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HSBC Student Debit Card Review

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Take advantage of free unlimited transactions and no minimum balance requirements with this student debit card. 

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The HSBC Student Debit Card is a debit card offered exclusively to post-secondary students. It comes with a number of features that are usually reserved for more premium accounts. These include free unlimited transactions, free HSBC and Exchange Network ATM withdrawals and no monthly fees. The downside of this HSBC Debit Card is that you won’t be able to use it to shop online or earn rewards when you make purchases.

30-second take

  • Think about this card if you’re a post-secondary student and you want a debit card that comes with unlimited free transactions.
  • Choose something else if you’d prefer to shop online or earn rewards with a debit that functions more like a credit card.

The Basics

If you’re in the market for a basic student debit card that offers unlimited transactions and free ATM withdrawals, the HSBC Student Account Debit Card could be a good fit.

  • No monthly fees. This card comes with no monthly fees as long as you’re a student.
  • Welcome bonus. Enjoy a welcome bonus when you sign up for the HSBC Student Checking Account that’s affiliated with this card.
  • Unlimited transactions. Take advantage of unlimited free transactions when you sign up for this HSBC Debit Card.
  • Fee-free ATM withdrawals. Take money out for free at HSBC ATMs and those on the Exchange Network.

The perks

  • No minimum balance requirements. You won’t need to keep a minimum balance in your account to qualify for no monthly fees.
  • Mobile banking. The HSBC Student Account is linked to your online and mobile banking so you can manage your finances on the move.
  • Overdraft Protection. Protect your account from unnecessary fees for non-sufficient funds (NSF) if you ever drop into a negative balance.

What to watch out for

  • No online application. You’ll have to book an appointment to go into the bank to sign up for an HSBC Student Account since there’s no online application.
  • No student perks. There aren’t many student perks on offer with this card such as a free Student Price Card or special discounts with certain retailers.
  • Online purchases aren’t allowed. You won’t be able to use this HSBC Debit Card to make purchases online since it’s not affiliated with a credit card.
  • No rewards program. It’s not possible to earn points or cashback with this card since it’s not linked to a dedicated rewards program.
  • No access to credit. This card doesn’t offer access to credit, so you can only spend money that comes directly out of your bank account.

What should I know before I apply?

Eligibility requirements

You’ll get an HSBC Debit Card automatically when you sign up for the HSBC Student Checking account. To apply for this account, you’ll need to meet the following criteria:

  • Be a Canadian citizen, permanent resident or temporary resident of Canada
  • Have reached the age of majority in the province where you reside (18 or 19 years old, depending on where you live)
  • Be enrolled as a full-time student in an eligible post-secondary institution

Required documents and information

To sign up for the HSBC Student Account, you’ll need to provide the following:

  • Your name, residential status and contact information
  • Your Social Insurance Number and date of birth
  • Your email address and phone number
  • Proof of full-time enrollment in a Canadian post-secondary school

How to apply

  1. Visit HSBC’s main page to book an appointment to apply for the HSBC Student Account.
  2. Go into a branch to complete your application. This will include providing your name, email address, Social Insurance Number, birth date and proof of enrollment.
  3. Review and submit your application.
  4. Your HSBC Debit Card should come automatically included with your account once you sign up (so you won’t need a separate application).

HSBC Youth Debit Card

If you’d prefer to open a youth account that lets you make interest on your savings, you might like to check out the HSBC Youth Debit Card. This card can be used by youth under the age of 19, which makes it a good option if you haven’t yet reached the age of majority in your province (which is a requirement to qualify for the HSBC Student Debit Card).

Much like the student debit, the HSBC Youth Debit lets you make unlimited withdrawals and deposits for no monthly fees. The main difference with the HSBC Youth Debit is that you’ll also earn interest on any money you put away.

Bottom line

The HSBC Student Debit Card is an everyday debit that comes with the HSBC Student Checking Account. It offers free unlimited transactions and free ATM withdrawals for no monthly fee. You may also be able to qualify for a welcome bonus when you sign up. The main drawback of this card is that it’s not affiliated with a credit card. This means you can’t use it to earn rewards or to make purchases online.

Frequently asked questions about the HSBC Debit Card

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