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Capital One Quicksilver Student Cash Rewards Credit Card: Ideal for traveling students

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It used to be that starter and student credit cards were pretty slim on benefits. Expecting perks like a welcome bonus or cash back once seemed impossible. But now, students just starting their credit journey or in the process of rebuilding their credit can get access to premium benefits with issuers like Capital One.

The Capital One Quicksilver Student Cash Rewards Credit Card is a prime example of a credit card that delivers plenty of extra benefits for all types of students, but especially students on the go. Whether you’re an international student, like to travel a lot, or have plans to complete that semester abroad, here are some key features of the Quicksilver Student Cash Rewards card you should know about.

What does the Quicksilver Student Cash Rewards offer?

Quick card details

  • Rewards rate: 1.5 percent cash back on all purchases and 5 percent back on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel
  • Welcome offer: $100 when you spend $100 in the first three months
  • Annual fee: $0
  • Regular APR: 16.49 percent to 26.49 percent variable APR

The first thing you might notice about this Capital One student credit card is that you can get unlimited 1.5 percent cash back on all purchases. This can come in handy when making everyday purchases like groceries, school supplies, and other education-related expenses.

Why is the Quicksilver Student Cash Rewards card good for Travel?

Although you don’t necessarily associate traveling with college students, it’s a growing reality for some. Graduate students may attend conferences regularly, and international students may go back home overseas for breaks. Other students may travel for leisure or participate in an exchange program for college credit.

No matter why students travel, it can be helpful to have a credit card to support and provide discounts for travel expenses. Surprisingly, this card has an impressive slate of features that can make it ideal for students that travel often.

Cash back on hotel and rental cars

If you book hotels and rental cars through the Capital One Travel portal, you’ll get 5 percent cash back on your purchases. It might not seem like a lot, but every little bit helps if you’re a student trying to save money on pretty much anything.

Don’t forget that when you arrive at your travel destination, you’ll be racking up 1.5 percent back on all other purchases, too. A trip that costs $500 for car and hotel, plus $300 in other incidental costs could mean about $30 back. Over the course of a few trips, this cash back can add up quickly.

Access to the Capital One Travel Portal

To get your cash back on hotel and rental cars, you’ve got to book through the Capital One portal. If you think this presents an additional hassle, nothing could be further from the truth. This newly revamped portal is actually a travel search engine with a number of features that can make your travel-booking experience more efficient, with plenty of opportunities to save money:

  • Price alerts
  • Price drop protection
  • The ability to cancel a flight for any reason (a small fee may apply)
  • Access to the best prices when booking travel

Welcome bonus

Recently, the issuer added a $100 welcome bonus that cardholders can use for anything. If there’s a larger travel purchase on the horizon, this money could be used to offset the cost of things like plane tickets, a hotel booking or even a car rental reservation.

If this welcome bonus isn’t quite enough for you, you should know that there’s another way to earn money with your Student Rewards card: the Refer a Friend bonus. Students can earn $100 for each successful referral, up to $500 a year, when friends use their link to become a new Capital One cardholder.

No foreign transaction fees

Typical foreign transactions can be up to 3 percent of the total transaction amount. If you travel abroad often or make purchases overseas, these fees can add up. However, the Quicksilver Student Cash Rewards doesn’t have any foreign transaction fees, so you don’t have to worry about that as a traveling student.

Travel protections

Your Capital One Student credit card also comes with rental car insurance, 24/7 access to a pay-per-use roadside assistance program and complimentary concierge services. These are the little things that can give you peace of mind as a student traveler.

Should I get the Capital One Quicksilver Student Cash Rewards Credit Card?

If you are a credit-building student who needs some perks for travel, this card is an attractive option with some respectable features. Although it’s not a premier travel credit card with higher-end benefits, there’s enough that makes this no-annual-fee card worth it.

The bottom line

There are many ways you can use a rewards credit card to support some of your financial goals. If you can find a little-known angle with substantial benefits, like travel perks, even better. We think this Capital One student card fits the bill in more than a few ways.

Written by
Aja McClanahan
Personal Finance Writer
Aja McClanahan is an author, blogger and speaker on personal finance and entrepreneurship. Aja is the author of "How a Mother Should Talk About Money with Her Daughter."
Edited by
Senior Editor