It’s common knowledge that shops and online stores usually accept credit cards and debit cards. Did you know that they will usually also accept a prepaid debit card? These are cards that you put a set of money onto and use to make your normal purchases.
There are a number of these cards available (e.g. MasterCard prepaid debit card) and they all offer broadly the same benefits. Here is a list of benefits associated with MasterCard prepaid debit cards – see if any of them could be beneficial to you (or to your teenager):
- There’s no debt involved. They help you to manage your money better than standard debit or credit cards because at no point do you get into debt – there’s no safety net or financial cushion to lull you into a false sense of financial security: once the money’s gone, it’s gone and there’s no more until you can next afford it. You budget an amount that you can live on for the week or month, load that amount onto the card and no more. It’s your money, not borrowed money and there’s no interest to pay.
- You have access to all your money. A standard debit card has a maximum amount that you can spend on it or withdraw with it each day; you also normally have a maximum amount you can withdraw before a fee is applied to the account for going over an agreed overdraft. A MasterCard prepaid debit card can give you all your money until the account is empty, then no more will be available.
- You can give them as gifts. They’re great if your child is going away to university or abroad on holiday, or, when they’re a little older, perhaps is planning some other major event such as a wedding or buying a house. You can give them a MasterCard prepaid debit card with a set amount of money on it and give them the opportunity to buy exactly what they want, when they want it. This gives them some autonomy and choice, and shows that you trust them to make sensible decisions about how they budget. And if they blow it all on booze then at least they haven’t got into debt doing so. They can also be used as a method of paying child maintenance.
- The money is available worldwide. If you have family abroad and want to send money to them then using a MasterCard prepaid debit card will enable you to load the account with the money and your loved one can instantly use the card anywhere in the world to use in shops or to withdraw cash.
- They are easy to acquire. You don’t need identity checks or a bank account to get a prepaid debit card, and you don’t need to prove how much you earn. After all, the card issuer is not giving you credit. These are much easier to get than standard credit cards, even if you have a poor credit history.
- They can act like bank accounts. You can have your salary paid onto them and you can use them to pay your outgoings.
If you think this is the card for you then shop around to find the right card for you – and check the small print to compare the fees charged for usage.