Credit cards have revolutionized spending globally. People are increasingly moving to card payments in place of cash payments for the convenience and safety they offer.

Millennials are fast catching up with the card payment trend. 

Individuals between the ages of 18 and 25, who are mostly students and first-time job-seekers, are crucial drivers of the credit card market growth in the country.

It is necessary to know the credit card eligibility criteria if you lie in this age group.

The credit card market share in this age bracket increased to 14% in FY 2019-20, a leap from its humble 1.6% market share in FY 2015-16.

The rise in credit card demand by the younger population in the country has given rise to the concept of a student credit card.

What are student credit cards?

The concept of student credit cards is new in the country, is still in a nascent stage, and is still evolving. 

Credit card issuing institutions offer student credit cards to college-going students above 18 years. 

Student credit cards are gaining popularity because they do not require income proof from the students and provide immediate access to instant cash to the youngsters. 

Features of a student credit card

Student credit cards have some unique features which make them different from other credit cards.

  • Credit card validity: Student credit cards are usually valid for five years from their issue date. This validity is a couple of years more than other common credit cards, which have a validity of three years. 
  • Credit card limit: The credit limit on a student credit card is comparatively lower than other credit cards. The credit limit on a student credit card is Rs. 15,000 approximately. A lower credit limit restricts the card from unwanted spending.
  • Duplicate card fee: If the student loses his credit card, the card issuer issues a duplicate card for free or for a very nominal fee.
  • Charges: There is no joining fee on a student credit card. The annual charges on these cards are also low.
  • Offers and rewards: Student credit cards offer several rewards and loyalty programs in the form of cash-backs, discounts, and cash points.  

Eligibility criteria for a student credit card

The eligibility requirement for a student credit is very limited. An individual needs to meet only the following two criteria to be eligible for the best credit cards for students:

  • The age of the applicant should be above 18 years.
  • The applicant should be a college-going student.

Documents required for a student credit card

The following documents are required to apply for a student credit card:

  • Birth certificate/ Passport/ Voter ID Card/ 10th standard school certificate of the applicant as an age proof
  • Address proof
  • Identity card/ Admission slip/ Study certificate issued by the college or university to prove the applicant’s student status.
  • Identification proof
  • Passport size photograph

How to apply for a student credit card

The application procedure for a student credit card is different for different issuers. 

While some institutions offer a student credit card to any college student above 18, others offer the credit cards to only their education loan customers. 

Some banks allow students to apply only for a credit card while others require the student to visit the nearest branch to submit the application and documents. 

How can students get a credit card in India?

Student credit cards do not require the applicant to submit his income proof, proof of employment, or income tax return statements. The credit score and credit history are also not considered while approving student credit cards. However, there are certain ways in which students can get a credit card in their name:

  • Credit card against a Fixed Deposit: Some financial institutions issue a credit card to a student who has a fixed deposit in his name. The issuer may ask for a fixed deposit of a minimum amount for this.
  • As an add-on card: A student can ask one of his family members to apply for an add-on card in the student’s name. The approval chances of such a card increase if the family member has a strong credit history. 
  • Credit card against a Savings Account: A student who has a strong savings history can apply for a credit card against it with certain issuers. 

Student credit cards offer EMI credit to students at easy repayment terms. The student can get his credit card upgraded to a regular credit card during the validity of the card.