Credit card companies are wooing college students with everything from free pizza and T-shirts to airline miles and an iPod shuffle in exchange for filling out a credit application. U.S. PIRG has been working on campuses across the country to counter aggressive marketing schemes. The organization released a survey in March of 1,500 students at 40 campuses. Nearly two out of three students reporting having at least one credit card. Andthree out of four students said they had stopped on tables to consider offers or apply.
The findings confirm that students are using credit cards in significant numbers and that a significant number are paying the price through late fees, high balances and delinquencies.
Freebies are anything but a good value if you end up in debt. As this Ask the AG column shows, there’s more to a credit card than a low APR; so shop around. Try to pay balances in full and make your payments on time.
Your credit history is maintained by private companies called credit bureaus. The three major bureaus are Equifax, Experian and Trans Union. You can request an annual free copy of your credit report from each of these bureaus at www.annualcreditreport.com or by calling (877) 322-8228.
Thanks to Consumer Smarts for the story tip.