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Review of Paypal Prepaid Mastercard

Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It has not been previewed, commissioned or otherwise endorsed by any of our network partners.

The strength of the PayPal Prepaid Mastercard lies in its connection with its parent company, PayPal. One of the innovators in online money transfers, PayPal’s prepaid card can link up directly with a PayPal account to provide instant access to funds.

Beyond that feature, which can be a huge benefit to PayPal account holders, the PayPal Prepaid Mastercard is somewhat run-of-the-mill. As a prepaid card, it does offer access to cash and allows you to make purchases, at least up to the amount you’ve got on deposit. Additionally, you can avoid the overdraft charges you’ll find with most checking or savings accounts and the interest charges that come with credit card accounts.

Like some other prepaid cards, however, the PayPal Prepaid Mastercard has a host of fees and expenses that can add up in a hurry and overwhelm the benefits of using the card. In addition to paying fees just to own the card, you can expect that any transactions you make will cost you money. You might even run into some unexpected fees for activities or transactions that you might expect to come free of charge.

PayPal Prepaid Mastercard features

Instantaneous transfers from your PayPal balance. Without question, the primary benefit of the PayPal Prepaid Mastercard is the ability to transfer funds from your PayPal balance directly to your card free-of-charge and instantaneously.

Early access to funds. Using the no-fee direct deposit feature, you can have access to your funds up to two days faster than with a traditional bank.

No credit check required. Because the PayPal Prepaid Mastercard is a prepaid debit card, not a credit card, there’s no credit check required at the time of application.

Spend or shop anywhere Mastercard is accepted. You can use the PayPal prepaid card to make purchases anywhere that debit cards are accepted, including online.

Savings account option. With an optional connected savings account, you can earn up to a 5% APY on balances of up to $1,000.

High card limit. You can have up to $15,000 on your card at any time.

High ATM withdrawal limit. The daily limit on ATM withdrawals is $940, although no single ATM transaction can exceed $325.

Free mobile app. Access your PayPal Prepaid Mastercard account 24/7. Use the mobile app to check your balance, review transactions, receive real-time activity alerts, and more.

Perks: You can opt-in to receive special offers and cash back rewards with certain merchants when using the PayPal prepaid card. Additionally, if you refer a friend who activates and loads at least $10 onto their card, you’ll each earn a $5 bonus.

PayPal Prepaid Mastercard fees and fine print

The PayPal prepaid card has a whole host of fees that can take some time to read through and absorb. The most noteworthy are the common fees that one can expect while using a prepaid card, such as monthly plan fees and ATM fees.

Most of the other fees listed by the PayPal Prepaid Mastercard are for less-common scenarios, like if you need to request checks or a replacement card. However, the long list of charges can make it feel as though you’ll get dinged with a fee for doing just about anything.

PayPal Prepaid Mastercard Fees
TypeFeePro tip
Card purchase feeUp to $4.95Buy the card online from PayPal to avoid the card purchase fee.
Plan fee$4.95 per monthN/A
Over-the-counter cash withdrawal fee$2.50Select “debit” and use your PIN to get cash back at various retailers, including grocers, to avoid having to go into a branch and pay a fee to access your cash.
Over-the-counter cash withdrawal fee from a Netspend reload network locationVarying fee will be assessed by the network operator, not by PayPalN/A
ATM cash withdrawal fee (domestic)$1.95, plus ATM owner surcharge, if anyAvoid surcharge fees by using an Allpoint ATM
ATM cash withdrawal fee (international)$1.95, plus ATM owner surcharge, if any, plus foreign transaction surchargeIncluded in transaction fee
ATM transaction decline fee (domestic)$1Avoid fees by only withdrawing the amount you have in your account; There’s no fee to check your balance online, by email or phone
ATM transaction decline fee (international)$1
Mobile check load fee$0 for 10-day processing; to get money in minutes, 1% for payroll and government checks and 5% for all other checks
Balance inquiry fee (domestic ATM)$0.50 plus ATM owner fee, if anyCheck your balance online or via email or phone for free
Balance inquiry fee (international ATM)$0.50 plus ATM owner fee, if anyCheck your balance online or via email or phone for free
Foreign transaction surcharge2.5% of transaction
Check request fee$5.95 each
Additional statement mailing fee$5.95 each
Additional card fee$0
Replacement card fee$5.95
Card delivery fee (7-10 business days)$0
Card delivery fee (3 business days)$20
Card delivery fee (1-2 business days)$25
Account maintenance fee$0
Stop payment$10
Custom card fee$3.95

In a nutshell, you can expect to pay a $4.95 monthly fee for using the card, which amounts to $59.40 per year. This fee includes all of your PIN and signature-required transactions. You’ll also face ATM fees of $1.95 per transaction, plus any surcharges from terminal operators or from the foreign transaction surcharge.

