Zach Wollman and his mom are getting ready to send him off to college for the first time.
"We've got everything checked off on your list."
His parents hope he learns a lot, including how to manage his money.
"I think it is going to come with time," says Zach.
According to college loan company Sallie Mae, the number of students who have credit cards dropped from 42% in 2010 to 30% in 2013.
Among credit card users, 75% carry a balance of $500 or less.
Financial experts say credit cards are okay if students use them responsibly.
"You can co-sign with your child to get a credit card and you can also request certain spending limits," says Tobie Stanger of Consumer Reports.
A recent survey found nearly one quarter of parents help pay at least a portion of their student's credit card bill.
80% of students use a debit card for everyday expenses. Experts say choose one with low fees and don't opt for overdraft protection.
"If the student has an overdraft, yes they're going to pay up to $35 but they'll learn a valuable lesson."
Zach has a debit card. His parents can put money in his account and track his spending. He also has credit card for emergencies only.
"That's where the excitement comes in, the definition of the word emergency," says father Sanford.
Experts say one advantage to students having credit cards in their own name is they can start to establish credit, but they have to be careful not to make mistakes.