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International student looking to build credit

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    International student looking to build credit

    Hi everyone,

    I'm an international student currently going to school on the West Coast, and I’m trying to get a credit card to build my credit score. So far I’ve only found a few companies (Deserve (https://deserve.com/), TomoCredit (https://tomocredit.com/), Discover) that seem to approve international students with no credit history. Wasn't sure who to ask but does anyone know anything about these companies?

    Appreciate any advice you guys have!

    #2
    "Doctor of Credit" has recommended the Discover it Secured Credit Card (refundable deposit required) as a good choice for international students trying to build their credit history who want to earn a cash back bonus.

    Comment


      #3
      I'd think a secured card would be the way to go (probably the only option to start). Most banks offer them for credit-beginners. I don't think I'd go with a Discover card - I'd go Visa or MasterCard first. Better acceptance rate by most retailers, stores, etc. Secured cards require you front your credit limit (set by them) in cash, so if you don't pay, they take the deposit. As you build credit, you can transition to a traditional credit or charge account.

      The unique challenge to an international student is you may not have a social security number, which most banks require to open a credit account. Citibank was mentioned to not have this requirement, specifically for international students. I'm not sure of other banks' programs, but it's worth asking the question or browsing their websites.

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        #4
        Originally posted by ua_guy View Post
        I don't think I'd go with a Discover card - I'd go Visa or MasterCard first. Better acceptance rate by most retailers, stores, etc.
        I don't think that's true the way it used to be years ago. I can't think of anywhere I've been for years that didn't accept Discover.
        Steve

        * Despite the high cost of living, it remains very popular.
        * Why should I pay for my daughter's education when she already knows everything?
        * There are no shortcuts to anywhere worth going.

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          #5
          Originally posted by disneysteve View Post

          I don't think that's true the way it used to be years ago. I can't think of anywhere I've been for years that didn't accept Discover.
          The one caveat would be for an international student, Discover definitely isn't as accepted internationally. Visa/MC are, however.

          But you are correct - Discover is widely accepted - in the US - , but perhaps not advertised as accepted, as much as other brands. They are the 4th largest issuer in the US behind Visa, MC, Amex. Note: Costco does not accept Discover and that's probably why I still have a bad taste about them

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            #6
            Originally posted by ua_guy View Post

            The one caveat would be for an international student, Discover definitely isn't as accepted internationally. Visa/MC are, however.
            That's true. I was strictly thinking of use here in the US (except Costco apparently).
            Steve

            * Despite the high cost of living, it remains very popular.
            * Why should I pay for my daughter's education when she already knows everything?
            * There are no shortcuts to anywhere worth going.

            Comment


              #7
              Thanks for the advice everyone! Will definitely look into Discover and Citi. What are your thoughts on Deserve and Tomo? I have friends who have signed up and gotten approved, and have asked me to apply as well. Seems like those companies have cashback programs too.

              Comment


                #8
                Originally posted by MikeyC13 View Post
                Thanks for the advice everyone! Will definitely look into Discover and Citi. What are your thoughts on Deserve and Tomo? I have friends who have signed up and gotten approved, and have asked me to apply as well. Seems like those companies have cashback programs too.
                I never heard of either of them.
                Steve

                * Despite the high cost of living, it remains very popular.
                * Why should I pay for my daughter's education when she already knows everything?
                * There are no shortcuts to anywhere worth going.

                Comment


                  #9
                  The one I personally have heard the most about is Tomocredit. Supposedly they don’t require a credit score and have smart payments to help you build credit. They also have one of the best cash back rewards for a beginner card that I know of.

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