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Western Union NetSpend Prepaid Mastercard Review

Last updated:  
  • Get this card if… you’re looking to receive Western Union transfers more quickly.
  • Pick something else if…you don’t want to pay a monthly fee for a debit card.

Up to $9.95

Monthly fee

From $0

Signature transaction fee

From $0

PIN transaction fee

Details

Card typeDebit
Card networkMastercard
Monthly fee$9.95
Monthly fee (pay-as-you-go plan)$0
Signature transaction fee$0
Signature transaction fee (pay-as-you-go plan)$1.50
PIN transaction fee$0
PIN transaction fee (pay-as-you-go plan)$1.50

Expert review

Kevin Joey Chen

Review by


Kevin Joey Chen is a credit cards writer whose work and analysis have appeared on CNN, U.S. News & World Report, The Dallas Morning News, Lifehacker and CreditCards.com. He's passionate about helping you get your finances in order and expertly navigate the cutting-edge financial tools available -- including credit cards, apps and budgeting software.

Expert review

If you receive Western Union transfers and are willing to put up with pesky fees, the NetSpend Prepaid Mastercard may be for you. It lets you automatically deposit your paychecks and quickly receive Western Union transfers.

But the card is loaded with fees that you’ll want to look out for.

The basics

The Western Union Netspend Prepaid Mastercard lets you receive Western Union money transfers within minutes — a big plus if you’re used to picking up cash from Western Union locations or waiting for bank account deposits.

But the card comes with a rather long fee table. You’ll pay $2.50 for each ATM withdrawal. Plus, a per-transaction or monthly fee depending on which plan you choose.

If you’re not into monthly or ATM fees, you may be better off with a debit card from a bank.

Fees associated with the Western Union Netspend Prepaid card

Pay-As-You-GoMonthly FeeAdvantagePremier FeeAdvantage
Account opening fee$0$0$0
Monthly plan feeNone$9.95$5
Signature purchase transaction fee$1.50Included in planIncluded in plan
PIN purchase transaction fee$1.50Included in planIncluded in plan
US ATM/bank cash withdrawal fee$2.50$2.50$2.50
Balance inquiry fee$0 by text message; $0.50 by phone or ATM$0 by text message; $0.50 by phone or ATMNone
Account inactivity fee$5.95 a month$5.95 a month$5.95 a month
Foreign transaction fee4%4%4%

How to load the Western Union Netspend card?

There are several ways to add or reload money onto your Western Union Netspend card. These are your options, along with associated fees.

Direct deposit feeNone
Adding money at NetSpend Reload Network locationVaries by location
Bank transfer feeVaries by bank
Western Union money transfer feeFree to accept money. Fee varies for sending money.

View a full list of fees in the Western Union Netspend Prepaid Mastercard terms and conditions.

What’s great about the WU NetSpend Prepaid Mastercard?

If you’re in the market for a prepaid card, you may like these noteworthy features:

  • No account opening fee. The card comes with no activation fee, unlike many other prepaid cards.
  • Faster access to deposits. When you deposit your paycheck or government benefits directly to your card, you can access the funds up to two days faster than you would with a direct deposit to a bank account.
  • Load money quickly. Set up direct deposits, receive Western Union money transfers or reload your card at more than 130,000 locations in the NetSpend Reload Network.
  • Mobile banking app. The NetSpend Prepaid Mobile Banking app lets you upload checks, send money and receive Western Union transfers — all from your mobile phone.
  • Cash back. Earn cash back when you use your WU NetSpend Prepaid Mastercard at select merchants.
  • Refer a friend. If you refer a new user who funds their card with at least $40, you and that person each receive a $20 credit.

        What to watch out for

        Although the Western Union NetSpend Prepaid Mastercard has a long list of interesting perks, you may want to watch out for the following:

        • Not open to Vermont residents. If you live in Vermont, you’re not eligible for a Western Union Netspend Prepaid Mastercard account.
        • Not a credit card. This Mastercard is a prepaid card. You’ll need to load money to the card before using it.
        • Loads of fees. The prepaid card charges nickel-and-dime fees at every turn. Check the fee table before applying.
        • Account inactivity fee. If your account is dormant, you’ll pay $5.95 a month.

