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Should Prepaid Credit Cards Be Used For Your Motorhome Road Trip \ Vacation?
Prepaid credit cards are also known as general purpose reloadable cards and have gained a lot of popularity with most motorhome traveling Americans. These cards work and look just like the normal bank debit cards but without the bank as well as the vital federal consumer protections that cover debit cards which check if your card is stolen, lost or even used for unauthorized transactions. When choosing between the available prepaid travel credit cards, there are certain factors one has to take into consideration.
First it is important to acknowledge that getting a prepaid card is much simpler than opening a bank account so as to get a debit card or apply for a credit card. You can simply buy them online or from a store. However, once you have bought the card, it is much like a debit card and you can use it to purchase in stores and online, receive direct deposits, obtain cash from an ATM and pay bills online.
It is also important to note that the money you have loaded on the card is normally converted to the local currency with each and every purchase or even ATM Withdrawal, using the dominant exchange rate of the day. This is very convenient for any traveler as you don’t have to worry so much about converting your dollars to the local currency. It is also worth mentioning that users have the option to reload the card as many times as they deem necessary, no matter where they are. In addition to all the above, there are many card providers who are now offering chip and PIN security technology. This implies that the card can easily be approved in areas or places where American credit cards are not accepted.
Another major factor that many people take into consideration is that with prepaid cards, you do significantly limit your exposure levels since even with the fraudulent use of the card; you can’t lose anything more than what you may have loaded on the card.
One of the biggest advantages with some of the cards is that you are allowed to load the card with different currencies of your choice such as Sterling Pounds, Euros or even US Dollars. In terms of security, most of card owners also currently offer users zero liability protection from fraudulent use as well as 24 hour security support to assist with any problem.
For parents who are sending their teenagers out to explore the world or just to do some domestic traveling, then these cards have some very attractive features which does give most parents some peace of mind. Parents do have the ability to check card balance, add money if needed, set up alerts and view transaction history. This makes it not only a great way of parents ensuring that their kid(s) have the money he or she needs but also provides parents with a sure proof way of knowing what kids are spending their money on.
Depending on which card brand you opt for, the prepaid travel card may come with purchase protection as well as other services which direct cardholders to English speaking legal and medical professionals as well as other professionals who may assist with lost passports.
However, just like any other product, these cards also have their drawbacks which one must also take into consideration. First and foremost, the terms and conditions that govern the fees as well as your responsibilities and rights when using these cards vary quite significantly among providers. With no standard terms to describe any common fees, it is very difficult to do an objective comparison and get to know the cheapest or most affordable card out there in the market. In this regard, it is important to read the fine print of these agreements before signing the dotted line. Amongst some of the fees you need to take into consideration include initiation or activation fee, monthly fees, point of sale or transaction fees, cash withdrawal fees, balance inquiry fees, the fees charge to get your remaining funds back when closing the account, charges to load or add funds to your account, shortage or overdraft charges, fees or charges to call customer service, bill payment charges or fees to receive a paper statement. It is therefore prudent for one to do some due diligence and find out as much details as realistically possible before buying a prepaid card.
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