Best prepaid top up cards in the UK 2024

Control your spending with a prepaid card. Find a prepaid card that you can top up and use.

A prepaid card is a good option if you need to stay on top of your spending. Here we compare the account, transaction and withdrawal fees to help you decide which card suits you best. We also have a dedicated guide on prepaid cards for businesses.

Compare prepaid cards that you can top up

Table: sorted by monthly fee, promoted deals first
1 - 11 of 11
Name Product Network Monthly fee UK card transaction fee UK cash withdrawal fee Loading fee Key benefits
FairFX Linked Card
Mastercard
£0
£0
£1
£0
Revolut Standard
Mastercard
£0
Free
Free up to £200 a month
Free
Get a £20 welcome bonus when you spend your first £20 (T&Cs apply).
Suits Me Essential
Mastercard
£0
Free
£1.50
Free
Revolut Plus
Mastercard
£3.99
Free
Free up to £200 per month
Free
Get a £20 welcome bonus when you spend your first £20 (T&Cs apply).
Suits Me Premium
Mastercard
£4.97
Free
£1.25
Free
Revolut Premium
Mastercard
£7.99
Free
Free up to £400 a month
Free
Get a £20 welcome bonus when you spend your first £20 (T&Cs apply).
Revolut Metal
Mastercard
£14.99
Free
Free with withdrawals of up to £600 per month
Free
Get a £20 welcome bonus when you spend your first £20 (T&Cs apply).
Suits Me Premium Plus
Mastercard
£9.97
Free
4 free withdrawals per month (then £1.25 per withdrawal)
Free
Cashplus Freedom Account
Mastercard
£0
9/month free, 99p after
£0
0.5%
Pockit Prepaid Mastercard
Mastercard
£1.99/month
99p
£1.49
£1.99 but free for salary or benefits bank transfers
ThinkMoney app
Mastercard
£10.95
Free
£0
£0
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1 - 10 of 10
Name Product Ratings Network Monthly fee Card delivery fee UK card transaction fee UK cash withdrawal fee Loading fee Key benefits
FairFX Linked Card
Not yet rated
Mastercard
£0
£0
£0
£1
£0
OFFER
HyperJar
Finder score
★★★★★
Mastercard
£0
£0
£0
N/A
£0
A children's prepaid card with no monthly fees.
FREE TRIAL
Revolut <18
Finder score
★★★★★
Mastercard
£0 (parent needs Revolut account)
£4.99 delivery charge
£0
£0
£0
Get 3 months of Premium for free
Finder Award
OFFER
Starling Kite
Finder score
★★★★★
Mastercard
£0 (parent needs Starling account)
£0
£0
£0
£0
Earn interest on your balance.
EXCLUSIVE
Osper
Finder score
★★★★★
Mastercard
£1.95 (1 month free trial)
£0
£0
£0
Direct debit free. 50p per instant load
22% off the standard pricing + 1 month free trial
EXCLUSIVE
nimbl
Finder score
★★★★★
Mastercard
£1.99 (+1 month free trial)
£0
£0
£0
£0
Exclusive: Just £1.99 /month per child + 1 month FREE
Finder Award
FREE TRIAL
NatWest Rooster Money
Finder score
★★★★★
VISA
£1.99 (+1 month free trial)
£0
£0
£0
3/day or 10/month free, then £0.50
Rooster Card Subscription is free for current NatWest Group customers (card for ages 6-17, offer T&Cs and other fees may apply)
Finder Award
EXCLUSIVE
GoHenry - with £15 pocket money and two months free
Finder score
★★★★★
VISA
£3.99
£0
£0
£0
1 free/month, then 50p each
Get an exclusive 2 months free and £15 pocket money offer when you sign up with this link
gohenry teen - custom
Not yet rated
VISA
£3.99
£0
£0
£0
1 free/month, then 50p each
OFFER
GoHenry Plus
Not yet rated
VISA
£5.99
£0
£0
£0
Unlimited top-ups
1% cashback on in-store spending
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Prepaid cards for travelling

Revolut - Revolut Standard

Revolut Standard
Finder rating
★★★★★
Read review

£0

Min. opening balance

£0

Account fees

0% AER

Interest (AER)

Get a £20 welcome bonus when you spend your first £20 (T&Cs apply).

