Approval for any credit card will depend on your status. The APR shown represents the interest rate offered to most successful applicants. Depending on your personal circumstances the APR you're offered may be higher, or you may not be offered credit at all. Fees and rates are subject to change without notice. It's always wise to check the terms of any deal before you borrow.
AIB Student Mastercard review 2020
A straightforward card designed to give existing AIB (formerly First Trust Bank) account holders financial freedom and convenience during their student days.
Finder rating: ★★★★★
Doing its job: 4/5
In a nutshell:
Minimum credit limit
Up to 56 days
Interest-free each billing period
Chris Lilly is a publisher at finder.com. He's a specialist in credit-based products including business and personal loans, mortgages and credit cards, and is passionate about helping UK consumers make informed decisions about their borrowing. In his spare time Chris likes forcing his kids to exercise more.
If you don’t anticipate carrying a balance from month-to-month, then a student credit card can offer a smart way to deal with unexpected costs and take control of your finances while studying.
Provided you pay your balance in full and on time each month, you won’t incur any interest on purchases or cash advances (taking out cash from the card) because the card comes with up to 56 days of 0% interest on your purchases each billing cycle.
To apply you need to be 18 or over, a full-time student and resident in the UK. You will also need to hold an existing AIB account.
The AIB Student Visa is issued on the Visa network (used by a whopping 3.3 billion cards), so you'll be able to use it at more than 46 million merchants across more than 200 countries and territories.
Pros and cons
- Since it's a student card, you aren't required to have a super-high credit score in order to be approved
- Up to 56 days to spread the cost of purchases (provided you pay off your balance in full each month)
- No annual fee
- To apply, you must hold a student bank account with AIB
How does it compare with other student deals?
You can make manual repayments through AIB's app, by logging in to your online banking or over the phone (0345 600 5925). Alternatively you may wish to set up a direct debit.
A direct debit protects you from forgetting to make a repayment and damaging your credit score – making it harder and more expensive to borrow money in the future – and getting hit with a penalty fee (£12) as a result.
You can arrange a direct debit for repayments when you apply for the credit card. The table below shows the options available.
Choose from the following direct debit options for your monthly repayments:
|Minimum amount||Fixed amount||Fixed percentage||Full amount|
How to apply for the AIB Student Mastercard
If you have compared your options and want to apply, you’ll need to call AIB (or request a callback) or head to a branch. A credit check and affordability assessment will be performed based on the information you’ve given, and you will normally receive a quick decision. Once approved, you should receive your new AIB credit card within 3-5 working days.
Frequently asked questions
What credit limit will I get with the AIB Student Visa?
If AIB is able to offer you this deal, the offer will specify a personalised credit limit based on AIB's assessment of your situation. The minimum limit offered on this card is £300 and AIB does not specify a maximum. Once you've had the card for a while and shown AIB that you're reliable, you may wish to apply for a credit limit increase.
Can I withdraw cash using the AIB Student Visa?
Although it's possible, withdrawing cash from a credit card account is generally not a good idea, as "cash-like transactions" (withdrawing cash at an ATM, getting cashback at the till, spending at a casino, buying currency, etc.) often incur steep fees and/or higher rates of interest.
The cash advance fee on the AIB Student Visa is 1.5%.
The interest rate on this part of your balance will be 12.9%, which is the same as the standard purchases rate (chargeable from the day of the transaction – the card's usual "up to 56 days interest-free" grace period won't apply).
How much does it cost to use the AIB Student Visa abroad?
Non-sterling transactions are subject to a 2.75% charge. For example, if you spend 200 euros (£181.11), it'll cost you around £4.98.
What is the minimum payment on the AIB Student Visa?
Each month you must pay at least 3% of your balance at that point or £5.00 – whichever of the two figures is greater. So if you had, say, £150.00 outstanding, you'd pay £5.00, and if you had £666.67 outstanding, you'd pay £20.00.
Paying only the minimum required amount each month is generally not advisable as it tends to be a very expensive way to borrow money which can lead to persistent debt.
Do I need to be an existing AIB customer to apply for the AIB Student Visa?
Yes, you must already hold a AIB student bank account.
What does "Up to 56 days interest-free" on purchases mean?
Almost all credit cards offer you a "grace period" in which to settle your purchases. But to enjoy this feature, you have to clear your full balance each month (cash withdrawals and non-sterling transactions sadly tend not to benefit from this feature).
Let's say you make a purchase using the AIB Student Visa on the 1st day the month. Shortly after the end of the month you receive your statement and bill from AIB which needs to paid by, say, the 25th of the month. If you then pay off your balance in full on the 25th, you won't be charged interest on that purchase and you'll have enjoyed 56 days interest-free.