Bank Cards

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Listen to the following conversation.

(Scenario – A young woman, Hoa Thi, is speaking to Miss Hong, a bank officer.)

Fill in the blanks as you listen to the dialog again.

Miss Hong: Hello. How (1)   ?
Hoa Thi: Hi. I (2)   a credit card.
Miss Hong: I understand. May I (3)   ?
Hoa Thi: Yes. Here, I’m a (4)  .
Miss Hong: You know, students (5)  live beyond their means.
Hoa Thi: I’m not like that. (6)  .
Miss Hong: Even so, a debit card will be better. First, deposit money into an account. Then (7)  . This will help you manage your spending.
Hoa Thi: Could my parents (8)  from Vietnam?
Miss Hong: That (9) . Please sign this.

Useful Expressions

Make complete sentences by writing the best expression in each blank.

to apply for a - see some identification - live beyond their means - pay them off - please sign this

• a. If you have too many bills,      .
• b. I need     bank loan.
• c.      to show you received your package.
• d. To get past the doormen, they’ll have to      .
• e. Those who      may run up huge debts.

Listening & Speaking

Model Dialog 
Listen as the teacher reads the model dialog.
(Scenario – Howard is in the office of Mr. Gray, a debt counselor.)

Howard: Hello, my name is Howard. My wife asked me to speak with you.
Mr. Gray: Yes, I recall when she made the appointment.
Howard: We live beyond our means. We owe big money and it’s killing us.
Mr. Gray: How many cards do you have?
Howard: We each have six credit cards.
Mr. Gray: Step 1 is to manage your spending. Each of you choose one card to keep.
Howard: And then what?
Mr. Gray: Cut up the other cards. Pay them off, but don’t make any new charges.
Howard: How can I do that?
Mr. Gray: I will help you apply for a loan to pay them all off.
Howard: How can I afford to do that?
Mr. Gray: We will decide how much you can afford to pay, over several years.
Howard: Will it really take that long to clean this up?
Mr. Gray: You didn’t make a mess like this quickly. Why are you surprised?
Howard: I guess I’m not, really. How can we get started?
Mr. Gray: Good. Let me see some identification, and sign this.

Guided Speaking

With a partner, take turns completing the answers to the questions.

$3,000 per month from my government - to apply for a credit card - get help from my older sister - is 20% for charges not paid off each month - a VISA credit card, if possible - up to $1,500 per month

How can I help you?                           I want (1)   .
 What kind of card do you want?     I want (2)   .
 How much income will you have?  I’ll have (3)   .
What’s my credit limit?                    You can charge (4)   .
What are the finance charges?        The annual rate (5)   .
 How will you manage your spending? I will (6)   .


Bank Statements
Read the following bank statement, and learn what information it contains.
What will you do with the money you earn in North America? Once you start getting a regular paycheck, you will want to open a checking or debit account. The table below is a checking account statement.

Look at the statement above, and complete the sentences below. 

a. Michael had $   in the balance brought forward from his last account.
b. Michael’s salary seems to be $   .
c. $   was refunded for an electronic product.
d. The monthly fee for the checking account is $   .

Grammar Focus (wh-questions)

What kind of card do you want?           • Where can I apply for a debit card?
Who do you bank with?                           • When will I receive the bank statement?
Why are people standing in line here?

Reading and Discussions

Read the following passage, and answer the questions. Use the words provided below each question.

Credit Cards on Campus

Credit card companies make money when card users buy more than they can afford to pay for in one month. When they have to pay for it over several months, they also pay interest on the amount they owe. This is how credit companies make a profit. Naturally, card companies seek out new card users who are likely to pay them interest. Offers for credit cards are sent to university students and even to some senior high school students. Young people want to buy a lot but cannot pay for it, so they are perfect customers for the credit card companies! According to recent statistics, 78 percent of undergraduate students have at least one credit card. Thirty-two percent of those students have four or more cards. On average, students owe $2,745 to credit card companies.
However, 9 percent of the students owe more than $7,000. These numbers are actually lower than they used to be. There are two main reasons for it. One is that students now realize how easy it is to go into debt with a credit card. The other is credit card fraud. Because students are now worried about ID theft by hackers who steal their personal information, they are using their cards less often.

afford: to have enough money to buy
statistics: numerical data
undergraduate: before graduating from college
fraud: deceit or trickery
ID theft: criminal act of stealing personal information

1. According to the reading passage, what are the reasons for students’ using their credit cards less often than before?

realize, easy, debt, fraud, ID theft, information

Your answer may begin like:
There are two main reasons for it. One reason ....

2. Can you suggest five important tips to avoid credit card debts?

reduce, warning, lend, questionable, phone, safe, essential

Your answer may begin like:
First, reduce the number of credit cards you carry. Second, put warning labels ....

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