Watch Out! Campus Checking Accounts May Come with Extra Fees!

According to a new report from U.S. Public Interest Research Groups, when college students sign up for checking accounts via their schools, bad things are likely to happen. These accounts and associated debit cards often come with heavy fees that put students — some of whom are financially independent for the first time — in a tough spot.

The study also found that 1.1 million college students are currently signed up for one of these campus debit cards. These cards are part of a marketing deal between banks and schools. The banks pay the schools for the chance to get students signed up. The schools often sell the cards as an easy way for students to access their financial aid. The problem is that the accounts come with unexpected fees and that leaves some students struggling.

The best way to avoid this issue is by making sure you keep an open dialogue with your college kid before school starts up again. Now is the perfect time to do so. Consider whether opening a FREE Swipe2Save Checking Account at Pathways would be a more appropriate solution. (Keep the need for ATM access in mind.) The more knowledge they have, the better.