Petal 1 Visa Vs Deserve EDU Mastercard: Read This Before Applying

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Last updated on November 15th, 2022

Building credit can be challenging – especially if you are entirely new to credit cards. If you’re looking for some options, the Deserve EDU Mastercard and the Petal 1 Visa credit card are two popular credit-building candidates. But which card is right for you?

Petal 1 Credit Card or Deserve EDU Mastercard: Which Is Right for You?

Both the Deserve EDU and Petal 1 enjoy popularity among credit-building consumers – but which is best? Here is the breakdown of the two cards over key credit categories:

Pre-Qualification Before Applying

Applying for a credit card often requires a credit check. These credit checks (or credit inquiries) normally look at your entire credit history and are known as “hard inquiries”. This means the bank pulls your full credit report before making a decision on your credit card application. If you apply for a credit card and are declined, your credit score will likely take a minor hit. One way to avoid a negative impact on your credit score before getting a new credit card is by pre-qualifying before you apply.

Both the Petal 1 Visa and the Deserve EDU Mastercard provide quick, online prequalification forms before applying.

How to Apply

Here is all the information you’ll need to apply for both credit cards:

What Information Do You Need to Apply for a Petal 1 Card?

  • Name
  • Address
  • Email address
  • Phone number
  • SSN
  • Employment or educational status
  • Annual income
  • Housing status
  • Monthly housing payment

What Information Do You Need to Apply for the Deserve EDU Card?

  • Name
  • Address
  • Email address
  • Phone number
  • SSN (for identification/verification purposes)
  • External bank account information

Deserve uses a non-traditional cardholder screening to help make its credit card products more readily available to a wider proportion of eligible applicants. The Deserve application process includes linking your bank account to the application to provide additional factors to help improve approval success odds.

Credit Score Needed

Because both cards are designed for those new to credit, the typical FICO credit score for an applicant for the Petal 1 and Deserve EDU is around 580 to 640. Both credit cards are available for applicants with credit scores ranging from 300 to 850, thanks to their non-traditional application scoring.

Do the Cards Build Credit?

Both cards can be great tools for building credit when combined with financially responsible habits. Despite that, how the two credit cards build credit differs.

The Deserve EDU, for instance, is an unsecured credit card mainly aimed at students. As a student credit card, the Deserve EDU offers students (both international and domestic) the chance to build credit in the traditional sense. Cardholders can make purchases and pay them off as they normally would with any credit card without a security deposit.

Similarly, Petal 1 is an exceptional credit card for building credit. Petal reports to the three major credit reporting agencies (TransUnion, Equifax, and Experian). Additionally, Petal offers the chance at a credit limit increase in as few as six months from opening an account. With Petal’s Leap program, cardholders can earn a credit line increase in six months by making qualifying on-time payments and keeping their credit score within a personalized range.

Starting Credit Limits

Petal generates insights into the applicant’s creditworthiness through their unique “Cash Score.” This process analyzes credit history, banking, and other aspects of an applicant’s background to gauge their creditworthiness. Petal states that this provides access to higher credit limits and broader acceptance. Credit limits with the card range from $300 to $5,000 based on creditworthiness, with the latter being an impressive credit line for someone seeking to build up their credit score.

Deserve EDU also offers higher-than-average credit limits for new accounts. Depending on your creditworthiness, these credit limit ranges may be smaller – or larger. The average starting credit limit with Deserve EDU is around $1,000.

Card Fees

Here is a quick breakdown of some of the key fees with both cards:

Annual Fees

Neither credit card charges an annual fee:

  • Deserve EDU – No annual fee
  • Petal 1 Card – No annual fee


Deserve EDU

The Deserve EDU credit card doesn’t offer exceptional rewards but it can earn basic cash back on every purchase. Cardholders can earn 1% cash back on all eligible purchases. Those rewards aren’t outstanding, but they are a great addition to the overall package.

Rewards with Deserve are redeemable as statement credits in intervals of $25. Essentially, statement credits allow you to pay down your card’s balance with cash back.

After meeting a minimum spending goal within the first three billing cycles, the complimentary Amazon Prime Student membership is equally enjoyable. Amazon Prime offers free shipping, streaming videos and music, and more for members. Students can enjoy real value with this bonus – a $59 annual cost they would otherwise have to pay. To put it simply, spend $500 in the first three months, and the Prime membership is yours.

Petal 1

The Petal 1 Card earns cash back via special merchant offers. Merchant offers are automatically loaded to one’s Petal account. When making a purchase with an eligible merchant, cardholders can earn cash back based on the purchase – this normally varies between 2% and 10% in cash back.

Petal cash back rewards are redeemable through the card’s Cash Back Wallet as a statement credit up to the amount of the current balance. Cash back rewards over $20 are also redeemable via direct deposit into a linked bank account.

Other Card Features

Here is a list of other key features of both credit cards:

Petal 1

Petal 1 provides an exceptional selection of features for no annual fee. These perks and protections include premium Visa features like:

Zero Fraud Liability Cardholder Inquiry Services Emergency Card Replacement
Roadside Dispatch and Auto Collision Damage Waiver Lost/Stolen Card Reporting ID Navigator from Norton

Deserve EDU

The Deserve EDU also provides excellent features, including:

Zero Liability Protection Mastercard Global Services ID Theft Protection


Here is a quick summary of all the features from both cards:

Petal 1® Visa Credit Card

Deserve® EDU
Earn between 2% and 10% cash back when shopping with select merchants Earn 1% Cash Back on all purchases with your Deserve EDU Mastercard. Once approved, you’ll automatically start earning cash back on all purchases
No annual fee No annual fee

Featured image by Gam-Ol  / PixaBay

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About: Cory Santos
Cory Santos

Cory is the senior credit card editor at BestCards, specializing in everything credit card-related. He’s worked extensively with credit cards and other personal finance topics, including nearly five years at BestCards. Cory’s extensive knowledge is an essential part of the BestCards experience, helping readers to live their best financial lives with up-to-date insights and comprehensive coverage of all facets of the credit card space, including market trends, rewards guides, credit advice, and comprehensive credit card reviews.

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