Compare Student Debit Cards

Information verified correct on December 9th, 2016

A student debit card is best for those everyday purchases to avoid going beyond your means and losing track of your spending.

This is because a debit card only draws money from your bank account, so you cannot spend more than you actually have. Although, a student credit card can be good for helping to establish a credit history, the obvious proviso is that you do not abuse any overdraft facility on your student debit card, or you will be hit by bank fees. The other main benefit is that you will not have to carry too much cash around with you, which cuts the risk and consequences of theft or loss.

Rates last updated December 9th, 2016
$
Monthly Account Fee Debit Card Access ATM Withdrawal Fee Fee Free Deposit p.m. Details
ANZ Access Advantage
Earn a $100 shopping voucher.
For opening a new account by 18 Dec 2016 and shop three times with your new Visa debit card by 8 Jan 2017 (conditions apply).
Visa $0 $2,000 No monthly account fee when you deposit at least $2,000 per month. Other fee waivers available based on your personal situation. Open More
Bendigo Bank Student Account
Available to full time students, apprentices and trainees over 12 years.
Mastercard $0 $0 No monthly account service fee, unlimited e-banking transfer, BPAY and Pay Anyone. More
Community First Student Starter Account
Designed for students aged 17-24 and studying their first degree or traineeship full-time.
Visa $0 $0 No monthly fee, fee-free banking with access to the RediATM network. More
Bank of Sydney Student Transaction Account
A flexible, student bank account with a linked Visa debit card.
Visa $0 $0 No monthly account fee with free, unlimited ATM withdrawals from RediATM network. More
Bank of Sydney Student Savings Account
Available for students under 18 years of age and want to earn interest on their transaction account.
Visa $0 $0 Free, unlimited ATM withdrawals from any RediATM. More
Bank of Melbourne Complete Freedom Student
Get a linked Visa debit card and $0 monthly fee for under 18's.
Visa $0 $0 A low cost transaction account for students – no ATM withdrawal fees at Bank of Melbourne, BankSA, St.George and Westpac ATMs in Australia. More
Westpac Choice Student
An everyday account for full-time tertiary students.
Mastercard $0 $2,000 No monthly service fee whilst you are a full time tertiary student More
BankSA Complete Freedom Student Account
An everyday banking account for students with a linked Visa debit card and $0 monthly account service fee.
Visa $0 $0 No ATM withdrawal fee at over 3,000 BankSA, Bank of Melbourne, St.George & Westpac ATMs around Australia. More
Police and Nurses Student Account
A bank account for secondary and tertiary students aged between 16-25 years old.
Visa $0 $0 Unlimited + free transactions via rediATM, NAB and BOQ ATMs. More
Rates last updated December 9th, 2016
$
$
months
Maximum Variable Rate p.a. Standard Variable Rate p.a. Bonus Interest p.a. Fees Min Bal / Min Deposit Interest Earned
ME Online Savings Account
Ongoing, variable 3.05% p.a. rate when you link to a ME Everyday Transaction account and make a weekly purchase with your Debit MasterCard using tap & go. Available on balances up to $250,000.
3.05% 1.30% 1.75% $0 $0 / $0 Open More
Citibank Online Saver
Introductory rate of 3.00% p.a. for 4 months, reverting to a rate of 1.70% p.a. Available on balances below $500,000.
3.00% 1.70% 1.30% $0 $0 / $0 Open More
RaboDirect High Interest Savings Account
Introductory rate of 3.05% p.a. for 4 months, reverting to a rate of 2.00% p.a. Available on balances below $250,000.
3.05% 2.00% 1.05% $0 $0 / $0 Open More
Bankwest Hero Saver
Ongoing, variable 2.65% p.a. rate when you deposit at least $200 each month and make no withdrawals. Available on balances up to $250,000.
2.65% 0.01% 2.64% $0 $0 / $0 Open More
AMP Saver Account
Introductory rate of 2.55% p.a. for 4 months, reverting to a rate of 2.10% p.a. Available on balances below $5,000,000.
2.55% 2.10% 0.45% $0 $0 / $0 Open More
ANZ Online Saver
Introductory rate of 2.85% p.a. for 6 months, reverting to 1.25% p.a. Available on the entire balance.
2.85% 1.25% 1.60% $0 $0 / $0 Open More
Westpac eSaver
Introductory rate of 2.71% p.a. for 5 months, reverting to a rate of 1.25% p.a. Available on the entire balance.
2.71% 1.25% 1.46% $0 $0 / $0 Open More
HSBC Serious Saver
Introductory rate of 2.25% p.a. for 4 months, reverting to a rate of 1.60% p.a. Available on balances below $1,000,000.
2.25% 1.60% 0.65% $0 $0 / $0 Open More
BankSA Maxi Saver
Introductory rate of 3.00% p.a. for 3 months, reverting to a rate of 1.05% p.a. Available on the entire balance.
3.00% 1.05% 1.95% $0 $1 / $1 Open More
Bank of Melbourne Maxi Saver
Introductory rate of 3.00% p.a. for 3 months, reverting to 1.05% p.a. Available on the entire balance.
3.00% 1.05% 1.95% $0 $1 / $1 Open More
BankSA Incentive Saver Account
Ongoing, variable 1.85% p.a. when you make at least one deposit each month and no withdrawals. Available on the entire balance.
1.85% 0.01% 1.84% $0 $0 / $0 Open More
Bank of Melbourne Incentive Saver
Ongoing, variable 1.85% p.a. when you make at least one deposit and no withdrawals each month. Available on the entire balance.
1.85% 0.01% 1.84% $0 $1 / $1 Open More
ANZ Progress Saver
Ongoing, variable 1.91% p.a. when you link to any Australian everyday bank account and deposit $10+ each month. Available on the entire balance.
1.91% 0.01% 1.90% $0 $10 / $10 Open More
Westpac Reward Saver
Ongoing, variable 1.85% p.a. when you deposit at least $50 and make no withdrawals each month. Available on the entire balance.
1.85% 0.01% 1.84% $0 $0 / $0 Open More

