Sovereign Bank Introduces Smart Cards to College... - Products News


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Credit Card Applications » News » Products » Sovereign Bank Introduces Smart Cards to College Campuses

Sovereign Bank Introduces Smart Cards to College Campuses

Sovereign Bank Introduces Smart Cards to College Campuses
The content is accurate at the time of publication and is subject to change.

A new smart card program from Sovereign Bank lets students, faculty and staff at college campuses turn their ID cards into multipurpose banking and identification tools. With one card, they are able to access college buildings and services, buy books and meals, and get cash from Sovereign ATMs.

Wheelock College in Boston and Mount Ida College in Newton, Massachusetts, are pioneering the program, and the 2,000-plus populations of the two college campuses are all receiving cards at the beginning of the fall semester. Students and staff need ID cards to gain entry into college buildings, but they can choose whether or not to open a bank account with Sovereign and link their card to the account.

Linking for convenience

If students do wish to set up a bank account and turn their ID card into a smart card, Sovereign has a student checking account with no monthly fee. There is no minimum balance required to open or maintain the account, and a Sovereign ATM will be located in the student center hub at each college. ATM transactions are free of charge, as are transfers between linked accounts.

Many parents send their kids to college with prepaid debit cards or credit cards to use for everyday expenses, cafeteria fees and class materials. The Sovereign Bank smart card can be used off campus as well as on, so parents can help their children set up a bank account and link it to their own, as an alternative to giving them a prepaid card.

Stripes and chips

Their smart cards have both magnetic stripes and EMV chips—commonly used in Europe, Canada and other countries—so they have maximum security functionality and can be used overseas as well as in the U.S.

Sovereign to become Santander

Sovereign Bank is a fully owned subsidiary of Santander Holdings, and as of October 17, 2013, they will change their name to Santander. Its Santander University division has been issuing smart cards to university and college campuses worldwide since 1996, but this is the first time they have done so in the United States. They have issued more than six million smart cards in other countries.

Disclaimer: This editorial content is not provided or commissioned by the credit card issuer(s). Opinions expressed here are the author's alone, not those of the credit card issuer(s), and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuer(s). Reasonable efforts are made to present accurate information, however all information is presented without warranty. Consult a card's issuing bank for the terms & conditions.
All rates and fees, and other terms and conditions of the products mentioned in this article/post are actual as of the last update date but are subject to change. See the current products' Terms & Conditions on the issuing banks' websites.
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