Student credit cards offer 0% interest, rewards

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There's one group banks and credit card issuers are actually sucking up to these days: college students.

Card issuers have designed credit cards specifically for them, with better terms, no annual fees and longer zero-interest periods.


Because college students are seen as important customers to grab onto on their way up financially.

Also, students aren't perceived to be as financially risky. New credit card rules require students younger than 21 to provide proof of income, assets or a cosigner in order to get a credit card, and this lowers the chance of a default.

And that's good for both card issuers and college-age card users.

Find a number of credit card offers tailored to college students in our extensive database. Here are a few to consider:

Discover Student More Card and Discover Open Road Card for Students: These two cards offer a introductory APR of 0% for the first nine months -- currently the longest zero-interest period available to college students -- which is good for students to load up on books and supplies this fall without earning interest.

The regular purchase APR is a variable rate ranging between 13.99% and 20.99% (that's the prime rate of 3.25% plus 10.74% to 17.74%), depending on the student or cosigner's credit history.

Both offer cash-back rewards of 5% to 20% when shopping in Discover's online shopping mall of national retailers.

The More card has a 5% bonus for up to $300 in purchases in specific shopping categories that rotate quarterly (October through December, it's cash back for restaurant and clothing purchases) and up to 1% cash back for unlimited purchases in everything else, from textbooks to toothpaste.

The Open Road card has double cash-back bonuses (2%) at any gas station or restaurant, good for up to $250 in purchases each month.

Capital One Journey Student Rewards: Capital One targets this card for students who want to build up their credit with a good payment record.

Besides offering 1% cash back on all purchases, the card gives a 25% bonus on the cash students earn each month when they pay the bill on time.

So, for a student who charges $200 onto the card each month, he or she will receive $2 in cash back, plus a 50-cent bonus for paying on time. While it sounds small, it adds up to $30 extra over a year to spend.

Purchase APR on this credit card is a variable 19.8%, which is quite high.

Citi mtvU Platinum Select Visa: This card rewards students who not only pay on time but get good grades, too.

It offers five "ThankYou Points" for every dollar spent at restaurants, from fancy to fast food, as well as bookstores, music stores and movie theaters. Earn one point per dollar spent everywhere else.

Students who pay their bills on time and don't exceed their credit limits can earn up to 25 points per month, and those who maintain a GPA of 2.5 and over can earn between 250 and 2,000 points every semester.

The 100-point mark is when students can start redeeming for everything from travel and merchandise to gift cards and exclusive Citi deals. There's a 0% APR for the first seven months, then the variable APR goes from 13.99% to 21.99%.

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