There are many credit card companies out there that offer plastic Cards that act as virtual money. However, it is best to shop around for a credit card just like you shop around for the best prices on merchandise or food.

Banks and credit unions offer credit cards. Since credit unions are not-for-profit financial cooperatives, often they can afford to provide credit cards with no annual fees and with better interest rates than banks.

For example, USE Credit Union offers credit cards with no annual fees, no cash advance fees, and no balance transfer fees.

The Card Act which took effect in 2010 now prohibits companies from giving out free prizes to students for signing up for a credit card. In addition, they are not allowed to market within 1,000 feet of campuses. These rules were put in place to try to prevent the massive debt that many students accumulate on credit cards. Often students graduate from college with thousands of dollars in debt which will take years to pay off and could ruin their credit scores.

People under 21 will need a co-signer to take on any card debt that may accumulate on a credit card. A co-signer needs to be someone over the age of 21. This could be a parent or a friend. The risk of being a co-signer is that the co-signer's credit history can be damaged if the person with the credit card runs up huge credit card debts.

Don't mind giving out a ton of personal information to shady credit card people? Then you might be able to catch a Free Lunch here when the credit card goonies set themselves up on campus. Be careful, though.

  • I recommend giving them fake info. You have no way to verify they're legit, and even if they are, they probably don't background check the people handling the sign ups, and even if they do, that only means that nobody's caught them being naughty. —RyanCastellucci
    • They have a digital camera with them, and they take a picture of your student id (allegedly required) and hint that a drivers license is preferable. I let them take a pic of my student id, but it seemed when I did it, I accidentally gave slightly altered info on the application. It seems my phone number, address, email, name...all one letter or number wrong! Oops. But really, the food isn't even worth it. -ES

Fortunately, UC Davis doesn't have nearly the credit card hawker infestation problem that places such as UC Berkeley have.

Do they hang out anywhere else but the east entrance to the Silo by the UC Davis Bookstore? — JasonAller

  • Depends. Sometimes they have people passing out fliers around the Quad, Wellman and the MU And it's not just to Mr. Chan's...they do Subway's as well at times. And the last few days, the California Aggie has run coupons with "free" 6 inch sub + chip combos to Subways for UCD students with id only on certain days/hours, but 'restrictions apply'. I'd be willing to bet money the restriction would have to do with Citibank's hoard of people out to get your application. Weak. -ES
  • The actual credit card application stuff is all done off campus, so it doesn't break any rules I don't think. But they send people on campus to promote it (who fail to mention the CC application part).

They used to offer a free lunch at Mr. Chan's if you agreed to sign up for their particular credit card.

See Authorization hold and Credit Card Minimum Purchase

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2007-04-06 17:37:23   I highly recommend not taking part in these activities, or giving fake information. When I was a freshman, I signed up for a couple cards for the free stuff, then canceled those cards when I received them in the mail. I must have missed one or two, or had several accounts signed up in my name when I didn't request them, because when I looked over my credit report recently, I saw there are accounts in my name that I don't use and don't have cards for and which can only be explained by my behavior freshman year. Thankfully, no one has ever hacked into those accounts or gotten ahold of any cards I should have but it's still a scary situation to be in. —ElleWeber