Top tips for students to avoid credit card fees

By Mozo ·

Credit providers are very inventive with their fees, so you'll need to be crafty to avoid them. Here are Mozo's top 4 student credit card tips:

Fee free credit card comparison - last updated December 05, 2020

Search promoted credit cards below or do a full Mozo database search. Advertiser disclosure.

  • Thumbnail icon for American Express
    American Express Qantas Discovery Card



    20.74% p.a.

    No current offer

  • Thumbnail icon for ME
    ME frank Credit Card



    11.99% p.a.

    No current offer

  • Thumbnail icon for Virgin Money
    Virgin Money No Annual Fee Card



    0% p.a. for 12 months then 18.99% p.a.

    0% p.a. for 12 months and then 20.99% p.a.

  • Thumbnail icon for Bankwest
    Bankwest Zero Platinum Mastercard



    17.99% p.a.

    2.99% p.a. for 9 months and then 17.99% p.a.


1. Always pay the minimum amount due on time.

At the very, very least, you've got to remember to pay this one. Failure to do this may result in the following atrocities:

  • A fee (ranging from $10 to $40).
  • Losing your interest-free period.
  • A bad credit rating. (This one might sound obscure, but it'll come back to bite you.)

MOZO'S HANDY HINT: Arrange to have the minimum amount direct debited from your student bank account.

2. Give your annual fee the flick.

Cards with rewards programs often have higher annual fees than regular cards - and the value of benefits can be less than the fee! A free toaster might be more fun than sensible financial practice, but let's not give the banks the satisfaction of making off with our money.

MOZO'S HANDY HINT: Keep your student credit cards to a minimum. More cards mean more needless annual fees.

3. Resist the cash advance.

Most banks charge a fee for the pleasure of your easy money. Plus, cash advances attract interest immediately, even if your card offers a 55-day interest-free period on purchases.

MOZO'S HANDY HINT: Student credit cards are for purchases only.

4. Never, EVER exceed your credit limit.

Overlimit fees (usually $35) will apply once you exceed your credit limit. Bad credit ratings may swoop down upon you.purchases.

MOZO'S HANDY HINT: If you're spending up a storm, check your credit balance.

MOZO'S EVEN HANDIER HINT: If you're fast-approaching your credit limit, check out a balance transfer card pronto.

Okay okay, thank you for saving me all these heinous fees.

Now tell me how to manage my credit balance

^See information about the Mozo Experts Choice Credit Cards Awards

Mozo provides general product information. We don't consider your personal objectives, financial situation or needs and we aren't recommending any specific product to you. You should make your own decision after reading the PDS or offer documentation, or seeking independent advice.

While we pride ourselves on covering a wide range of products, we don't cover every product in the market. If you decide to apply for a product through our website, you will be dealing directly with the provider of that product and not with Mozo.