International travel among college-age students is at record levels, thanks in part to the relative ease of travel, study abroad programs, and growing overseas tertiary school enrolments. This is particularly true in Asia, home to a growing share of the global student population.
To better serve the needs of students traveling abroad, MasterCard and the International Student Identity Card (ISIC) Association join forces to give students the benefits of the ISIC Prepaid MasterCard, the only internationally recognized proof of student identity, combined with the convenience and security of the MasterCard acceptance network.
The ISIC card provides students with access to services at every stage and aspect of their college life, providing them with easy and secure ways to manage their money, track spending, learn financial planning best practices, and purchase goods at discounted prices – whether online or in a store. In Asia Pacific, the ISIC Prepaid MasterCard Programme is available to students in a growing number of markets that includes China and India.
Students across the world already know the ISIC card and trust it as a reliable form of student identity and gateway to a student discount program that brings everyday savings, whether they are traveling the world or close to home. Holders of the ISIC Prepaid MasterCard are entitled to more than 40,000 targeted discounts and benefits in over 120 countries.
“When I studied abroad, the ISIC card came in very handy and saved me a lot of money as I was able to get great discounts when booking air and rail tickets, accommodation at hostels and admission tickets. It provided me with easy access to student discounts around the world,” says a young Hong Kong resident who studied abroad in Australia and Canada.
In Asia Pacific, key outbound markets include China, India, South Korea, Japan, Malaysia, and Vietnam.
Key Asia Pacific inbound markets – where students from other counties arrive with their ISIC MasterCard cards to attend college – include Australia and Japan.
Safer than traveling with cash, students can use their ISIC Prepaid MasterCard to pay for purchases at over 30 million merchant locations around the world through MasterCard’s global payments network.
For many students, the ISIC Prepaid MasterCard is their first payment card, and lays the foundation for lifetime money management skills.
Parents like the fact that they can load money onto the ISIC Prepaid MasterCard from afar. A prepaid card, unlike a debit or credit card, is not linked to a savings account or a credit line.
The ISIC card, which dates back to 1953, is the only internationally accepted proof of full-time student status, and is endorsed by UNESCO, national governments, and ministries of education worldwide. It is sold each year to over 4.5 million students in 124 countries. The ISIC MasterCard partnership began in 2008.
Now a “virtual identity card” smartphone app allows ISIC cardholders to search online for local concessions.
Are you familiar with the ISIC Prepaid MasterCard? What have you used it for?