Survey: Your First Credit Card

By Arkansas Next on Thursday, March 31, 2022

Staff members of Arkansas Next Money answer the big question, "When did you get your first credit card—how did it go?"

“My sophomore year of college. I used it for fun stuff but paid it off in full every month. That kept me from charging too much. I don’t use that particular card anymore but the account is still open because it helps my credit score.” –Lindsay Irvin, Editor & Associate Publisher

“When I got married. I was too afraid I would let loose in college, so I waited until I knew that my decisions could potentially affect someone else.” –Maddie Schmidt, Education Events Coordinator

“I got my first credit card right after I graduated college. I didn't have any credit so I needed one to establish a credit score.” –Bethany Johnson, Advertising Coordinator

“I was 19. There were booths set up in the student union with credit card applications. I didn't have a job but was approved anyway. I didn't know anything about interest or making payments on credit cards. I was still paying off that card after I was married and had my first child.” –April Scott, Production Manager

“I got my first credit card in college and was on my mom's account to help myself build credit. It was mainly for groceries and books.” –Kelli Roy, Marketing & Events Lead

“Seventeen years old—too much for me to handle at that age because the interest rate killed me.” –Brandy Hubener, Senior Account Executive

“I was fresh out of college and did pretty well at first, only using it for groceries and gas, and instantly paying it off. However, I started using it for larger purchases—hotel rooms, food, clothes—which rapidly increased my balance and made it more difficult to pay off by due dates. I learned my lesson and all about interest fees!” –Madeline Martin, Advertising Coordinator

“I was 18 and got a Cato Fashions store card. I was pretty responsible with it. However, the first Visa card I had in college quickly became a means to supplement my meager student income—a hard lesson learned.” –Dana Wade, Circulation Manager

“Eighteen, and it went terribly. Pretty sure I ran it up the first day, not understanding how credit cards work and the payback that comes with it.” –Natasha Norris, Accounting Manager