NatWest Student Credit Card review 2020

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For NatWest student account holders this card could help cover unexpected expenses and kickstart a positive credit history.

You say: ★★★★★We say: ★★★★★

Representative example: When you spend £500 at a purchase rate of 18.95% (variable) p.a., your representative rate is 18.9% APR (variable).

£250

Minimum credit limit

Up to 56 days

Interest-free each billing period

18.9%

Representative APR

£0

Account fee

Details

IssuerNatWest
NetworkMastercard
Annual/monthly fees£0
Min credit limit£250
Max credit limitSubject to status: £500
Purchases18.95%
Purchases interest-free period (days)56
Balance transfers18.95%
Additional cards available1

Expert review

Chris Lilly

Review by


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.

Expert review

This NatWest card comes with a low credit limit (that’s the amount you’ll be allowed to borrow on the card) and no annual or monthly account fee – pretty standard stuff for a student card. Credit limits are personalised meaning they’re based on NatWest’s assessment of your unique circumstances.

Student cards also typically don’t have the most competitive rates around (in part due to the limited credit histories of many of the card’s users), but if you clear your balance in full each month, you won’t actually have to pay interest on your purchases. This is thanks to the card’s interest-free days on purchases, which could potentially offer a buffer until your next paycheck or student loan instalment comes through. This is a standard feature of almost all credit cards, not just those designed for students.

NatWest also offers an “eligibility checker” on its site which allows you to get a good idea as to whether or not your application would be successful, without a hard credit search (which would have a slight, and usually short-lived, negative effect on your credit score). As is generally the case with student credit cards, you’ll need to already hold a student bank account with NatWest to be eligible to apply.

You can use Apple Pay with your student card and in the NatWest mobile app you can manage your credit card alongside your NatWest student current account.

It’s smart to be cautious about taking out a credit card while studying. If your income is minimal and paid infrequently, be realistic about how quickly you’ll be able to pay off any borrowing. On the plus side, if you don’t carry a balance from month to month and you use this card responsibly, it could help you to handle fluctuating costs and help you start building a positive credit history, standing you in good stead for future borrowing.

The NatWest Student Credit Card is issued on the Mastercard network so it's accepted at nearly 53 million merchants across more than 210 countries and territories.

Pros and cons

Pros

  • Since it's a student card, you aren't required to have a super-high credit score in order to be approved
  • 56 days to spread the cost of purchases (provided you pay off your balance in full each month)
  • No annual fee

Cons

  • To apply, you must hold a student bank account with NatWest

How does it compare with other student deals?

Table: sorted by representative APR, promoted deals first
Data indicated here is updated daily
Name Product Purchases Annual/monthly fees Credit limits Rep. APR Link Incentive Representative example
TSB Student Credit Card
19.95%
£0
Min. limit £500, max. limit £1,000.
19.9% (variable)
More Info
Representative example: When you spend £1,000 at a purchase rate of 19.95% (variable) p.a., your representative rate is 19.9% APR (variable).
HSBC Student Credit Card Visa
18.9%
£0
Min. limit £250, max. limit £500.
18.9% (variable)
More Info
Discounts and exclusive offers for dining experiences, leisure activities and shopping available through HSBC Home and Away.
Representative example: When you spend £500 at a purchase rate of 18.9% (variable) p.a., your representative rate is 18.9% APR (variable).
NatWest Student Credit Card Mastercard
18.95%
£0
Min. limit £250, max. limit £500.
18.9% (variable)
More Info
Representative example: When you spend £500 at a purchase rate of 18.95% (variable) p.a., your representative rate is 18.9% APR (variable).
Royal Bank of Scotland Student Credit Card Mastercard
18.95%
£0
Min. limit £250, max. limit £500.
18.9% (variable)
More Info
Representative example: When you spend £500 at a purchase rate of 18.95% (variable) p.a., your representative rate is 18.9% APR (variable).
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Compare up to 4 providers

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.

Repayment options

You can make manual repayments through NatWest's app, by logging in to your online banking or over the phone (0345 788 8444). 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 NatWest Student Credit Card

If you’ve compared cards and want to apply, completing the secure online application form takes about 15 minutes. Before you apply, first use NatWest’s “eligibility checker” to make sure that you’re not wasting your time. To do this you’ll need to supply some basic details about yourself, plus three years of address history. If you decide to go ahead with a full application, NatWest will additionally ask for your end date of your current course.

Frequently asked questions

What credit limit will I get with the NatWest Student Credit Card?

If NatWest is able to offer you this deal, the offer will specify a personalised credit limit based on NatWest's assessment of your situation. The minimum limit offered on the card is £250, while the maximum is £500. Once you've had the card for a while and shown NatWest that you're reliable, you may wish to apply for a credit limit increase.

Can I withdraw cash using the NatWest Student Credit Card?

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 NatWest Student Credit Card is 3%.

The interest rate on this part of your balance will be 27.95%, which is 48% more than 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 NatWest Student Credit Card abroad?

Non-sterling transactions are subject to a 2.75% charge. For example, if you spend 200 euros (£182.78), it'll cost you around £5.03.

Finder student credit card ratings

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Our experts rate each student credit card comparing it to similar deals available on the market. We look primarily at the costs of running each card and then also at what benefits each card can offer students.

See the details of our scoring methodology on our credit card methodology page.

We show offers we can track - that's not every product on the market...yet. Unless we've said otherwise, products are in no particular order. The terms "best", "top", "cheap" (and variations of these) aren't ratings, though we always explain what's great about a product when we highlight it. This is subject to our terms of use. When you make major financial decisions, consider getting independent financial advice. Always consider your own circumstances when you compare products so you get what's right for you.

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