For college student, CardHub likes:
Citi Dividend Platinum Select MasterCard for College Students — No annual fee, and 5 percent back on purchases at certain merchants, such as gas stations, supermarkets and convenience stories for first six months. Drops to 1 percent after that, although certain items on a rotating basis will qualify for 2 percent cash back.
Discover Open Road for Students — No annual fee, but 0 percent interest for new purchases for nine months. (Frankly, the other two sound better to me.)
For high school grads?
CardHub recommends Capital One Cash Rewards for Newcomers. No annual fee, and 1 percent cash back on all items, and double that on travel purchases.
Teenagers can’t get credit cards unless they have a co-signer or show they have the income to cover their charges. Although there are some credit card experts that will disagree with me, I think before jumping into a credit card, teens should start by learning how to handle a debit card before graduating to credit. At 21, they can get their own credit card without a co-signer.
CardHub also likes the Orchard Bank Secured MasterCard for both high school and college grads. No annual fee the first year, $35 after that, and comes with a low rate of 7.9 percent
A secured card require you make a deposit in the bank that serves as your credit limit. So, if you keep $500 in the account, your credit limit is $500. These cards are usually for those starting out who can’t get credit on their own, or those trying to rebuild their credit after some reckless use of plastic.