You can use the Revolut card to spend and withdraw cash abroad and no fees will be charged, provided you stay within your monthly limit and carry out transactions on a weekday. Monthly limits will depend on the plan you have chosen. You can also convert money in 36 currencies within the app, enabling you to convert some spending money into the local currency before you go on holiday - this could work to your advantage if exchange rates are favourable. If you don’t exchange currency before you go, Revolut will use its own variable exchange rate to carry out the conversion when you pay for something with your card.
  • Low overseas fees
  • Quick application
  • Earn cashback on spending
  • Set budgets for financial goals
  • Virtual cards for online purchases
  • Easy to transfer money internationally
  • Linked 'Junior' account available for one child
  • 1% currency conversion charge on weekend spending abroad
  • Free cash withdrawals in the UK and abroad both limited to £200 per month
  • Cannot deposit cash or cheques into the account
  • Charged a fee to receive your bank card
Minimum opening balance £0
Account fee £0
Overseas card transactions 0% Mon-Fri (max. £1,000 per month)
Overseas cash withdrawals 0% Mon-Fri (max. £1,000 per month)

Prepaid cards for bad credit

Suits Me - Suits Me - Essential Current Account

£20

Min. opening balance

£0

Account fees

0% AER

Interest (AER)

£10 when your wages or benefits are paid in for the first time (T&C's apply).

It’s quick and easy to apply for a prepaid Mastercard with Suits me. No credit checks are carried out and you can open your account in just 3 minutes. You can manage it online or via the app. The account lets you receive and send money in the UK and abroad, as well as pay direct debits and standing orders. Plus you can earn up to 15% cashback at selected partners. The Essential plan has no monthly fee but you will need to pay for certain transactions such as cash top-ups, ATM withdrawals and electronic payments in.
  • Accepts range of ID documents, ideal if you’ve recently moved to the UK
  • No monthly fee
  • Comes with a prepaid debit card
  • No credit check
  • One-off activation fee applies
  • Transaction charges also apply
Minimum opening balance £20
Minimum operating balance £0
Switch service guarantee No
Account fee £0
Overseas card transactions 2%
Overseas cash withdrawals 2%

Prepaid cards for building credit

Cashplus - Freedom Account

Freedom Account
Finder rating
★★★★★
Go to site Read review

£10

Min. opening balance

£0

Account fees

0% AER

Interest (AER)


If you have poor credit and open a Cashplus bank account, you can choose to select the Creditbuilder add-on to help you boost your credit score. It works by lending you the equivalent of 12 months of account fees (which will vary depending on the account you have). You then pay your monthly fee as usual and Cashplus takes this as a payment against your loan and reports it to credit reference agencies. Once you’ve made all 12 payments on time and paid off your loan, your credit score should start to improve.
  • No credit check
  • No monthly fee
  • Option to add a US dollar or Euro card to the account
  • Easy to monitor spending on the go through the app
  • No bank branches so not suitable for face-to-face banking
  • Limited account features
Minimum opening balance £10
Minimum operating balance £0
Switch service guarantee No
Account fee £0
Overseas card transactions 2.99%
Overseas cash withdrawals 2.99%

Prepaid cards for children

NatWest Rooster Money

NatWest Rooster Money
Finder score
★★★★★
Go to site Read review

£1.99 (+1 month free trial)