In the prepaid card world, a monthly fee is to be expected, and $4.95 is in the middle of the road when it comes to competitor cards. Although some prepaid cards don’t charge any monthly fee, others charge $9.95 per month. The fact that this monthly fee includes transaction expenses is a benefit, as some cards charge both monthly fees and individual transaction fees. The ATM fee is also a bit below the $2.50 commonly charged by prepaid card issuers.

When it comes to reloading your card, PayPal doesn’t charge any fees at all, which is refreshing. However, you will still face charges from individual retailers if you reload via any other method than direct deposit or via your PayPal account.

As long as you don’t stray outside the lines of typical debit card usage, you won’t face a ton of additional fees with the PayPal Prepaid Mastercard. But you should expect to pay for nearly any other additional service, from ordering checks to making foreign transactions.

Using the PayPal Prepaid Mastercard app

PayPal Prepaid Mastercard app
Source: iTunes/Screenshot

The PayPal Prepaid Mastercard app allows you to access your account 24/7, much like with a regular bank account. You can review your recent transactions, check your current balance, find a nearby reload location, receive real-time activity alerts and load checks using your smartphone.You can use the mobile check deposit option in the app to get cash in minutes. However, you’ll have to pay for this privilege. For payroll and government checks with a pre-printed signature, the standard fee to get your money in minutes is 1% of the amount of the check. For all other accepted checks, the fee jumps up to 5% of the amount of the check.

You can, however, avoid mobile check deposit fees if you’re willing to wait 10 days for your cash to become available.

Opening a PayPal Prepaid Mastercard account

Source: Screenshot

You can get a PayPal Prepaid Mastercard online at https://www.paypal-prepaid.com/. To start the process, you’ll need to enter your name, address, and email address. You’ll also choose if you want to sign up for direct deposit, and the card design that you would like.

The next step in the process is to validate your ID by providing your date of birth and some type of government identification, such as your driver’s license. You’ll also need to provide your Social Security number, to help prevent the card from being used for illegal purposes.

Because the PayPal Prepaid Mastercard is a prepaid debit card, not a credit card, there’s no credit check required at the time of application. In fact, when you apply for the card, you’re only subject to identity verification, although you must also activate the card before you can use it. Once you open your account, you’ll receive your card in about 7 to 10 business days.

One interesting thing to note is that this card is not available to residents of Vermont.

How to reload your Paypal Prepaid Mastercard

The PayPal Prepaid Mastercard offers two ways to reload the card free of charge: direct deposit and PayPal balance transfers. PayPal balance transfers offer the additional benefit of being real-time, meaning you can access your cash as soon as you transfer it.

You can also use one of more than 130,000 Netspend reload locations to deposit cash or checks to your PayPal Prepaid Visa Card. A fee will apply that varies depending on the individual retailer. You can use the PayPal Prepaid Mastercard website to find the nearest reload location.

Cash reloads have a daily limit of $2,500; the limit for ACH/bank transfers is $7,500. The maximum value you can have on the card at any time is $15,000.

Who could benefit from the PayPal Prepaid Mastercard?

Prepaid cards aren’t usually the option of choice for banking customers, and the PayPal Prepaid Mastercard is no exception. Although it has some traditional banking features, it also has a host of fees and expenses for the most basic banking services.

On the plus side, the PayPal Prepaid Mastercard offers important basic features, including ATM access, purchase capability, and the ability to transfer funds. The true highlight of the card for PayPal customers is the ability to instantaneously transfer money to the card from your PayPal balance, free of charge.

However, you’ll have to pay just to open the card, and if you want to access your cash, that will cost you money as well.

Overall, you should understand that even fees that seem low add up over time. Although not the highest in the industry, the $4.95 monthly fee takes nearly $60 out of your pocket every year. Even if you sign up for the PayPal 5% APY savings account and deposit $1,000, the $50 you’d earn won’t even cover your annual fee on the card.

