A card that's pre-loaded with money.
As its name suggests, Visa prepaid is a type of Visa card that is pre-loaded with funds. Instead of being linked to a bank account (like Visa debit), or providing a line of credit (like Visa credit), the amount you can spend is limited by the value that’s been pre-loaded onto the card.
Visa prepaid cards generally look just like normal credit or debit cards, carrying all the same features (such as the card number, expiry date and security code). They are easy to use, widely accepted, safe, convenient, and can help you control your spending.
A variety of Visa prepaid cards are offered by a wide range of banks, websites and high street retailers. Popular options include:
- Travel cards – for spending money abroad, enabling you to separate out your holiday spending
- Convenience cards – ideal for people who may not qualify for a traditional debit or credit card
- Youth cards – specifically designed for younger people, enabling them (and their parents) to control and monitor their spending
- Gift cards – a safe, convenient and fun way to give money to friends or family
- Virtual cards – a prepaid card account that’s specifically designed for online, mail-order and telephone spending.
Depending on which particular option you choose, a Visa prepaid card may be:
- A disposable prepaid card, which is much like an electronic gift voucher – you use it until all the funds are spent (and you’re happy with your purchase) then throw it away
- A re-loadable prepaid card, which acts like a prepaid mobile phone account – when the value is running low, you can top-it up and use it again