BBVA Compass ClearSpend Visa Review

The BBVA Compass ClearSpend Visa prepaid card is an inexpensive prepaid card option for those that live in its seven state service area. It has a low (and waivable) monthly fee with a no-fee ATM network, but the card has low balance and load limits and isn’t available in 43 out of the 50 states. Here’s what you need to know.

BBVA Compass ClearSpend At-a-Glance

8.5

Features

8.5/10

Fees

9.5/10

Card Limits

7.5/10

Pros

  • Low Fees
  • Free ATM
  • Mobile budgeting

Cons

  • Regional (7 state) service area
  • Lower card balance limit

BBVA Compass ClearSpend Visa Overview

The BBVA Compass ClearSpend Visa is issued by BBVA Compass bank through the Visa network. The ClearSpend Visa is available only to residents of Alabama, Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, New Mexico or Texas–the states where BBVA Compass has branch locations.

BBVA Compass ClearSpend Visa® not what you're looking for? Check out other options in our Best Prepaid Debit Cards list.

The ClearSpend Visa has a $4 monthly fee but waives the monthly fee if you load $400 or more per month. You can also add a secondary user and receive an additional card for free.

A unique feature of the BBVA Compass ClearSpend prepaid card is its well-developed budgeting app. After your first month using the card, it will automatically categorize your transactions and track your spending. Set limits for each category and receive alerts when you are approaching those limits. This card can be a real benefit for those who struggle with overspending.

You can get a BBVA Compass ClearSpend Visa prepaid card for free online, through BBVA’s mobile app, or in any BBVA location. The card has lots of reload options with free cash and check loads at any BBVA location.

You can withdraw cash at any Allpoint ATM with no fee, and there are over 50,000 Allpoint ATMs across the country. But out-of-network ATM fees are $2.00 per transaction.

Features

The BBVA Compass ClearSpend Visa card has basic features without too many bells and whistles. The card includes direct deposit, text alerts, and a mobile app–with one limitation.

Mobile App: BBVA Compass ClearSpend Visa has a full mobile app where you can check your balance and transactions, and find nearby BBVA branches. However, you can not deposit checks through the mobile app.

The mobile app does have a stand-out feature with its budgeting capabilities. The app allows you to set spending limits by category and the Compass ClearSpend card will automatically sort your transactions into budget categories and notify you when you approach spending limits.

Text Alerts: Through the online portal or mobile app, users can sign up for text alerts on transactions, deposits, and budget limits.

Limits

The card balance and cash load limits on the BBVA Compass ClearSpend Visa are lower than many cards. You can have up to a $6,500 balance on the BBVA Compass ClearSpend Visa – considerably lower than other prepaid cards. The daily cash load limit is $2,500, also lower than the average.

The ATM withdrawal limit is $600 a day, slightly lower than the average for prepaid cards.

However, the maximum daily spending limit for the card is $3,500, in line with most prepaid cards.

Fees

The BBVA Compass ClearSpend Visa has a $4.00 monthly fee, which can be waived if you direct deposit $400 a month.

The card also has an extensive ATM network through Allpoint, giving users access to over 55,000 ATMs for free across the country. However, if you do use an out-of-network ATM, there is a $2.00 ATM fee, in addition to the fee from the ATM owner.

There are no inactivity, activation, or transaction fees. If you wish to close the card and receive the remaining balance by check, there is a $15 fee.

How to Load Money on the BBVA Compass ClearSpend Visa

There are several ways to load the BBVA Compass ClearSpend Visa.

Direct Deposit: Paychecks and government benefits checks can be loaded on the card via direct deposit without a fee.

In-Person Branch Deposit: Load cash or deposit checks for free at any BBVA Compass branch location. However, with just over 670 branch locations across seven states there may not be a location in your area.

Visa ReadyLink: If you don’t have a BBVA Compass branch in your area, or are out of state, you can visit one of over 50,000 Visa ReadyLink locations to load your card with cash or check. However, fees for this service varies and can be up to $4.50 per load.

Online Bank, Popmoney, PayPal, or Venmo Transfer: If you have a bank account or money transfer account from providers such as Popmoney, PayPal, or Venmo, you can transfer funds to the BBVA Compass ClearSpend Visa for free.

Getting Cash

There are two ways to get cash from the BBVA Compass ClearSpend Visa:

ATMs: The free ATM network is one of the key perks of the BBVA Compass ClearSpend Visa. You can withdraw money from a BBVA Compass or Allpoint ATM (there are over 55,000 across the country) with no fee. If you do need to use an out-of-network ATM, BBVA Compass charges a $2.00 fee.

Cash Back at Retailers: Many retailers allow you to get cash back when making purchases using your PIN number.

Getting the BBVA Compass ClearSpend Visa

You can order your prepaid card online or directly through the BBVA Compass ClearSpend app with no fee. Or visit a BBVA Compass branch to receive your card immediately. Like most brick and mortar bank-issued cards, it’s not available at retail store locations.

Getting a BBVA Compass ClearSpend Visa, like other prepaid cards, does not require a credit check or ChexSystems inquiry and has no income requirements. You do need a valid social security number to verify your identity.

Summary

For users who are a resident of Alabama, Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, New Mexico or Texas the BBVA Compass ClearSpend Visa can be a good low-fee prepaid card option. The card charges a reasonable monthly fee of $4 that drops to $0 with a $400 load per month. The Compass ClearSpend card makes it easy to get cash with no fee with its large ATM network.

Although the card is somewhat of a no-frills card, the budgeting features in its mobile app is a big plus.

However, if you plan to carry high amounts on your prepaid card or live outside the seven states where BBVA is available, you should consider a prepaid card with national reach.

Best For: Prepaid card users who live in BBVA Compass’ service area, have a regular need for ATM access and could use a hand with budgeting.

Not So Good ForPrepaid card users who don’t live in the limited service area or load large amounts onto their cards.

Features

Direct Deposit
Mobile App
Text Alerts

Limits

Card Limit:
$6,500
Daily Spending Limit:
$3,500
Daily ATM Limit:
$600
Daily Cash Load:
$2,500

Fees

Activation Fee:
$0.00
Monthly Fee:
$4.00
ATM Fee (in network):
$0.00
ATM Fee (out of network):
$2.00
Signature Purchase Fee:
$0.00
PIN Purchase Fee:
$0.00
Direct Deposit Fee:
$0.00
Cash Reload Fee:
$0.00