Compare Prepaid Cards

compare credit cardsFrom travel money to everyday spending, prepaid credit cards give you secure and convenient access to your own cash when you need it. Find out more about them and compare prepaid credit cards here.

Prepaid cards give you another way to pay for things without the potential cost of interest charges associated with regular credit cards.

This guide outlines the different features of prepaid credit cards, how to compare them and where you can get one so that you can decide if a prepaid credit card is right for you.

What is a prepaid credit card?

A prepaid credit card is a type of card where you load and use your own money, rather than  drawing on your credit limit and paying off the balance as you would with a normal credit card. Some of the features and benefits of prepaid credit cards include:

  • More control over the balance or amount of money on the card
  • An alternative to a credit card for someone under 18
  • Access to multiple currencies through the one card
  • Lower fees and charges than other credit cards
  • No interest rate
  • Reward points
  • Money tracking tools
  • Security against theft, loss and fraud

These features vary from card to card, so it’s important to make sure you compare prepaid credit cards and find options that are suited to your specific needs.

Different types of prepaid credit cards

Just as there are different types of regular credit cards, there is a range of prepaid cards designed to suit specific needs, including:

  1. Everyday prepaid credit cards. These cards offer convenience for day-to-day spending and could include tap-and-go payments, balance-tracking features and fast, easy money loading options.
  2. Prepaid travel cards. You can use prepaid travel cards to load Australian dollars and convert them into a number of supported foreign currencies at a locked-in exchange rate. This means that you can access your own funds overseas without the cost of a currency conversion fee.
  3. Gift cards. Prepaid credit cards can make great gifts as an alternative to cash, and can be loaded with a nominated amount or purchased with a set amount already on the card. These cards may be designed to be used at specific shops or businesses, such as Westfield or the Woolworths Group stores, and usually can be re-loaded once the balance is spent.
  4. Money transfer cards. Money transfer cards allow multiple people in different countries to access the funds in one account. These accounts come with two cards; one person deposits money in the account, and the other person, who has the card in a different country, can access the funds as soon as they clear in the account.
  5. Prepaid reward cards. Some prepaid cards are also linked to reward programs and earn you points for your spending. The Coles Reloadable Prepaid MasterCard, Qantas Cash card and Velocity Global Wallet are all examples of cards that you can preload and earn points with.

How to compare prepaid credit cards

Considering the following features will help you find a prepaid credit card that is right for you.

  • Pre-loaded vs. reloadable. Some prepaid cards come with a fixed amount of money to use, while others allow you to load money on an ongoing basis. If you’re planning to use the card more than once, consider a reloadable card.
  • Purchasing or set up fee. Prepaid cards may come with a one-off fee when you buy them, usually ranging from $5 to $11. Some cards don’t charge a fee or will waive it for existing customers, like the ANZ Travel Card.
  • Loading fees. Some prepaid credit cards charge an initial loading fee, and others may charge a fee every time you add more money to the card. Others don’t charge anything, so make sure to read the terms and conditions to confirm how much you could pay.
  • Inactivity fee. This fee usually applies if you get a reloadable prepaid card and don’t use it for 12 months. Inactivity fees can be as little as $1 to $5 per month, so keeping this in mind when you compare prepaid cards could help you avoid this charge.
  • Currency conversion fees. A fee of around 3% could be applied for any currency conversions associated with the prepaid card. If you’re spending in a supported currency, you can usually avoid this fee with a travel card.
  • Rewards. If you’ll be using the card regularly, consider whether you can earn rewards on your purchases and what you can redeem them for.
  • Other fees. Prepaid debit cards can include a number of other fees including card replacement fees, cancellation fees, declined transaction fees and ATM withdrawal fees. Check these charges before you apply to find an affordable prepaid card for your needs.
  • Load limits. Prepaid cards usually have a maximum amount of money you can carry on the card at one time, ranging from $30 to $10,000 or more. Check these details before you apply to make sure these limits don't restrict the way you use the card.

Remember, every prepaid credit card is different, so checking individual details now will help you make a more informed decision when choosing the right option for you.

