Best Student Credit Card: Chase Freedom Student

There are many credit cards that cater to students on the market. But the Chase Freedom Student credit card is the best student credit card out there.

Back in June, Chase announced it was releasing a card to allow students to build up their credit. But unlike many other credit cards, this one allows the cardholder to earn points that will transition into a longer-term points and miles strategy.

While the popular Discover student card earns cashback, that cashback can’t ever be turned into points. American Express, Citi and Capital One don’t have student cards that can turn into points or miles either.

Chase, though, is allowing students to have a card that acts similar to it’s non-student equivalent – the Chase Freedom card.

The Important Stuff

The Chase Freedom Student Credit Card is a great option for those with a lack of credit history.
  • Earn $50 sign-up bonus (5,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards) after making a single purchase in the first three months.
  • No annual fee
  • 1% back on all purchases
  • Cashback can be transferred to Ultimate Rewards
  • Cardholders will receive $20 every year on account anniversary for five years
  • In-branch applications only

The Details: Chase Freedom Student Credit Card

Analysis

We’ve written about how the Chase Freedom Unlimited card is a great starter card, but it was hard for those without much credit history to get.

For the first time, those without a credit history – students – have the ability to start earning Chase Ultimate Rewards.

The sign-up bonus isn’t great, but for someone who can’t earn Ultimate Rewards otherwise, at least it doesn’t require doing a number of things to reach minimum spend requirements. The card earns 1% on everything making it a straight forward card for starters, as well.

Each year, the cardholder will get a $20 bonus each year (equivalent to 2,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points). The cardholder gets an automatic credit line increase if five payments are made on time within the first ten months. With that said, as we cover in our Beginner’s Guide, if you don’t plan on paying off your credit card in full each month, travel credit cards aren’t right for you.

Finally, after graduation, the cardholder can automatically upgrade the card to a Chase Freedom or Chase Freedom Unlimited. This is great for students who don’t want to waste a 5/24 slot on a non-travel credit card.

Overall, it’s a win for Chase to get students into the Chase brand of credit cards. I imagine it will lead to more conversions to travel cards like the Chase Sapphire Preferred and Chase Sapphire Reserve.

The Chase Trifecta

We have an entire article on the Chase Trifecta. Pairing the Freedom Unlimited with the Sapphire Preferred or Sapphire Reserve. one of or both of the Freedom or Freedom Unlimited Card is even more powerful.

Because cardholders of the student card can automatically upgrade to the Freedom or Freedom Unlimited, this card is perfect in order to get started on obtaining the Chase Trifecta.

The Freedom (5x on quarterly rotating categories) and Freedom Unlimited (1.5x on every purchase) are both cash-back cards earning cashback instead of points. However, when a cardholder has the Sapphire Preferred card, the cashback credits can be transferred to become Ultimate Rewards.

Final Thoughts: Chase Freedom Student Credit Card

This is a game-changer for students wanting to start earning points and miles.

Chase Ultimate Rewards are some of the most valuable currencies out there, and students can start “earning them” when they’re still in college. You can do things like fly to Thailand using Chase points or use them for many nights in hotels.

Chase allowing for students to join their family of credit cards is really smart by Chase. But, it’s also incredibly valuable to young people who want to earn points and miles towards free travel.


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