Finding the right credit card can be tough. This guide will help you choose the best credit card by category and credit score.

There are plenty of articles offering advice on the best credit cards in different categories. You might find different guides for travel, cash back, balance transfer, and other credit card types. You may also find articles listing the best credit cards for different credit score levels.

But in this comprehensive guide, we’re covering ALL of them.

We’ve listed the best credit cards in a bunch of different categories.

Comparison Summary of the Best Credit Cards

Credit card Credit score required⁺ Unique features
Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card750+ No foreign transaction fees; get 10,000 bonus points for each referral
Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card750+ Receive up to a $100 credit on Global TSA Pre✓ and no foreign transaction fee
Capital One VentureOne Rewards Credit Card700+ Use your Venture miles on hotels and flights and even transfer miles to 15+ travel partners, and no foreign transaction fees
Journey Student Rewards from Capital One 640+24-hour assistance including emergency card replacement in case your credit card is lost or stolen while you're traveling; for every month that you pay on time, you’ll receive an additional 0.25 percent in rewards for every dollar
Discover It® Cash Back 700+ Redeem rewards for cash at any time; no late fee on your first late payment and paying late won’t raise your APR; no foreign transaction fee; free FICO credit score
Capital One QuicksilverOne Cash Rewards Credit Card640+Redeem rewards for cash at any time
Citi Double Cash® Card - 18 month BT offer 700+ Rewards can be redeemed for statement credits or checks; free monthly credit score
Capital One® Savor® Cash Rewards Credit Card750+ Redeem cash back for any amount; no foreign transaction fees
Chase Freedom® Student credit cardNo credit required$50 sign-up bonus; $20 annual bonus for accounts in good standing for first five years
Capital One Platinum Secured Credit CardNot indicated, accepts poor credit Your payment history will be reported to all three major credit bureaus, helping you to rebuild your credit, or build it for the first time
Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card700+ Earn a bonus of 100,000 points when you spend $15,000 on purchases in the first three months
⁺Credit Score requirements are based on Money Under 30’s own research of approval rates; meeting the minimum score will give you the best chance to be approved for the credit card of your choice. If you don’t know your credit score, use our free credit score estimator tool to get a better idea of which cards you’ll qualify for.

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

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In A Nutshell

The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card sets the standard for travel rewards by offering an excellent 5x points on travel purchases through Chase Ultimate Rewards®, 3x points on dining and 2x points on all other travel purchases. And points are worth 25% more when you redeem travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards® – That means the killer 60,000 point sign-up bonus is worth $750 towards travel.

Read review
Credit Score Requirements: Credit Score requirements are based on Money Under 30’s own research of approval rates; meeting the minimum score will give you the best chance to be approved for the credit card of your choice. If you don’t know your credit score, use our free credit score estimator tool to get a better idea of which cards you’ll qualify for. *Money Under 30 uses a FICO 8 score, which is one of many different types of credit scores. *A creditor may use a different score when deciding whether to approve you for credit.
Poor 500-599
Fair 600-699
Good 700-749
Excellent 750-850

What We Like:

  • A monster of an up-front bonus; 60,000 bonus points after spending $4,000 in the first three months.

  • 5X points on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®, 3X points on dining, 2X points on all other travel purchases, plus more.

  • Points are worth 25% more when you redeem travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards®

  • Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.
  • Enjoy benefits such as a $50 annual Ultimate Rewards Hotel Credit, 5x on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®, 3x on dining and 2x on all other travel purchases, plus more.
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. For example, 60,000 points are worth $750 toward travel.
  • With Pay Yourself Back℠, your points are worth 25% more during the current offer when you redeem them for statement credits against existing purchases in select, rotating categories
  • Count on Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Lost Luggage Insurance and more.
  • Get complimentary access to DashPass which unlocks $0 delivery fees and lower service fees for a minimum of one year when you activate by December 31, 2024.
Annual Fee
$95
Regular APR
16.74% - 23.74% Variable
Intro APR
Intro APR Purchases N/A , 0 months
Intro APR Balance Transfers N/A , 0 months

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Journey Student Rewards from Capital One

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In A Nutshell

The Journey Student Rewards from Capital One is a great student rewards credit card focused on making on-time payments. One benefit of paying on time is a boost from 1% cash back to 1.25% cash back another is that Capital One will automatically review your credit limit in as little as six months.