Compare travel money cards

Rates last updated December 9th, 2016
Available Currencies ATM Withdrawal Fee Reload Fee Initial Load Fee
ANZ Travel Card
ANZ Travel Card
AUD, CAD, EUR, GBP, HKD, JPY, NZD, SGD, THB, USD, AUD 3.50, CAD 3.00, EUR 2.20, GBP 2.00, HKD 20.00, JPY 260, NZD 4.50, SGD 4.00, THB 95, USD 2.50 1.1% of the value purchased $0 Go to site More
NAB Traveller Card
NAB Traveller Card
AUD, CAD, EUR, GBP, HKD, JPY, NZD, SGD, THB, USD $0 per withdrawal on international ATMs and $3.75 per withdrawal at any Australian ATMs $0 $0 Go to site More
Cash Passport MasterCard
Cash Passport MasterCard
AUD, CAD, EUR, GBP, HKD, JPY, NZD, SGD, THB, USD $2.50 for withdrawals made overseas 2.95% of the amount withdrawn for domestic withdrawals $0 $0 Go to site More
Travelex Travel Card
Travelex Travel Card
AUD, CAD, EUR, GBP, HKD, JPY, NZD, SGD, THB, USD Travelex does not charge an ATM withdrawal fee when you use your Travelex Multi-currency Cash Passport to withdraw currencies that are loaded on the card at overseas ATMs where MasterCard is accepted. The greater of 1.1% of the initial load / reload amount or AU$15.00 $0 Go to site More
Rates last updated December 9th, 2016
Currency Conversion Fee Monthly Inactivity Fee Multiple Currencies on One Card Maximum Load Amount
ANZ Travel Card
ANZ Travel Card
3% $3 Yes $80,000 Go to site More
NAB Traveller Card
NAB Traveller Card
4% $0 Yes $45,000 Go to site More
Cash Passport MasterCard
Cash Passport MasterCard
0% $0 Yes $100,000 Go to site More
Travelex Travel Card
Travelex Travel Card
5.95% AU$4.00 per month No $5,000 Go to site More

Compare more prepaid travel money cards

Provider and cardMasterCard/Visa/AMEXReloadable?Min/max load (AUD)Issue feeWhere to get it
ANZ prepaid credit cards
ANZ Pacific Money Transfer CardVisaYes$0 / $500 (up to $2,500 per month)$24.95Order online
ANZ Travel CardVisaYes$200 / $80,000$11Order online
American Express prepaid credit cards
GlobalTravel Card*
*Only available in USD, British Sterling Pounds or Euros
American ExpressYesMaximums for eligible currencies: US$30,000
£16,000
€24,000
Up to AUD$15Order online
Australia Post prepaid credit cards
Load&Go Reloadable Visa CardVisaYes$20 / $999$6.95Order online or in selected stores
Load&Go Travel CardVisaYes$100 / $10,000$0Online or in selected stores
Load&Go Gift CardVisaNo$20 / $500$5.95Order online or in selected stores
Commonwealth Bank prepaid credit cards
Commonwealth Bank Prepaid MasterCard Gift CardMasterCardNo$25 / $5005,400 to 100,000 Awards pointsOnly available through the Commonwealth Bank Awards program
Commonwealth Bank Travel Money CardMasterCardYes$1 / $100,000$15Order online
Coles prepaid credit cards
Coles Reloadable MasterCardMasterCardYes$10 / $10,000$10Order online
Coles Gift MasterCardMasterCardNo$10 / $1,000$5Order online
Coles Online MasterCardMasterCard (virtual only)No$10 / $1,000$5Order online
Heritage Building Society prepaid credit cards
Cash Passport MasterCardMasterCardYes$100 / $100,000$0Order online
Universal Gift CardsVisaNo$25 / $100$9.95 (postage and handling)Order online
NAB prepaid credit card
NAB Traveller CardMasterCardYes$50 / $45,000$0Order online
Qantas prepaid credit card
Qantas CashMasterCardYes$50 / $20,000$0Order online
Travelex prepaid credit card
Travelex Multi-currency Cash PassportMasterCardYes$100 / 100,000$15Order online
Virgin Australia Velocity prepaid credit card
Velocity Global WalletVisaYes$1 / $25,000$0Order online
Westpac prepaid credit card
Global Currency CardVisaYes$100 / 100,000$0Order online
Woolworths prepaid credit card
MasterCard Prepaid Gift CardMasterCardNo$20 / $500$5.50Selected stores
Visa Prepaid Gift CardVisaNo$20 / $500$5.50Selected stores
Woolworths WISH Gift CardN/A#No$10 / $500$0Order online or in selected stores

#The Woolworths WISH Gift Card is only available to be used at participating Woolworths Group stores

How can I get a prepaid credit card?

