Payment Alternatives You Can Use Today

You might have a student in your family who is in college, and there might be surprise costs that come up for which they aren’t prepared. Handling money may be one of the first lessons learned by a student as they are away from home and in a new environment.

Fear not, parents. Today’s world offers a host of safe payment alternatives that can be accessed online or in person.

A situation recently came up where a freshmen college student had to buy a book. Little did they know that the cost of this book was $100, and it was necessary for a special class. They did not have the money in their bank account, so alternative means had to be sought to get them the funds.

Another student went on a mini-escape with friends and spent all their money having fun. They now need some funds for more supplies and books. How do you get funds to them quickly?

Whatever the case may be, here are some ways that parents could get the needed money to the student quickly:

Money Orders
Knowing how to get a money order is Money 101 for both the student and their family. The money can be sent by wire and picked up in person.

You can send up to $50,000 by this method, which hopefully you will not need to do. Stop by the location and purchase a money order for the dollar amount needed. At this point you will fill out the “payee” portion of the form. You then sign it and send it to the receiver. Be sure that the money amount of the money order matches what you paid. Fill out the form with a pen in large, dark letters and make sure it is clearly written; it should be difficult to alter.

With this form of payment, you should keep the receipt until you are assured that it has been received by the student. Be sure to record the location where it was purchased, in case it is ever misplaced.

Money orders can be purchased at the following locations:

  • In person, at banks
  • Credit unions
  • Financial institutions
  • Post Offices
  • Delis
  • Some retail chains

Bank Transfers
This works if two bank accounts are linked, or both student and parents have an account at the same bank. Details and times may vary, but the service is usually free of charge. On business days, the money usually arrives within minutes.

Linked Prepaid Debit Cards
If your child overspends or does not have a bank account, this is a good way of sending them money. Prepaid debit cards are easy to obtain; you will never have an overdraft fee, since the student can only spend what they have.

You and the student will need the same type of card. Some cards allow you to transfer funds from your bank account. Some prepaid debit cards do not charge a fee when you make a purchase.

Payment to Payment Services
If you and your child have different banks, your bank may have a service for transferring money to the student’s bank.

Learning how to be responsible with money as well as knowing how to send and receive it is a lesson in financial life. Knowing about sending money is one skill that parents can master; the student will also need to know this at some point, maybe when paying for supplies or materials.

Sending money to students has never been easier.

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