Read review
Credit Score Requirements: Credit Score requirements are based on Money Under 30’s own research of approval rates; meeting the minimum score will give you the best chance to be approved for the credit card of your choice. If you don’t know your credit score, use our free credit score estimator tool to get a better idea of which cards you’ll qualify for. *Money Under 30 uses a FICO 8 score, which is one of many different types of credit scores. *A creditor may use a different score when deciding whether to approve you for credit.
Poor 500-599
Fair 600-699
Good 700-749
Excellent 750-850

What We Like:

  • 1% cash back on all purchases and pay on time to get a boost to 1.25% cash back

  • Be automatically considered for a higher credit line in as little as 6 months

  • No annual fee and no foreign transaction fees

Learn More >>

Capital One QuicksilverOne Cash Rewards Credit Card

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In A Nutshell

If you don’t have the excellent credit needed to score some of the bonuses other Capital One credit cards offer, consider the Capital One QuicksilverOne Cash Rewards Credit Card. It’s a terrific card for average credit and you can still earn 1.5% cash back on all purchases with a modest $39 annual fee.

Read review
Credit Score Requirements: Credit Score requirements are based on Money Under 30’s own research of approval rates; meeting the minimum score will give you the best chance to be approved for the credit card of your choice. If you don’t know your credit score, use our free credit score estimator tool to get a better idea of which cards you’ll qualify for. *Money Under 30 uses a FICO 8 score, which is one of many different types of credit scores. *A creditor may use a different score when deciding whether to approve you for credit.
Poor 500-599
Fair 600-699
Good 700-749
Excellent 750-850

What We Like:

  • 1.5% cash back on all purchases.

  • Be automatically considered for a higher credit line in as little as six months.

  • No foreign transaction fees and a modest $39 annual fee.

Learn More >>

Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer

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In A Nutshell

The Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer includes one of the best everyday cash back rewards rates available for cardholders.  2% cash back is earned on all purchases; unlimited 1% cash back when you buy, plus an additional 1% as you pay for those purchases.

Read review
Credit Score Requirements: Credit Score requirements are based on Money Under 30’s own research of approval rates; meeting the minimum score will give you the best chance to be approved for the credit card of your choice. If you don’t know your credit score, use our free credit score estimator tool to get a better idea of which cards you’ll qualify for. *Money Under 30 uses a FICO 8 score, which is one of many different types of credit scores. *A creditor may use a different score when deciding whether to approve you for credit.
Poor 500-599
Fair 600-699
Good 700-749
Excellent 750-850

What We Like:

  • 0% intro APR on balance transfers for 18 months (regular APR of 15.49% – 25.49% Variable)

  • 2% cash back on every purchase

  • No annual fee

  • Earn 2% on every purchase with unlimited 1% cash back when you buy, plus an additional 1% as you pay for those purchases.
  • To earn cash back, pay at least the minimum due on time.
  • Balance Transfer Only Offer: 0% intro APR on Balance Transfers for 18 months. After that, the variable APR will be 15.49% - 25.49%, based on your creditworthiness.
  • Balance Transfers do not earn cash back. Intro APR does not apply to purchases.
  • If you transfer a balance, interest will be charged on your purchases unless you pay your entire balance (including balance transfers) by the due date each month.
  • There is an intro balance transfer fee of 3% of each transfer (minimum $5) completed within the first 4 months of account opening. After that, your fee will be 5% of each transfer (minimum $5).
  • The standard variable APR for Citi Flex Plan is 15.49% - 25.49%, based on your creditworthiness. Citi Flex Plan offers are made available at Citi's discretion.
Annual Fee
$0
Regular APR
15.49% - 25.49% (Variable)
Intro APR
Intro APR Purchases N/A , 0 months
Intro APR Balance Transfers 0% intro for 18 months on Balance Transfers , 18 months

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Capital One Platinum Secured Credit Card

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In A Nutshell

If you are worried that you will not get approved for a conventional credit card or have been rejected in the past, the Capital One Platinum Secured is an excellent option. It’s rare to find one that doesn’t charge an annual fee and Capital One will automatically review your credit limit in as little as six months.