What is a student debit card?

Providing you with electronic and branch access to your bank account, a student debit card is popular among university and high school students who have not yet established their credit history. An application for a student debit card is convenient and easy as there is no credit history generally required for approval. You only spend the money you have stored in your credit card, and some student debit cards can be used to shop online.

How does a student debit card work?

A student debit card draws funds from your own money in the bank every time you use it. You can swipe it for payment in shops, restaurants, online transactions, link it to your PayPal account, or withdraw money directly from ATM machines.

How do I compare debit cards for students?

When planning to apply for a student debit card, make sure to find the bank that gives you the most benefits. Be mindful that most transaction accounts that are linked to your student debit card usually earn minimum interest.

  • MasterCard or Visa. The two main players in the student debit card space in Australia is MasterCard or Visa. Both have a global ATM network, use the latest in chip and data encryption technology and offer purchase protection if you meet the terms and conditions
  • No monthly or ongoing fees. Spend time to know what they have in store for a student depositor like you. Find out if there are card maintenance fees. Some banks usually waive monthly service fees for full time students.
  • Easy accessibility. Choose one that offers unlimited transactions and ATM withdrawals for free, and one that has an extensive ATM network. Most banks have partnered with other banking institutions that allow ATM withdrawals for free. You may also want to opt for a bank that allows 24/7 online access through their banking portal.
  • Mobile and internet bankingAs mobile banking nowadays makes day-to-day transactions faster and more convenient, it is wiser to check the bank's mobile app as well and make sure it works on your Android phone, tablet or iOS device.
  • Special student offers. Promotional offers like discounts at shops may also be included in some student debit cards so it's great to take a look as to which debit card gives you the best value for advantage in terms of charges, security and incentives. Don't forget to carefully review your cardholder agreement.
  • PayPass or PayWave. You can shop faster using PayPass or PayWave technology, which allows you to just tap and go for purchases under $100.

What are the benefits of student debit cards?

  • Fast and easy application without the need of a credit history as you're using your own money.
  • Gives you protection against overspending as you only spend your money that is in your bank account.
  • Most student debit cards have secure chip technology and utilise NFC so you shop faster by tapping and go for your purchases under $100.
  • Works similar to a credit card as you have access to most Visa and MasterCard merchants, locations and ATMs.
  • Debit cards are generally protected with a PIN and Zero Liability Protection.
Things to avoid about student debit cards
  • Fees are the one thing that you must try and avoid with student debit cards. These can include service fees charged per month, ATM withdrawal fees, transaction fees and dishonour fees.

Frequently asked questions

  • How do I apply for a student debit card? After you've looked at your options and decided the student debit card that is best for your needs, you can apply online or through a branch.
  • How long will it take for me to wait for a student debit card application? This depends on the financial institution - generally you can have your card within five working days of lodging the application.
  • Will the bank conduct credit checks upon application for a student debit card? Since a student debit card is tied up with your bank account, it is not subject to credit checks.
  • Can I still use my student debit card overseas? You can use your student debit card and withdraw money from ATMs when you travel internationally but you may be charged with currency conversion and international ATM withdrawal fees. You may want to opt for an alternative travel money option instead.

Shirley Liu

Shirley is finder.com.au's publisher for banking and investments. She is currently studying a Masters in Commerce (Finance) and is the author of hundreds of articles. She is passionate about helping Aussies make an informed decision, save money and find the best deal for their needs.

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Related Posts

Savings Account Offers

Learn about our information service
ME Online Savings Account

Maximum Variable Rate

3.05%

Standard Variable Rate

1.30
Citibank Online Saver

Maximum Variable Rate

3.00%

Standard Variable Rate

1.70
Bankwest Hero Saver

Maximum Variable Rate

2.65%

Standard Variable Rate

0.01
RaboDirect High Interest Savings Account

Maximum Variable Rate

3.05%

Standard Variable Rate

2.00

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