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Deserve Credit Cards

If you’re just starting out with credit and are trying to build up a credit history, a credit card can be the easiest and cheapest way to improve your credit—at least if you pay your balance in full each month.

But finding a good credit card can be hard when your options are so limited.

“When it comes to credit, most young people are caught in a Catch-22,” says a representative of Deserve. “They don’t qualify for credit because they lack a credit history, but to build a history they need to get credit.”

“Looking at things like potential earnings, Deserve provides credit to young people that the FICO-based system puts at a disadvantage,” says the representative.

And if you’re an international student, you don’t even need a Social Security number to get approved. To determine if a Deserve card is right for you, learn more about all three cards and their benefits.

Deserve offers three credit cards, all of which are unsecured, meaning you don’t have to put up a security deposit to get approved. That can be a major appeal to students and others who want to build credit but don’t have a few hundred dollars to spare.

Here’s a closer look at the details for each card.

Deserve Classic Credit Card

If you’re not a student but want to start building your credit score, this is a decent unsecured alternative. You can qualify for a credit limit worth up to $1,500, and you can avoid having to put down a deposit on a secured card.

Like many other credit cards for folks with no credit history, the Deserve Classic doesn’t offer rewards. You’ll also pay an annual fee and a high APR. But you won’t have to pay foreign transaction fees.

Deserve Edu Credit Card

Designed for college students, the Deserve Edu requires a Social Security number only if you have one. When you sign up, you’ll get a reimbursement of up to $49 for an Amazon Prime Student membership.

You’ll also earn one percent cash back on all your purchases. The card has no annual fee, no foreign transaction fees, and you can qualify for a credit limit up to $5,000. But its variable APR is a bit high, though lower than the classic.

You’ll need to prove you’re enrolled at an eligible school, though, so don’t try to apply if you’re not a student.

If you’re an international student, you’ll need to provide your:

  • Passport ID
  • Student Visa
  • I-20 form
  • Proof of a U.S. bank account balance

Deserve Pro Credit Card

Unlike the other two Deserve cards, this one was created for people with good or excellent credit—potentially as an upgrade once you’ve used the Deserve Classic or Deserve Edu to establish a solid credit history.

The card is also a good option for L1 and H1B Visa holders who might not qualify for a different credit card.

You’ll earn 3 percent cash back on travel and entertainment, 2 percent cash back on restaurants and one percent cash back on all other purchases.

You’ll also pay no annual or foreign transaction fees, and get a credit limit worth up to $10,000. Your variable APR will depend on your credit worthiness.

Is a Deserve credit card is right for you?

If you’re an international student, the Deserve Edu card is a no-brainer because it’s highly unlikely you’ll get approved for a credit card elsewhere.

But if you’re in a different situation, be sure to compare the Deserve cards with competitors. Here are just a few scenarios where you’ll want to shop around.

If you want to read more about the Classic, Edu, and Pro cards on the Deserve website, click here.

If you’re not an international student

This offer requires Average/Fair/Limited credit.

The Deserve Edu offers one percent cash back on everything, but a different student credit card, the Journey® Student Rewards from Capital One®, offers up to 1.25 percent cash back as long as you make your monthly payment on time.

Like the Deserve Edu, you won’t pay any foreign transaction fees, and you can get access to a higher credit line after you make your first five payments on time.

There’s no special bonus like the Deserve Edu’s Amazon Prime Student benefit, though, so consider whether you’d rather have that or the higher rewards rate.

If you’re not a student but building credit

Discover it® Secured

Credit Needed: Please refer to issuer’s website
  • No Annual Fee, cash back on every purchase, and helps you build your credit with responsible use.
  • Your Secured Credit Card requires a refundable security deposit up to the amount we can approve of at least $200 which will establish your credit line. You will need to provide your bank information when submitting your security deposit.
  • We will automatically begin reviewing your account starting at 8 months to see if we can transition you to an unsecured line of credit.
Intro APR
Intro Term
Intro APR
Balance Transfers
Intro Term
Balance Transfers
Regular APR Annual Fee
N/A N/A 10.99% 6 months 24.99% Variable $0

While an unsecured card may sound preferable to a secured card, this is one instance where the opposite might be the case.

The Discover it® Secured requires an initial deposit of at least $200. But here’s the kicker: You may qualify to get that back starting at eight months, turning the card into an unsecured card. Most secured cards won’t give your deposit back until you close the account.

The Discover it® Secured also offers rewards. You can earn two percent cash back on up to $1,000 spent each quarter (combined) at restaurants and gas stations, plus one percent back on everything else.

What’s more, Discover will match all the cash back you earn during the first year. So, you’ll effectively earn at least two percent cash back during that time. The card has no annual fee and no foreign transaction fees, and its APR is 24.99% Variable.

If you have established credit

If you’re eligible for the Deserve Pro, you’re also eligible for several other great cash back and travel credit cards, many of which offer sign-up bonuses and better rewards.

Take a look at some of the top credit cards available to see if there’s a card that fits your spending habits and personal preferences better.


The Deserve credit cards offer a way to build credit to a group of people who may not have had great opportunities to do so before. But they’re not for everyone.

To determine which credit card is best for you, compare these and other credit cards and consider all of their features. Once you find the one that works best for your spending habits and personal preferences, you’ll be more likely to hold onto it for a long time.

If you want to read more about the Classic, Edu, and Pro cards on the Deserve website, click here.

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