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It’s mid-March, which means it’s college spring break season.
From the shores of Florida and Mexico to the islands of the Caribbean and Bahamas, college students flock to the beaches to unwind from midterms with the help of cold beverages and lots of sun.
If you’re like us, you might wonder how so many college students living on a shoestring budget can afford to go on a not-so-cheap weeklong getaway.
For many students, vacations are funded by the same source that helps pay for day-to-day college costs: their parents.
But LendEDU discovered another source for spring break funding that might be shocking to some: student loans.
56.78% of In-School Student Borrowers Going On Spring Break Will Use Loan Money for Trip in 2018
LendEDU conducted a survey of 1,000 student loan borrowers who are currently enrolled at a four-year college to find out how many are using student loan money to help pay for their spring break trips this year.
Our survey found that 56.78 percent of current college students who have taken out student loan debt and are going on spring break this year are using their loan money to help pay for their fun-filled excursions.
When including respondents who are not taking a spring break vacation in 2018, that still leaves 44.4 percent of college borrowers overall who are using student loan money to help pay for their weeklong trips.
You might be wondering how this nifty maneuver is even possible. Well, when a student debtor is approved for financial aid, those funds are sent and administered by that student’s college’s financial aid office. The financial aid office takes out the necessary money to pay the college for that student’s course load.
Whatever money remains is sent to the student loan borrower in the form of a refund check. The refund check is intended to be used on living expenses or other school-related expenses, but there is no way of keeping track of where that excess money is spent.
Apparently, this money will come in handy for student borrowers looking to put together the last leg of funding for their spring break trips. And, depending on how you look at the stats, there is more than a two-to-one chance that will happen.
It’s Not Just Student Loans. Parents Chip In, Too
As a follow-up question, we asked those student loan-borrowing college students who are going on spring break in 2018 if their parents were helping pay for the trip.
Just a little over half of this pool of respondents, 50.51 percent, will receive assistance from their parents to pay for a spring break vacation this year.
As a student debtor, it’s probably savvier to ask your parents to help you pay for a spring break excursion rather than tap into your financial aid. More likely than not, parents won’t ask to be paid back, but the Department of Education will!
All of the data that was used in this study was from an online poll commissioned by LendEDU and conducted online by polling company Pollfish. In total, 1,000 current four-year college students with student loan debt were surveyed. We did not specify what type of student loans the borrowers had to have (federal or private). The desired respondents were found and filtered via screener question. This poll was conducted over a five day span, starting on Mar. 8, 2018, and ending on Mar. 12, 2018. All respondents were asked to answer each question truthfully and to the best of their ability.
See more of LendEDU’s Research
Author: Mike Brown