Ready to get that first college credit card? Well don’t go to the first company offering a free iPod in return for your application, make sure you are getting a card that will best suit your needs and income.
Make a Budget
The first thing you should do as a college student is make a realistic budget of the money you will need and spend each month. If you are paying rent, this should be the top of the list. Next, list any utilities you have to pay. Now you need to make an estimate of how much you will spend in food (include both the stuff you buy at the grocery store and the nights you will be eating out). Now consider other expenses – gas, bus fare, memberships, etc. You need to know how all off these things add up so you know how much you will be spending.
Know the Truth About Your Spending Habits
Once you come up with your budget, you need to know how realistic it will be that you keep to it. Many people are responsible about these things once they have a budget in hand. Others are impulsive shoppers and will add a lot to the monthly bill because of their flamboyant spending habits.
Getting a Card – Know Your Will Power
When it comes time to select a student credit card there are a few things you need to consider. The first thing is whether you want an open credit card or a pre-paid one. If you are one of those more frivolous spenders who can’t always keep it in control, you may want to stick with a prepaid card that will only allow you to charge as much as you have put into an account on the card. If you are more responsible with your spending, an open account (with a limit of $1000 or so) should be just fine.
Know your Responsibility
Once you get your student credit card, you must make sure to treat it with respect. This is not just a way to pay your monthly expenses, but the beginning of your credit history. Anything you do wrong with this card will go on your credit report and be there for years to come. Also keep in mind if you miss a payment, or are late, not only will it ding your credit rating, but also you will likely be levied with late fees and higher interest rates.