American Express is a multinational financial service corporation situated in the lower Manhatten in New York. American Express is one of the largest financial service providers in the country and the world. And being such a big financial institution it provides various services to the customers like charge and credit cards, travelers check, and other stored value products. Among the many services of American express, its prepaid credit and debit cards are one of them.
Debit cards mean it charges the money that is already in your bank account and use are paying from that money while making a purchase. And credit cards charge your credit line when you make a purchase. And if you pay that money in time and follow the instructions correctly it will increase your credit score and that can be a great loan in approving a loan or doing financial activities in the future.
Meanwhile, prepaid cards can only be used in making a purchase or doing any financial activities if you have previously deposited money on them. And unlike debit and credit cards, prepaid cards are like gift cards. Like any other banks and financial institutions, American express also provide the prepaid card to its customers, and the American Express credit cards are an ideal choice for the people who want to stick to the budget and want to avoid the debt problems.
The gift card or the prepaid card provided by American Express has a pre-loaded amount and you can only spend the money that you have previously loaded to your prepaid card. If you are looking for a simple card to make everyday payments without the hassle of overdraft fees and want to save yourself from credit card debt then an American Express prepaid card balance is for you.
What is an American Express prepaid card?
American Express prepaid card is a special card provided by the company to its customers. You have to load the money to your card before you can spend it and you cannot spend more than the loaded amount. American prepaid card is especially for people who want a payment card without any credit check and also for the people who have a very poor credit score and don’t qualify to get the credit card. American Express prepaid cards can also be useful to people who want a cheaper alternative to a secured credit card.
This can be very useful to people with a low credit score as they don’t have to have a good credit score to get the American Express prepaid card, there will be no credit check while getting the prepaid card, and it doesn’t matter whatever your credit score is. So American Express prepaid card is the cheaper alternative to a credit card where you don’t have to pay the interest and can manage your budget and safe from credit card debt.
American Express prepaid cards can come with a great advantage for the customers like you don’t have to pay any extra fee for every reloads you made to the card. There is also not any monthly fee that you have to pay to American express. As it is linked to your bank account, the reload of the money from your bank account to the American Express prepaid card can be very easy.
You can also reload the money to your prepaid account through moneypak or American Express card. If you buy any merchandise through your American express prepaid card then it is protected by the AMEX merchandise protection. You can also get free roadside assistance from the American Express prepaid card. So American express prepaid can come with really useful perks.
American Express is a big financial institution and one of the largest of its kind in the country. Its prepaid card service is also one of the best in the country. But it is not flawless, it comes with many flaws and cons. Reload amount of prepaid cards is limited so it mightn’t be enough for all people. You cannot direct deposit your paycheck to the American Express prepaid card.
There is no online bill payment with this card. And even if there are many perks, you cannot use it as a replacement for your bank account. And another disadvantage that comes with this is you have to wait three to five days if you load funds in the card from your bank account. And the service of American express payment cards is not available to all the places as it is not available in Arkansas and Vermont.
How Do American Express Prepaid Cards Work?
American Express prepaid card is very easy to use and also very easy to signup for this service. you can get an American Express prepaid card even if you don’t have a good credit score. The process involved in getting and using American Express credit card are:
1. Sign Up
You can signup or register to get the American Express prepaid cards such as American express®serve® or American express®bluebird® card for free online. There are certain criteria that you have to fulfill to get the American Express prepaid card such as you must be a minimum of 18 years old and must have a social security number and also a valid email address. But to get the bluebird card you must be at least 19 years of age if you live in the state of Alabama or Nebraska and you cant apply for a card if you live in the state of Vermont.
If you don’t want to register to get the card you can pay $3.95 for the serve card and $5 to get the bluebird card to purchase the card from a pharmacy or any big box store. But you won’t have full access to the card if you don’t register online.
2. Load it with Funds
If you want to load your money in a prepaid card then there are many ways to do it. you can direct deposit your paychecks or the benefits you get from the government. You can also use the mobile check deposit to load the money into your account but it cost you some 10 days to load and if you don’t want to wait that long, you have to pay 1-5% with the minimum amount of $5. You can also link your debit card, or checking and saving account.
You can also load the amount on your card through various locations in the country. But some shops may charge you up to $3.95 in loading the funds in your American express prepaid card.
3. Use the Card
Now that you have loaded your prepaid card it is ready to use. You can use the prepaid card in the shops or you can use it to buy online. You can pay your bills through any online bill pay portal. You can withdraw the cash from any American express ATM in the country. You can send or receive money for free with the same type of AMEX prepaid card. You can directly withdraw the money from Walmarts by paying certain fees in the certain amount of money you withdraw.
4. Reload the Card
Now after using the card, you have to reload the prepaid card to use the card again. You can reload the amount by following the process of how to load it with funds. Or you can choose to close the account online for free without penalty.
