College. It's a rite of passage. Importantly, it's a stepping stone to the real world. For parents, seeing a child off to college can be a time of immense pride. But there's also some amount of trepidation. Have we done all we can to prepare our child to be independent and responsible? What if there's an emergency? How will they manage for cash?
Finances can especially weigh heavily on the minds of parents as well as their college-bound children. Making them an authorized user of your credit card can ease the concerns of children's day-to-day financial needs on campus or while traveling on their own. Most importantly your children will have access to cash in case of an emergency. However, many parents worry about giving a credit or debit card to their children. They're simply not sure if they're ready for it.
By taking some astute steps, parents can teach children important financial lessons including how to be independent and responsible. Most credit cards today, offer parents the ability to curtail spending by setting maximum limits on a child's card. You can also set alerts when preset limits are reached. You're not only aware when a child uses the card but also have the ability to view detailed transactions anytime by going online.
Depending on the card, you can also help your children build their credit history by the time they graduate and are ready for their first job. Most cards also offer points for every dollar spent, so you can take advantage of travel rewards and discounts for the many trips children are bound to make during college.