The lower-than-normal $1.95 ATM fee can also easily eat up hundreds of dollars per year in charges, simply for accessing your money.

In a world full of banks that charge no monthly or ATM fees, using the PayPal Prepaid Mastercard as your primary banking option is less than ideal. However, if you’re forced to use a prepaid card for whatever reason, this card might have some appeal, particularly if you are already a PayPal customer.

Advertiser Disclosure: The products that appear on this site may be from companies from which MagnifyMoney receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). MagnifyMoney does not include all financial institutions or all products offered available in the marketplace.

John Csiszar
John Csiszar |

John Csiszar is a writer at MagnifyMoney. You can email John here

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Reviews

Review of Green Dot Unlimited Cash Back Bank Account

Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It has not been previewed, commissioned or otherwise endorsed by any of our network partners.

Get rewarded for your spending with the Green Dot Unlimited Cash Back Bank Account. The account earns unlimited 3% cash back earned from online or in-app purchases, but unlike most cashback programs, this one prevents you from enjoying your earned rewards immediately. The catch: You can only access and redeem your cashback rewards if your account is in good standing a year after registration. In addition, there is a $7.95 monthly fee, although it’s simple to get around the fee.

While you wait for your account registration anniversary, you can use this account’s other features to your advantage. For one, Green Dot Bank can get you your paycheck up to two days in advance through direct deposit. You can also use the 3%* APY Green Dot Bank High-Yield Savings Account to stash and grow your money.

Green Dot doesn’t have any branch locations of its own, so it relies heavily on its app and participating stores to offer its services to customers. This makes it slightly tricky for users who need quick and easy ATM access.

Read on to learn more about the FDIC-insured Green Dot Unlimited Cash Back Bank Account and its rewards requirements, fees and fine print.

How does the Green Dot Unlimited Cash Back Bank Account work?

 

The Green Dot Unlimited Cash Back Bank Account’s biggest draw is the unlimited 3% cash back earned from online or in-app purchases. There’s no limit to how much cash back you can earn, so long as you’re using your card for online and in-app purchases (there’s more on how Green Dot identifies those purchases in a section below)

Getting access to your cash back is a little trickier, however. While you’ll see the cash back earned on each purchase reflected almost immediately, you’ll have to wait for each anniversary of your account registration to redeem the funds. On each anniversary date, you can transfer your cash back rewards into your Unlimited Cash Back Bank Account. Your registration date is the date you actually register your card no matter where you got it, either at a store or online.

On your registration anniversary, your account must be in good standing. This means it must have a positive balance and cannot be blocked or flagged for any reason. If you have a negative balance, you must bring it to a positive balance before you can redeem your rewards.

Depositing cash into your Unlimited Cash Back Bank Account is also a little unorthodox, as Green Dot doesn’t have any of its own branches or ATMs. To deposit cash, you need to visit a Green Dot participating retailer, including CVS pharmacies and Walmart stores. Cash deposits are free when you initiate the deposit on the Green Dot app and complete them at a retail store. You can also initiate a cash deposit by swiping your Green Dot debit card at a participating retailer, who may charge a cash deposit fee of their own.

As for withdrawals, you can locate free ATMs through the bank’s app. Otherwise, you’ll face an out-of-network ATM fee, in addition to a potential ATM owner surcharge.

Unlimited Cash Back Bank Account features

  • Earns unlimited 3% cash back on eligible online or in-app purchases
  • Get your paycheck up to two days earlier with ASAP Direct Deposit™
  • Links to 3%* APY Green Dot Bank High-Yield Savings Account
  • No overdraft fees

Along with its competitive cash back rate, another big perk of banking with Green Dot Bank is that you can get your direct deposit paychecks up to two days in advance. Typically, employers deposit paychecks into employees’ banks two days before actual payday. So instead of letting your paycheck sit in the Automated Clearing House (ACH) limbo, where payments like these are processed, Green Dot deposits your paycheck on the same day the bank receives it. Exact timing and availability of your direct deposit will depend on when your employer submits your payment information and deposit verification.

Also included with the Green Dot app is the Green Dot Bank High-Yield Savings Account. There is no fee, and the account earns 3%* APY on balances up to $10,000. Once you’ve redeemed your cash back rewards and deposited them into your Unlimited Cash Back Bank Account, you can then transfer those funds into your High-Yield Savings Account for better savings.