        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

        Name Product ATM withdrawal Monthly Fee Features
        Greenlight
        $0
        $4.99
        • Allowance payouts
        • Usage notifications
        • Parent-paid interest
        Greenlight is the prepaid debit card for kids that parents manage from their phones with flexible parental controls.
        BusyKid
        $0
        • High load limits
        • Invest in real stock
        • Donations to 20+ charities
        Link your child's BusyKid account to a prepaid card to help teach invisible money management. The base app has no fee, but you'll pay an additional $7.99 annually for each spend card
        ACE Flare Account
        $2.50
        $9.95 per month (or $5 with a $500+ direct deposit) $9.95
        • Earn interest on your Flare Account
        • Optional Debit Card Overdraft Service
        • Get paid up to 2 days faster with Direct Deposit
        Withdraw up to $400 in cash per day without a fee at participating ACE locations when you have qualifying Direct Deposit activity.
        FamZoo
        $0
        $5.99
        • Free trial
        • Real-time requests
        • Parent-paid interest
        Teach your children good money habits with this comprehensive prepaid card and account.
        Brinks Prepaid Mastercard
        $2.50
        $9.95 per month (or $5 with a $500+ direct deposit, or $0 with pay-as-you-go)
        • Mobile app
        • Direct deposit
        • Payback rewards
        No credit check. No minimum balance. No late fees because this is not a credit card.
        PayPal Prepaid Mastercard
        $1.95
        $4.95
        • Manage money on the fly
        • Receive special offers and cash back rewards
        • Get your state and federal tax refund faster than a paper check
        Use the no-cost direct deposit service and have access your funds up to two days faster than what traditional banks offer.
        NetSpend® Visa® Prepaid Card
        $2.50
        $9.95 per month (or $5 with a $500+ direct deposit, or $0 with pay-as-you-go)
        • No transaction fees
        • $5 per month with a $500+ direct deposit
        • Trusted by more than 7 million people
        With Netspend, you get a convenient way to manage your money on a prepaid card that is packed with features.
        Netspend Prepaid Mastercard, WWE partner
        $2.50
        $9.95 per month (or $5 with a $500+ direct deposit, or $0 with pay-as-you-go)
        • No activation fee
        • Payback rewards
        • No minimum balance required
        No credit check, mobile check load, and now a WWE partner
         Netspend All-Access Account by MetaBank
        $0
        $5
        • Earn cash back on everyday purchases
        • Earn up to 6% APY with an optional Savings Account
        • Receive your paycheck up to 2 days earlier with Direct Deposit
        With Netspend All-Access Account by MetaBank there's no credit check and no minimum balance to open an account.
        loading

        Compare up to 4 providers

        What should I know before I apply?

        If you live in Vermont, you’re ineligible for the WU NetSpend Prepaid Mastercard.

        Always consider your options and your financial situation before you apply for a prepaid card.

        Information you’ll need

        • Full name and contact information
        • Date of birth
        • Government ID number, if you’re looking to deposit government benefits checks

        How do I sign up for the Western Union Netspend Prepaid Mastercard?

        1. Go to the Western Union NetSpend Prepaid website and complete the on-screen application with details like your name, address and direct deposit information.
        2. Choose a card design, review the Cardholder Agreement and then click Get My Card to submit your application.

        How long will it take to be approved?

        You’ll typically receive a decision on your application right away. After you’re approved, your card arrives in the mail within seven business days.

        I got the card. Now what?

        • Avoid fees. You may be assessed fees for everything from a purchase to a simple balance inquiry. Check the fee table to understand the fees you might encounter.
        • Customer service. If you have questions, contact customer support at 800-214-5483.

        Frequently asked questions

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        10 Comments

        1. Default Gravatar
          Javonni
          March 12, 2019

          How do I sign up for the western union card

          • Avatarfinder Customer Care
            johnbasanes
            March 13, 2019

            Hi Javonni,

            Thank you for reaching out to Finder.

            Please see instructions below on how to apply for the Western Union NetSpend Prepaid Mastercard:

            Go to the Western Union NetSpend Prepaid website and click Get My Card.
            Complete the application with details like your name, address and direct deposit information. Choose a card design. Then click Get My Card to submit your application.

            Hope this helps!

            Cheers,
            Reggie

        2. Default Gravatar
          Kevin
          October 30, 2018

          How long does it take for a money transfer to be available on the card?

          • Avatarfinder Customer Care
            Jhez
            October 30, 2018

            Hello Kevin,

            Thank you for comment.

            Western Union NetSpend Prepaid MasterCard gives you access to your money as soon as the funds are electronically deposited to your card account and that can be up to 2 days.

            Should you wish to have real-time answers to your questions, try our chat box on the lower right corner of our page.

            Regards,
            Jhezelyn

        3. Default Gravatar
          Heidi
          October 25, 2018

          What is the limit for Mobile check load?

          • Avatarfinder Customer Care
            Charisse
            October 25, 2018

            Hi Heidi,

            Thanks for reaching out to finder.

            If you are referring to mobile check load service to credit funds from checks to your NetSpend card account, the limit is $2,500 per check; $5,000 per day and $10,000 per month. Also, please note that the checks must be in an amount between $5 and $2,500.

            I hope this helps.

            Cheers,
            Charisse

        4. Default Gravatar
          Marie
          October 7, 2018

          can i send monwy r another card

          • Default Gravatar
            nikkiangco
            October 8, 2018

            Hi Marie,

            Thanks for your inquiry and for visiting finder.

            Yes, you can send money to another Western Union NetSpend account. However, please be aware of the fees associated with this service. You can check the fee table as given above.

            Hope this helps! For any clarifications, feel free to message us again.

            Cheers,
            Nikki

        5. Default Gravatar
          Karen
          July 5, 2018

          Can someone put money on my western union card

          • Default Gravatar
            nikkiangco
            July 5, 2018

            Hi Karen,

            Thanks for leaving a question on our page.

            Yes, anyone can add money to your Western Union card via Direct Deposit. You can use this as your everyday expense account.

            Hope this helps.

            Cheers,
            Nikki

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