7 Spring Break Money Wasters

Spring Broke

In the busy and stressful lives of American college students, spring break is often seen not only as a break from daily reading and problem sets, but also as a break from the prudence and moderation necessary to be a model student. But while the fuzzy memories of drunken debauchery mercifully fade over time, the financial hangover can be much harder to escape. Mitchell Weiss, an author and 35-year veteran of the financial services industry, began teaching a course on financial literacy at the University of Hartford six years ago, and has seen students come back from spring break with a mountain of money problems to deal with. “I’ve had students come back and talk about every type of problem imaginable,” he says. “They’ve been ripped off, overspent, misunderstood promotional offers or mismanaged group payments. By far the most common issues though are overdraft charges and ID theft issues.” Responding to what he saw as a lack of information for students, this year he published Life Happens: A Practical Guide to Personal Finance from College to Career, which he now uses as the blueprint for his class. He shared some of the most common mistakes young people make that can turn spring break into spring broke. Photo Credit: BluEyedA73