible usage. 

The Capital One mobile app makes it easier to check and manage your account from anywhere at any time. Plus, you can pay your monthly bill how you want, when you want, with no fees: you can write a check, pay online, or visit your branch in person. Since you pick the due date, you’ll always be ready to pay that month’s bill — no more missed payments while you wait for your paycheck to clear! 

Petal 2 Visa Credit Card

Purchase Intro APR: Not available

Transfer Intro APR: Not available

Regular APR: 12.99% – 26.99% (variable)

Annual Fee: $0

Rewards Rate: 1% – 1.5% cash back

Credit Requirements: Good for those with limited history

The Petal 2 Visa is one of the best starter credit cards thanks to its excellent rewards program. With it, you can earn as much as 1.5% cash back when you pay your monthly statement on time for one year after account opening. 

But you don’t need to wait that long to start enjoying rewards: you receive 1% back on qualifying purchases from the get-go. Plus, depending on where you shop, you even could get up to 10% cash back from eligible merchants. 

The Petal 2 Visa has other perks as well, including zero fees. That means no late fees, annual fees, international fees, or anything else. You don’t even need to pay a deposit.

Even if you don’t have any credit history, Visa’s cash flow innovations make it easier to qualify. You can get pre-approved in a matter of minutes without hurting your score. And, depending on your credit history, you can get approved for a credit limit anywhere between $500 and $10,000. 

Petal 2 cardholders also get access to the intuitive mobile app, making it easier to stay on top of your credit card usage. Monitor your balance, spending, and even set up automatic payments. 

Capital One Secured Mastercard

Purchase Intro APR: Not available

Transfer Intro APR: Not available

Regular APR: 26.99% (variable)

Annual Fee: $0

Rewards Rate: None

Credit Requirements: Good for those with bad credit

 

The Capital One Secured Mastercard reports to all three credit agencies, making it easier to build your credit when you use your card responsibly. As a secured card, you must pay a $49, $99, or $200 deposit to open an account, but Capital One will refund the amount after a certain period. If you need a higher line of credit, all you need to do is make another deposit. After six months, Capital One will automatically assess your account to determine if you qualify for a higher credit limit — no deposit necessary. 

 

The Capital One mobile app gives you around-the-clock access to your account. But if you need personalized service, you can also contact a representative over the phone.

 

Source
  • “10 Starter Credit Cards for First-Timers: Best of 2020.” WalletHub, wallethub.com/credit-cards/starter/.
Ian Schindler