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College Credit Cards – Learning To Handle Them

Many banks and credit card issuers offer college credit cards designed specifically for college students. College students are one of the most lucrative and therefore targeted demographic groups coveted by these companies.

That’s why before you send your son or daughter off to college, you should sit them down and have a frank discussion about credit, credit cards, and how to handle finances.

The main reason that banks and financial institutions  target college students with college credit card offers is to lock them in as customers for the next 10, 20, 30 or more years. They know that once a college student signs up for one of their cards, that they are not likely to keep it in the years to come. It’s the same principal used by the cigarette companies when they used to target teenagers. Get them when they’re young, and you have them for life. Companies know that if they can “hook” a college student on their credit card, it represents possibly hundreds of thousands of future dollars to them.

Credit card companies approach college students in many ways and at many events attended by the students. To entice them, they may offer the student something such as  a free gift for signing up. The companies make the cards extremely easy to get, even for students without credit – which is why so many students eventually end up with them.

Keep in mind, that giving a student a credit card is not a bad thing. In fact, they probably should be given one even earlier. What’s missing, however, is that when many students receive their first card, they haven’t been taught how to handle credit. As a result a huge number of them tend to run up balances and get into debt trouble before they know it. And the credit card companies are well aware of this dynamic. In fact, they count on it knowing that once the student gets into debt, it’s even less likely that they will drop the card. In addition, they know that because most students are cash poor, that they can count on the student to roll over balances month after month – giving the company even more profits.

And that’s why teaching your kid how to handle credit responsibly before they get to college is so important. A good way to prepare them is to start to give them a taste of financial independence while they’re still in high school. In fact, this is a good idea even if your kids don’t plan on attending college. Get them a credit card with a limit, teach them how to use it responsibly, and monitor their usage. Teach them the dangers of abusing college credit cards. This way they’ll be prepared when they start to get hit with all of the college credit cards and offers that are sure to come their way.

For most people, handling financing is not something that comes naturally. Unless they’re taught by someone, preferably their parents, they’ll have to learn the hard way.

0 Apr Cards – Why You Should Have One
0 APR cards or 0% APR cards are credit cards where you pay no interest, for a certain period of time, on the outstanding balances.

Consumer Credit Counseling
Although disparaged by many, consumer credit counseling can be a great help in assisting consumers to draw down their credit card debt and to get their finances on the right track.


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