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Capital One Journey Student Rewards Credit Card: Good for Everyone?


Student credit cards can be a great option for those just starting out in the credit world, because while they often have less impressive perks, they are also often far easier to qualify for. However, the Capital One Journey Student Rewards credit card is one  of the few student cards I could recommend to anyone—not just students. Capital One has worked up a rewards program with this card that is actually better than many cards only available to applicants with “excellent” credit.

So, what’s so great about the Capital One Journey Student Rewards credit card?

The Capital One Journey Student Rewards credit card has a cash-back based reward system with a few added perks on the side to sweeten the deal. You get 1 percent cash back on all your purchases, and if you pay your bill on time, you are rewarded with an additional .25 percent, making for a total 1.25 percent return on all purchases.

This may not be the highest return out there, but on a student card, it’s excellent. The fact that all purchases gain this rate rather than obnoxious category specific regulations is also a major plus. With many cards, you have to spend within the right category and hope that your purchase is actually billed within that category to expect a return.

Rewards earned on your Capital One Journey Student Rewards credit card never expire and can be redeemed at anytime for a check or statement credit. The ability to receive rewards within a minimum pay-out as a check is also unusual in the world of credit cards for those with average credit. You can even set payment thresholds to have your rewards automatically processed once they meet a set amount.

Your Capital One Journey Student Rewards credit card also comes with:

Text or email alerts: Like many companies Capital One has gone green and offer online statements and account access, but they also allow you to opt for text message or email alerts when your balance is due, a payment clears, a charge seems fishy, or any other important information regarding your account comes to light.

Free credit monitoring: This feature is especially nice if you applied for the Capital One Journey Student Rewards credit card in the first place to build a positive credit history. Capital One grants you access to a free program to watch your score grow and monitor it to avoid costly errors.

$0 liability and 24-hour travel assistance: Not only are you covered 100 percent in the event of unauthorized card purchases, but if you lose your card while traveling that zero liability is coupled with 24-hour support and a fast emergency replacement.

This travel assistance plan can also be used in other situations, such as to get legal or medical referrals, translations, help finding lost baggage, transportation, or prescription and valuable documentation delivery arrangements. While all these services are free, any fees associated with them are your responsibility. For example, if the travel line finds you emergency transportation, the finding is free, the ride is not.

Extended warranty protection: Capital One will double the warranty on any item purchased with your card. You must send Capital One a copy of your receipt and warranty to receive this benefit, however, it is not automatic.

Free auto rental insurance:  When you rent a car with your card, you can receive free rental car insurance coverage to cover theft or damage. There is no limit on this coverage, but certain exclusions apply on luxury and exotic vehicles.

Free travel insurance: Your card offers $100,000 in insurance for loss of life or limb while traveling as long as the entire fare was paid with your card.

What does the Capital One Journey Student Rewards credit card cost you?

This is another huge perk of this card, it has no annual fee. Considering the rewards package detailed above, that’s rather generous.  The interest rate is also set, all card holders receive the say 19.8 percent, which is a bit on the high side, but that’s to be expected with a student card.

Cash advances garner a 3 percent fee and a higher interest rate of 24.9 percent. There are NO transfer or foreign transaction fees with this card. This is a great perk for travelers, and an awesome perk for those looking to transfer a balance—being the industry standard is 3 percent. However, there is also no introductory APR period, so this option is only ideal if the card you are transferring a balance from has a higher APR than 19.8. The Capital One Journey Student Rewards credit card also generally has a low starting credit line, which is only increased after 5 months of timely payments, this can delay the usefulness of a zero balance transfer fee.

There is no over-credit fee and a $35 late or returned payment fee, plus late payments will result in the loss of that bonus .25 percent return on your purchases.

Who can benefit from a Capital One Journey Student Rewards credit card?

As I mentioned before, really the Capital One Journey Student Rewards credit card is a good match for just about anyone. I will say that if you have excellent credit, you can probably find a more generous rewards program, possibly with that same zero annual fee, but a much lower interest rate. Because this card has a low introductory limit, those that need a large credit line fast may also want to look elsewhere, but for those that have decent credit and are looking for a low cost card with decent rewards, the Capital One Journey Student Rewards credit card is a winner.

This card may also prove attractive to those who previously have suffered in the credit realm and carry a balance on high interest cards as a result. Once you’ve cleaned up your credit, the zero balance transfer fee makes this card a wonderful choice to lower your interest charge costs, which can be particularly helpful when paying down balances.

Undeniably, in the student card market itself, where interest rates are almost always high, the Capital One Journey Student Rewards credit card gains best in category as far as fees and rewards.

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