The 5 Best Credit Cards for Teenagers

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Having a credit card is a big responsibility. The way you manage credit can greatly influence your credit score, which impacts whether you qualify for loans and credit cards. Given the level of responsibility, you may hesitate giving your teenager a credit card. Teenagers often shop frivolously and this behavior increases their risk of debt. To avoid debt or credit problems, you might suggest a prepaid credit card. These cards teach budgeting and self-control, but they aren’t necessarily the best credit cards for teens.

A prepaid credit card is a type of debit card. These cards do not build credit because teens can only spend what they deposit on the card. An actual credit card in your teen’s name can help him or her establish credit at an early age. If you’re searching and comparing the best credit cards for teens, here are five options.

1. Citi Dividend Card for College Students

Earn bonus cash back on rotating categories each quarter, such as dining out, groceries and entertainment. Plus, 1% cash back on all other purchases. Online account management lets you monitor your spending and pay bills online. Enjoy 0% interest on purchases for the first seven months. There is no annual fee.

2. Journey Student Rewards from Capital One

Apply for this credit card and access your credit score monthly. Set up text or email alerts to receive payment and balance reminders. Earn 1% cash back on all purchases, plus a 25% bonus whenever you pay your bill on time. There is no annual fee.

3. Discover It for Students

The best credit cards feature bonus perks, such as no annual fee, no over limit fees and no foreign transaction fee. This student credit card has all these features and more. Earn 5% cash back on rotating categories throughout the year, and 1% cash back on all other purchases. Use the credit card for books, food, transportation and more. The more you use your credit card, the more opportunities to earn cash. Choose your own due date, and with $0 Fraud Liability, you’re never responsible for unauthorized purchases. Enjoy 0% interest on purchases for the first six months.

4. Capital One Secured MasterCard

This credit card has no application or processing fee. Submit a refundable security deposit up to $3,000 and receive a comparable credit limit. Capital One reports to the three major credit bureaus monthly, which helps build your credit faster. Make timely payments and qualify for credit limit increases with no additional deposit. Demonstrate a good credit history over time and you may qualify for an unsecured credit card with Capital One. Use this credit card wherever MasterCard is accepted. There is a $29 annual fee.

5. First Progress Platinum Select MasterCard

Get approved for this secured credit card with a security deposit between $200 and $2,000. There are no credit history or credit score requirements, which is perfect for first-timers. Deposits are fully refundable, and you can request your deposit anytime after paying off your balance. Credit activity is reported to the three bureaus each month and you can access your account online 24/7. There is a $39 annual fee.