Take Advantage Of Balance Transfers
If you own other credit cards and want to move some of the balance of another card onto your American Express card, choose the balance transfers option. Each card has its own balance transfer options. To find out what offers are available with your card, log into your account from the balance transfers page on the American Express website.
If your card qualifies for any offers, you can take advantage of them by entering the account number of the card you want to transfer from and the amount you want to transfer. Depending on your card, there may be a balance transfer fee. The Blue Cash Everyday card, for example, charges the larger of $5 or 3 percent of the transfer amount.
Who Should Get A Prepaid Debit Card
The biggest target market for prepaid debit cards is people who are unbanked or underbanked, either by choice or circumstance. It can be challenging to qualify for a bank account if you dont have a Social Security number or if youve had issues with previous bank accounts, such as unpaid negative balances or involuntary closures.
Prepaid debit card issuers dont check your banking history when you apply. And while you may be asked for a Social Security number, its not a requirement for all prepaid cards.
You might also consider a prepaid debit card if you need some help with your budgeting. If you want to limit how much you spend for a given period on certain expenses, you can transfer money to your prepaid debit card and only use that payment method for the expense category. Some prepaid cards even allow you to set up multiple cards for different budget categories.
Finally, some people might consider a prepaid card as an alternative to a credit card. While a prepaid card wont help you build credit, it can be a good way to avoid interest charges and stay out of credit card debt. And while you wont get standout rewards and benefits compared with the best credit cards, you can still earn cashback or other rewards with some of the top prepaid cards.
Alternatives To Amex Send & Split
There are several options for sending people money, including PayPal, Venmo, Zelle, Cash App, and others. There are also apps to help with bill splitting. Whats nice about Amex Send & Split is that it lets you manage both payment scenarios right from your American Express app. Setup is simple, and it adds another tool to your digital payment arsenal, even if you dont use it all the time.
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Best Prepaid Debit Cards And Alternatives: Summary
We looked at 40 reloadable prepaid debit cards offered by some of the biggest banks, credit unions and prepaid debit card issuers. Where multiple card plans existed, only the basic monthly fee plan was considered.
We analyzed four categories for each card: general fees and features, purchases and withdrawals, reload fees and options, and other services such as bill pay and savings accounts. The cards that made this list had the best combination of these categories. Some cards in this roundup have nonbank program managers that partner with banks. Regardless, all the cards issuers are banks that insure consumers money through the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. No cards above have overdraft fees.
Prepaid debit cards that we considered included:ACE Elite Visa Prepaid Debit Card, American Express Serve, Bluebird by American Express, Fifth Third Access 360° Reloadable Prepaid Card, Green Dot Prepaid Visa Card, Mango Visa Prepaid Card, Netspend Prepaid Card, PayPal Prepaid Mastercard, RushCardPrepaid Visa Card.
What the ratings mean:
How Do I Check The Status Of My American Express Balance Transfer
Balance transfers arent allowed by American Express currently.
The editorial content on this page is based solely on the objective assessment of our writers and is not driven by advertising dollars. It has not been provided or commissioned by the credit card issuers. However, we may receive compensation when you click on links to products from our partners.
Kevin Payne is a freelance writer focused on the personal finance and travel spaces. He frequently writes about credit cards, banking, student loans, insurance, travel rewards and more. He is also the personal finance expert behind Family Money Adventure, where he regularly shares practical advice on managing family finances and traveling with a family.
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American Express Serve Card Fees
The American Express Serve card is fee-free for the most part but certain transactions will cost you extra.
For example, adding cash to the card at a participating retailer will cost you up to $3.95 each time. You can load cash at thousands of places nationwide, including Walmart, Rite Aid and Family Dollar.
If youre using the card for an international purchase, a 2.7% foreign transaction fee applies. Finally, if you use your card to get cash at a Walmart store, youll pay up to $9.49 for each withdrawal.
What Are The Features Of The American Express Serve
Before you get the card, it is essential to understand the card usage features. The following are the features you need to understand.
i) Free registration
You can register online for free. There is no credit check during the card registration. Once you register, you will receive the card at your physical branch.
ii) Free early direct deposit
You can get your payments up to two days earlier before your payday with the American Express Serve account. Your employer should submit payment details before your payday for this to work.
iii) Free ATM withdrawals
The card allows you to withdraw money for free at various ATMs throughout the country. You can withdraw money at over 30,000 MoneyPass ATMs countrywide from your American Express Serve.
iv) Free Online Bill Pay
You can use the American Express Serve App to pay for your bills. Like when withdrawing cash from your ATM, online bill payment is free and wont cost you any coin to set up or use. Bill payments usually require you to transfer money using a routing number and account number.
v) Free Reserve Partition
You can save funds by setting up a Reserve partition in your account to help you in the future. You can take money for free out of your Reserve any time of the day.
vi) American Expresss excellent Customer Service
American Express understands that every company grows by having good customer service. Once you get your card, you can be sure to converse with a live person 24/7via a phone call or chat.