Read review
Credit Score Requirements: Credit Score requirements are based on Money Under 30’s own research of approval rates; meeting the minimum score will give you the best chance to be approved for the credit card of your choice. If you don’t know your credit score, use our free credit score estimator tool to get a better idea of which cards you’ll qualify for. *Money Under 30 uses a FICO 8 score, which is one of many different types of credit scores. *A creditor may use a different score when deciding whether to approve you for credit.
Poor 500-599
Fair 600-699
Good 700-749
Excellent 750-850

What We Like:

  • Put down a refundable security deposit starting at $49 to get a $200 initial credit line.

  • Be automatically considered for a higher credit line in as little as six months with no additional deposit needed.

  • No annual fee and no foreign transaction fees.

Learn More >>

Chase Freedom® Student credit card

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In A Nutshell

The Chase Freedom® Student credit card can help students begin to build a strong credit profile while earning a $50 Bonus for signing up and making one purchase during the first three months.  There’s no annual fee to own.

Read review
Credit Score Requirements: Credit Score requirements are based on Money Under 30’s own research of approval rates; meeting the minimum score will give you the best chance to be approved for the credit card of your choice. If you don’t know your credit score, use our free credit score estimator tool to get a better idea of which cards you’ll qualify for. *Money Under 30 uses a FICO 8 score, which is one of many different types of credit scores. *A creditor may use a different score when deciding whether to approve you for credit.
Poor 500-599
Fair 600-699
Good 700-749
Excellent 750-850

What We Like:

  • $50 Bonus after making your first purchase within three months from account opening

  • Keep your account in good standing and receive a $20 award each account anniversary for up to five years

  • No annual fee

  • $50 Bonus after first purchase made within the first 3 months from account opening
  • Earn 1% cash back on all purchases
  • No annual fee
  • $20 Good Standing Rewards after each account anniversary for up to 5 years
  • Earn a credit limit increase after making 5 monthly payments on time within 10 months from account opening when meeting credit criteria
  • No minimum to redeem for cash back. Cash Back rewards do not expire as long as your account is open.
  • Free credit score with Chase Credit Journey
Annual Fee
$0
Regular APR
15.74% Variable
Intro APR
Intro APR Purchases N/A , 0 months
Intro APR Balance Transfers N/A , 0 months

Apply Now >>

Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card

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In A Nutshell

The Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card blows you away with a 100,000 point bonus after you spend $15,000 in the first three months and keeps you coming back with 3 points per dollar spent on travel and select business categories for the first $150,000 spent each account anniversary year.

Read review
Credit Score Requirements: Credit Score requirements are based on Money Under 30’s own research of approval rates; meeting the minimum score will give you the best chance to be approved for the credit card of your choice. If you don’t know your credit score, use our free credit score estimator tool to get a better idea of which cards you’ll qualify for. *Money Under 30 uses a FICO 8 score, which is one of many different types of credit scores. *A creditor may use a different score when deciding whether to approve you for credit.
Poor 500-599
Fair 600-699
Good 700-749
Excellent 750-850

What We Like:

  • 100,000 bonus points after spending $15,000 in the first three months (Worth $1,250 in travel when redeemed through Chase Ultimate Rewards®)

  • 3 points earned per $1 spent on travel and select business categories each account anniversary year

