The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

Texas A&M University System Chancellor John Sharp attends the Class of 1972 50-year reunion in Kyle Field on April 20, 2022.
A&M System’s Title IX director suspended after supporting Biden's Title IX changes
Nicholas Gutteridge, Managing Editor • May 23, 2024
Texas A&M infielder Kaeden Kent (3) celebrates a home run during Texas A&M’s game against Tennessee at the NCAA Men’s College World Series finals at Charles Schwab Field in Omaha, Nebraska on Saturday, June 22, 2024. (Hannah Harrison/The Battalion)
Winning 9 to 5: A&M beats Tennessee in Game 1 of College World Series finals
Luke White, Sports Editor • June 23, 2024

While Texas A&M baseball had never appeared in the College World Series finals before Saturday, the Aggies played as if they were seasoned...

Texas A&M fans react after The Aggies win the NCAA Bryan-College Station Super Regional at Olsen Field on Sunday, June 9, 2024. (CJ Smith/The Battalion)
The mad dash to Omaha
June 21, 2024
Enjoying the Destination
Enjoying the Destination
Cara Hudson, Maroon Life Writer • June 17, 2024

For the history buffs, there’s a story to why Bryan and College Station are so closely intertwined. In 1871 when the Texas Legislature approved...

Chris Hemsworth as Dementus in Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga.
Review: ‘Furiosa’ is a must-see
Justin Chen June 4, 2024

My jaw dropped open in 2016. Rarely in life does that happen, but the viewing experience of “Mad Max: Fury Road" was something to behold....

BBB Column: What You Should Know About Opening a Credit Card

Emily Gaines – BBB

You probably know by now that once someone turns 18, they can apply for their own credit cards. In fact, you probably started getting mail from credit card companies the second your 18th birthday arrived. There’s a lot of responsibility that comes with opening a line of credit, but plenty of benefits that come with it as well. Once you weigh the pros and cons, and know how to manage a card, you just need to ask, “Am I ready to apply for one of my own?”

BBB serving the Heart of Texas has the following tips for anyone considering opening their first credit card:

  • Building credit. It won’t take long before you realize the impact your credit score and history have on your life. You’ll also find that a higher credit score means lower interest rates on things you want to buy on credit. There are a few ways you can start building credit, but the easiest is to have and make regular payments on a credit card. Paying the balance on your card can show creditors you’re a suitable credit risk (meaning, you can handle bigger payments like a car or rent). Just be sure to use it responsibly, otherwise damage done can impact you for years.

  • Don’t overspend. This is the biggest risk for first-time credit card users. It can be incredibly easy to accumulate credit card debt if you don’t fully understand how it works. Credit is borrowed money, so when you pay for something with your Visa or Mastercard, it doesn’t come directly out of your bank like paying with a debit card. You have a balance, which is the amount you’ve spent since your last payment. You can choose to fully pay the balance or only make the minimum monthly payment. The thing is, when your credit card balance moves from one month to the next, it gains interest. And it be, a lot. Standard credit cards have some of the highest interest rates out there. There’s also your spending limit, or how much you’re allowed to put on the card. You may have a higher spending limit than checking account balance, but you still have to pay the credit card company back. A good rule of thumb is to never spend money you don’t actually have. 

  • Monitor your credit. Late or missed payments are things that can affect your credit score and history. Setting up automatic payments is the safest way to avoid this. You can also see the way your financial habits affect your credit by checking your credit report.

  • Shop safe online. Only buy from secure sites (ones that have ‘https’ or a lock icon next to the URL) to keep unwanted people from getting ahold of your credit card information. Most credit cards also offer a level of buyer protection you can’t get from debit or cash transactions.

  • Review your statements. Keep a close eye on your credit statements. If you see a purchase you didn’t make, contact the credit card company immediately. They can remove the charge and take measures to keep your information safe, even if it means sending you a new card. 

The first time you consider everything that goes into having and using a credit card, it can be overwhelming, but this information can help you decide if you’re ready to start building credit. For more tips, visit us at

Leave a Comment
Donate to The Battalion

Your donation will support the student journalists of Texas A&M University - College Station. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
Donate to The Battalion

Comments (0)

All The Battalion Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *