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Student Credit Cards:
Paying for Online Expenses

To begin with, keep in mind that althought credit cards are a plastic financial staple, prepaid debit cards have increased in popularity. There are numerous options available, but be sure to compare card fees by visiting a Web site such as

Now, learn more by reading these questions and then listening to the recording.

Think about these questions before you start listening and then find the answers in the recording:
  1. What are the advantages and disadvantages of having a credit card?
  2. What other type of card is available besides a credit card that allows you to make purchases and how does it work?
  3. Search the Internet for a good credit card deal. Discuss benefits and drawbacks of each one you find. Discuss the results with a friend or family member.

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A student credit card? Is it right for me, and can it help me pay for expenses online such as online courses, music, language-learning materials, or even a degree?t

Actually, the answer might be yes or no, depending on your circumstances. Of course, probably the best advice is to save up and then make purchases with cash. Unfortunately, different online services often require a credit card. Here are some ideas to getting a credit card. First of all, obtaining a student credit card is becoming easier, and many companies are offering such cards to students in this growing market. From a student's perspective, it allows a person to pay for things online that only can be purchased on credit. Furthermore, it can help students build a good credit history that is often needed later for bigger purchases like a car or home.

In spite of these advantages, students have to be careful because interest rates on such cards are often higher and have higher penalties if you fail to pay on time. Furthermore, students may spend well beyond their means and end up in debt that they can't pay off.

Perhaps a happy medium is for students to get a debit card that has a credit limit, and money for purchases is just deducted from existing funds from a student's account. Thus, it operates like a checking account, and when the student's spending reaches the credit limit, they can't continue to spend.

Before you decide to get a student credit card, look carefully at the agreement terms for each company and compare the advantages and disadvantages of each. Searching the Internet for such offers will give you a good start on what to look for in a company.

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