Credit card advice for college students

Students debt has become largely acknowledged in society. Over the years, many college students obtained credit cards and take pleasure in using them. Credit cards are used as a means of payment convenience, online shopping, reserve in case of emergency, ease of purchases and gaining financial responsibility.Mishandling credit cards puts college students in debt and affects credit histories.

According to a 2009 study by Sallie Mae, the average undergrad carries $3,173 in credit card debt and college students graduate with an average of $4,100 in credit card debt.

Also, 78 percent of college students have at least one credit card and 32 percent having at least four credit cards.

On average, students have nearly three credit cards and of graduate students, 95 percent have at least one credit card.

Misuse of credit cards by college students is a great concern. Although credit cards are great financial tools and considered as making life easier, they can contribute to financial burdens.

High-interest rates, finance charges, annual fees and late-payment fees contribute to the damage of students’ credit scores, which will affect them in the upcoming years.

Identity theft is another critical issue, which occurs as a result of lost or stolen cards.

The key to handling credit card debt is engaging in money management and using credit cards wisely.

When applying for credit cards, it is the responsibility of college students to take advice and follow the rules to protecting credit history.

Set up a monthly budget to monitor transactions and stay within the spending limit.

Avoid impulse buying by shopping mindfully and discipline yourself to keep away from purchasing unnecessary items.

Use debit cards, instead of credit cards and their benefit from no interest rates and credit limit.

Make minimum payment by due date to prevent late fees.

Avoid going over the spending limit on credit cards to prevent additional fees by the credit card companies.

When applying for credit cards, read information carefully to be aware of agreement terms in the contract.

Try paying a little over the minimum payment once in a while.