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Best Prepaid Debit Cards
Many or all of the products featured here are from our partners who compensate us. This may influence which products we write about and where and how the product appears on a page. However, this does not influence our evaluations. Our opinions are our own. Here is a list ofour partnersandhere’s how we make money.
Bluebird by American Express: Cheapest.
Movo Virtual Prepaid Visa: Cheapest.
Fifth Third Access 360° Reloadable Prepaid Card: Best for ATM withdrawals.
FamZoo Prepaid Card: Best for parents.
Greenlight Prepaid Mastercard: Best for parents.
Walmart MoneyCard: Best for shopping at Walmart.
Chime: Best cheap prepaid alternative.
How Much Does It Cost To Do A Balance Transfer With American Express
Balance transfer credit cards typically charge a balance transfer fee that is equal to 3 percent or 5 percent of the balance you transfer. This means that, for every $5,000 in debt you transfer from another card, youll be asked to pay $150 to $250 in upfront balance transfer fees.
Also, keep in mind that youll have to pay the standard variable APR on any remaining balances after your cards introductory APR period ends.
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How Do You Cancel Your American Express Serve Card
The first step in canceling your account is to transfer out any remaining funds. Once your account balance is exactly $0, then you can simply log into your account online, go to the settings on your main account’s home screen, and select “close account.” You can call customer service if you need assistance with this process.
The Most Horrible Prepaid Company And Customer Service I Ever Dealt With
My American Express Serve account was compromised and I waited patiently for the Amex Serve fraud team to resolve the issue . They failed big time and protected the fraudulent merchant instead of my account. The company that appeared in the statement is no where to be found on google. So how could they have done their due diligence. Now Ive waited over 10 business days for a replacement card in which I have not received to get the small amount of funds on it to be able to get food and gas and have no received it missing days from work and having to get food from the state due to Amex Serves fraud team failed to return my provisional credit. They could. Not provide me any proof of my signature on any document that I authorized the transaction or who obtained access to my account. Amex serve is the WORST company pertaining to customer service and fraud protection . The representatives are in located in other countries doing horrible service by constantly hanging up on you and constantly transferring you to other departments and refuse to allow you to speak to a supervisor . Now Im having to go through the courts the theft of my funds by Amex Serve and allowing a fraudulent merchant to keep. And I look forward to seeing them in court and sharing my bad experience with the masses on every social media account.
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Get The Prepaid Card Account Number And Routing Number
The first step to the process is to get the account number and routing number for your prepaid debit card.
This is where most prepaid cardholders get stuck in the process because they cannot locate that information. If thats you, keep reading.
Every prepaid debit card has an issuing bank. Even though its a prepaid debit card, a financial institution issued that card.
Therefore, since the card was issued by a bank, there is an account number for each prepaid card and there is a routing number for the issuing bank.
To be able to set up the transfer from your bank to your prepaid card, you will first have to get your prepaid card account number and the routing number for the issuing bank.
Some prepaid cards easily provide this information to you and it can be located in your prepaid card account online.
However, some prepaid debit cards do not make this information easily available.
Sometimes, the account number that identifies your debit card can be different from the card number.
Best For Cash Reloads: American Express Serve Free Reloads
American Express Serve FREE Reloads
No fee when you load cash onto your card at more than 45,000 Walmart, 7-Eleven, CVS, Rite Aid, Dollar General, and Family Dollar locations
Other reload options include direct deposit and bank account transfers
Access to more than 30,000 fee-free ATMs
Eligible purchases get purchase protection
Theres a $6.95 monthly fee
Mobile check deposits take 10 days unless you pay a fee
No rewards or other major benefits
If you dont have a checking account, cash reloads may be your best option, making the Amex Serve Free Reloads a top choice. You can also create free sub-accounts for family members.
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How Does Fdic Insurance On Prepaid Cards Work
Prepaid debit cards nearly always have FDIC insurance, which keeps your funds protected in case the issuer goes bankrupt. Only financial institutions can have FDIC insurance, so a prepaid card is either managed by a bank or by a prepaid card company that partners with a bank to offer that insurance. You must register your prepaid debit card with your name and other identification information in order to be eligible for FDIC insurance and other protections.
