Students should know it does not always pay to get a credit card.
Every fall vendors are lined up on the Plaza urging students to fill out their credit reports for clever t-shirts and replica sunglasses.
What these vendors do not tell students is the consequences of not being responsible with credit.
According to 2001 Credit Card Usage Analysts and reported in the Rocky Mountain News, 83 percent of college undergraduate students have one credit card, a 21 percent increase since 1994.
The average balance for undergraduate students in 2001 was $2,327.
Twenty-one percent of undergraduates have a credit card balance between $3 and $7 thousand.
The average debt of graduating students is $20,402, including student loans.
The editorial board is not trying to tell students not to get credit cards, in fact we feel that having a credit card is a great way to establish credit, but we want to remind students that how you spend now can affect your purchases in the future. Deciding to spend $2,000 on a Las Vegas trip and only paying the credit card interest can affect a bank’s decision when you go to buy a home in the future.
It is a student’s responsibility to manage his or hers money. Before you fill out that list for a free shirt, read the fine print. Do research. Find out if that vendor on the Plaza is actually the best choice.
We know it’s tempting. The urge to spend $20 on beer, $250 at target, it may not seem like a lot at point of purchase, but in the long run it adds up and is that nifty t-shirt worth it?