As you’ll read below, the Unlimited Cash Back Bank Account is rife with fees, depending on how you use your account and manage your money. But a certain perk of the account is its lack of overdraft fees. So when you make a purchase that your balance cannot cover, Green Dot will decline the transaction, but they won’t charge a fee like most other banks do.

Unlimited Cash Back Bank Account fees and fine print

Unlimited Cash Back fees
Unlimited Bank Account purchase — online $0
Unlimited Bank Account purchase — in store$1.95 or less
Monthly fee$7.95, waived when you spend $1,000 or more in the previous monthly period
Deposit cash with Green Dot app & participating locations$0
Direct deposit$0
Out-of-network ATM withdrawal$3 per transaction
Teller cash withdrawal$3 per transaction
Out-of-network ATM balance inquiry$0.50
Foreign transactions3% of total transaction amount
Paper checks (pack of 12 checks)$5.95

There are quite a few fees to keep an eye out for when you have a Green Dot Unlimited Cash Back Bank Account. For starters, note that there is a fee when you open the account in a store. You can easily avoid this fee by opening the account online instead.

The account charges a $7.95 monthly fee. This can be waived when you spend at least $1,000 in the previous monthly period. This excludes transactions like ACH payments or prepaid card purchases. This may be easier if you do much of your shopping online, since you’re more likely to reach the minimum balance. If you’re betting the cash back you earn will offset this monthly fee, you’d have to spend $3,180 in a year to earn enough to pay off a year’s worth of the monthly fee. Plus, you’d have to wait for each anniversary to take advantage of that cash back bonus.

It also helps to keep your account activity online. You can initiate the deposit through the Green Dot app then depositing cash at a participating retailer at no charge. However, if you want to deposit cash without the app by swiping the debit card at a participating retailer, then the retailer may charge a service fee for cash deposits. Note that direct deposits are free.

As for the fine print, there is some room for error when it comes to determining which purchases are eligible for the 3% cashback. Green Dot identifies online and in-app purchases through unique merchant category codes (MCC) and “other identifying information,” according to the Green Dot website.

However, Green Dot acknowledges that sometimes online or in-app merchants use an MCC that does not properly identify themselves as online or in-app. On Green Dot’s part, the bank states that it “does not determine which MCC a merchant chooses to classify itself as and has no way of changing a merchant’s identifying information.” So if merchant misidentification is the case, your purchase won’t register as online or in-app and won’t earn 3% cash back.

Cash back also does not apply to airline tickets or to products and services that are redeemable for cash, such as gift cards, online funding of accounts, credit card cash advances, P2P funding, prepaid cards, money orders and traveler’s checks.

Opening an Unlimited Cash Back Bank Account

You can open an Unlimited Cash Back Bank Account either online or in-store at Green Dot participating retailers. When you open an account online, you’ll need to provide your full name, address, email address, phone number, Social Security number and date of birth. If you open an account in store, you’ll need to register your new debit card online or through the Green Dot app. There, you’ll need to provide your personal information.

Who is the Green Dot Unlimited Cash Back Bank Account best for?

The Green Dot Unlimited Cash Back Bank Account seems to be a better option for those who aren’t chasing a quick reward. Green Dot requires you to wait a year after account registration to redeem your cash back rewards, which may not be much of a reward for some. It’s more of an added perk than a real primetime feature since you have to wait so long.

The Unlimited Cash Back Bank Account may also be better for those who are tech savvy enough to manage their accounts largely online and in the app. Accounts are more easily opened and registered online and even cash deposits work best when done through the app.

That said, this account could be a potential hassle who want the ease and speed of ATM access. Green Dot requires you to visit a participating store to deposit cash, whether you use the app or not. For many, navigating a physical store just isn’t as convenient. When it comes to withdrawals, it may be difficult to find a free ATM nearby in order to avoid the out-of-network ATM fee.

In all, the Green Dot Unlimited Cash Back Bank Account seems to hold a lot of promise. But there’s a few hoops to jump through to earn rewards and use the account efficiently that detract from the eye-catching 3% cash back.

*Rate accurate as of August 21, 2019

Advertiser Disclosure: The products that appear on this site may be from companies from which MagnifyMoney receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). MagnifyMoney does not include all financial institutions or all products offered available in the marketplace.

