Sometimes, students need credit, too. I should know, I was one at one time, and began writing about travel and credit cards shortly after receiving my first. Sustainable credit is an important topic to me, since I was taught at a young age to spend within my means.
The Upromise MasterCard is marketed toward students who may have never had a credit card, since it’s cobranded with SallieMae, one of the largest student loan dispersers in the United States. Let’s check out some of the benefits and see if this card is for you or the student in your family!
- The Upromise System
In a rather unique system, Upromise is designed to help students pay off student loans, save better, and save money for school purchases. All cashback earned from the card is put into a Upromise bank account. The cash can be used as fuel in a high-interest savings account, used to pay off student loans, or get a check for eligible school purchases.
- 0% Intro APR
This card, like many cards that Barclays manages, has no APR for the first twelve months of cardmembership. This is very helpful for those of us that need a few months to pay off a purchase. However, I would not recommend racking up a year of purchases without paying a dime. The interest that will hit you at the end of the year will not be worth it.
- First Purchase Cash Back
On your first purchase, you’ll earn $50 cash back.
- Cash Back Earning – Up to 5%!
One great benefit of this card is the large amount of bonus cash back opportunites to be had. For one, all eligible online shopping done through Upromise.com earns 5% cash back. There are many retailers on the site, so much of your daily spend can be funneled through this site. Thousands of participating restaurants offer 4% cashback when you dine with them (check Upromise.com to see participating restaurants). You can earn 3% back on gas at Exxon or Mobil locations (as long as that gas purchase is 20 gallons or more, so, sorry Honda Civics!). You earn 2% cashback at eligible movie theaters, and 1% on everything else.
The Nitty Gritty
After your 12 month introductory period is over, you’ll be paying between 12.99% or 20.99%, which is the same amount for balance transfers. Fees for balance transfers are either $10 or 4% (3% in the first 12 months). Cash advances pay 25.24% in APR, and that comes with a fee of $10 or 5%. Foreign transaction fees are 3%. Penalty APR is 27.24%.
This card is an excellent product, in my opinion. Not only does it allow for a good way to save for college, pay off loans, or pay for school purchases, the earning potential is huge with the Upromise shopping mall. 5% back on purchases is a huge discount. In addition, the no APR for 12 months is helpful for students that may not have a steady stream of income. In summation, I would absolutely recommend the Upromise World MasterCard for anyone thinking about school, attending school, or paying off student loans (I think I just covered 95% of America!).