Walmart MoneyCard—Prepaid Visa Debit Card
Walmart Visa Debit Card
The Walmart MoneyCard is simply a prepaid debit card. You can choose between a card backed by Visa or MasterCard. Depending on your decision, you will be able to use your MoneyCard anywhere that company is taken. This is my review of the MoneyCard. If you shop at WalMart like most people do, you can find the prepaid card at most registers and the customer service desk.
How the MoneyCard Works: A Quick Overview
Again, the MoneyCard works like any debit card—but you don't need to have a bank account.
There are four types of MoneyCards: Basic, Plus, Specialty, and Preferred. You can get the Basic card for free by ordering it online; otherwise, expect to pay between $1.88 and $4 for the card.
Other fees include:
- $3 a month for a service fee.
For a Basic account, you cannot waive this monthly fee.
For Plus and Specialty accounts, this fee can be waived if you deposit at least $1,000 a month onto the card.
For Preferred accounts, this fee can be waived if you deposit at least $500 a month onto the card.
- $3 per loading (every time you put more money on the card at a Walmart store).
The only way you can avoid this fee is by creating a Preferred account. This means you have to pay $4 for the card—as you can see, after adding money to your card twice, this pays for itself.
- Fees for ATMs other than those owned by Walmart (which can only be found within Walmart stores). Walmart will charge a $2 fee for the use of any non-Walmart ATM on top of that ATM's fee. Even a balance inquiry at a non-Walmart ATM will cost $1.
When you buy the card in the store, you will receive a temporary card in the store and can load between $20 and $50 dollars on it as your initial balance. You will then need to activate it by calling 1-800-532-0936 or by going to Walmartmoneycard.com before you can use it or receive your permanent card. I suggest activating it online, because you can create an account, which will allow you to set up free email and cell phone alerts for balances and fees. If you set up your card for your son or daughter (you can get a second card for your account for a relative or significant other), an account has the additional benefit of being able to monitor their expenditures.
Make sure you do not lose your receipt for your card. It has your activation code, and you will need that to activate your temporary card and to get a permanent one. Once you have activated your card with all of your information, you will get your new card or cards sent to your address within in two weeks.
The Benefits of a Walmart MoneyCard
The two benefits of a Walmart MoneyCard are that you can use them online and anywhere Visa or MasterCard (depending on which you choose) is used.
That being said, a debit card from a regular bank has all of the safety of a Walmart MoneyCard without the fees—and many credit unions either have more ATMs or will pay for your ATM fees.
Also, neither a MoneyCard nor a debit card can be used to build credit or rebuild bad credit. At best, it will have no effect on your credit score.
Lastly, both debit cards and credit cards often have better rewards programs than Walmart's. I recommend shopping around. If you do not shop at Walmart, you might consider getting another prepaid debit card that will give you more benefits like AccountNow, where you get $25 dollars with your Direct Deposit and $20 for referring friends. Or you can consider a Russell Simmons card that has benefits like Bill Pay, Prescription Drug Discount Card, and other good benefits.
While there are lots of good prepaid debit cards out in the market, I only recommend considering one of these cards if you have lost your bank account or cannot get a real debit or credit card.
Overall, I believe that the WalMart MoneyCard is a good deal for someone with bad credit. Anybody of age can get one of these cards and will not have to worry about spending more money than he or she has, because you can only spend what you have on the card. You will avoid the hefty overdraft fees, and this card may help you get back on track spending only what you can afford.
How to Activate Your MoneyCard
Walmart MoneyCard Activation Number and Site
Activation number: 1-800-532-0936
Activation site (recommended): https://www.walmartmoneycard.com/walmart/activation/online-activation-init
What you will need to activate your card:
- The receipt
- Your address
- Your date of birth
- Your social security number
Once you have activated your card, the site will ask you if you want a second card for an additional $3. If you choose this option, the money will be taken out of your initial deposit, so I recommend to do this only if you are sharing the card with someone else, such as a significant other or child. Once you have completed your activation on your temporary card you will have to wait one or two weeks for you permanent card, which you will have to activate as well. Your account will then be automatically transferred to the permanent account number.
How to Add Money to Your Walmart MoneyCard
There are four different ways to add money to your new Walmart Card. I will explain each way to help you decide what is best for you.
1. With Cash at Walmart
At any participating Walmart store, you can add cash (anywhere from $20 to $1,100) to your MoneyCard account at the register. However, there is a $3 dollar fee to load your card. After loading your card, the money will be available to use instantly.
2. By Check at Walmart
You can load your government check or paycheck with no reload fee. This will save you $3 and any check cashing fees. The amount of the check must be between $20 and $1,500 dollars to be loaded. Also Walmart does check to verify that the check is good before cashing the check. This service is not available in CT, NJ, NY, RI.
3. Direct Deposit
You can also enroll in their direct deposit program and load you paycheck directly onto your card. This is another excellent option if you do not want fees for loading money into your account. You can find your account information on the walmartmoneycard.com website or at the 1-800 number. Once you have this info, give it to your payroll department, and they should be able to arrange for direct deposit.
4. With an Online Bank Transfer
Another way to add money to your card with no reload fees is to add money online from a bank, credit union, or other financial institution through an electronic money transfer. You can enjoy the convenience of reloading your card from work or home.
Highest WalMart Money Card fee is $2
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What Are Posted and Pending Transactions?
A pending transaction is when you have authorized a purchase, but the final amount may not have been finalized. This money is on "hold" until the transaction is completed, which means that you cannot spend the money elsewhere. Many services that may involve additional charges (for example, hotels may charge additional fees for room service or missing towels, restaurants may charge the tip you have authorized, and car rentals may charge for damage) will put a hold on more money than you will actually spend.
