Low APR Student Credit Card - 5 Alternatives
Students entering college today know that they have their work cut out for them. Given the high cost of
going to college these days - due to increasing cost of living, tuition raises, and less governmental help -
most students who are interested in merely partying their way through college need not apply.
Rather, students have to work hard on many fronts just to keep their heads above water while in school.
That includes not only making good grades and staying involved with extra-curricular activities, but also
paying the bills.
For the past 2-3 decades, many students have been turning to credit cards as a way to pay for daily and
weekly expenses such as food and gas, as well as for less frequent expenses such as books and other
Today, there is a growing awareness that too many students are graduating with thousands of dollars in
credit card debt. On top of that, the U.S. Congress has made it harder to qualify for a card. These days, a
student seeking one will need an adult co-signer just to qualify.
Still, some students recognize that having a card can serve as a great backup just in case they need to
pay an emergency expense. Those students want a low APR student credit in their wallets, just in case.
Looking for a low APR student credit card? Here are 5 alternatives to having one:
1. Go with cash-only:
One option is for you to give up the idea of a card and just go cash-only. This is a sure way to keep you
out of debt. However, it will leave you vulnerable in the face of emergency situations when you need to
make a large purchase (think medical issues or car repairs).
2. Carry your parent's card as a backup:
Another option is to ask a parent to have one of their own cards issued in your name. You can promise
to only use the card if absolutely necessary. And, your parents can monitor your use by reviewing their
3. Get a co-signer to help you attain a credit card but only use as a backup:
College students have another option. You can enlist an adult you know - it could be a parent, an
uncle/aunt, or a friend - to co-sign on your card application with you. But, make sure the person whom
you ask for this favor knows and trusts you well, since they will be responsible for the bill if you
become unable to pay.
4. Use a prepaid debit card for emergencies only:
A prepaid debit card is a relatively new innovation. It looks and acts like a credit card: it even carries the
popular symbol of Visa, MasterCard, or American Express. However, these cards are a little bit
different. When you purchase they already have a certain amount of credit on them. Every time you use
the card at a merchant, that amount is debited from the card. There is no application required, no credit
check needed and it is impossible to run up a big balance.
An alternative to a credit card is to get a prepaid debit card and then to keep it only for emergencies.
5. Use a prepaid debit card on a daily basis:
Similarly, you can use a prepaid debit card on a regular basis, using it for everyday purchases.
Consider these 5 alternatives to getting a low APR student credit card.