Top tips for students to avoid credit card fees

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 28 November 2021

Search promoted credit cards below or do a full Mozo database search. Advertiser disclosure
  • St.George No Annual Fee

    0% p.a. for 12 months on APR requested at card application. The special promotional purchase rate applies from card approval, after the promotional period, the rate will switch to the variable purchase rate. New cards only, Eligibility criteria and T&Cs apply. Offer ends February 24th 2022.

    Annual fee
    Interest free days
    Purchase rate
    Balance transfer rate
    $0
    55
    0% p.a. for 12 months then 20.74% p.a.
    2.99% p.a. for 15 months and then 21.49% p.a.
    Details
  • Mozo Expert Choice Badge
    American Express Low Rate Credit Card

    Competitive low rate with $0 Annual Fee. Offers purchase and refund protection. Customers need an annual income of $50,000 or more.

    Annual fee
    Interest free days
    Purchase rate
    Balance transfer rate
    $0
    55
    8.99% p.a.
    No current offer
    Details
  • BankSA No Annual Fee

    0% p.a. for 12 months on APR requested at card application. The special promotional purchase rate applies from card approval, after the promotional period, the rate will switch to the variable purchase rate. New cards only, Eligibility criteria and T&Cs apply. Offer ends February 24th 2022.

    Annual fee
    Interest free days
    Purchase rate
    Balance transfer rate
    $0
    55
    0% p.a. for 12 months then 20.74% p.a.
    2.99% p.a. for 15 months and then 21.49% p.a.
    Details
  • Mozo Expert Choice Badge
    American Express Velocity Escape Card

    Receive 10,000 bonus Velocity Points when you apply online by 13 December 2021. No annual fee. Credit Card Provider of the Year in the Mozo Experts Choice Awards 2020^. T&C’s apply

    Annual fee
    Interest free days
    Purchase rate
    Balance transfer rate
    $0
    55
    20.74% p.a.
    No current offer
    Details
  • Virgin Money No Annual Fee Card

    Virgin Money No Annual Fee for the life of the card. 0% p.a. for 12 months on purchases (reverts to ongoing purchase rate) and balance transfers (reverts to cash advance rate).

    Annual fee
    Interest free days
    Purchase rate
    Balance transfer rate
    $0
    55
    0% p.a. for 12 months then 18.99% p.a.
    0% p.a. for 12 months and then 20.99% p.a.
    Details

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 Card Awards

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