Best Prepaid Credit Cards for 2021

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Brink’s Prepaid MasterCard Reviews

Best For: Flexible Plans

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  • Mobile check deposit available with app
  • Get paid through direct deposit or government benefits up to 2 days faster
  • Sign up for anytime alerts to monitor your account
  • Brinks Preferred benefits when you have at least $500 in qualifying direct deposits
  • Earn PayBack Rewards on select purchases
  • Optional savings account with up to 5.00% APY
  • Person-to-person transfers and budgeting tools through app

Editor's Take

It’s simple to get started with Brink’s Prepaid MasterCard. Just order your card, then either enroll in direct deposit or load it with cash at more than 130,000 reload locations across the U.S. Depending on the plan you choose, you could pay between $5 and $9.95 per month.

Brink’s offers an additional level of benefits called Brink’s Preferred. You could qualify with $500 or more in direct deposits each month. You can also earn cash back rewards on your purchases. Ready to save? Their optional savings account can earn you up to 5.00% APY.

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NetSpend Visa Prepaid Card Reviews

Best for: Mobile App

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  • Direct deposit available up to 2 days faster for paychecks and government benefits
  • Deposit checks with Mobile Check Load or in -person, along with cash deposits
  • May qualify for $10 purchase cushion
  • Earn cashback with Payback rewards
  • Save on prescriptions with the Pharmacy Savings card
  • Create temporary card numbers for online purchases
  • Zero liability for fraudulent card use

Editor's Take

NetSpend’s Visa Prepaid Card lets you tailor your plan based on your purchasing needs. If you plan to use your prepaid card often, opt for the $9.95 monthly plan. If not, pay no monthly fee and instead just pay $2 for every purchase you make.

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Prepaid credit cards come with a number of advantages. Most importantly, they connect you to the banking system even if you don’t qualify for a traditional checking account. They can also save you time and potentially money if you receive checks but have to go somewhere and pay fees to cash them each time.

You can avoid constantly using cash with a prepaid card, even receiving some protections on the funds in your account in some cases. Plus, you can use your card for online shopping and other places that may not even accept cash payments anymore. Many prepaid cards even offer online accounts and mobile apps, making it easier than ever to manage your money without worrying about getting a bank account.


While prepaid cards come with many advantages, there are also several disadvantages. The most important thing to look out for are fees. You’ll usually need to pay a monthly fee to keep your card active. You may also be required to pay each time you reload your card with funds. Some companies also charge each time you actually use the card.

If you’re not careful, prepaid card fees can quickly add up, costing you a lot in the long run.

You probably also won’t be rebuilding your banking history with a prepaid card. While some banks and credit unions offer “fresh start” checking accounts for people with a history in ChexSystems, prepaid cards usually don’t do anything to help you in the long run, besides giving you time to wait out your negative reports.

Finally, check what kind of limitations your prepaid card comes with. Before choosing one, find out the answers to these questions:

  • How frequently can you reload each month?
  • How many transactions can you make each month?
  • Is there an ATM withdraw fee?

That way, you’ll be prepared for the total cost of your card without any unpleasant surprises.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are there reload limits?

Your specific card may come with limits on how much you can reload, how often you can reload, and how much cash you can withdraw from an ATM. Check your card agreement so you can manage your card well.

Can your card have a negative balance?

In most cases, your card cannot have a negative balance. If you try to make a purchase and don’t have enough money loaded to your prepaid card, the transaction will be declined. Some companies offer a $10 cushion if you qualify.

What happens if your prepaid card is stolen?

If your card is stolen, you should immediately call your provider’s customer support line. If you can access your account online or via a mobile app, you may be able to deactivate the card remotely. Before choosing a prepaid card, check to see their liability policy if a card is lost or stolen. You may be not be accountable to pay for any fraudulent transactions.
Brink’s Prepaid MasterCard Reviews


Get a Prepaid Card Today

A prepaid credit card lets you manage your money without a checking account. Sign up now!

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by Lauren Ward

Personal Finance Writer

Lauren Ward is a personal finance writer with nearly ten years of experience covering topics like loans, credit, and real estate. She lives in Virginia with her husband and three children.

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