Prepaid credit cards are available both online and in outlets around Australia.

Depending on the prepaid credit card you choose, you will be able to apply online or in person at participating retailers and bank branches. While each application varies, the following list outlines common requirements you need to meet to get a prepaid credit card:

  • Age. Some prepaid credit cards specify a minimum age for cardholders or will limit the available balance if a person is under a certain age. For example, the Coles Reloadable MasterCard requires you to be at least 18 years of age if you want to increase your card limit. Similarly, the Velocity Global Wallet card requires you to be “over 18 years of age” to use it.
  • Personal details. You may need to provide personal details such as your full name, residential address, contact phone number and date of birth to help verify your identity.
  • Initial load amount. Some cards may require you to load a minimum amount onto the card when you first get it.
  • Card activation. You will need to activate the card before you can use it. This can be done in person, over the phone or online depending on the card.
  • PIN. Prepaid credit cards may come with an assigned PIN, or require you to choose a PIN when you activate the card.
  • Signing the card. Make sure you sign the card once you receive and activate it. This step is necessary to validate the zero liability policy that helps protect you against any unauthorised transactions.

Making sure you are prepared to meet these requirements will help you get your card as quickly as possible. If you apply in person, you’ll be able to get and use your card straight away. If you apply online you will have to wait to receive the card in the post, which takes up to 5-10 working days in most cases. You can also check with the prepaid credit card provider to find out about specific card requirements before you apply.

Prepaid credit cards combine flexibility and affordability by letting you load and spend your own money in a range of different ways. With so many different prepaid cards available, learning more about them and comparing prepaid options will help you get the most out of these cards whenever you choose to use them.

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American Express Essential Credit Card
American Express Essential Credit Card

Interest rate

14.99

Annual fee

0
ME Bank frank Credit Card
ME Bank frank Credit Card

Interest rate

11.99

Annual fee

0
HSBC Platinum Credit Card
HSBC Platinum Credit Card

Interest rate

19.99

Annual fee

149

Credit Cards Comparison

Rates last updated December 9th, 2016
Purchase rate (p.a.) Balance transfer rate (p.a.) Annual fee
Virgin Australia Velocity Flyer Card - Balance Transfer Offer
Enjoy a 0% p.a. balance transfer offer for 18 months and also earn 2 bonus Velocity Points in the first 3 months on everyday spend.
20.74% p.a. 0% p.a. for 18 months $64 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($129 p.a. thereafter) Go to site More info
ME Bank frank Credit Card
Enjoy a low and consistent interest rate on purchases and cash advances, combined with no annual fee.
11.99% p.a. $0 p.a. Go to site More info
HSBC Platinum Credit Card
Receive a full annual fee refund and save $149 if you meet the $6,000 spend requirement. Enjoy a balance transfer offer and platinum card benefits such as complimentary insurances and concierge services.
19.99% p.a. 0% p.a. for 15 months $149 p.a. Go to site More info
NAB Low Rate Credit Card
The NAB Low Rate Card offers 0% p.a. on purchases and balance transfers for 15 months. This card also comes with a low annual fee.
0% p.a. for 15 months (reverts to 13.99% p.a.) 0% p.a. for 15 months with a one off 3% balance transfer fee $59 p.a. Go to site More info
HSBC Platinum Qantas Credit Card
Receive 60,000 bonus Qantas Points on eligible spend within 3 months. Enjoy access to premium benefits and complimentary insurance.
19.99% p.a. $199 p.a. Go to site More info

* The credit card offers compared on this page are chosen from a range of credit cards finder.com.au has access to track details from and is not representative of all the products available in the market. Products are displayed in no particular order or ranking. The use of terms 'Best' and 'Top' are not product ratings and are subject to our disclaimer. You should consider seeking independent financial advice and consider your own personal financial circumstances when comparing cards.

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