Credit Cards For College Students Deserve Close Scrutiny!

The quality of your credit rating has a huge effect on a lot of things in your life. It will be easier to get loans when you need them; and you will receive a lower interest rate on them as well. A good credit rating can even mean having an easier time being hired for a job.

It was not all that long ago that credit card companies were handing out cards left and right. You would see low interest credit card offers with very high credit limits. Credit cards for college students were easy to get - the card offers were sent out in bulk and it was so easy to apply and be approved. People took advantage of these offers and bought those things that they really could not afford otherwise - but could afford to pay off over time.

If your folks did not happen to be geniuses about money and particularly if you are still young, you might have problems taking care of your finances. If you spot that jacket that you just simply have to have, then you produce that card and forget all about that statement which will be coming in a matter of weeks.

If you are in school, you probably see a lot of these credit cards for college students being offered. Before you even look at any of these applications, it would probably be a good idea to ask your parents for some advice. They may have had some experiences with these credit cards for college students when they were still attending university back before you were born; of course now, these cards have a much higher interest rate and fees. If your parents got themselves into a debt which it took years to pay off, this is a time where you should not follow the example set by your parents.

It may surprise you to find out that these credit cards for college students are just as prevalent as they ever were; of course, the costs associated are far higher now. Remember that a single late or missed payment can result in your having a very high APR from there on in.

Many credit card companies don't even ask you for all that much information before they will hand that card over to you. It is your responsibility to read all of that fine print; you need to understand all of the terms and conditions which are spelled out there.

Be careful when you apply for credit cards for college students. Read the entire cardholder agreement before you sign - you need to be confident that you can pay off any debt which you incur. If you find yourself faced with a situation where you max out your card due to an emergency, you need to pay three times the monthly minimum payment at least to get the balance paid off quickly. Used judiciously, a credit card can be a wonderful thing.


Credit Cards and APR Fees

To avoid falling into the "debt trap", it is vital that you understand the APR part of the credit card package and this is worked out using several tables. It is now the "norm" for credit card companies who offer the ability to make payments via the telephone to charge a fee for the service, usually in the vicinity of $1.50 to $3.50. Considering this, it may be wise to avoid using the phone to pay your bills!

There are even some companies that have a fee for statement reviews, answering queries and so on. This means that the humble telephone is making more than you do!

It is essential that you read the Terms and Conditions very carefully if you wish to avoid these annoying charges. Your own phone bill is enough to pay - you don't want to pay another one!

Some credit card companies offer "free online" account access, but you should be careful with these as well. Sometimes, going online will alter the "free" into "fee".

Check the "Annual Fees" aspect as well - there may be hidden catches to these also, especially with subsequent bills.

Sometimes, cash advances are included when your application for a credit card is accepted, which can be beneficial sometimes, but only if the APR rates are not too high. Other providers offer a $3 charge on cash advances, but you must be sure to check the Terms and Conditions first.

A card provider will sometimes allow that a card can be used to pay another fee. This is known as balance transferring. A "check" is mailed to the client, used to pay any amounts owing and a fee is charged. You should be aware of the fee to avoid incurring more debt.

If your payments are made after the due date, a "late fee" is often charged, so this means that along with the payment, you will also have a late fee and the APR to pay. if this happens, you might just as well throw the money away. It is incredibly frustrating to watch your hard earned money go to waste just paying extra fees, rather than seeing the balance of your debt reduce!

All credit cards have an upper limit on how much you can spend. Some can offer up to $30,000, but many will set the limit much lower. You will have to pay yet another "fine" in the form of high APR if you exceed the limit.

As cruel as it may seem, card providers have been known to charge even more fees when people ask for a higher credit limit on their card. So, in addition to making profit from existing fees, they increase their earnings through this sneaky fee.

If you present a check and it is returned because there is not enough money in the account to cover it, this will incur an overdraft fee. Logic would suggest that providers would welcome new custom, but in reality they are only interested in the profits they can make through charging fees on the establishment of a new account.

If you are considering obtaining a credit card from a major provider, do your research and compare them according to what they can offer you, any costs, the APR, the fee structure, complete rewards program and any other relevant details. Don't risk being taken for a fool! These convenient little cards have placed many people all over the world in grave financial difficulties, even bankruptcy.


It is becoming increasingly more difficult to rid yourself of existing credit card debt due to changes in the law. Bankruptcy was formally relatively easy to obtain, but greed and money grabbing is pushing people further and further towards the edge of the debt precipice.

As a final thought, if you are able to make do without a credit card, that will be an advantage. If not, be absolutely certain of your rights and obligations before you sign on the dotted line and be sure that you are in control of your spending, not the spending in control of you!


4 Ways to Get More From Your Travel Rewards Credit Cards

If you're like most people you like to get away from time to time. If vacations aren't usually in your budget you may have been smart and applied for a travel rewards credit card that will help you save up for airfare, hotels and the other necessities while on vacation.

While you may know the great travel items you can get from your travel rewards credit cards, what do you know about the little extras they offer? There are 4 great extras that many travel rewards credit cards offer, which many customers don't realize.

