Frequently Asked Questions about Payment Options
and the Credit Card Convenience Fee
Why did Eastern decide to change the credit card payment options for tuition
Eastern’s annual expense for supporting credit card payments totals more than $250,000.
Concern for these costs to Eastern and the other Connecticut State Universities led the Board of
Trustees for the Connecticut State University System to pass Board Resolution #11‐33. Included
in this resolution is a 2.5 percent convenience fee on credit card transactions. This includes
payments for any charges shown on your bill, including tuition, fees, parking tickets, library
fines, and other charges. Eastern will implement this policy change effective October 1, 2011.
What credit cards will be accepted for payment of tuition and fees?
Eastern will accept Visa, American Express, MasterCard and Discover credit cards. Due to these
changes we can only accept credit card payments on‐line. We can no longer accept mailed, faxed
or in‐person credit card payments.
What about online debit card payments?
You can make online payments using your debit card. Debit Card payments will not be assessed the
2.5 percent convenience fee.
What about electronic checks?
We will continue to accept this popular form of payment. Electronic checks will not be assessed a
2.5 percent convenience fee.
When I make an online credit card payment, how will I know how much the convenience fee will cost?
When you make an online credit card payment you will receive a message asking if you agree to pay a
convenience fee for using a credit card. The convenience fee will be calculated at 2.5 percent on
the amount you pay. For example, if you pay $1,000, your credit card will be charged $1,000 plus a
$25 convenience fee. That convenience fee will appear on your student account.
Is the convenience fee refundable?
No. The convenience fee is a non‐refundable charge.
Are there any other payments I may make to Eastern that are not subject to the convenience fee?
Yes. Eastern EXPRE$$, housing deposits, tuition deposits and any donations made to the ECSU
Foundation, Inc., are not subject to the convenience fee.
What happens if I want to use my credit card to add money to my Eastern
EXPRE$$ Card (Student ID)?
For your Eastern EXPRE$$ card, used for purchasing goods and services at Eastern and various local
merchants, nothing has changed:
- You add funds directly through Card Services, in person or online at
- You will NOT be charged a convenience fee.
- You can use debit/credit MasterCard, VISA or Discover cards.
When will the credit card payment changes go into effect?
The credit card payment changes will be effective October 1, 2011.
What other payment options are available to pay my tuition and fee bill?
There are several other options to pay your bill:
- ELECTRONIC CHECK – Online payment by electronic check uses funds directly from a checking or
savings account. This method of payment is becoming more popular with families. It’s easy to set up
on your student account. Payments are secure and instantly applied to the account, without a
- IN-PERSON ‐ Payment in‐person by cash, check or money order can be presented at the
Bursar’s Office during regular business hours. The office is open Monday through Friday
8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. While credit card payments will not be accepted at the Cashier’s window,
computers are nearby in the Wood’s Support Center lobby where credit card payments can be made. The
non‐refundable convenience fee will apply.
- BY MAIL ‐ Check and money order payments can be mailed to: Eastern Connecticut State
83 Windham Street Attn: Cashier’s Office Willimantic, CT 06226
- TUITIONPAY INSTALLMENT PLANS – Another popular option is to pay your semester bill in five
monthly installments. This service is managed by Sallie Mae and allows you an interest‐ free way
to break down your tuition expenses. For more information, visit
https://tuitionpay.salliemae.com or call (800) 635‐0120 to speak with a Sallie Mae
Are other colleges and universities making similar changes?
Yes, colleges and universities all over the country have made similar credit card payment and
convenience fee policy changes. All four universities in the CSU System (Eastern, Western, Central
and Southern) are implementing a convenience fee. Other Connecticut colleges and universities that
currently charge a credit card convenience fee include UCONN, the University of Hartford and Sacred
I often receive checks from my credit card company. Can I use the routing number and account number
on these checks to make an electronic check (eCheck) payment?
No. The credit card companies will not honor checks used electronically. The payment will be
returned as “account not found” and a $20 returned check fee will be assessed. You may use
these checks through the mail or in‐person only.