Students are leary about buying gifts with credit
According to a report published online by Sallie Mae, in 2004, half of all college students had four or more credit cards.
The report additionally indicated that a significant amount of students across the country were not only using credit cards for personal expenses but also for entertainment.
A Federal Reserve Statistical Report released on November 5, 2010 showed that the current Unites States consumer revolving debt fell to $814 billion at the end of the third quarter in 2010 down from $894 billion at the end of the third quarter of 2009.
The trend of using credit cards to purchase Christmas gifts is also on the decline. Students at Yavapai College along with a large number of Americans have saved up cash to go shopping for Christmas gifts to avoid using credit in making purchases.
According to a number of Yavapai College students, they are serious about exercising better fiscal discipline particularly because of the struggling U.S. economy. They are extremely cautious about owning a credit card out of fear of accumulating debt.
Chelby Hahn, a second year student at Yavapai who also works part-time said, “I made a decision earlier on that I would not own a credit card while in college. I do not want to deal with debt or high interest rates. I am taking other responsible measures to build my credit to prepare for the future.”
“I am using all cash by keeping a budget and I have to save up $500 to do my Christmas shopping this year. Right now I am more excited about shopping over the holidays than I would be if I were using a credit card,” said Hahn.
Hahn is not alone in this decision as statistics show that there are more people using other means than a credit card.
According to a report on creditcards.com, 72 percent of consumers indicated they used a debit card in the past year for shopping; in 2007 that number was 65 percent. Debit cards are a convenient debt free alternative to credit cards.
“I am currently unemployed but even if I was working, I still could not afford to have a credit card. I won’t be doing really any Christmas shopping this year but if I was going shopping, I would rather use cash,” said Misty Baker, a first year Photography major here at Yavapai.
Wendi Nelson, a first year student said, “I am really excited this year about going Christmas shopping and I will probably spend $200 in cash on Christmas gifts for family and friends. I don’t own a credit card because I am afraid that I will go in debt, especially if I use the card for shopping.”
Some students are also afraid that at their age they cannot afford other additional expenses.
“I feel like I am way too young to have a credit card and I am afraid to go in debt. I am excited [to] go shopping for Christmas gifts and I plan on spending about $300 dollars in gifts but I am using cash,” said Kelsey Chambers, a nursing student at Yavapai.
Students are aware of the dangers of relying on borrowed income especially for entertainment purposes.
Baylee Deutch said, “I get pretty excited about Christmas shopping but I am skeptical this year about using credit to make any purchases.”
Marsha Rose, who is a first year student at Yavapai College said, “This year I am using my credit card for some Christmas shopping but I am only spending $100 [on the card] for a Christmas gift for my little brother.”
According to Jessica Moyer a local resident of Prescott, she owns a credit card but only uses it for emergencies. “I make a budget to purchase my Christmas gifts using cash,” she said.