Points for this activity were reversed because you removed the college from your Data Locker.
Points for this activity were reversed because you removed the scholarship from your Data Locker.
Points for this activity were reversed because you removed data to start your Admissions Profile.
Points for this activity were reversed because you removed data to start your College List.
Points for this activity were reversed because you removed SAT or ACT scores from your Admissions Profile.
Points for this activity were reversed because you removed application details from your Admissions Profile.
Points for this activity were reversed because you removed activities and awards from your Admissions Profile.
Points for this activity were reversed because you removed your weighted GPA from your Admissions Profile.
Points for this activity were reversed because you removed data to complete your Admissions Profile.

Using Credit Wisely

Credit cards are easy to use. But good management of your credit use can be challenging. Here are some strategies to help you avoid credit problems and put credit to work as a helpful tool in your financial life.

Smart Credit Tips

  • Spend within your budget. Use your card to make purchases you have the money to cover. Not only will you be using your money wisely, you will also be on track to building a good credit history.
  • Watch your limit. Know your credit limit and stay well under it. It's a good idea to have credit available in case of emergency. Monitor your balance carefully. If you "opt-in" to allow over-the-limit transactions, you may be charged a fee if your balance exceeds the limit.
  • Pay as much as you can. Pay as much of your balance every month as you can afford. Pay the whole balance if possible.
  • Pay on time. You are likely to be charged late fees if you don't. Also, a single late payment may increase your interest rate.
  • Read your statement and any communications from the credit provider carefully. Interest rates and even your credit limit are subject to change.
  • Keep your receipts. Use them to double-check against charges to your account listed on your statement.
  • Know the rules for fees and interest. Be sure you understand your card's terms for cash advances and convenience checks before using them. They may have fees and higher interest rates.
  • Don't let anyone else borrow your card. Don't charge purchases for other people on your card.
  • Keep your address up to date. If you move, promptly notify the credit card company of your change of address. Delayed delivery of your statements could cause you to lose track of due dates and miss payments.
  • Don't procrastinate if you run into trouble. If you are having trouble managing your account, call your credit card company right away. It may be able to adjust your fees and interest rates.
  • Report a lost or stolen card immediately. You can avoid almost all financial liability plus any headaches resulting from bogus charges.

Information in this article is of a general nature. It is provided by COLLEGEdata for educational purposes only and may not apply to you or your situation. Please consult a financial or legal advisor before acting on such information. COLLEGEdata is a service of 1st Financial Bank USA, a provider of financial services.

For Students Age 18 and Older

Have you received a Personal Invitation to apply for a Student Credit card?

Learn how to qualify for a Personal Invitation to apply for a Student Credit Card


1st Financial Bank believes students who pick colleges wisely will also want to learn how to use credit cards wisely.

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COLLEGEdata Dollars are
points you earn by
completing certain
COLLEGEdata activities

Ways to earn
COLLEGEdata Dollars:

  • Complete your Admissions Profile.
  • Add colleges to your College Choices.
  • Update your Admissions Statuses.
  • Use the College Match tool.

What are COLLEGEdata Dollars (CD$)?

COLLEGEdata Dollars (CD$) are points you earn by completing certain COLLEGEdata activities. The maximum number of CD$ you can redeem is 5000. Once you have earned at least 2500 CD$, you can redeem them for $25, which will be provided to you on a Loyalty Card, and once you earn another 2500 CD$, you can redeem those CD$ for a second $25, which will also be provided to you on a Loyalty Card.

Earn points and redeem them for
U.S. Dollars

Complete certain COLLEGEdata activities (for example, signing up, starting your Admissions Profile, searching for colleges, calculating your chances for admission, searching for scholarships, updating your Profile with your admission decisions). Each activity is worth a specific amount of points (CD$). You can redeem the points you earn for U.S. Dollars that will be issued to you in the form of a 1st Financial Bank USA Loyalty Mastercard®.

How do I earn COLLEGEdata Dollars?

You can earn CD$ by completing certain COLLEGEdata activities. As soon as you sign up and activate your COLLEGEdata account, explore COLLEGEdata and begin completing COLLEGEdata activities to earn points.

Here is a full list of COLLEGEdata activities for which you may earn CD$ and the number of CD$ you can earn by completing each activity.*

Activity
CD$
×
Congratulations!
+ CD$
You just earned COLLEGEdata Dollars!
Check your CD$ Dashboard at the bottom of the page to view your CD$ balance, find other activities that you can complete to earn CD$, and redeem the CD$ you have earned for U.S. Dollars.