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Review: Netspend® Visa® Prepaid Card

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Netspend® Visa® Prepaid Card
Monthly maintenance fee
Up to $9.95
Signature transaction fee
From $0
PIN transaction fee
From $0

Our verdict

If you have bad or no credit, this card could be a helpful solution — and you don't need a credit check.

Because the Netspend® Visa® Prepaid Card is a prepaid card, you can worry less about overspending, late fees and overwhelming credit card debt. The card offers cashback rewards, the ability to control your budget and the option to open a high-yield savings account. And there’s no credit check when you sign up.

If you're looking for a credit card but don't have stellar credit, the Netspend® Visa® Prepaid Card is a viable option. But it has a lengthy list of potential fees you'll want to watch out for.


  • Get paid faster
  • Easy loading
  • Control your finances
  • Card customizations
  • Mobile app
  • Savings account


  • Potential fees
  • Privacy policy
  • Inactivity penalty
  • Upfront card cos.

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How much does Netspend® Visa® Prepaid Card cost?

Netspend offers you a choice between three different fee plans. To qualify for the Premier FeeAdvantage Plan, you must have at least $500 in monthly direct deposits.

PlanMonthly feeTransaction fee
Pay-As-You-Go Plan$0$1.95 — Signature-based

$1.95 — PIN-based

4% — Foreign transaction

FeeAdvantage Plan$9.95Free — Signature-based

Free — PIN-based

4% — Foreign transaction

Premier FeeAdvantage Plan$5Free — Signature-based

Free — PIN-based

4% — Foreign transaction

How do I open a Netspend® Visa® Prepaid Card account?

Applying for the Netspend® Visa® Prepaid Card is quick and simple:

  1. Go to the provider’s site and follow the steps to apply.
  2. From the NetSpend’s website, enter your name, contact information and ID number.
  3. Choose your direct deposit method.
  4. Choose your card’s color and design.
  5. Agree to the terms and conditions.

Once approved, you’ll receive your card in a few weeks. You’ll need to activate your card, but you can begin using it immediately after.

How do I activate my Netspend card?

Activate your Netspend card online at Or, call customer service at 866-387-7363.

What is Netspend?

Netspend was founded in 1999 and has served more than 10 million customers. It offers over 130,000 reloading locations, and funds are FDIC-insured. Cards are issued through Pathward.

What are the benefits of the Netspend® Visa® Prepaid Card?

  • Get paid faster. Load money onto your card through direct deposit and get your money two days faster.
  • Rewards. Earn rewards as you spend money with your card. The more you spend, the more rewards you qualify for.
  • Easy loading. Load money onto your card through direct deposit, e-check deposit or convenient reload locations at grocery stores and gas stations. You can even receive money from family or friends.
  • Control your finances. Manage your budget online and set up a purchase cushion that covers $10 if you’re ever short on a purchase.
  • Card customizations. Choose from four free card designs, including a pink Netspend card. Or, add a family photo or unique image to your card for $4.95.
  • Mobile app. See your account balance, transaction information and more from your phone.
  • Savings account. Set up a high-yield savings account that earns 5% APY on balances of $1,000 or more. All funds are insured up to your coverage limit.

What to watch out for

  • Fees. Watch out for potential fees that can easily accumulate as you use your card.
  • Privacy policy. Depending on the product or service you use, Pathward collects and shares information like your Social Security number, account transactions, balances, purchase and payment history — even after you’re no longer a customer.
  • Inactivity penalty. If you don’t use the card for at least 90 days, you’ll pay a $5.95 inactivity fee.
  • Upfront card cost. If you buy the card at Walmart, CVS or other locations, you’ll pay $4.95. However, you can get it free online.

If you want a prepaid card with zero to minimal fees, you’ll want to keep looking. As always, compare your options when looking for a prepaid card.

Compare with other prepaid cards

1 - 1 of 1
Name Product Fee ATM withdrawal Features
PayPal Prepaid Mastercard®
PayPal Prepaid Mastercard®
$4.95 per month
  • Faster access to deposits
  • PayPal Prepaid mobile app
  • Open a savings account
  • PayPal Payback Rewards

Am I eligible for this card?

There’s no credit check required, so you can apply with poor credit. But you must be at least 18 years old and able to prove your identity. The card is available in all states except for Vermont.

What information do I need to apply?

To sign up for the card you’ll need to provide:

  • Your full name and contact information, including an email address.
  • Your date of birth.
  • Your bank information for direct deposit, including your routing and account numbers.
  • Government-issued ID, such as your driver’s license or passport.

How to add money to your Netspend prepaid card

There are several ways to add and reload money to your account:

  • Direct deposit.
  • NetSpend reload network locations.
  • Bank transfers.
  • PayPal.
  • Transfers between NetSpend card accounts.
  • Tax refunds.

How do I contact Netspend customer service?

There are a variety of ways to get in touch with Netspend customer service:

  • Email
  • Call 866-387-7363 weekdays from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. CT or weekends from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. CT
  • Mail your questions to:
    Netspend Corporation
    PO Box 2136
    Austin, TX 78768-2136

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Leah Finder


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December 19, 2018

Do I have a direct account open



December 19, 2018

Hi Melissa,

Thanks for getting in touch! I’d be happy to check if you have a direct account open however we don’t have access to Netspend’s records. It would be best to contact them immediately to check on your account. Hope this helps!



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