Prepaid debit cards have primarily been helpful for people who cannot qualify or struggle to qualify for a traditional bank account. Prepaid cards allow you to load money directly onto the card without needing a bank. Many people use them for the convenience.
In addition, you do not need credit for a prepaid card and they also won’t help you build credit. They are just like a debit card–you cannot spend more than you have on the card, although with a bank you may have overdraft protection attached to your debit card, with prepaid cards the card expires when you run out of funds in your account.
Reload Prepaid Cards with Ease
You can reload the card several ways through PayPal, a local retailer, transfer money from your bank to the card, or have your employer directly deposit money onto the card. Many prepaid cards have associated fees, however; to set them up or put money on you can be charged a fee. But there are ways to bypass these fees.
These Prepaid cards have no interest and limited fees –
- MOVO Virtual Prepaid Visa Card
Movo has no fees, there are no activation costs, monthly fees, fees for inactivity or credit checks required.Over 6,000 ATMs offer free to use this card. You can reload this card through direct deposit from a bank account, withdrawal from PayPal or Venmo, you can upload at retailers, however, retailers may have their own associated reload fees. There are also free online bill payments.
- American Express Serve Cash Back
This card offers you one percent cash back for purposes there is no credit check or minimum balance needed. It also advertises there are no hidden fees. You get free direct deposits, and ATM withdrawals for 24,000 ATMs nationwide. When you shop online you also get purchase protection.
- Bluebird by America Express
There are no monthly or annual fees, transaction purchase fees, or bill pay fees. In addition, if you order it online there are no card fees. They have over 25,000 ATM locations offering no ATM fees. You can use the app to categorize and set spending limits for this card and up to four others. If you are trying to learn better money management habits this card was rated best for budgeting.
- H&R Block Emerald Prepaid MasterCard
This card has no monthly fee or activation fee. In addition, there is no fee for reloading via direct deposit. ATM withdrawal is free at all MoneyPass ATMs There are no fees for point of sale or signature transactions. This card is great if you use your card frequently for regular purchases.
- Wal-Mart MoneyCard MasterCard
This card offers cash back three percent at Walmart.com and two percent at Murphy USA and Wal-Mart Fuel Stations. There is no credit check, overdraft fees or bank account needed. Free money transfer via direct deposit, and you can send money for free to another card issued by Green Dot Bank. At any Wal-Mart service desk, you can get cash off your card for free. If you are a frequent shopper at Wal-Mart this card could be an excellent choice as many of its perks are centered on shopping at Wal-Mart. Prepaid cards were developed to help those who want the freedom of a debit card without having to have a bank. Even if you have bad credit you can use a prepaid debit card, which can help you reserve hotels, rent cars, and make other purchases. These cards can also be used as tools for people wanting to budget their funds better.
Useful Prepaid Card Facts
The nature of the card allows you to practice budgeting because you load a specific amount of money on the card and once that amount is gone you have to reload it. To set up these cards you typically have to share information with the issuer, similar to if you were starting an actual bank account. Some issuers can also verify your identity to be sure you have proper identification. If you are looking for the ease of a debit card with the ability to use and make purchases these prepaid cards will allow you to do that. It is important to note however, these cards are not credit cards. They will not help you build credit. Although they can be colloquially called prepaid credit cards, they resemble a credit card but there is no credit limit on the card. You have to reload the card. There are associated costs of using these cards. The cards mentioned have low associated costs, but if you are choosing one figuring out which is best for your needs is important. Just like with any credit card or bank, knowing your needs and what types of purchases you will be making can help you choose the best-prepaid debit card. Some of the cards listed have better benefits if you shop certain places. ATM access is also important researching which ATMs the card you are considering has in your area can help you figure out if its convenient for your lifestyle.