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Prepaid Debit Cards

Prepaid Debit Cards

What is a prepaid debit card?

Prepaid debit cards replace cash, checks, and other payment cards when consumers or businesses want to use or provide an electronic means of payment, but do not want the payment tied to a credit or debit account. Prepaid cards are designed to work like a debit card with both ATM and point of sale accessibility. An added benefit for many consumers is that it looks and acts like a credit card but requires no income verification or loan or checking account approvals.

Who uses prepaid debit cards?

Users can vary widely, but are more apt to include:

  • Many of the 30 million Americans without a traditional bank account because of past problems with managing a checking account
  • Teens and students when parents want to provide limited access to funds
  • Those making purchases over the Internet and want to limit potential account theft

Why should credit unions care?

Prepaid cards provide a way for credit unions to safely offer unbanked and under-banked consumers with access to a transaction product that is less likely to be overdrawn or mismanaged than a traditional checking account. Prepaid cards mitigate risk for both the credit union and the user.

What can credit unions do?

In stead of turning members away who have ChexSystem records and may not qualify for a traditional checking account, credit unions can partner with a third-party vendor to offer prepaid card programs or set up an in-house product to simulate a debit card without overdraft capabilities. Members can avoid using expensive check cashers and carrying extra cash, and prepaid cards provide them with a means of making monthly payments.

CoVantage Credit Union

Antigo, WI

Load-N-Go » View details

Co-Vantage Credit Union in Antigo, Wisconsin provides a Prepaid Card program for existing members call Load-N-Go.

Oregon Pioneer

Portland, OR

Prepaid Debit Card – Oregon Pioneer FCU » View details

Oregon Federal Credit Union has partnered with ILCUSYS to offer its members a reloadable, prepaid card product. Members who don’t qualify for the CU’s checking account are primary targets, but it also can be a good tool to help teens and students learn money management and budgeting skills.


Elkhart, IN

Reloadable PayCard – INOVA FCU » View details

INOVA FCU offers its members a suite of prepaid products through its CUSO, including a Visa reloadable payroll card. The target market includes unbanked and under-banked consumers and SEGs that want to pay employees via ACH in lieu of a check.

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