By: Deidre Hicks
When your child—better yet, young adult—goes off to college, it’s an exciting but stressful time for the entire family. And with the expenses of tuition, room and board, text books, food, activities and other student necessities, it can also be a financially demanding time for parents. If you’re providing financial support for your college student, setting up a fast and easy way to send them cash can provide some much-needed relief in the hectic transition to college life.
Since your student’s college experience is about life lessons in addition to their classroom studies, it may be a good idea to allow them to jump right into the fire and be responsible for making the payments for their own expenses, even if you are footing the bill. This financial responsibility can help them be better money managers. Or, you may decide to take on the responsibility of making all the applicable payments for your college student’s educational and living expenses, and only send them spending money. Whichever method you choose, you’ll still need to ask yourself: How will you get the money to them?
Here are a few convenient ways you can provide funds to your college student and, at the same time, control the flow of money.
If both you and your college student have VyStar checking accounts, visit your nearest branch location and request to have your accounts linked. Then, using Internet & Mobile Banking, you can quickly and easily deposit funds into your child’s account when needed. The transfer is instantaneous, and there are no limits or fees when you deposit into the other account. Keep in mind that the linked accounts only allow deposits to each VyStar account—not withdrawals.
If your college student doesn’t have an account at VyStar but you do, you have two convenient options to transfer money to them from your VyStar account: External Transfers and Person-to-Person Payments. Both services are easy to set up in Internet Banking.
Our External Transfers service allows you to transfer money from your VyStar account to another account you might have at a different financial institution. This is especially helpful if your child is a joint owner on the external account and has access to the transferred funds.
You can also send your child a Person-to-Person Payment (i.e., send money from your account directly to another person) through Zelle®. Transactions are free. And if they’re feeling generous, your student can send money to you too!
If you’re only sending your student spending money, a Reloadable Student Visa® Prepaid (RSVP) Card or Reload & Spend Visa Prepaid (RSVP) Card may be the way to go. You can use funds from your VyStar checking account to reload the card online at any time. If you want to make it even easier, set up recurring automatic reloads. Your student can use the card everywhere Visa debit is accepted. Visit our Prepaid Cards page to learn more about these two card options and decide which is the better fit for your family.
These financial tools can take away some of the stress of watching your child enter adulthood and/or move away for the first time. Even if you’re a parent of a young teen who will be going to college in a few years, you can get ahead by starting these practices now. Starting out with a VyTeen account to help you both get used to the process of transferring/managing money will help ensure that you’re both pros when college comes calling.
If you need help navigating through your options, you can always visit any one of our branch locations to speak with a VyStar representative in person, or you can call us with your questions any day of the week at (904) 777-6000 or 1 (800) 445-6289, from 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.
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