A posted transaction is a transaction that has been finalized. Once a pending transaction is completed, the final amount will be deducted or credited to your account balance, and the status of your transaction will change from "pending" to "posted" on your statement history.
Special Transactions You Should Know about Before You Shop
Now your card is ready to use. Take warning: There are several types of transactions (see list below) which can put more funds than you actually spend on hold until the transaction is completed and closed out.
1. Gas Stations
When you use the credit function at the pump, you may cause an up to four-day hold of at least $35. This is because you swipe and authorize your card before pumping.
To avoid this and only charge the exact amount you pump, choose the debit function at the pump and use your 4 digit PIN. Better yet, I suggest going inside and pre-paying the attendant or cashier for the exact amount you would like to pump.
Be careful about remembering this, or you might try to spend money that you have to find it on hold.
When you eat (or drink) anywhere that usually requires a tip, the amount of your bill may be held for up to four days before the actual transaction is posted to your card. Make sure you have enough funds to cover any added tip. Usually I have had no problems with this, but you do need to be careful. Check your funds online to see if added funds are being held.
A "hold" of your estimated bill may be placed on your card when you check into a hotel, making that amount unavailable for other purchases. When you check out, the hold may take up to 10 days before it is removed. I did have this happen to me—the hotel held 100 dollars from my card—and I had to wait four days after I checked out for my money to be released. If you need it released earlier, you may be able to call the hotel's customer service.
5. Auto Rentals
You may use your card for final payment for a rental car bill. However, depending on the rental car company, a credit card may be necessary to reserve the rental. If you do reserve a car with a debit card, you may have a significant amount of money held for 60 days. Once, when I rented a car, the company held $300 dollars in my account, and it took a few days after returning the vehicles for the amount to be released.
6. Returning purchases
Store return policies may vary. You may receive a credit to your card, cash refund, or even store credit, depending on the particular store. A credit to your card may take up to 10 days to process before it's available for use. I have not returned any items using my card, so I have no extra tips for you here.
Student Edition Walmart MoneyCard
If you have a student in school, you can purchase the Student Edition Walmart MoneyCard. How this works is that you get another card linked to your account that your student can use. This is really no different than the previously mentioned option for a second card, and the fees are the same (you will be charged $3).
The benefit of a second card is that you can monitor you kid's spending, and you can add money to student's debit card anytime you add money to your own. See the fees below before you decide to purchase the Student Edition of the Walmart MoneyCard.
Walmart MoneyCard Fees
Make sure you check out the fees involved in getting a Walmart MoneyCard before you get one. Below is a list of fees associated with the card drawn from Walmart's website:
Fees. We will charge the fees listed below for your Walmart MoneyCard. We can change the fees as described in section 21 below.
Standard Fees One-time Temporary Card Issuance Fee at Walmart Store - Standard Walmart MoneyCard $3.00 - Student Edition Walmart MoneyCard $6.00 Reload Personalized Card at Walmart (No Check Cashing) $3.00 Reload Personalized Card at Walmart (Check Cashing) $0.00 Reload Personalized Card at Green Dot Varies by Retailer Location (other than Walmart store) Additional Personalized Card Fee - Standard Walmart MoneyCard $3.00 - Student Edition Walmart MoneyCard $0.00
Standard Fees - ATM Cash Transaction - Domestic $2.00 ATM Cash Transaction - International $2.00 ATM Balance Inquiry $1.00 POS Cash Back $0.00 Walmart POS Balance Inquiry $0.00 IVR (Automatic Telephone System) Balance Inquiry $0.00 Monthly Maintenance Fee $3.00 Operator Assisted Call $0.00 Teller Cash Transaction $2.00
Standard Fees Lost/Stolen Replacement Personalized Card $3.00 PIN Debit Purchase $0.00 Signature Debit Purchase $0.00 Stop Payment Order Fee (see section 7) $0.00 Negative Balance Fee $0.00 Rush Delivery of Personalized Card $20.00 Foreign Transactions (see section 19) 2%
When you use an ATM not owned by Walmart, you may be charged a fee by the ATM operator or any network used (and you may be charged a fee for a balance inquiry even if you do not complete a transaction).
Walmart MoneyCard Review by Trevor Grijalva
Email and Text Alerts
The MoneyCard comes with the free ability to check your balance through text and email alerts. This is a service offered by many debit cards, so if you decide to go with a different, ask about similar options.
You can set up your alerts to send you a message:
- When your balance falls below a certain amount
- Every day or week
- Whenever money is deposited in your account
Below is an example of one of these alerts (one that I actually received):
A direct deposit of $385.43 was received on 10/28 . Thank you for using Walmart MoneyCard.
You can also check your balance anytime via text. Text BAL and the last 4 digits of your card to 96411 (WM411) and you will get a text back with your balance.
Rush Card vs. MoneyCard Monthly Plans
Two free each calendar month. $2.50 for each ATM withdrawal after that.
ATM Balance Inquiry Fee
Use Your PIN: $1.00 Without PIN: FREE
Lost/Stolen Replacement Personalized Card
Walmart MoneyCard Support Information
If you have questions or you have had your card lost or stolen, you would need to contact support ASAP.
* For cardholder customer service, call 1-877-937-4098
* To report a lost or stolen card, call 1-877-937-4098
What Has Been Your Experience with the Walmart MoneyCard or Any Prepaid Debit Card? Which One Do You Suggest? 157 comments
Walmart MoneyCard Customer Testimonials
Rush Card vs Walmart Money Card
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