Best Credit Cards for Students in Canada

Updated on: 2021-09-30 - 5 mins read
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After graduate from high school at age of 18, you are considered an adult in many of the provinces, and you should start taking your finances seriously. It might seem oppressing to apply for a credit card, but it’s never too early to start building good credit. If you’re looking to build a credit history, a simple no fee card that offers a great combination of generous rewards and low annual fees is exactly what you need. Here we have compiled few credit cards with their offers and best deals:


1. Tangerine Money-Back Credit Card

Tangerine credit card is one of the best credit cards in Canada when its all-embracing perks and ethos are considered. Unlike other credit cards, the Tangerine Money-Back Credit Card concedes you to attain limitless Money-Back Rewards on everyday purchases. When you deposit cash back earned into a free Tangerine Savings account, you get one extra 2% cash back category for a total of 3. To apply for the Tangerine Money-Back Credit Card you need to be a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident. Be at least 18 years of age, or the age of majority in your province or territory of residence.

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Annual Fee: $0
Rewards: Additional Features:
  • You earn 2% cash-back on purchases you make in up to three different categories.
  • Unlimited Cash-Back Paid Monthly.
  • 0.50% Cash-Back on Other Purchases.
  • Low Balance Transfer Rate.
Pros: Cons:
  • Earn cash back on categories of your choosing with no cap.
  • Automatic reimbursement - Cash back is automatically deposited in your account each month.
  • Enticing welcome offer - 10% cash back on your purchases for the first two months (up to $100 earned).
  • No travel insuranc.
  • No extra perks.
  • Need to be a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident.

2. BMO Cash-Back Master Card

BMO CashBack® Mastercard is multi-faceted. On the cash back rewards side, it earns list of the best no fee card in Canada. Respite from high credit card interest rates on your balance, this card offers a 1.99% rate on balance transfers and is one of the best low interest balance transfer cards in the country. To apply for the BMO Cash-Back MasterCard you need to be a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident. Be at least 18 years of age, or the age of majority in your province or territory of residence. You will also need to provide the following documents and information: Your name, residential status, and contact information.

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Annual Fee: $0
Rewards: Additional Features:
  • 3% cash back on groceries (up to $500 per month), 1% on recurring bills (up to $500 per month), and 0.5% cash back on everything else.
  • Welcome bonus: 5% cash back on everything for the first 3 months up to $2,000 in purchases.
  • Set up an automatic deposit whenever you reach a certain amount, starting at $25.
Pros: Cons:
  • Very flexible redemption options.
  • Grocery and recurring payment spending caps renew monthly.
  • Great balance transfer option.
  • Purchase protection and extended warranty.
  • Get up to 25% off car rentals at National Car Rental and Alamo Rent A Car locations.
  • The standard earn rate for purchases outside of groceries and recurring payments goes down to 0.5%.
  • This card offers very little in the way of insurance.
  • Perks like rental car insurance, emergency medical, and travel accident insurance benefits are not provided.
  • need to be a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident.

3. Scotiabank Scene Visa Card

The SCENE Visa Card for students is a nice beginner card and great for assimilating free movies. The card has low qualifying requirements and car rental discounts.

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Annual Fee: $0
Rewards: Additional Features:
  • Earn an average of 1% back on every purchase made - a fair percentage for a card with no annual fee.
  • Save on Car Rentals.
  • As a cardholder, you can apply for additional protection/insurance against disability, critical illness, or loss of life for a monthly fee. This feature is entirely optional.
  • Generous bonus of 2,500 points.
Pros: Cons:
  • SCENE points don’t expire.
  • Low redemption inception.
  • Does not require credit history for eligibility.
  • No fee for complementary cardholders.
  • Redemption options are limited to Cineplex and select restaurant chains.
  • Limited options for restaurant redemptions.
  • Average interest rates on purchases and on cash advances, balance transfers, and credit card cheques.

4. PC Financial MasterCard

President’s Choice Financial Mastercards (PC Financial MasterCard) is an excellent way to earn rewards points. Gives cardholders the ability to earn points without an annual fee. There is no minimum annual income requirement. This benefits the borrowers who are new to credit cards or do not have high income to qualify for other cards.

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Annual Fee: $0
Rewards: Additional Features:
  • 10 PC Optimum points per $1 spent at Loblaws grocery stores.
  • 20 points per $1 spent at PC Travel.
  • 25 points per $1 spent at Shoppers Drug Mart.
  • At least 30 points per litre at Esso or Mobil.
  • 10 points per $1 spent everywhere else.
  • Purchase interest 20.97%/ Cash Advances 22.97%.
  • 0.97% interest on balance transfers for the first six months.
  • Add up to four additional users for free.
Pros: Cons:
  • Best for students or new cardholder as there is no minimum income requirement.
  • Excellent gas rewards.
  • You can get card replacement or cash advance during emergencies.
  • No travel insurance.
  • Points can only be redeemed at PC stores.

