Student credit cardsA record number of recent graduates are finding themselves debating over whether or not a credit card is the best idea in these economic times. With fewer and fewer younger people accessing lines of credit, it comes as no surprise that credit card companies are trying to sweeten the pot with better offers and less restrictive terms in order to stimulate the number of applicants they receive.

Responsible credit card use is a good thing, and many graduates can find deals that can help establish credit and even earn rewards and benefits in the process. Below, we’ll review four credit cards that can be great for the recent graduate – depending on his or her needs.

Orchard Bank Secured MasterCard

Perfect for those who do not have the ability to access premium lines of credit, the Orchard Bank Secured MasterCard allows teens and young adults the choice of building credit without a huge commitment. Requiring a $200 deposit, the secured MasterCard comes with no annual fees for the first year (after that, it is $35) and has an APR of 7.99% – not bad for a card designed for those with no or bad credit. Orchard Bank reports to all three major credit bureaus monthly, so your hard work and responsible credit habits will assist in building a solid credit score for future needs.

Citi Dividend Platinum Select for College Students

Having access to a line of credit that is not only designed for students but can also provide cash-back offers is an excellent selection, and the Citi Dividend Platinum Select Card makes the list for that very reason. The interest rate on this card varies between 13-21% depending on credit history, but the goal of any student with a credit card should be to pay off expenses monthly rather than allowing interest charges to accumulate. Offering up to 5% cash-back on purchases at supermarkets, gas stations and department stores, the card can help students develop sound spending habits while being rewarded in the process.

Discover Open Road Card for Students

Designed for students who find themselves on the go, the Discover Open Road Card for Students provides up to 2% cash-back on gas and restaurants purchases up to $250 every quarter. While not the most feature-laden credit card on the list, it does come with no annual fee, a 9-month 0% APR offer and a subsequent interest rate between 13-18%. Rewards can be received in the form of cash, gift cards or as a donation to charity.

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