The 10 Best American Express Prepaid Card Balance is For You
There are many prepaid cards available in the market. All of them have their cons and pro, but the 10 of the prepaid card that stands out among other prepaid cards in the market in 2021 are:
1. American Express® Serve ® Free Reloads
American Express is one the biggest company that provides the prepaid card to the public there are two American Express serve in this list, this version of the American express serve doesn’t charge any reload fees, which can be useful if you have to reload the fund in your American express serves card many times. The road network and cities have more than 45,000 locations around the country which make it easy to use your prepaid card.
You can also take out the money from the pharmacy, dollar general, Walmart,7-eleven, etc. so it is even easier to take the money from the prepaid card. You don’t have to pay any money to reload your card from your bank account. With the American express serve prepaid card you can pay the online bill for free, fraud protection, and free early direct deposit. The card is free if you order a line and $3.95 if you take it from offline stores. Atm charges are also free if you use the money pass atm and will charge $2.50 if you take money from other atm.
2. Netspend Prepaid
Netspend prepaid card allows you to get paid up faster with the direct deposit. You can load money into your prepaid card by using a mobile check deposit. Or you can reload your NetSpend prepaid card at 130,000 locations across the country. You can download the free mobile app to manage your Netspend account. And you can refer the app and can get a bonus with it.
There are two plans available in the Netspend One is paid an you go account that doesn’t charge any monthly cost but charges $2 for each signature or pin transaction. Another is the premier fee advantage plan which is the best plan if you have a direct deposit of $500 or more and you will be $9.95 per month and every transaction fee is included.
3. American Express Serve Cashback
This is another version of the American Express service card, if you spend more than $800 per month then the American express serve cash back card can be your best option. You will get unlimited 1% cashback from each transaction from this card. There is no additional fee with it, atm cost are free and protection of purchase up to $1000. But you have to pay the $7.95 monthly fee to get the advantage of the card you must spend more than $800 per month.
4. Starbucks Rewards Visa Prepaid Card
It can be used anywhere where a visa card is used and you can get 1 star for every $10 you spend and you can collect 25 stars and redeem to get the money. It won’t expire if your account is active. This card doesn’t charge you any additional fee. but this card can’t is used to take out money from the atm, you must load a minimum of $25 from the chase checking or saving account.
5. Akimbo Prepaid Master Card
Akimbo lets you create a separate prepaid card for your different budget goals. The cost to open the first account is free and after that, it might cost some charge. There is no monthly fee and other fee but you have to pay $0.99 for each pin transaction. Atm cash withdrawal has cost $1.98 for each transaction and you have to pay$.33 for balance inquires. But you have to pay the dormant fee of $5.95 after the 13th month if your account remains dormant for 12 months.
6. Walmart Money Card
If you have this card you can enjoy 3% Cashback at walmart.com and 1% Cashback at the stores. Cashback is limited to $75 per year and you cant have more than that. You can have the free direct deposit, mobile check deposit, and free online bill pay service with the card. Reload fees are according to the reload method and usually charge $5.95. atm transaction and atm balance inquire also charges $2.50 and $0.50 respectively. If you spend $1000 per month then your monthly fee of $5.95 can be waived.
7. Farm Zoo Prepaid Debit Card
This card is mostly used by children. This card can be used to teach children how to save and manage money. With this card, parents can have control of the access and functionality of the card. You can also pay a weekly and monthly allowance to your children through this card by making a recurring transfer of money between cards. A paid subscription of this card allows you to have a four farm zoo prepaid card as long as your subscription is active. There is no cost for direct deposit and transfers between the cards are easy and quick.
8. Fifth Third Access 360 Card
Fifth third access 360 cards can be useful to you if you have an atm or branch near. It can be used to make online payments and making small purchases or many other things. This card can be useful to any people such as co cardholder or teen. Card purchase cost is free, there is a monthly charge of $4 but if you spend $500 or more you don’t have to pay any monthly charge. You have to pay some charge for atm and balance inquires and you can get your card by ordering online.
This card can be a worthwhile option for families. This card is a very good option for kids as you can send the money from your card to your kids easily. You can give rewards by letting your kids do chores and also give penalties if they do something wrong through cards. You can also pay the monthly allowance to your kids by making a recurring payment system. You have to pay the monthly fee starting from $4.99.
10. Wells Fargo Easypay Card
Wells Fargo Easypay card is not available to the new applicants but you can still use it if you have one. The card comes with the daily maximum limits and atm withdrawal limit. You can pay the online bill and buy purchases with this card. You can get the money from ATM and many shops around the country. You have to pay the monthly fee and if your account has a negative balance you don’t have to pay the extra cost but have to deposit the money as soon as you can. You cant get more than 1 prepaid card so it cant be useful for families.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Answer: Prepaid card is the card in which you have to load the funds to spend and doesn’t have an overdraft problem.
Answer: You have to load funds in prepaid cards while the checking or saving account is linked with the debit card so you can use that money.
Answer: You can get prepaid card online or you can get from shops and pharmacy.
At last prepaid card can be very useful to the people who want to have a managed budget plan and also who doesn’t qualify for the credit card. Prepaid cards are easy to gain and don’t need credit history to obtain them. So if you have the same needs and criteria then prepaid can be a good option. and if you ever plan to get one then by reading the above article you can easily choose your credit card according to your needs.