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These are not credit cards, but you can use them anywhere Visa debit cards are accepted. Visa prepaid cards must be loaded with cash before you make a purchase, and you might incur a number of fees from everyday use. You won’t be able to build credit from these cards because they do not report your activity to the credit bureaus.
Visa prepaid cards can be used to pay bills, make purchases, withdraw cash, and protect your money, because all of these cards are protected by Visa’s Zero Liability Policy.
These are not credit cards, but they can be used to pay for most things in the same fashion and they’re much easier to get your hands on. Instead of a credit application, most cards will just need some basic info or a startup fee. Because these are not credit cards, prepaid cards will not help you build credit since your activity is not reported to the credit bureaus.
To use your card you’ll have to activate it and then load it with money either by direct deposit from your paycheck, or in person at a bank or retail location. You can then use it to make purchases up to that amount, similar to a debit card.
These card are all reloadable, accepted everywhere Visa debit cards are accepted, and don’t require a credit check or a bank account. Each card has its own features, but most of them offer free direct deposit a day or two ahead of payday, along with brand rewards if the card is offered by a particular retailer.
There’s lots of cards to choose from, with over 30 available online from Visa’s site alone and while they’re all different, most of them are similar in a lot of ways. A popular offer is the MyVanilla Prepaid Visa Card which offers free direct deposit, is available in Visa or Mastercard versions, and isn’t affiliated with a specific store.
Some cards aren’t so friendly and will charge some fees for things you might not suspect. You might get hit for an activation fee, a monthly fee, a fee for reloading your card in certain ways, a direct deposit fee, a withdrawal fee, and more. You typically won’t have to worry about overdraft fees because you won’t be able to spend more than you load on your card.
It’s important to make sure you find a complete list of fees for any card you’re interested in before submitting your request, as you never know what small action they might bill you for.
Click the Apply button to find a list of Visa prepaid cards that you can request online.
Check out our post on Prepaid Debit Cards to learn more.