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Student Credit Card - How To Choose The Right One

Aug 17, 2007
Getting a student credit card is not hard to do. The problem comes in how it is used. Your student should not be carrying large sums of cash each month to get through the month. It could easily be lost or stolen. I had a friend that was considered a genius. While we were at school he couldn't remember from one day to the next what he had done the previous day, or where he put anything, including his money. Another friend constantly ran out of money by the middle of the month and was either borrowing form other students or on the phone crying to his father about needing more. Not to say I was a saint, but that is another story.

A student credit card may be the first line of credit your child has. It will depend on the child if they understand the responsibilities of having one. Student credit cards can come with a monthly limit or with no limit at all except for the bank limit. You have a choice in that matter, because usually the student will need a co-signer for that card.

In a credit based family a child may have signature loans by the time they are twelve. My uncle was one of those people. They used a well known institution for signature loans and he would take out six month to one year loans for music equipment that he was easily able to pay back in half the time. By the time he was sixteen his credit rating soared and to this day he has no problems with getting what he wants when he wants it.

Most of us are not that lucky however, and some students just are not driven by desire. A student credit card should not be a gift and should not be considered a gift by the parents. The students themselves should be mentally-aware of how to handle finances. If your child is one of those that still has a quarter when you give them the second one a week later, then chances are they can handle a credit card. If it was lost or spent, you may need to start worrying.

For the sake of the article we will assume that, while yet unproven, there is no indication that your student will use the credit card for junk. First sit down with the student and decide what the credit card will be used for. Keep in mind that a cola and pizza a day adds up to over $4475 plus tips, in credit over a year! The sum does not take into consideration other meals and snacks. A single candy bar at a school could easily add up to $365 dollars in credit over a year, if they only ate one a day. Try to remember your eating habits when you were a student.

Dormitory, apartment rent, books and tuition should be paid by check. If there is a car involved it should also be paid for by check, unless you and your student are familiar with online banking and the great benefits a good system offers.

If you are giving support to your student you can setup an auto withdrawal from your bank account each month to payoff the student credit card payments. The credit card can be great for just about anything but it, just like everything else, needs to be in moderation, and I mean moderation within your budget, not necessarily the students budget.

After you have decided on what the credit card will be used for go online and start searching. Make sure you pay attention to the all of the details of the card, and all of its terms and conditions. Above all, make sure there is an automatic bill payment feature so the card is never paid late.
About the Author
For more on how to choose the right student credit card most effectively, Robert Alan recommends that you visit CreditCardAssist.com
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