  • No foreign transaction fees

  • Earn 100k bonus points after you spend $15,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $1,000 cash back or $1,250 toward travel when redeemed through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • Earn 3 points per $1 on the first $150,000 spent on travel and select business categories each account anniversary year. Earn 1 point per $1 on all other purchases
  • With Fraud Protection your card transactions will be monitored for possible signs of fraudulent activity using real-time fraud monitoring
  • With Zero Liability you won't be held responsible for unauthorized charges made with your card or account information
  • Redeem points for cash back, gift cards, travel and more - your points don't expire as long as your account is open
  • Points are worth 25% more when you redeem for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • Purchase Protection covers your new purchases for 120 days against damage or theft up to $10,000 per claim and $50,000 per account.
Annual Fee
$95
Regular APR
16.74% - 21.74% Variable
Intro APR
Intro APR Purchases N/A , 0 months
Intro APR Balance Transfers N/A , 0 months

Apply Now >>

In-depth Look at the Best Credit Cards on the Market

If you want to get into the nitty-gritty details of the credit cards we recommend, we get into it here:

Best Credit Cards for Travel

Chase Sapphire Preferred Card®

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Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card is one of the top travel cards available.

Not only does it offer one of the best travel reward bonuses around ($750 towards Travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards® or $600 in cash after spending $4,000 in the first three months), but it also provides 5x points on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®, 3X points on dining, 2x points on other travel purchases, and has no foreign transaction fees.

Though it doesn’t offer a 0% introductory APR, it does provide a low rate for the first year, for both purchases and balance transfers.

  • Introductory APRN/A.
  • Balance transfer fee: Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater..
  • Regular APR16.74% - 23.74% Variable on both purchases and balance transfers.
  • Annual fee$95.
  • Credit needed: Good/Excellent (750+).
  • Sign-up bonus: 60,000 bonus points (worth $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards® or $600 in cash) after spending $4,000 in the first three months.
  • Rewards: 5X points on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®, 3X points on dining, 2X points on all other travel purchases, plus more.
  • Unique features: No foreign transaction fees; get 10,000 bonus points for each referral.

See card details/apply or read our full review.

Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card

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Another one of the top travel credit cards, the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card provides a generous bonus of 75,000 miles (equal to $750 in travel) after spending $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months.

Plus you can also earn 2X miles per dollar on every purchase, every single day.

  • Balance transfer fee$0 at this Transfer APR.
  • Regular APR17.49% - 25.49% (Variable).
  • Annual fee: $95.
  • Credit needed: Excellent (750+, No late payments over 60 days, no bankruptcy or loan defaults).
  • Sign-up bonus: 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening
  • Rewards: 2X miles earned for $1 spent on all purchases.
  • Unique features: Receive up to a $100 credit on Global TSA Pre✓.

See card details/apply or read our full review.

Capital One VentureOne Rewards Credit Card

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A variant of the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card, the Capital One VentureOne Rewards Credit Card offers similar terms and benefits.

But the Capital One VentureOne Rewards Credit Card offers a sign-up bonus of 20,000 miles (equal to $200 in travel) after spending $500 on purchases the first three months from account opening.

  • Regular APR16.49% - 26.49% (Variable).
  • Annual fee: $0.
  • Credit needed: Good/Excellent (700+, No late payments over 60 days, no bankruptcy or loan defaults).
  • Sign-up bonus: 20,000 bonus miles after spending $500 on purchases in the first 3 months.
  • Rewards: Unlimited 1.25 miles per dollar on every purchase.
  • Unique features: Use your Venture miles on hotels and flights and even transfer miles to 15+ travel partners.

See card details/apply or read our full review.

Journey Student Rewards from Capital One

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The Journey Student Rewards Card from Capital One is perfect for students and non-students alike.

You don’t need excellent credit, and you can even earn rewards. You’ll start with 1% back on all your purchases, but if you pay your bill on time, you’ll jump to 1.25% cash back.

You’ll also get travel benefits like 24-hour assistance in case of an emergency.

  • Introductory APRN/A.
  • Balance transfer fee$0 at this Transfer APR.
  • Regular APR26.99% (Variable).
  • Annual fee: None.
  • Credit needed: Fair (640+).
  • Sign-up bonus: N/A.
  • Rewards: 1% cash back on all your purchases. Pay on time to boost your cash back to a total of 1.25% for that month.
  • Unique features: 24-hour assistance including emergency card replacement in case your credit card is lost or stolen while you’re traveling; for every month that you pay on time, you’ll receive an additional 0.25% in rewards for every dollar.