Lost or Stolen Baggage

Unfortunately your luggage may not always stay with you on a trip. Airports lose thousands and thousands of bags a week. Many of those are found, sometimes days later. Others seem to disappear forever. What if it's your bag that has gone missing? What would you do if you had just arrived at your travel destination? While for many people the anger and stress that goes with this situation may mark the end of their enjoyment of the trip, if you have the right travel rewards credit card, you may have a friend on your side. Many cards offer replacement value for lost bags as well as a voucher to help you get the essentials you need to continue your trip.

Trip Cancellation or Interruption

Life isn't perfect. Often it's not even close. In this respect it means something may come up at the last minute to make you have to cancel your trip. Most travel comes with strict cancellation policies that will cause you to lose a portion if not all of your money if you have to cancel. But, many travel rewards credit cards will come to your aid in this case offering travel cancellation and interruption insurance that will help you recoup the money you have paid in for the trip.

Medical Expense & Transportation Coverage

If you are the adventuring type, something could go wrong on your trip. If you were to get hurt in a foreign country the cost to care for you and move you to a hospital that can handle your injuries can be steep. This is a cost you usually have to pay, as your health insurance may not choose to cover certain activities or travel locations. Many travel rewards credit cards step in here offering medical expense and transportation coverage options to take care of these costs.

24/7 Travel Assistance Services

After you arrive at your destination you may be in unfamiliar territory. While a map and a little patience is usually enough to handle it, what if something goes wrong or the car breaks down? Many travel rewards credit cards offer 24/7 travel assistance services that will come to your aid.


Apply For a Student Credit Card

Being a student means no excuse from large expenses. This is the reason why apply for a student credit card, which will suffice their emergency purposes. Parents therefore make sure that their teens are well-provided financially, even at the onset of their high-school years.

Many credit card companies target the students, which are part of the fast-growing segment population that are ready to spend money. Many of these companies offer great deals, at affordable rates - generally higher than normal credit cards.

If you want to apply for a student credit card for your son or daughter, you should ensure that you will go to a good company. Applications today are not difficult at all since most of these are held online. Nonetheless, you need to be responsible and watchful of scams.

Aside from scammers, you should also be wise with your choices, since your son or daughter may get tempted to use the card anytime they want to. It will be best to know the rules beforehand, such as: the cards must only be used for emergencies. Once this rule is broken, high premiums for everyday purchases will be the fine. Through this, your teens will be learning lessons as they will also develop self-control and good financial management with their own money.

As a parent, you should also be careful if your teens apply for a student credit card. You need to know this especially when they are not of legal age. It will be better to offer them good deals instead of letting them think that you don't trust them.


Watch Out For Student Credit Cards

Going off to college or university is an exciting time and fraught with financial responsibility. For many of us becoming a student is the first time we are eligible to apply for a credit card and, with fees to pay and books to buy, it certainly seems tempting. So what do you need to know about student credit cards and what do you need to watch out for?

What is Credit History?

Though you are a student and therefore not earning a full wage, from the age of 18 you are eligible to apply for credit cards.

Once you become legally able to borrow, your debt and payment history will be recorded by three credit reporting agencies: Experian, Equifax and Trans Union for the rest of your life. They keep track of your spending habits and particularly bad spending habits such as late payments. Student credit cards are first step in your credit history. Whenever you apply for a loan, credit card or even mortgage in the future, the lender will consult one of these credit reporting agencies to find out whether you can manage your money wisely.

All of this begins with your first credit application, which is likely to be a student credit card. So remember, credit is not 'free money'. If you manage your account well and always pay off your debts in a timely way, you will build up a good credit history and be eligible for lower interest rates, higher spending limits and credit rewards in the future such as very lucrative cash back rewards and air miles programs. But if you mismanage your student credit account you will cause yourself problems in the future and may be refused further credit. So how you pay your debts does count, even as a student.

How are student credit cards different?

Well, fundamentally, they aren't. 'Student credit card' may sound friendly, like borrowing from your Mom and Dad, and they may offer seductive perks that appeal to students, such as earning Karma Points on Facebook with the Chase +1 Student MasterCard, but at the end of the day they are still credit cards.

Some of the offers usually highlighted on student credit cards are:

  • No liability if your card is lost or stolen

  • The chance to build up your credit history

  • Advantage, travel or cash back points

  • Transferable points to charitable causes

  • 0% Introductory APR, usually for the first six months

  • No annual bank administration fees

  • Rewards for making payments on time

These are all advantages you will often see on standard credit cards available to people with a good credit rating. Most offers, such as cash back on purchases, are designed to encourage you to spend. 0% APR is for the same purpose, as is donating points to charity, all designed to encourage you to increase your spending. Be careful and remember that money borrowed needs to be repaid. As a student with little or no income, this may prove to be quite difficult. Your spending limit may be high, but your ability to pay back the loan is what is important.

The main things to remember before agreeing to a student credit card are:

  • Introductory offers, such as 0% APR, come to an end - find out what the real APR will be.
  • Are there any additional annual bank charges?
  • If the card carries a cash back incentive, what is the cash back percentage and for which type of purchases?
  • Do you really need such a high credit limit or will you just be tempted to spend more than you can sensibly repay?

Don't be blinded by student friendly offers or incentives, what is the card actually offering and is it the best student credit card for you? Can you pay back the debt on time each month? If the answer is "yes" then you will enjoy the great convenience of using a credit card as well as take the first steps toward a good credit rating and future credit opportunities such as a new home and starting a business.