A student credit card can be the best financial tool that you use. On the flip side, a credit card can also completely ruin your financial situation in your early-20s. Credit cards for college students are just not taken as seriously as they should be by the parents and the students.
Student credit cards have been handed out like free samples around the college campus and I’m here to write about it.
For the record I am not anti-credit card nor will you ever hear my preach about not using credit cards. To be quite honest I actually support credit cards in many cases. However, to hear a credit card rep. make such an irresponsible statement really infuriated me.
The credit card company is offering college students:
- A customized University credit card with school name on it.
- A low interest rate.
- A few gifts (back pack with school name, water bottle & a few other great items).
What is wrong with what the credit card companies are doing? Well before you guys email me to fix my mistake about the Credit Card Act of 2009 let me remind you that I’m located north of the border. The credit card companies on my campus were pretty much willing to give anyone a student credit card. The funny thing is that all you really need to receive a student credit card is to be 18 years of age and prove some sort of an income. If you can’t perform the latter then you will still likely still receive a $500 limit credit card.
Instead of ranting I will just throw out some thoughts on student credit cards today. I’m not here to make your decisions for you, I simply want to help you guys make educated choices on your own.
Do you really want a customized college student credit card? What I mean is how important is if it your credit card is customized for your school? For me the aesthetics of the credit card is the least of my issues. I would rather find a rewards credit card or one with no annual fees then a credit card that has my school name on it.
A low interest rate is almost never permanent. So the credit card company locks you in with an introductory low interest rate. A few months down the road you will lose track of time and next thing you know you’re rates are up at 18% or so.
Why don’t you just buy the bag or any of the free gifts they are offering? I don’t want to advise spending money foolishly but if you really want that bag or water bottle then you should just buy it. I mean you could spend a few bucks now to go buy that bag instead of having to deal with receiving this new credit card in the mail. If you’re not willing to spend the few bucks on the purchase then chances are it offers no real value to you in the first place.
As soon as I mentioned the free gifts from credit card companies, a Twitter follower chimed in with @Sustainlifeblog: The free t-shirt with your schools logo on it is not worth the interest you’ll be paying in the future. Dont bother singing up.
Any experiences you guys want to share with credit card companies around your college campus?