See card details/apply or read our full review.

Discover it® Secured card

The best travel cards by far are for those with excellent or at least good credit. These cards come with the most generous bonuses and rewards. But if you have poor credit, options are extremely limited.

One alternative is the Discover it® Secured card. This is basically a credit builder card, that will require a deposit to support your credit limit. But it will give you a credit card you can use for travel.

There is no annual fee, and you can earn 2% cash back on up to $1,000 in combined quarterly purchases at gas stations and restaurants, and 1% on all other purchases. Discover will also match all your cash back at the end of your first year.

It’s not a dedicated travel card, but it will provide you with cash back rewards, while helping to rebuild your credit.

Best Credit Cards for Cash Back

Discover it® Cash Back

Discover it® Cash Back offers very generous cash back rewards, including 5% on select categories each quarter, like groceries, restaurants, and gas stations.  Activation is required and the max spend per quarter is $1,500.

They also offer 1% cash back on all other purchases. But rather than giving you an upfront bonus, instead they match 100% of your rewards within the first year.

They also provide a 0% introductory APR on balance transfers for the first 14 months.

  • Introductory APR0% introductory APR on balance transfers for the first 14 months.
  • Balance transfer fee: 3% intro balance transfer fee, up to 5% fee on future balance transfers (see terms)*.
  • Regular APR11.99% - 22.99% Variable.
  • Annual fee: $0.
  • Credit needed: Good to Excellent (700+).
  • Sign-up bonus: Your cash back will be 100% matched at the end of the first year.
  • Rewards: 5% cash back on quarterly merchants, like gas stations, grocery stores, and restaurants; 1% cash back on all other purchases.  Max spend is $1,500 per quarter and activation is required.
  • Unique features: Redeem rewards for cash at any time; no late fee on your first late payment and paying late won’t raise your APR; no foreign transaction fee; free FICO credit score.

Capital One QuicksilverOne Cash Rewards Credit Card

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The Capital One QuicksilverOne Cash Rewards Credit Card is one of the very best for both cash back and general rewards. It provides unlimited 1.5% cash back on all purchases, which can be redeemed for cash at any time.

It’s designed specifically for consumers with average credit, even if you’ve defaulted on a loan within the past few years. The weak spot on this card is the APR. The regular rate is high among credit cards, and there is no introductory APR offer.

  • Introductory APR: N/A.
  • Balance transfer fee: $0 at this Transfer APR.
  • Regular APR26.99% (Variable).
  • Annual fee$39.
  • Credit needed: Average (640+; You have limited credit or you’ve defaulted on a loan in the past 5 years).
  • Sign-up bonus: N/A.
  • Rewards: Unlimited 1.5% cash back on all purchases
  • Unique features: Redeem rewards for cash at any time.

See card details/apply or read our full review.

Best Credit Cards for Balance Transfers

Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer 

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The Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer is an outstanding card for balance transfers.

The card has a unique reward system. Instead of paying a flat percentage on purchases, they pay 1% on purchases, and 1% on the payments you make on the card.

So if you charge $1,000 on the card for the month, you’ll receive $10 cash back. But if you pay the balance in full, you’ll receive another $10. It’s a good incentive to get you to pay back what you purchase while intending to take advantage of the rewards.

But the bigger story with this card is they offer a 0% introductory APR on balance transfers for a full 18 months.

  • Introductory APR: 0% on balance transfers for 18 months.
  • Balance transfer fee: An intro balance transfer fee of 3% applies per transfer (minimum $5) when completed within the first 4 months of account opening. After that, the fee will be 5% per transfer ($5 min.).
  • Regular APR: 15.49% - 25.49% (Variable).
  • Annual fee: $0.
  • Credit needed: Good/Excellent.
  • Sign-up bonus: N/A.
  • Rewards: Earn 2% on every purchase with unlimited 1% cash back when you buy, plus an additional 1% as you pay for those purchases.
  • Unique features: Rewards can be redeemed for statement credits or checks; free monthly credit score.