About the author:Melissa Lambarena is a credit cards writer at NerdWallet. Her work has been featured by The Associated Press, New York Times, Washington Post and USA Today. Read more
Movo Virtual Prepaid Visa Card
Most prepaid debit cards either charge you each month or each time you make a purchase, but the Movo Virtual Prepaid Card does neither. The exception is if you go more than three months without activity then a $4.95 inactivity fee is charged per month until theres activity. A virtual element lets you buy things online, and you can request a physical card for in-person purchases, ATM withdrawals and cash back at retailers.
General fees and features: No monthly fees and no costs for activation $4.95 inactivity fee.
Purchases: No fees.
ATM withdrawals: $2 at ATMs in the Visa Plus Alliance network additional operator fees may apply at out-of-network ATMs.
Other services: Online bill payments are free. For a fee, you can also create one-time secondary virtual cards with their own card numbers. These cards can protect your main account number during transactions. Movo can be used with Apple Pay, Google Pay and Samsung Pay.
Downsides: Free ways to reload the card, such as bank transfers, can take up to five business days no free ATM network.
» Looking for a traditional spending account? Check out NerdWallets best free checking accounts.
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How To Improve The Chances Of Your Balance Transfer Being Approved
Here are some tips to help your chances of being approved for a balance transfer:
Know your credit score. Your is the single most important factor considered for a balance transfer by card issuers.
- Work to improve your score. Work to improve your credit score before requesting a balance transfer if possible. Some ways to boost your score include making on-time bill payments, paying down debt balances, and not applying for new credit cards until after youre approved for a balance transfer.
- Look up your credit limit. A card issuer will typically deny balance transfer requests if you request a transfer amount higher than your credit limit. Consider your credit limit when requesting a balance transfer.
- Pay attention to balance transfer offers. Most balance transfer offers require you to request a transfer within a specific time period to qualify. Make sure you request a transfer within the allotted time to ensure eligibility.
How To Transfer Money With American Express
Thanks to advancing technology, consumers can instantaneously and securely transfer money in and out of their accounts. American Express money transfers can be made by customers using several methods including balance, wire and online transfers. Using American Express money transfer services, a customer can fund a new account, send money to family or friends, or move money between accounts.
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Blue Cash Everyday Card From American Express
- 0% promotional period: 15 months for purchases only, not balance transfers.
- Regular APR: Variable of 14.74% to 24.74%. For more information, see Blue Cash Everyday® Card review.
- Worth noting: Earn a $200 statement credit after spending $2,000 in the first six months of card membership. 3% cash back at U.S. supermarkets , 2% at U.S. gas stations and select U.S. department stores and 1% everywhere else. No annual fee.
How To Check The Status Of Your Amex Balance Transfer
If youre curious where your balance transfer stands, you can also check on this through your online account page with Amex. All you have to do is log in at AmericanExpress.com, then go to Account Services and select the option that says Payment & Credit Options.
Once there, you can click on the link that says Check Balance Transfer Status.
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How Do You Add Funds To The American Express Serve Card
There are various ways you can add funds to your card account. They include the following.
i) Mobile deposit of your checks
You can use the app to deposit checks online. Nowadays, you do not need to deposit checks in banks as you can carry out the process online.
ii) Use your bank account or debit card
You can easily add money from your bank to fund your transactions. You need to add your bank to your account, and you are good to go.
iii) Add cash at reloading locations
As I mentioned earlier, you can add money to your account at various reload locations.
How To Use An Amex Serve Card Like A Checking Account
American Express Serve cards are prepaid debit cards with fee waivers, no credit checks, and online account access. With FDIC coverage and additional features that help you manage your finances, one of the three available Serve cards can essentially replace a checking account at traditional brick-and-mortar banks. You can use a Serve card to make purchases using funds that you load into your account, and since you’re spending your own money, you won’t rack up debt or overdraft fees.
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How Do You Get The American Express Serve
I have mentioned that American Express collaborates with banks to issue payment cards. You also need to know that the company also independently issues cards that consumers can use for their daily payment needs. American Express Serve is one of the payment cards you can find at the company.
You only need to apply online at the Serve website and navigate to the card application tab to get it. The cards, however, require no credit history to get them. You also need to know that American Express Serve is not a bank but a payment card that gives you an alternative option for handling your money. It is also an excellent option to reduce the various bank costs that drain you financially.
Generally, the American Express Serve has no welcome bonus, no credit history requirement, no annual fees, and no regular APR. Therefore, it is an economical card to use for your transaction needs. The foreign transaction fee is 7% after conversion to US Dollars.