Life after college graduation can be challenging, especially when it comes to money. While your student loans may come with clear instructions on what to do once you leave campus, what happens to your student credit card? Here’s everything you need to know about student credit cards and graduation.
1. Can I Keep a Student Credit Card After I Graduate?
Possibly. Many lenders allow graduates to keep the same cards they had while they were in school, complete with perks, including benefits and rewards — however you should check with your provider. Whatever you do, be careful about canceling your card when you leave school without exploring your options, because doing so may have a negative impact on your credit score, according to creditcards.com.
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2. Will I Qualify for a Higher Limit When I Graduate?
Student cards usually come with lower credit limits to reflect the higher risk students with no income or low income could pose to credit card companies.
When you graduate, you should call your credit card provider to update your information. This includes: contact information, housing information (such as rental or mortgage payments) and income. Updating all this information enables your creditor to consider you for credit line increases because your ability to pay increases with a higher income. You can also usually do this online or within your mobile app.
3. What Happens to My Reward Balance?
If you’ve been enjoying rewards as a perk of your student credit card and aren’t ready to redeem them, some credit card issuers allow you to transfer them to other cards. Call your credit card issuer to see if it offers this service. However, you may not need to transfer rewards at all — it may be possible to keep them until you’re ready to redeem them. For example, with the Discover it® Chrome for Students card, Cashback Bonus you earn never expires, and you can redeem it in many ways. And, if you don’t use your Discover it Chrome card for 18 months, or if it’s closed, your account will simply be credited with your Cashback Bonus balance.
4. Communicate With Your Credit Card Provider
Your credit card company may help you figure out the best credit card options for you after graduation, whether this means converting your student card to a similar or completely different card or keeping your student card. And remember, using a credit card responsibly as a student and a graduate may help build credit as you transition into the next phase of your life.
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As a college student, you may not realize just how important building your credit history can be. That’s where a student credit card such as the Discover it® Chrome Student card can come in handy, offering both the ability to begin building a credit history through responsible use, plus rewards on gas and restaurant purchases.