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Deserve EDU Mastercard for Students Review

Barret WilliamsJanuary 9, 2022

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Deserve Edu Credit Card
Deserve® EDU Mastercard for Students

4.8 / 5 Stars

Best for Cell Phone Protection & International Students
- 4.8 / 5 Stars - Best for Cell Phone Protection & International Students

Enjoy up to $600 in cell phone protection when you use your card to pay your phone bill. For international students, a social security number is not required to apply.

Apply Now
at Deserve's Website

  • APR:  18.74% Variable APR
  • Annual Fee: $0
  • Welcome Bonus: 
  • Receive one year of Amazon Prime Student on Deserve after spending $500 in the first three billing cycles with your EDU card (Lifetime Value of $59).
  • Recommended Credit: Limited or No Credit
  • Receive one year of Amazon Prime Student on Deserve after spending $500 in the first three billing cycles with your EDU card (Lifetime Value of $59).
  • Earn 1% Cash Back on all purchases with your Deserve EDU Mastercard. Once approved, you’ll automatically start earning cash back on all purchases.
  • Feel secure with cell phone protection up to $600.
  • No deposit required. No annual fees.
  • There are no international transaction fees on purchases abroad, so you can travel with confidence.
  • No social security number is required for international students to apply.
  • See if you prequalify with no impact to your credit score in minutes.
  • Cards are issued by Celtic Bank, Member FDIC.

Deserve EDU is our FinTech entry on the list. This card doesn't offer the highest rewards, but 1% on all purchases is respectable. It is also packed with benefits. Cell phone protection is uncommon on student cards, and the Amazon Prime Student membership for a year is a nice plus. 

For international students looking to study in the U.S., the ability to apply for this product without a SSN is a breath of fresh air.

Deserve's cards are issues by Celtic Bank (Member FDIC).

Read our Deserve EDU Mastercard for Students Review.

Deserve Company Overview

Deserve was founded in 2013 in Palo Alto California. They currently have over 100 employees and are valued at over 100 million dollars. Deserve specializes in offering credit to college students and young people who may have traditionally been overlooked by the larger banks. 

In addition to the Deserve branded cards, Deserve also looks to help other companies offer their own credit products through a co-branding service. 

 Is Deserve a Bank?

Deserve is not a bank. Rather, it is a technology company that services credit accounts. Deserve adds a layer of technology on top of a credit card that is issued by a banking partner. Deserve's EDU cards are currently issued by Celtic Bank, Member FDIC. Celtic Bank has been operating since 2001 and is based out of Salt Lake City, Utah. This arrangement means that Celtic Bank may appear on your credit report if you open a Deserve EDU Mastercard, but they will not service your account or be your point of contact. 

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Deserve EDU Mastercard for Students Information

The Deserve EDU Mastercard has some interesting features. As a general product, it is fairly middle of the road. It does, however, offer some unique perks, which is why it appears on our best student credit cards list. Let's take a closer look. 

Deserve EDU Rewards Earning

The Deserve EDU Mastercard earns 1% cash back on all purchases. For a student card, 1% is the standard earning rate. You can find higher rewards, but as a student, an extra .5% is unlikely to make a difference over the course of a year. This may become more important as your income increases over time. Rewards can be redeemed as a statement credit once you've accumulated $25. For context, this means you've spent $2,500.

Deserve EDU Rewards Fees

The Deserve EDU has moderate fees. It has no annual fee, a must for a good student card. The interest rate on purchases is very middle of the road. If you think you'll be carrying a balance, we might recommend looking for a lower rate, but you can certainly do worse than the APR offered on the Deserve EDU. The card also charges no foreign transaction fee, which is perfect for a card that is well suited for international students.

Deserve EDU New Customer Bonus

The Deserve EDU offers new customers a year of Amazon Prime Student if you're able to spend $500 on your new card within the first 3 months of account opening. This perk is only valid for a one-year subscription, for a total value of $59. This is a decent bonus for a student card. 

Deserve EDU Other Benefits

Deserve EDU has two additional benefits worth looking at. 

1. It is available to international students without a Social Security Number. Most cards will require a SSN on application.

2. It offers cell phone protection. If you pay your cell phone bill with your card, you are eligible for up to $600 in cell phone protection for damages to your phone. This perk is most commonly seen on higher end cards for those with good to excellent credit, so it's a nice feature for a student card. 

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What Credit Score is Needed to Get the Deserve EDU Mastercard for Students?

The Deserve EDU Mastercard may be available to you with a limited credit history. This generally means that you have no credit extended to you, or you've been using some credit products (like a student loan in repayment) for less than 3 years. Your credit history should be free of any major delinquencies. If you've had credit issues in the past, you may want to consider one of the best credit cards for building credit

Can I get prequalified for the Deserve EDU Mastercard for Students?

Deserve puts all applicants through a prequalification process before you submit an application. The process is fast, taking only a few seconds to get a response. If you're matched to an offer, you can submit an application. Once you submit an official application, a hard credit inquiry will be conducted. 

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Deserve EDU Mastercard for Students Reviews

Deserve EDU Mastercard for Students Reddit Reviews

The people of Reddit have spoken, and the reviews are overwhelmingly positive. Most users report a positive experience with the application process, receiving a card and dealing with the company.

The Deserve EDU card does seem to have robust security in place, with some users reporting that transactions are declined when traveling. This is fairly common practice if your card is used internationally. Remember, if you're traveling abroad or even out of state, it doesn't hurt to notify your card issuer so they can pre-clear transactions. 

Deserve EDU Mastercard for Students Trustpilot Reviews

Over 80%of the Trustpilot reviews for Deserve are positive, which is good considering this is a financial company. Many of the negative reviews are from users that were declined for a card. 

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Should You Apply for the Deserve EDU Mastercard for Students Card?

The Deserve EDU Mastercard is a solid option for those looking for a card with cell phone protection and those that need to apply without a SSN. Even if you don't fall into one of those buckets, this is still a decent card that you are likely to be happy with as you make your way through school. 


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Compare the Deserve EDU Mastercard

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What is the credit limit on the Deserve EDU Mastercard?

The Deserve EDU's minimum credit limit isn't published, but it can be as high as $5,000. You'll need to be able to demonstrate your ability to repay any amount borrowed as part of your application. As a student, it's unlikely you'll receive a credit limit of $5,000 unless you have a stable income. 

Do I need to be a student to apply for the Deserve EDU Student credit card?

Yes. If you're not a student, and you need to build your credit, consider one of our best cards to build credit

What is the interest rate on the Deserve EDU Mastercard?

The card charges an APR of 18.74% variable as of 1/9/2022. Some student cards charge over 25% on the high end, with others charging less than 15% at the low end. We consider 18.74% to be reasonable, but not great.

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