Prepaid credit card 

Albert Einstein said “Intellectuals solve problems, geniuses prevent them”. I am not saying I am a genius but I do believe prevention is better than cure. Do you worry about bills coming through your letter box? Are you disciplined when it comes to spending? Have you completed an annual household budget and are you able to keep to it?

Part of the mix in controlling your financial affairs is your personal credit card management. Prepaid cards – you can only spend what you lodge into them – are now becoming more popular by the month and tie in with the Money Doctor philosophy of better money management. With only 31 shopping days to Christmas, it’s appropriate we think about our credit card strategy. Here are 10 reasons for that prepaid card consideration :

  1.  Enforced discipline – by using a prepaid card, you deny yourself a credit facility that you may be tempted to use. Your flexible friend does not have to worry about the repayment of your spending – you do.
  2. Greater control of your spending – because it is YOUR money, you take greater care in the spending of it, being aware of, and ensuring you receive, best value at all times.
  3. Manage your money hassle-free – you will know precisely how much money you have and can budget accordingly.
  4. Government charge is only € 5 on prepaid cards (€ 30 on credit cards) – payable on 31st December each year…also no late payment fees, surcharges or “minimum payments” to meet every month.
  5. Pay bills and shop online – avail of special discounts and reward programmes.
  6. Worldwide ATM access – MasterCard and Visa card universally accepted with better availability and access than debit card outlets.
  7. Companion card – control your son or daughter’s personal spending even when they are abroad. Lodgements can be made directly onto companion cards. You MUST be over 18 to own a prepaid card but in some cases, companion cards may be available for your children – minimum age 13.
  8. No credit application form to complete – all applicants will be accepted, guaranteed approval unless cardholder information cannot be validated.
  9. Better and safer than cash – no more carrying large amounts especially when you are away. Prepaid cards are ideal for holiday spending.
  10. You don’t need a bank account to have a prepaid card – with most prepaid cards, you can use Payzone, PayPoint or online bank transfers / debit cards to lodge to your prepaid card.

With a very simple application process, taking the Skrill prepaid mastercard as an example, initial cost of this prepaid card is the €10 annual charge and takes about 10 days for card delivery. The card itself is free and there is no monthly cost.  Minimum age is 18 and there is no minimum income requirement while you don’t need a bank account nor will they do a credit check on you.

Government annual stamp duty is € 5 while in-store and online transactions are free. For ATM or cash withdrawals, the fee is € 1.80 and there is a foreign exchange charge of 2.99% of the amount being exchanged. There are no top up charges if you use your debit card or transfer via your bank account. Using your credit card to top up will cost you 1.9% of the amount being topped up. This particular card has no maximum on top ups.

Other prepaid cards to be considered with minor differences include NETELLER, Swirl and O2. Certainly something to think about. For enquiries or additional information, contact Dublin 278 5555 or

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