Three Cool Credit Cards for Young Adults

Information verified correct on October 27th, 2016

When trying to teach a young adult how to manage their personal finances there are a few specialised types of cards available that might be just what they need, instead of diving straight into adult credit cards and all the risks attached.

Student Credit Cards

If you are a student yourself or a parent looking to get a sense of what is available for your child, it’s important to understand the various student credit card options in the market. Whilst not always marked as a student credit card, most banks will have a credit card in their range with a low credit limit available and lower than typical minimum income requirements. It’s also important to note than banks will require the cardholder to be over 18 years of age.

Learn more about student credit cards with our student guide here.

Gift Cards

Although not strictly speaking a credit card, gift cards which are produced at a set value which cannot be topped up or exceeded, will work like a credit card within the boundaries of the value of the card. Although a young adult is not going to learn the intricacies of credit card interest and fees from a gift card, they offer a good way to get newcomers to the world of personal finance to experience safely what a card is, and how it actually works at point of sale.

There are a lot of benefits associated with using gift cards for online purchases as well. Although they are becoming less widely accepted due to international control regulations. Before buying a gift card check what it will do before assuming it will behave exactly as a normal card, but most of the named types offered by certain banks are generally accepted just as widely.

Pre-Paid Cards

The next level of card up is the pre-paid card. These are mostly like a gift card, but always named and able to be ‘topped-up’ with money whenever required. In this way they behave similarly to a debit card connected to a bank account, but without the complication of interest, overdrafts and account fees.

Co-Signatory Cards

The third type of card that can give a young adult the training they need to manage their personal finance is the co-signatory card. Most companies offer the majority of their cards in this format, so these can be full-blown proper adult credit cards with all the benefits and pitfalls.

The difference is that a second signatory is required to manage the account and make most purchases, also meaning that the adult consignor is essentially guarantor for any debt accrued. Check exactly what controls are on purchases with this type of credit cards, as some will not be limited to double signature purchases.

They are all slightly different and depending on the age of the young adult and the relationship to them, different methods may be used.

Although the gift and pre-paid cards will not have fees or charges once they are running, be aware that most will cost a small amount to set up, and external fees such as ATM charges will still come off the balance.

Was this content helpful to you? No  Yes

Related Posts

Ask a Question

You are about to post a question on

  • Do not enter personal information (eg. surname, phone number, bank details) as your question will be made public
  • is a financial comparison and information service, not a bank or product provider
  • We cannot provide you with personal advice or recommendations
  • Your answer might already be waiting – check previous questions below to see if yours has already been asked

Disclaimer: At we provide factual information and general advice. Before you make any decision about a product read the Product Disclosure Statement and consider your own circumstances to decide whether it is appropriate for you.
Rates and fees mentioned in comments are correct at the time of publication.
By submitting this question you agree to the privacy policy, receive follow up emails related to and to create a user account where further replies to your questions will be sent.

2 Responses to Three Cool Credit Cards for Young Adults

  1. Default Gravatar
    The | October 28, 2014

    Hi there,

    Great post and great advice! We are students campaigning for young people in credit card debt and your website has been very helpful in finding great advice and information. Our credit crusade is all about getting young people back on track. What do you think is the best tip for young students in credit card debt?


    • Staff
      Elizabeth | October 29, 2014


      Thanks for your question.

      Young people in credit card debt is an important issue to highlight. Because each person’s debt situation is unique, as it depends on the amount of debt they’re in, how much they’re earning and their financial situation, there really is no one ‘best tip’ for young students in credit card debt. Any student who finds themselves in debt needs to consider their options and find the best debt reduction strategy to work for them. Anyone wanting to learn more about strategies to reduce credit card debt can take a look at this page and this page.



Credit Cards Comparison

Rates last updated October 27th, 2016
Purchase rate (p.a.) Balance transfer rate (p.a.) Annual fee
Virgin Australia Velocity Flyer Card - Balance Transfer Offer
Enjoy a 0% p.a. balance transfer offer for 18 months and also earn 2 bonus Velocity Points in the first 3 months on everyday spend.
20.74% p.a. 0% p.a. for 18 months $64 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($129 p.a. thereafter) Go to site More info
ME Bank frank Credit Card
Enjoy a low and consistent interest rate on purchases and cash advances, combined with no annual fee.
11.99% p.a. $0 p.a. Go to site More info
HSBC Platinum Credit Card
Receive a full annual fee refund and save $149 if you meet the $6,000 spend requirement. Enjoy a balance transfer offer and platinum card benefits such as complimentary insurances and concierge services.
19.99% p.a. 0% p.a. for 15 months $149 p.a. Go to site More info
NAB Low Rate Credit Card
The NAB Low Rate Card offers 0% p.a. on purchases and balance transfers for 15 months. This card also comes with a low annual fee.
0% p.a. for 15 months (reverts to 13.99% p.a.) 0% p.a. for 15 months with a one off 3% balance transfer fee $59 p.a. Go to site More info

* The credit card offers compared on this page are chosen from a range of credit cards has access to track details from and is not representative of all the products available in the market. Products are displayed in no particular order or ranking. The use of terms 'Best' and 'Top' are not product ratings and are subject to our disclaimer. You should consider seeking independent financial advice and consider your own personal financial circumstances when comparing cards.

Ask a question