You have to be at least eighteen years old to get a credit card. At eighteen you may find that there are not many credit card companies that will give you a credit card. This does not mean that you cannot get one. It is better that you apply for a credit card with those companies that are known for giving credit cards to new card holders than to apply to many companies and see which one gives you one.
Also Federal Law requires that anyone under twenty one years of age must have a verifiable source of income to be approved for a credit card otherwise you will need a cosigner to apply for a joint credit card. Another problem with getting your first credit card is that you have no credit history which is one of the primary considerations that credit card companies consider when approving a credit card.
Before you get your first credit card you have to be sure that you are a responsible person and can handle the credit card by charging responsibly and paying the balance on time. There is no point in getting your first credit card if you are not responsible enough because it could spoil your credit rating which would be disastrous. If you are not ready as yet, you can prepare yourself by learning everything you can about credit cards and about credit rating.
There are a few steps that you can take to help you get your first credit card.
You can get a part time or full time job which would let you have a steady verifiable source of income and put you in a good position to get your first card. Credit card companies need to be sure that you can repay a credit card balance before they will issue you a credit card.
In case you do not have an income your next choice would be to get someone to cosign for a joint credit card. You will have to be very responsible though, since any mistake that you make will reflect on your cosigners credit.
When applying for credit cards, look for those that accept applicants with little or no credit history as these credit cards are geared towards your credit history and you will stand a better chance of getting approved.
If you are a student you could apply for a student credit card. Most credit card companies have a student credit card, but you have to be careful since some of these cards carry a high interest rate and also have high annual fees which make them a bad choice as a first credit card.
If you have a checking or savings account and have been responsible with it, you could apply for a credit card at your bank. Having an existing relationship with a bank can greatly improve your chances of being approved for a credit card.
Retail department stores have an easier approval level for credit cards. You could apply for one of these. Though a retail store credit card is not as versatile as other credit cards and have a higher rate of interest they can help you establish your credit history.
If you are finding it very difficult to be approved for a credit card, you can always get a secured credit card where you have to make a deposit against the credit limit of your card.
Do not be discouraged if you are denied for the first few cards that you apply for. The credit card companies will let you know as to why you were denied, this will help you plan as to which type of a credit card you should apply for in order to get approved.