Monthly fee

£0

Card delivery fee

6-17 for card, 3+ for app

Age range

Rooster Card Subscription is free for current NatWest Group customers (card for ages 6-17, offer T&Cs and other fees may apply)
NatWest’s Rooster Money is designed to help children learn more about managing their money and how to spend, save and earn it. The Rooster card is for children aged 6 to 17 and the account is funded from the parent’s account which can all be managed via the app. Children can see their balance in the app, while parents can set dedicated spending limits as well as decide whether their children can use the card to spend online, in person or for cash withdrawals. Savings goals can also be set up, and kids can learn to earn with the chore-tracking feature. A monthly fee applies.
  • Great educational value; a slick app with lots of features to personalise the way you teach your children about finance.
  • Children as young as 4 years old can use it (6 for the card).
  • Total control over where your children use the card and how much they can spend.
  • Safe and secure. The card can be frozen from the app.
  • No fees for using the card (including abroad).
  • One-month free trial.
  • Annual fee to access the full range of features, including the card.
  • Parents topping up card limited to 3 loads a day/10 a month for free.
  • Spending abroad on the card is free up to £50 a month, then it’s 3% of the transaction.
  • No interest paid on the account balance.
Monthly fee £1.99 (+1 month free trial)
Card delivery fee £0
Card transaction fee £0
Cash withdrawal fee £0
Loading fee 3/day or 10/month free, then £0.50
Replacement card fee Free for the first replacement (per household), £5 thereafter
Network VISA
How many child accounts No limit
Fees abroad Free ATM withdrawals, 3% of transaction value on purchases over £50/month
Other fees £0
Freeze/unfreeze card Yes

GoHenry - with £15 pocket money and two months free

GoHenry - with £15 pocket money and two months free
Finder score
★★★★★
Go to site Read review

£3.99

Monthly fee

£0

Card delivery fee

6-18

Age range

Get an exclusive 2 months free and £15 pocket money offer when you sign up with this link
GoHenry comes with an app for parents, as well as a debit card and app for your child. Parents can set one-time and weekly spending limits and choose where the card can be used. Spending can be tracked within the app and kids can get paid when they’ve completed certain tasks. You’ll also be able to set savings goals for your child and your child can access videos and quizzes through the app to teach them more about money. Spending on the card abroad is fee-free. There are two plans to choose from and both have a monthly fee.
  • Full parental control thanks to instant notifications and spending limits
  • One-month free trial
  • It can be used by children as young as six
  • Reward system for completed tasks
  • Children learn about personal finance in a controlled environment
  • Relatives can also send money to the children
  • You can manage up to four child accounts from the same parent account
  • No fees to spend or withdraw cash abroad - these were scrapped in 2020
  • Monthly fee
  • Only one free top-up to the child account a month
  • Safe, but not as safe and regulated as a bank
  • It doesn’t pay any interest
  • There are cheaper cards available
Monthly fee £3.99
Card delivery fee £0
Card transaction fee £0
Cash withdrawal fee £0
Loading fee 1 free/month, then 50p each
Replacement card fee Free, or £4.99 if changing the card design
Network VISA
How many child accounts 4
Fees abroad £0
Other fees £4.99 for a customisable card or Eco Card
Freeze/unfreeze card Yes

The different types of prepaid cards

Prepaid cards for those who can’t get a bank account

If you’ve got poor credit, it can be difficult to get accepted for a standard bank account. But a prepaid card could offer a great alternative as it won’t require a credit check. Your employer can even send your salary directly to your card.

Prepaid cards to help you build your credit score

Some prepaid cards offer credit building facilities, enabling you to improve your credit score over time. The provider effectively lends you a year’s worth of monthly fees and, provided you repay this in monthly instalments and on time, your credit rating will start to improve.

Prepaid cards for use overseas

Some prepaid cards are designed to be used overseas and won’t charge you hefty foreign transaction fees. You can usually preload your card with currency before you set off, so you’ll know what the exchange rate is in advance. Some cards will also let you preload them with sterling and then carry out the currency conversion for you when you spend overseas.

Prepaid cards for anonymous payments or gift cards

Gift cards are also prepaid cards. You simply load them with the amount you want to spend and the recipient can then spend this amount at the card’s linked retailer(s). There’s no need for a personal identification number or a name on the card, making it completely anonymous.