5. BMO Air Miles Mastercard

BMO Air Miles Mastercard offers numerous chance to claim back your rewards. The miles earned on this card can be reclaimed for either Dream Miles which can be put towards free or discounted flights on selected airlines or Air Miles Cash can be redeemed for e-gift cards or discounts at Air Miles partner stores in addition of 95 miles for $10.

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Annual Fee: $0
Rewards: Additional Features:
  • Earn 3x the Miles per dollar at Air Miles partner stores.
  • Earn 0.04 Miles per dollar everywhere else.
  • Earn Miles twice when shopping at Air Miles partners.
  • Get 800 ($80 cash value) AIR MILES Bonus and a 1.99% introductory interest rate on balance transfers for 9 months with a 1% transfer fee.
Pros: Cons:
  • Purchase protection for 3 months.
  • Extended warranty for up to one extra year.
  • Impoverished base earn rate.
  • Monotonous allowance.

6. KOHO Prepaid Visa Card

KOHO Prepaid Visa Card is a reloadable card. KOHO is not a bank, they have partnered with Visa and Peoples Trust to grip the funds loaded by the cardholders on their card. A prepaid card does not accumulate debt, but rather uses the money you already have. Anyone in Canada of the age of majority in their province (18-19 years or older). Anyone in Canada of the age of majority in their province (18-19 years or older).

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Annual Fee: $0
Rewards: Additional Features:
  • 0.5% cashback with every eligible purchase and up to 5% cashback with select merchants.
  • $20 cash bonus on first purchse made.
  • Gives up to 1% additional cashback for 3 months.
  • Unlimited and free Interact e-transfers.
Pros: Cons:
  • Ability to track and budget your savings through the app.
  • There is no transaction fee (except for foreign transactions).
  • Daily spending limit of $3000.
  • The visa card can only be used in Canada.
  • Payments and purchases don't help to build credit on the card.

7. Choice Card from American Express

American Express Canada is a primitive credit card that enables you to attain points when you make purchases. Rewards are flexile and the cardholders of American Express can get ingress to few exclusionary fringe benefits. There is no minimum income requirement for this card. Be a Canadian citizen or resident who is at least 18 years old (19 in some provinces). Have a Canadian credit file or credit history.

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Annual Fee: $0
Rewards: Additional Features:
  • Earn 1 point for every $1 in Card purchases.
  • 1 bonus point per $1 for eligible hotel or car rental bookings.
  • Earn 10,000 Bonus Membership Rewards points when you charge $1,000 in purchases to your card within the first 3 months as a new Cardmember.
  • Purchase interest of this card is 19.99%, and cash advance rate is 23.99%.
Pros: Cons:
  • Access to special offer for music, dining, entertainment offered by American Express.
  • Fraud protection.
  • Emergency card replacement.
  • High interest rates.
  • No purchase protection and extended warranty coverage.
  • No travel insurance.

8. Triangle Mastercard

Triangle Mastercard grant cardmembers to earn Canadian Tire Money on qualified purchases. There is income requirement on Triangle Master Card. To be eligible for the Triangle Mastercard, you must be:

  • A Canadian resident
  • Currently employed or retired
  • At least the age of majority in the province or territory where you live
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Annual Fee: $0
Rewards: Additional Features:
  • Earn 4% on Canadian Tire Spending, 1.5% on groceries, 0.5% on everything else, 5 cents/litre – gas.
  • 19.99% purchase interest rate / 22.9% on cash advances.
  • 0% interest financing on eligible purchases.
Pros: Cons:
  • Zero liability insurance.
  • Enhanced security.
  • Easy returns.
  • Points can be redeemed only at Tire, SportsCheck, Mark's stores.
  • Does not offer any insurance cover.

9. TD Rewards Visa Card

TD Rewards Visa Card endeavours return on rewards at no extra fee. The card offers basic insurance to cover purchases and provides fraud protection. There is no minimum income requirement. Be a Canadian citizen or resident who is at least 18 years old (19 in some provinces).

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Annual Fee: $0
Rewards: Additional Features:
  • 3 TD Rewards points per dollar spent on travel booked through Expedia for TD.
  • 2 TD Rewards points per dollar spent on groceries, restaurants, and recurring bill payments.
  • 1 TD Rewards points per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • TD Rewards points can be redeemed optimally at a value of 0.5 cents per point, these are equivalent to a 1.5%, 1%, and 0.5% return, respectively.
  • TD Rewards points can be redeemed towards evryday perks like cash back, gift cards and more.
  • 19.99% interest on outstanding balances and 22.99% for cash advances.
Pros: Cons:
  • Wide range of point redemption.
  • Good rate of return on spending and redeeming.
  • Car rental insurance and discounts.
  • Fraud protection.
  • Low spending limits for earning points.
  • High interest rates.
  • No travel insurance.