Everything to know about using a Mastercard Cash Passport | finder.com

Mastercard Cash Passport review

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Load up to eleven currencies on this travel money card that’s accepted world wide.

The Mastercard Cash Passport has been discontinued. Consider using the Travelex Money Card instead.

Traveling to more than one destination? Instead of juggling multiple currencies in your fanny pack, load them onto one card. You’ll have local currency ready when you need it.

Travel money cards like the Mastercard Cash Passport can be loaded with several different types of currency to eliminate the hassle of finding a local currency exchange – which typically has less than attractive rates.

What is the Mastercard Cash Passport?

The Mastercard Cash Passport gives the cardholder peace of mind in knowing that all of their money is conveniently located in one place. The multi-currency card supports:

  • Australian dollar (AUD)
  • Arab Emirates dirham (AED)
  • Canadian dollar (CAD)
  • Euro (EUR)
  • Great Britain pound (GBP)
  • Hong Kong dollar (HKD)
  • Japanese yen (JPY)
  • New Zealand dollar (NZD)
  • Singapore dollar (SGD)
  • United States dollar (USD)
  • Thai baht (THB)

You can use your card to pay in local currency anywhere you find the Mastercard logo – this includes ATMs, stores and even online. And because the card is issued by Mastercard, you are protected by its zero liability policy.

Anytime you load or reload your card, the exchange rate is locked in so you can be sure of just how much money you have. When loading funds onto the card, it is important to note that the Mastercard Cash Passport has a minimum limit of $200 and a maximum limit or $8,500.

How much will the Mastercard Cash Passport cost?

How much will I pay on the exchange rate?

When moving funds from one currency to another, you’ll be subject to a rate set in place by Mastercard which is generally right on par with wholesale currency market rates. However, you’ll also be hit with an additional 5.5% currency transfer fee.

How much are the fees?

There are no annual fees and you can’t attract interest because you’re using a prepaid card. What will cost you a few dollars are the fees that come along with using the card.

Product nameMastercard Cash Passport
Card issue fee$9.95
Initial load feeNone
Reload fee$5.00
Transaction feeNone
ATM withdrawal fee$2.50
Bank withdrawal feeNone
Currency transfer fee5.5% of transfer
Inactive fee$3 per month

Benefits

Being able to lock in a exchange rate gives you the flexibility of knowing exactly how much money you have without worrying about rates bobbing up and down in the future. On top of that, Mastercard is one of the most recognized names when it comes to plastic – with that comes some perks:

  • Zero Liability Policy that will protect you against unauthorized purchases and fraud
  • Easy currency conversion
  • Smartphone app to check balances and move currencies from one to another
  • Option to have an additional card

Drawbacks and limits

Besides the pesky fees, Mastercard Cash Passport also has a few spending limits set in place.

  • ATM withdrawals have a maximum of $1,000 per day
  • Bank withdrawals have a maximum of $250 per day
  • Loaded funds are not available immediately

Be sure to keep tabs on what and where you’ve spent. Some merchants don’t settle your payment immediately which could reflect an incorrect balance on your end.

And before you jet-set, check Mastercard’s website as it lists a number of countries that have usage restrictions.

Did you know?

Travel money cards often have a tolerance amount on them as well. A tolerance amount is usually a reserve of about 10% to 20% of total purchases at bars and restaurants – so take this into account when swiping for international beer and cuisine.

How to get a Mastercard Cash Passport

Since the Mastercard Cash Passport is prepaid, there aren’t too many requirements to get your hands on one. You must be a US resident and at least 18 years old.

Once you get your card, you can load money during the initial purchase process and afterwards at via the mobile app, online or at a Travelex store – debit cards, bank transfers or cash will suffice. It is important to note that there is a yearly load limit of $30,000.

When you’re ready to close out the account, contact card services or bring the card back to the point of purchase with a valid ID and cash out your remaining funds – there is a balance refund fee of $20.

I got the card. Now what?

Keep on top of your balance and make sure to load your card a few days before you need the funds available, as it can take some time. It’s important to remember that the Mastercard Cash Passport is a preloaded card and once you’ve spend what you’ve loaded– that’s it.

If the card has been compromised, contact card services at 1-877-465-0085 immediately so they can cancel and replace your card free of charge – the service is available 24/7. It’s always a smart idea to initially purchase an additional card for $5 just in case.

Even if your card is stolen or missing, it is protected with a chip and a PIN for extra security. You can take comfort in knowing that since it is a prepaid card, it is not linked to your bank account.

Bottom line

Travel money cards can help relieve some stress that comes with traveling. While there typically aren’t many rewards that come with these cards, you benefit from the ease of swiping one card and paying in multiple currencies. Be sure to check others cards to compare rates and fees before going forward with any one specific travel money card.

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