See card details/apply.

Best Credit Cards for Sign-up Bonus

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

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Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card hits our list of the top credit cards, again.

It offers what we believe is the top travel rewards bonus around ($750 towards travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards® or $1,000 in cash after spending $4,000 in the first three months). Couple that with 3x points on dining and 2x on other travel, and no foreign transaction fees.

  • Introductory APRN/A.
  • Balance transfer feeEither $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater..
  • Regular APR16.74% - 23.74% Variable on both purchases and balance transfers.
  • Annual fee$95.
  • Credit needed: Good/Excellent (750+).
  • Sign-up bonus: 100,000 bonus points (worth $1,250 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards® or $1,000 in cash) after spending $4,000 in the first three months.
  • Rewards: 5X points on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®, 3X points on dining, 2X points on all other travel purchases, 1X points on all other purchases.
  • Unique features: No foreign transaction fees; get 10,000 bonus points for each referral.

See card details/apply or read our full review.

Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card

Another amazing sign-up bonus credit card, the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card provides a generous bonus of 75,000 miles (equal to $750 in travel) after spending $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months.

Plus you can also earn 2X miles per dollar on every purchase – every single day.

  • Balance transfer fee$0 at this Transfer APR.
  • Regular APR17.49% - 25.49% (Variable).
  • Annual fee: $95.
  • Credit needed: Excellent (750+, No late payments over 60 days, no bankruptcy or loan defaults).
  • Sign-up bonus: 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.
  • Rewards: 2X miles earned for $1 spent on all purchases.
  • Unique features: Receive up to a $100 credit on Global TSA Pre✓.

See card details/apply or read our full review.

Chase Freedom® Student credit card

This is another category where options are few and far between. The best option for students with no credit history is the Chase Freedom® Student credit card, which issues 1% cash back for every dollar you spend. In addition to accepting applicants with no credit, this card also lets you check your credit score every day.

Aside from the Chase Freedom® Student credit card, the best option will be to work to improve your credit, including using credit builder credit cards.

Best Credit Cards for General Rewards

Capital One® Savor® Cash Rewards Credit Card

The Capital One® Savor® Cash Rewards card is one of the top rewards cards available. You’ll get an incredible bonus of $300 cash when you spend $3,000 in purchases in the first three months,

You also get 4% cash back on dining and entertainment, which includes a diverse range of merchants, including cafes, bars, fast food chains and even bakeries.

Entertainment includes record stores and video rentals, dance clubs, pool halls, bowling alleys. Cash back rewards never expire and can be redeemed at any time.

  • Introductory APR: N/A.
  • Balance transfer fee$0.
  • Regular APR16.24% - 24.24% (Variable).
  • Annual fee$95.
  • Credit needed: Excellent (750+; No late payments over 60 days, no bankruptcy or loan defaults).
  • Sign-up bonus: $300 cash bonus once you spend $3,000 in purchases in the first three months
  • Rewards: Unlimited 4% cash back on dining, entertainment, and popular streaming services, 3% at grocery stores, 1% on all other purchases.
  • Unique features: Redeem cash back for any amount; no foreign transaction fees.

See card details/apply or read our full review.

Best Credit Cards for Students

Chase Freedom Unlimited®

This is the exact opposite of the situation with other card types and credit profiles in this section. If you’re a student looking for a credit card, and you have good or excellent credit, you may want to apply for any credit card that requires good or excellent credit.

The reason is those cards offer the most generous rewards and benefits. They’re not specifically designed for students, but the benefits they provide will do more than just get the job done.

For example, Chase Freedom Unlimited®  cardholders receive rewards, like 5% cash back on travel booked through Chase Ultimate Rewards®, which is great for students who frequently travel back home. Plus, this card offers 3% cash back on dining at restaurants (including takeout and eligible delivery services), 3% cash back on drug store purchases, and 1.5% back on all other purchases.

For a no annual fee card, the Chase Freedom Unlimited®’s benefits are generous, especially for college students looking to save as much cash as possible.

