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Best Student Credit Cards In Canada

I tested out 17 different student credit cards to help you find the best one!

Step into the quirky universe of Money With Mark, where personal finance isn’t just spreadsheets and snooze-fests. This time, we’re shining the spotlight on the best student credit cards in Canada.

Before you dive headfirst into a spending spree, take a breather. Watch my video guide to ensure you’re not just grabbing any card, but the right card tailored to your student life. Equip yourself with the knowledge to choose wisely and spend smartly. Welcome to your financial rite of passage!

neo financial cash back credit card

Mark’s Top Pick: Neo Financial

$0 Annual fee

Instant approval

Earn High interest on your savings

Don’t fall prey to the 5 biggest mistakes with credit cards.

I’ve landing in serious financial trouble a handful of times. And slowly crawled my way out of $10,000 in credit card debt, and more recently a $57,000 business mistake! I’m not saying this to scare you. I’m saying this because I wish I had the right information back when I was a student at McMaster University.

Watch Mark break down exactly what to look for, and what mistakes to avoid when choosing your credit cards for your student career.

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Jump To What You Need

TLDR: Comparing the best student credit cards

My top 3 student credit cards In Canada

How I evaluate student cards

Mark’s Credit Score Protocol

What to ask when choosing a card [FAQ’s]

Comparing the top student credit cards:

Student Credit Card Comparison

As a student, the decisions you make now will set you up to become a multi millionaire… or end up $100k in debt with a wife that’s going to divorce your broke ass.

Being in debt is hard, being financially responsible is also hard. Choose your hard. Part of making good decisions is understanding how to compare credit cards before you choose a card.

I’ve researched and signed up for almost all Canada’s most popular credit cards to help you choose the right one. I found that my favourite overall student credit card was Neo Financial.

Neo FinancialWealth Simple Cash CardKOHO
Annual Fee$0$0$0
Interest on Purchases19.99% – 26.99%0%0%
Instant approval?
Credit or Pre Paidbothpre paidpre paid
Best FeatureHigh interest savingsHigh interest savingsJoint accounts
Rewards programcash backaeroplan pointscash back
Mark’s Rating4/53.5/54/5

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Best 3 Student Credit Cards

As students we tend to run on tight budgets, so each dollar counts when looking for the best credit card. Most students will be getting their first credit card, which is the start of a positive or negative relationship with credit / debt.

Follow these tips when searching for the best student credit cards in Canada. You should look for one that offers cash back on all purchases, has no annual fee, and offers low interest rates. Ideally it would be great to earn high interest on your savings too.

You can take your financial responsibility one step further and use an app like KOHO that makes it impossible for your to accumulate debt, while still building your credit score. Choose a card that fits your financial needs and offers responsible usage practices like auto-pay, and spending notifications.

My Top 3 Student Cards:

neo financial cash back credit card

Neo Financial

$0 Annual fee

Earn high interest on savings

Easy to use app

koho mastercard


$0 Annual fee

Pre-paid card (no debt!)

Credit building tool

wealthsimple card


$0 Annual fee

Pre-paid card (no debt!)

Earn interest on your savings

Follow Mark’s credit card protocol for optimal results

⚠️Caution: Most Credit Cards Are Not Used Optimally

Don’t fall for the common credit traps, and make sure that you learn how to use and compare credit cards. Mark has boiled down the best credit score advice into his credit card protocol. Which will maximize your travel hacking points and minimize the risk of impacting your credit score.

    optimal credit card protocol

    What Questions Should Students Be Asking RE Credit Cards?

    Should you choose pre-paid or regular credit card?

    The ideal card for students is a card that doesn’t fuck up your credit score, or put you into a lot of debt. If you’re looking for a credit card because you don’t have any money… then you’re asking for trouble. Luckily there’s really helpful pre-paid credit cards and apps like KOHO that’s great for students and new-comers ot Canada. It’s the perfect risk-free place to ensure you don’t leave school with a bunch of credit card debt (on top of your student loans).

    But, if you’re that overachiever who’s already mastered the art of managing money, consider cards with richer perks from companies like Neo Financial or Amex to get more bang for your student buck.

    I’m scared to get a credit card… what are the pros and cons of them?

    Absolutely get the hesitation. Credit cards can feel like a Pandora’s box, especially for students. But let’s break it down real and raw:
    Build Credit: Using a credit card responsibly can help you build a good credit history. It’s kinda like getting a good grade in “Adulting 101”.
    Rewards & Perks: Some cards offer cash back, points, or other rewards. It’s like a mini “thank you” every time you spend.
    Spending insurance: Most cards come with fantastic fraud protection & chargeback options. So you’re not on the hook.
    Convenience: Some places just only accept credit.
    Travel Benefits: Some cards like Amex Aeroplan offer perks like travel insurance. Handy if you’re planning a post-exam getaway.
    Debt Temptation: If you’re not careful, credit cards can lure you into spending money you don’t have. And trust me, that’s not a rabbit hole you want to dive into.
    Interest & Fees: Didn’t pay off your balance in full? Welcome to the world of interest. It’s like that annoying group project member that keeps taking more than they contribute.
    Impact on Credit Score: Missed payments can dent your credit score. Remember the regret from procrastinating on that essay? This feels worse, and takes 6+ years to climb out of.
    Potential for Overspending: It’s easy to lose track of your spending, especially with tap-and-go payments. Before you know it, you’re buying stuff you didn’t plan for.
    Complex Terms: Some credit card agreements are more complicated than quantum physics. Always read the fine print.
    So, if you’re considering a credit card, think of it like a tool, not a magic wand. Wield it responsibly, and it’ll serve you well. Screw up, and you’ll have a mess on your hands. If you’re unsure, start with a risk-free option like a pre-paid card. That way, you get the feel without the potential fallout.

    Does cancelling a card hurt your credit score?

    Cancelling a card has the potential to hurt your score, but does not necessarily mean it will impact your score. When handling credit you should ensure you’re not opening and closing a lot of accounts in a short amount of time. Plus make sure you pay the full balance off every month, and never spend more than 30% of the maximum credit available to you.

    Summary of the best student credit cards for Canadians

    Stepping into the world of credit cards, especially as a student, can feel like diving into a pool of unknown depth. At “Money With Mark,” we demystify the world of credit, laying out the nitty-gritty pros and cons for students. From building credit to navigating the tempting dance of debt, we break it down real and raw.

    And if traditional credit cards feel daunting? We’ve got your back with risk-free options like KOHO. Dive in, get informed, and make choices that won’t have you regretting that late-night impulse buy. Welcome to your crash course in credit cards, student style.

    My Favourite Student Credit Card: Neo Financial!

    Instant virtual card access

    Earn 1 – 8% cashback

    Earn high interest on savings

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      Money With Mark is a personal finance speaker, influencer, author and content creator on YouTube, Tik Tok, and Instagram.