If you're getting money from multiple places (private, grant, stafford) I'd imagine they'd probably be deposited into your BAR account at different times of the day. Yeah they seem to be really busy and rarely return phone calls but if you can actually get somebody on the phone they're very nice and helpful.
Buy the parking pass. You may not want to drive to classes, but when you're studying late in the library until after dark, sticking around for a study group, having to bring more books than usual, or even just eating dinner on campus, you'll be thankful you don't have to take the bus home or fork over $7 every single time and then struggle to find a spot that's not reserved for permit parking. But that's just my opinion. :-D
On the FAO website it says you can fulfill the debt counseling session online, which I did. My loans haven't been disbursed yet though and URSA says I have WAY less 'anticipated financial aid' than I had anticipated (less than even my Staffords). But the financial aid office never calls me back. Ever. It's kind of annoying.
ETA: Ok, I got off the phone with financial aid and they said to totally ignore whatever it says on URSA. Loans will start being disbursed tonight and continue through next week.
Shira, I live in UA South, off Sawtelle. I can't decide if I should buy the permit or not! I don't want to drive to school but I feel like a schmuck passing on the chance to have a parking pass