Pre paid Visa and Mastercard.

Travel Forums General Talk Pre paid Visa and Mastercard.

1. Posted by PrincessLa (Budding Member 11 posts) 10y Star this if you like it!

The flights and accomodation, even the visas, are organised! Well maybe not organised but I understand everything.
The only problem I had was the money side of things. The problem being that i have direct debits etc coming out of my bank account each month and didnt want to overspend and these things not get paid, only to come home a year or so down the line and find extrodinary amounts of charges etc on accounts.
The other problem I have is credit cards! Because of previous problems I had when I was a student I find it hard to get credit and a lot of places dont accept Maestro or even some places to stay require a credit card for reservations etc
Im travelling with my best friend but dont want to rely on him all the time, even though hes making me a named user on his credit card account.
I think I may have found a solution in these 'new' pre paid visas and Mastercards. The idea is like its a top up card which I can transfer money onto online, over the phone and even over the counter in some places i think but I have the security of it being my own money (ie not the banks or another companys) and also the security of it being Visa and Mastercard.
Ive looked into it and some cards are free whereas others charge a small fee, to be honest id rather pay a small charge and go with a well known brand rather than some random company I dont know.
I spose I was just after other peoples opinions and if anyone has used them before or hads any kind of experience with them?

Oh my, just looked at the extremely large novel I just wrote!Hope youre still there!
Hope someone can help!

2. Posted by Dodger (Inactive 873 posts) 10y Star this if you like it!

I don't know how things work in the UK anymore, but if you have a bank account with a debit card, isnt it also linked as a Visa card? thats how all the US ones are now. Means you only need to have your bank account and when you pay with your debit/visa card they will ask which way you want to pay even though it still only comes out of your bank account. As far as over spending in the account, again all bank accounts in the US can be accessed from the internet, so you can keep an eye on your balances. Not the same in the UK?

As far as the pre paid cards, again I don't know for sure, but I think they charge a high interest rate for using them, even though its your own money your using. This could still be a good idea for an emergency, plus as you say it will be your money in the account, so it will hopefully still be there when you get back home.

3. Posted by Hien (Travel Guru 3906 posts) 10y Star this if you like it!

Look at the back of your Maestro card. It should have a CIRRUS logo on it. CIRRUS is a network of ATMs around the world operated by MasterCard. The other worldwide ATM network is PLUS, by VISA. If your card has one of these logos, you shouldn't have to worry about withdrawing money in an ATM outside the UK. Your bank may charge you a fee each time you withdraw money though. Check with your bank about the fee. According to many UK travellers' accounts, Nationwide Bank do not charge you any fee for withdrawals from overseas ATMs.

Read this travel guide article: Money Matters

Where are you guys travelling to?

4. Posted by PrincessLa (Budding Member 11 posts) 10y Star this if you like it!

We're heading to SE Asia then down to Australasia.
Its more for the booking of things that I was thinking about it for, I know recently I tried to book a suprise for my friend but I needed a credit card to guarantee a room at a hotel. I know its different when backpacking in hostels etc but id rather be on the safe side. I think that also a VISA or Mastercard will also be better if stopped by immigration etc to show I have funds etc, surely a Mastercard would be better to flash than a Maestro or is this just me being sily?

5. Posted by chemgal (Full Member 149 posts) 10y Star this if you like it!

Rather than getting a prepaid credit card, looking into getting a debit visa or mastercard. This is a Visa or Mastercard that works directly from your debit account - it works like a Maestro or debit card taking the money directly from your account but you can book and pay for things like a visa or mastercard.
It might be worth making an appointment with a consultant at your bank and see what solutions they suggest. My bank was really helpful before I left to go travelling and even arranged a no fees account for me.