I ran across this article Best credit cards for college kids on CNN Money. I found it interesting that 75% of all college students have a credit card, when I see so much media attention to how credit card companies target students. Seems like students now are seen more as big kids instead of young adults (again, note the title of the article). Soon they’ll need lessons on how to feed and bathe themselves…
The article then goes on to list some good characteristics of a college credit card, which really didn’t seem any different than what anyone should look for in a credit card… Low APR? Less fees? Calling Captain Obvious! CNN did suggest out the best credit card for those select “responsible” students – the Citi mtvU Platinum Select Visa Card, which was interesting.
The goal of every rewards card is to give you just enough good stuff to have you use it for everything, and this card is smart. What were my two top expenses as a college student besides rent? Eating out and textbooks. So guess what, the card gives you 5 ThankYou Points for every dollar you spend at restaurants, bookstores, record stores, movie theaters and video rental stores. These points can be converted to up to 5% back in gift cards or 5% back in cash towards your student loans. Some may see this as sneaky way to prey on college “kids”, but I see it as another loss leader to take advantage of.
In addition, one big “loophole” is that everything you buy from Amazon.com gets 5% back as well, as it is categorized as a bookstore! They can’t tell if you bought books there, or went for 8 bags of groceries and an iPod Touch instead.
The only problem is that if you aren’t a student, some people report that they ask for verification. Some have gotten transcript requests, many others slip by. I know some people out there have this card; please report your experiences! Students can also earn 250-2000 points per semester for maintaining a good GPA, and 25 points each month for not exceeding your credit limit and paying on time.