Brink's Prepaid MasterCard® Review
The Brink's Prepaid MasterCard® offers bank level features without hefty fees. From bill pay to a mobile app, text alerts to a purchase cushion, the Brinks reloadable debit card is one of our tap rated prepaid cards. Compare its features and fees in our detailed review.
Brink's Prepaid MasterCard® Overview
The Brink's Prepaid MasterCard® is a good option for anyone who wants to be able to get their money quickly and manage their funds around the clock using a smartphone. Cardholders can sign up for direct deposit to get paychecks or government benefits up to two days faster than what banks can offer. Money can be added from your existing bank account, your PayPal account or another Brink’s card.
Here’s a look at some of the other perks offered by this card:
- Trust Brink’s with your money. Securing cash and valuables since 1859.
- Get paid up to 2 days faster with Direct Deposit.
- Access your money whenever, wherever you are. Use your mobile phone and online Account Center to check your balance, send money, find reload/ATM locations and much more.
- Let Alerts help you stay connected to your money. Know when your card is used, direct deposit arrives, transaction details and your available balance.
- Shop securely Online with a Virtual Account so you don’t have to use your card number.
- Add extra protection for shopping in stores by putting your photo on your card.
- Earn Cash Back via the Payback Rewards program from restaurants, shops and more.
- $10 Purchase Cushion When You’re A Little Short.
The Basics of the Brink's Prepaid MasterCard®
The Brink's Prepaid MasterCard® rises to the top of the list of prepaid cards available out there because of the fact that it is one of the only options that actually lets you use a card without paying any fees. In addition, you get some choice when it comes to deciding which card tier you want to purchase. Here are the three options:
- Pay-As-You-Go Plan
- Preferred Fee Plan
- Monthly Fee Plan
The Pay-As-Go Plan can be used without paying any type of monthly fee. The $5 per month you’ll pay for the Preferred Fee Plan is nearly half the cost of most other popular cards on the market today. The $9.95 monthly cost of signing up for the Monthly Fee Plan is right on par with what most other mainstream prepaid debit cards charge. One thing to know is that the Pay-As-You-Go Plan does charge signature purchase transaction fees and PIN purchase transaction fees. Those fees are waived when you belong to either of the other two plan options. All three plan tiers charge 3.5 percent of the dollar amount of a purchase transaction whenever you make foreign transactions.
A Closer Look at the Fees
There are some fees to keep in mind as you use your card. One nice feature is that you can check your balance for free via text or using your online account. What do the rest of the fees look like once you start using your Brink’s Prepaid MasterCard to make purchases? Here’s a glance at the basics:
- $2.50 cash withdrawal fee for over-the-counter transactions at financial institutions
- $2.50 ATM cash withdrawal fee
- $4.95 international ATM cash withdrawal fee
- $1 ATM transaction decline fee
Cash reloads on your card at Netspend reload locations and over-the-counter withdrawals at Netspend reload locations are subject to fees. However, those fees will vary based on location. In addition, fees for completing a mobile check load will also vary by provider. This could detract from the ease of owning this card if you don’t like being surprised by fee amounts.
Fees aren’t the only things you’ll have to keep in mind as you use your card. There are also some penalties for users. Here’s a look at what you’re potentially facing:
- $15 fee per overdraft
- $5.95 monthly inactivity fee if card isn’t used for 90 days
- $10 fee for stopped payments
- $1 fee for declined payments
You will have to be careful because fees and penalties can add up pretty quickly if you’re not vigilant. The inactivity fee associated with the card should make you think twice about signing up for a monthly plan if you aren’t sure you’ll actually be using the card on a regular basis.
Some Extra Perks
This card offers cardholders cash whenever they refer friends. You’ll receive $20 whenever a friend that you referred signs up for a card and loads at least $40. That friend also receives $20. You can also look forward to getting rewards when you make purchases using your prepaid card. The company will send offers from stores, restaurants and brands that you like directly to your account. You’ll get money credited back to your account when you accept the offers and make purchases. This aspect of the card works a lot like the loyalty programs offered by major credit cards.
What You Should Think of the Brink’s Prepaid MasterCard
The choice to pay as you go or sign up for an actual plan is a feature that makes the Brink’s PrePaid MasterCard a nice product. Of course, you will need to watch out for fees that can add up quickly. This might not be the card for you if you’re prone to overdrafts or you won’t be using your card every single month. The bottom line is that the Brink’s Prepaid MasterCard deserves consideration if you’re looking for a card that offers easy management tools and minimal fees for standard usage.