Prepaid Visa cards have been around for a while, and here’s what you need to know about them, straight from the horse’s mouth.Prepaid Visa cards give cardholders a convenient way to access their money. These cards don’t offer any credit, they don’t link to bank accounts, and they still manage to give you easy access to your funds as and when needed. Not everyone is clear about just how these cards work, and to seek clarification on some of the most commonly asked questions, we contacted Judy Shaw from Visa Australia and New Zealand.
We thank her kindly for taking the time to interact with us, and here’s what she had to say.
Interview questions and answers
Some of our readers wish to know if they can use prepaid Visa cards with PayPal - would you please clarify.
Yes, prepaid Visa cardholders can use their card details to fund their PayPal accounts.
Is there currently a growth in the Australian prepaid Visa card market?
There has been a considerable growth in the prepaid card market over the last couple of years, which one can attribute to the diversity in the types of prepaid cards on offer. People can now choose from options like general purpose spending reloadable cards, disposable gift cards, and cards for overseas travel. Travel cards that allow loading of multiple currencies and gift cards remain the most sought after.
Many large corporate organisations are also turning to using prepaid Visa cards as incentives or loyalty rewards for their customers. Fujitsu General Australia, for instance, ran successful promotions using cashback on Visa prepaid cards. Opportunities also exist for governmental agencies and departments to turn to prepaid cards for emergency relief disbursements and staff per diem.
Such cards offer cardholders easy means to access electronic payment options. They tend to find favour with a number of people because not everyone wants, or can get, a credit card or a debit card. Besides, getting a prepaid card does not require a customer to have an existing relationship with a card issuer.
An extensive research that Visa carried out in Australia recently showed that customers are quite in favour of the prepaid card concept, especially when it comes to travel. The common perception is that prepaid cards offer increased safety when compared to carrying cash, and cardholders can withdraw local currency from ATMs the world over.
Can I use my prepaid Visa card anywhere?
As of now Coles and Woolworths don’t accept prepaid Visa cards, but Visa is continuing to discuss this matter with them. Other than this, you can use your prepaid card just about anywhere you see the Visa logo, at ATMs and EFTPOS terminals alike. Visa finds acceptance in over 200 countries and territories, at more than 1.9 million ATMs and 30 million merchants.
Is the MySpace Prepaid Visa the first card of its kind in Australia, or even globally?
Yes, as per my knowledge this is the first prepaid card in the world that targets users of social networking sites. Nowadays, it is more common for the youth to download music from internet, as opposed to buying CDs from brick-and-mortar stores. The MySpace Prepaid Visa card gives them a simple way to shop online, and also sets them on the road to financial independence.
Can you please give us information about fees such cards charge?
You can find out about fees that prepaid Visa cards charge and other related information by visiting this page.
How can customers find out more about prepaid Visa cards?
Prepaid Visa cards bring with them the convenience that people typically associate with credit and debit cards, given that they give cardholders easy access to their money the world over. Bear in mind, though, that a number of financial institutions in Australia offer prepaid Visa cards, so it is ideal that you compare a few before getting any one.
Please note that we conducted this interview in 2010 and ANZ no longer offers the MySpace Prepaid Visa card. It does, however, offer a range of other prepaid Visa cards.
Frequently asked questions
Is there a limit to how much money I can load onto a prepaid Visa card?
While some such cards allow you to load as little as one dollar, minimum load requirements can go up to $200 in some cases. The maximum you can load onto a prepaid Visa card also varies from one card to the next, with some allowing loading of any amount up to $100,000.
Can I get a personalised prepaid Visa card?
Yes, a number of prepaid Visa card issuers give cardholders the ability to personalise their cards. You can choose to add your company’s logo or can customise the entire front-face of the card, as long as you adhere to the card issuer’s image guidelines.