College students face many challenges. For the first time in their lives they are facing life and making decisions for themselves. The safety net is slowly being drawn away. They have to learn a different way of studying and a new way to socialize. They have to make decisions about drinking, drugs, and partying. With all these pressures along comes the promise of a 0% credit card. College campuses are being attacked from many different angles and are being pressured into having a credit card. They see their peers using their card to buy clothes and expensive things for their dorm rooms. So, when a credit card company approaches them with a special deal only for college students, an interest free credit card they jump at the chance and many end up starting their lives in debt. Debt that is in addition to their student loans.
Parents often step in to help when things start to get out of hand, but ultimately it is the student himself who is responsible for paying the bill. If they don’t, they start life with a lesson in debt.
The credit card companies take advantage of their lack of experience with the promises of a carefree life. With marketing targeting people younger and younger they are hoping to build customers for life. It is the same strategy that tobacco companies use to hook young people on cigarettes. Going through life in debt is just as bad. They are in danger of living a life with constant stress about how to pay the bills.
On most college campuses credit card companies are luring students to apply for these interest free credit cards. They set up table in student union halls, outside libraries, and at athletic events. The companies usually offer gifts to the students just for filling out an application. They even entice these young people with free lunches. The catch is that they have to apply for their credit card. They tell them that at 0% interest they can have the buying power that is easy without the worry of expensive interest charges.
Instead of the high schools and universities educating students about finances and the responsible use of credit they are being educated by the credit card companies who do not have the best interest of the student in mind. They have their own bottom line in mind.
You would think that colleges would be taking steps to regulate these companies to operate on campus. But, the sad fact is that many universities are enabling the credit card companies by getting financial kickbacks. Some colleges are even selling their students information to the credit card companies. They encourage students to get credit cards with the universities logo on them.
Many students are lured into a lifetime of credit problems and the credit card companies are more than happy to hook a new market. Zero percent financing is just another way to set the trap. Parents beware; they are coming after your children.