Sarah bought a Green Dot Visa card at Walmart so she could do some shopping online. Her experience is a great illustration of why this site isn’t a huge fan of prepaid debit cards: she put down cash for a card that had erroneous address information even though she had carefully followed all directions and registered the card. She ended up with most of the card’s balance tied up in transactions she couldn’t complete. [More]
This tax season, South Carolina taxpayers will have three options for getting their tax refunds: direct deposit, paper check, or a prepaid debit card from Bank of America. While this last option might seem like a good idea to some, they could be paying for the convenience. [More]
Poor Suze Orman. All she was trying to do was launch a prepaid debit card that charges slightly fewer exorbitant fees than the competition, and sort of reports your spending habits to credit bureaus but not really. Then a whole bunch of “idiot” personal finance bloggers began ganging up on her on Twitter, and she had no choice but to lash out and remind them that they’re not real journalists. [More]
Reader Andy noticed this sign in near the breakfast foods in a local CVS. It instructs customers to check the expiration dates of the items they choose before taking them up to the cash register. It’s an innovative idea: maybe they’re aiming to crowdsource stock rotation. [More]
Last year, Mike bought a Vanilla Visa prepaid debit card at CVS as a gift for a friend, who promptly forgot that the card existed until about a year later. The card doesn’t work, but not because it’s been dormant for the last year and had its balance eaten up in fees. No, the problem is that this card expired in July 2010, before it was even purchased. CVS never should have sold him this card. Now neither CVS nor Vanilla Visa will take responsibility for the problem, and are even accusing Mike of being a scammer. [More]
No longer able to make as much money from processing debit card transactions due to new regulations, banks are expected to start increasing their bottom lines by coaxing customers into using prepaid cards and signing up for credit cards. [More]
It seemed like a good idea at the time. When Jim’s wife received a bonus at her job in the form of a prepaid debit card from the First National Bank of Omaha, they chose to put it away for an emergency. What they didn’t realize is that prepaid debit cards combine all of the arbitrary fees of banks with all of the general crappiness of a gift card, only worse. Much worse. By the time the couple went to use the card, the entire balance had been gobbled up by fees. Fees levied for not using the card. [More]
Pushers of prepaid debit cards say the fees they charge are comparable to a checking account, but a new study by Consumers Union, publishers of Consumer Reports and this blog, finds that by and large, checking accounts are still a better deal. [More]
Using TurboTax to file his taxes last month, Sam chose an interesting new option for his refund: a TurboTax-branded Greendot prepaid debit card. He doesn’t have a bank account at the moment, and wasn’t receiving a huge refund, so this seemed like a good option. He tried to use up the card soon after receiving it in order to avoid the monthly “maintenance fees” that come with prepaid debit cards. What he didn’t know was his account really began on the day that he requested it online, so he was paying monthly fees when he had the card for barely a week. [More]
The Kardashians have been sued over their Kardashian Card, a pre-loaded debit card they agreed to put their faces and names on and help promote. The card was slammed by critics and an AG almost as soon as it came out for the high hidden fees it hoped to extract from the teen audience it was targeting. But the plaintiff isn’t a government body or members of a class action, it’s the Kardashian’s former business partners. [More]
After just 3 weeks, the Kardashian Kard is canceled. Lawyers for the K sisters sent a termination letter to the bank that had licensed their likenesses and slapped them on its hidden fee-laden debit card targeted at children. Seems they don’t want to be associated with a card that was almost immediately after it launched the source of an AG investigation. See the full letter, after the jump. [More]
Those wascally NMA folk took a swing at the Kardashian Kard with a new comedic animated video. They waste no time skewering the fee-laden prepaid debit card marketed towards children. My favorite part is when Kim runs away laughing as her tween fans paw ineffectually towards her, their feet shackled to balls and chains of debt. [More]
Keeping up with the Kardashians comes at a cost. The reality show star is pimping a new prepaid debit card targeted at kids that is as bursting with hidden fees as Kim’s shirt, featured prominently on the plastic, is bursting with integrity. Yeah, I think using sex to sell hidden fees to kids is pretty messed up. Just take a look at all these fees: [More]
Robb wrote in with a suggestion on how to bank without ever getting stuck with an overdraft fee — make sure as many plastic purchases as possible come from prepaid cards. His method seems like a hassle but may be worth the effort for those who can’t keep tabs on their checking account balances. [More]
With credit cards harder to come by and more annoying to use, the prepaid debit card market is projected to explode from $8.7 billion loaded on the cards to $119 billion in 2012, but a good chunk of that is going to be eaten up by hidden fees and gotchas. This sexy graphic visualization shows how.
Anthony received a Newegg rebate in the form of a prepaid debit card. When he went to use the $15 card for a $15.93 purchase, he received an unexpected and wonderful surprise.
The Associate Press says that 30 states have cut deals with bailed out banks like JP Morgan Chase, Citigroup, and Bank of America to distribute unemployment benefits on debit cards instead of paper checks. The catch? All of these programs have fees — and in some states the cards are mandatory.