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Deserve Credit Cards

2 min read
Brendan Harkness By Brendan Harkness Sep 24, 2019 | Updated Mar 25, 2020

Deserve (formerly known as SelfScore) is a newer credit card issuer focused on providing credit cards to people with fair credit and people who don’t already have significant positive credit history established on their credit reports.

There’s currently only one Deserve card, a Mastercard for students issued by Celtic Bank: the Deserve Edu Mastercard (Review). It has no annual fee or foreign transaction fee, and is accessible for international students who don’t yet have a Social Security number.

Who Is the Deserve Card For?

The Deserve Edu card is designed for students with limited or no credit history, both in the U.S. and abroad.

You can qualify for the Deserve Edu without any established credit, because Deserve will check more than the typical creditworthiness factors when you apply (more on that in the next section).

This card is rare in that it doesn’t require an SSN to apply, meaning international students are free to apply (with some requirements). If you do get an SSN later on, you should provide it to Deserve so your card activity can help you build credit.

Unlike secured cards, which are often the best options for people with limited or no credit history, the Deserve Edu doesn’t require a security deposit to be approved and establish a credit limit.

Read more

The 5 Best Credit Cards for International Students: Rewards, Low Fees, & More

How to Apply for a Deserve Credit Card

Whereas issuers usually determine an applicant’s creditworthiness by relying on scoring models such as FICO, this isn’t as effective when assessing those with little to no credit history. If you do have a credit history, Deserve will pull it with a hard inquiry, but this won’t be the only information it uses when deciding whether or not to approve you for a card.

In addition to the traditional criteria, Deserve will also consider other personal information in its underwriting process, to determine an applicant’s potential to successfully use the card responsibly and pay off balances. This information includes:

  • Education
  • Current financial wellness
  • Future employability
  • Monthly income, housing expenses, and available assets

If you’re an international student and do not have a Social Security number, you must provide a passport, student visa, I-20 form, and proof of a U.S. bank account.

Take note that Deserve will need to connect to your bank account to verify your balance. If you have privacy or security concerns this might worry you, but it seems logical because Deserve bases its decision on more than just an applicant’s credit history.

Deserve Edu Mastercard

The Deserve Edu card is designed for college students, including international students. It provides 1% cash back for every purchase and includes a statement credit for an Amazon Prime Student membership.

Deserve Edu Mastercard

Our rating
Min. credit levelLimited Credit History
Annual Fee$0
Regular APR20.24% Variable
Apply Now

securely on the issuer's website

  • No SSN required for International students. Available to students (enrollment verification is required)
  • Amazon Prime Student Membership (get reimbursed for subscription fees up to a lifetime total of $59)
  • 1% unlimited cash back on all purchases
  • Credit limits up to $5,000
  • $0 annual fee & no foreign transaction fees
  • No security deposit or co-signer required
  • Helps students build credit history and gain financial independence
  • Use anywhere in the world where Mastercard is accepted
  • Includes Mastercard Platinum Benefits like Car Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Roadside Assistance, Travel Assistance Services, Price Protection, Extended Warranty and ID Theft Protection
  • Complimentary cellphone insurance up to $600

Deserve Credit Card Features

Cardholders may receive the following perks with their new Deserve Mastercard credit card:

  • Amazon Prime Student: Deserve Edu cardholders will receive a credit towards a 12-month Amazon Prime Student membership.
  • $100 Feather subscription discount: Get $100 off your furniture rental subscription when you sign up using your Deserve card.
  • $45 statement credit for Mint Mobile
  • $10 statement credit for a Lemonade insurance subscription
  • Mastercard Platinum benefits: Cell Phone Insurance, Price Protection, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Roadside Assistance, and more

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