Lauren Perez
Lauren Perez |

Lauren Perez is a writer at MagnifyMoney. You can email Lauren here

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Reviews

Fitness Bank Savings Review

Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It has not been previewed, commissioned or otherwise endorsed by any of our network partners.

Fitness Bank’s savings account option

Fitness Savings Account

This unconventional savings product offers customers the chance to earn an outstanding APY when they are physically active. The daily average number of steps you took in the previous month determines the APY you earn on your account balance. The table below outlines the five earning tiers that this bank currently offers:
APY Tiers*Minimum Balance to Earn APYSteps Required
0.50%$1000-4,999
1.25%$1005,000-7,499
1.75%$1007,500-9,999
2.50%$10010,000-12,499
3.00%$10012,500+

If you are a US citizen age 65 or older, you qualify for a different rate schedule:

APY Tiers*Minimum Balance to Earn APYSteps Required
1.25%$1000-4,999
1.75%$1005,000-7,499
2.50%$1007,500-9,999
3.00%$10010,000+
  • Minimum opening deposit: $100
  • Minimum daily balance to earn APY: $100
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $10, waived by maintaining the minimum daily balance.
  • ATM fee: N/A
  • ATM fee refund: N/A
  • Overdraft fee: $40

These rates truly are outstanding if you live an active lifestyle. The first month, everyone gets highest APY regardless of number of steps they take. After that, your APY will be assigned based on your daily average number of steps over the course of the prior month. Needless to say, if you don’t live a very active lifestyle, or if you have a health condition that would prevent you from meeting the step requirements, this may not be the best account for you.

This bank charges a $10 monthly maintenance fee if you don’t maintain a minimum average daily balance of $100. If you’re not confident you can maintain this minimum, you may want to look at a checking account rather than a savings account — keep in mind, however, that Fitness Bank only offers a savings account. If you meet the minimum balance requirement, the monthly maintenance fee will be waived.

This savings account does not come with an ATM card or checks. You are limited to six certain withdrawals and/or transactions per month, per Regulation D, which is enforced by the federal government, although banks do have some flexibility in allowing more than six per month in certain cases. At Fitness Bank, if you make more than six withdrawals per month you will be charged a $10 fee for each additional withdrawal.

If you want to go above and beyond achieving the highest APY available from this account, you can join one of Fitness Bank’s challenges. Every month, there is a step challenge where you can compete with all other participating Fitness Bank members to get the highest number of average daily steps. Top competitors will be awarded with prizes at the end of the month. You can also set up challenges just for your family or friend group, or for a group of employees participating in a workplace challenge.

How to get Fitness Bank’s savings account

Opening a savings account at Fitness Bank is a straightforward process. The bank boasts account setup will take you less than two minutes.

You’ll fill out a quick online application, supplying basic information like your name, address and Social Security number, along with documentation of your driver’s license or passport. Then you’ll need to provide funding information, namely your bank account number, credit card or debit card.

LEARN MORE Secured

on FitnessBank’s secure website

Member FDIC

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How Fitness Bank’s savings account compares

This bank offers phenomenal rates. At the time of writing, they offer the highest savings account rate in the market — if you can rack up the steps needed to earn it. In addition, you will have to be comfortable doing your banking 100% online with this savings account. You will not receive a checkbook or ATM card – all of your withdrawals and deposits will be completed via electronic transfer. If you’d prefer ATM access or the ability to visit a physical branch, Fitness Bank is not the right match for you.

The minimum deposit required to open and maintain an account without incurring a monthly maintenance fee isn’t outrageous. But you can find savings accounts offering somewhat competitive rates without these requirements. And to repeat, you’ll have to meet the step requirements; if that challenge goes unfulfilled, the advantages of saving with Fitness Bank wane. Its rates get progressively less competitive the fewer steps you take.

Overall review of Fitness Bank’s banking products

This bank offers a unique financial product aimed at promoting wellness. Its minimum balance and deposit requirements are fairly average for the industry, as are its fees. While its offerings are fair and get more generous as you take more steps, you will likely find better rates elsewhere if you cannot realistically meet these specific fitness standards. If you can, though, you’re in for some of the best rates on the market.

Advertiser Disclosure: The products that appear on this site may be from companies from which MagnifyMoney receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). MagnifyMoney does not include all financial institutions or all products offered available in the marketplace.

Brynne Conroy
Brynne Conroy |

Brynne Conroy is a writer at MagnifyMoney. You can email Brynne here