Prepaid cards for children to spend pocket money

There’s a range of prepaid cards available for children, enabling parents to load pocket money onto the card which children can then use online or in shops. Many of these are linked to an app, enabling parents to keep an eye on spending habits.

Prepaid cards for business employees to spend on expenses

Prepaid cards can be used for employee business expenses. Companies can preload funds onto the card and employees can use this to pay for travel and other business costs. Different spend limits can be set for each card.

Why should I get a prepaid card?

  • Flexibility

    You only need to spend what you top up, so it’s up to you! You usually don’t incur any fees for leaving money on your card, so you can use it as and when you choose.

  • No credit checks

    If you’ve got a bad credit history or have previously defaulted on loans, it’s unlikely that you’ll be able to get a traditional credit card right now. Prepaid cards offer respite from the spiralling debt that can come with credit. Some prepaid cards charge monthly fees, while allowing you to build your credit. Another option are bank accounts for those with bad credit.

  • Spending abroad

    A lot of prepaid cards work abroad. This is great for two main reasons. Firstly you won’t have to carry loads of cash around or worry about it being stolen. Secondly, prepaid cards often offer bank-beating transaction and withdrawal fees, so you won’t need to worry about racking up a big bill on ATM charges. Learn more about prepaid cards for travelling abroad.

  • Easy to keep track of spending

    A lot of prepaid debit cards come with an accompanying app which will allow you to track your spending. Neatly designed apps let you see how you’re spending your money too, so you can get an idea of where you need to reign in your spending!

How do prepaid cards work?

When you buy a prepaid card you can decide how much money to put on it straight away. There’s usually a few limitations (such as an overall maximum, and a maximum amount you can withdraw in one go). Just think of a prepaid card as a card for day-to-day spending, the same as having cash in your wallet.

Topping up works in a number of ways. A lot of cards allow you to top up at places such as the Post Office, so you can go in and simply add however much cash to your card. (This may take a few days to be processed).

All prepaid cards are linked to your main bank account or building society. Many prepaid cards let you top up online or via an app. Revolut for instance allows you to manage your account, the cards linked to it, and other features such as your PIN number and your spending history all from the app.

Do prepaid cards cost much?

Fees and charges vary. Some prepaid cards come with absolutely zero fees for setting up or having them open.

In other cases, you can be charged for getting the card in the first place. Some cards also have monthly management fees. Similarly some charge withdrawals. Some charge you for paying for goods.

These fees can quickly add up so make sure you shop around and find the right card for you.

Pros and cons of prepaid cards

Pros

  • No credit check required
  • You can only spend what’s on the card, making them ideal for budgeting
  • Some offer low fees when you use them abroad
  • You can get more than one card linked to the same account

Cons

  • Purchases won’t have Section 75 protection as they would with a credit card
  • You could be charged a monthly or annual fee, as well as transaction fees
  • You can’t use them for certain transactions such as hiring a car or paying for petrol at the pump

Bottom line

Prepaid cards can be a simple and flexible way to spend money without using cash. You won’t undergo a credit check for these types of cards, so they can be a great financial tool for people who have previously defaulted on loans or have a poor credit history.

Prepaid cards can also be a handy way of budgeting, enabling you keep to spending limits without going into an overdraft. For this reason, prepaid cards can be a useful tool for teaching children about personal finance, enabling them to spend money without having to open a full bank account.

As a further bonus, prepaid cards can be a great way to spend your money when you’re abroad. Not only do you avoid the need to carry lots of cash, but you’ll often find lower transaction and ATM withdrawal fees.

Frequently asked questions

We show offers we can track - that's not every product on the market...yet. Unless we've said otherwise, products are in no particular order. The terms "best", "top", "cheap" (and variations of these) aren't ratings, though we always explain what's great about a product when we highlight it. This is subject to our terms of use. When you make major financial decisions, consider getting independent financial advice. Always consider your own circumstances when you compare products so you get what's right for you.

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