Be aware however that even with excellent credit, the lender will be looking to determine that you have a stable income. You may qualify with just a part-time job, but you may need a cosigner if you have no income.

Chase Freedom® Student credit card

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The Chase Freedom® Student credit card is designed for students, including those with fair credit (and no credit at all). 

You’ll get 1% cash back on every dollar you spend using the card, as well as a $20 “Good Standing” reward each year for the first five years. As long as you make a purchase in the first three months you have the card, you’ll also get a $50 bonus.

Another great perk for students is that you can monitor your credit score through the app. You’ll be able to see how your on-time payments are impacting your score.

  • Introductory APR: N/A.
  • Balance transfer feeEither $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
  • Regular APR: 15.74% Variable.
  • Annual fee: $0.
  • Credit needed: No credit history required.
  • Sign-up bonus: Earn $50 by making at least one purchase in the first three months.
  • Rewards: 1% cash back on every dollar spent.
  • Unique features: Credit limit increase after five monthly on-time payments in the first 10 months; $20 annual bonus for accounts in good standing for the first five years; view your credit score at any time.

See card details/apply or read our full review.

Capital One Platinum Secured Credit Card

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The Capital One Platinum Secured Credit Card can be an option for students with either poor or no credit. If fact, it’s an option for anyone who has bad credit. It’s designed specifically to help you rebuild your credit.

You start with a $200 credit line. You’ll need to make a refundable security deposit of $49, $99, or $200, based on your creditworthiness.

You can then use the card just as you would any other, and Capital One will report your payment history to all three major credit bureaus — TransUnion, Experian, and Equifax. Cardholders will be automatically considered for a higher credit line in as little as six months.

  • Introductory APR: N/A.
  • Balance transfer fee: $0 at this Transfer APR.
  • Regular APR26.99% (Variable).
  • Annual fee: None.
  • Credit needed: Poor (Less than 640; “Rebuilding” you’ve defaulted on a loan more than once or you’ve been declined for a credit card in the last three months).
  • Sign-up bonus: N/A.
  • Rewards: N/A.
  • Unique features: Your payment history will be reported to all three major credit bureaus, helping you to rebuild your credit, or build it for the first time.

See card details/apply or read our full review.

Best Credit Cards for Business

Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card

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The Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card is a great option for business owners and entrepreneurs looking for a robust rewards credit card with tons of business-related perks. 

The card starts with an impressive 100,000 bonus point welcome offer for new cardholders that spend $15,000 on purchases in the first three months. This is equivalent to a whopping $1,250 toward travel rewards when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®!

As for rewards, the Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card is perfect for business owners that spend a lot on travel and general business expenses like advertisements and utilities. You’ll earn 3x points per $1 (on the first $150,000 spent in combined purchases) on travel, shipping purchases, internet, cable and phone services, and advertising purchases made with social media sites and search engines. You’ll also earn 1x points per $1 on all other purchases.

  • Introductory APR: N/A.
  • Balance transfer fee: Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater..
  • Regular APR: 16.74% - 21.74% Variable.
  • Annual fee: $95.
  • Credit needed: Good (700+).
  • Sign-up bonus: 100,000 points when you spend $15,000 on purchases in the first three months.
  • Rewards: 3x points (on the first $150,000 spent in combined purchases) on travel, shipping purchases, Internet, cable and phone services, and advertising purchases made with social media sites and search engines; 1x points on everything else.
  • Unique features: Free additional employee cards, fraud protection, purchase protection, and personalized account alerts.

See card details/apply.

Summary

We’ve covered a lot of ground in this guide, including not only the various major credit card categories, but also offers available at the different credit levels for each.

Now it’s up to you to sift through the options, and find the card that best matches your preferences and credit profile.

Featured image: Katya Havok/Shutterstock.com

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About the author

David Weliver
Total Articles: 304
David Weliver is the founder of Money Under 30. He's a cited authority on personal finance and the unique money issues he faced during his first two decades as an adult. He lives in Maine with his wife and two children.