Has anyone used a Wal-Mart money card in London? It is a VISA debit card, but I wondered if anyone had any particular experiences with the Wal-Mart one.
No experience with it, but are you looking into getting a prepaid card? That is something I am looking into as well. The good advice I have gotten so far, is to check the fees and interest rate.
Because prepaid card are not subject to the same rules and regulations that bank debit are you must read the fine very carefully. You have to answer at least these question.
What networks does it operate on? If Visa based it should be Plus.
What is the currency exchange rate used -- Should be interbank plus the network fee.
What specific fees are added to the conversion? Bank debit cards are required to separately list all fees, prepaid cards are not required. Prepaid cards are considered gift cards and outside of banking regulations that apply to bank debit cards. There are no ATMs usage fees from European ATMs.
What is the backup support in the event of lost or failure. Now do you get replacement and how do you add money?
Thanks for the replies! I will look further into it. Bobbie
I would really check the fine print. Most Visa prepaid cards have huge fees. Our credit union CFO suggested one of the Visa travel cards to us and when I mentioned the fees, she checked directly with Visa and was shocked to find a 7% charge - way, way higher than the 1% ATM Visa fee (neither the credit union or Europeon ATM machines have charged us extra fees). The prepaid cards are quite pricey - AAA wants you to use those instead of traveler's checks, but again, the fees are much, much higher (I haven't used a traveler's check in years - ATMs are great.)
After my earlier posting I did a little more research on the Walmart card. If I can find my notes I will post them. There was a set up fee, a monthly fee of 8.95, a fee to withdrawn but could not find any reference to the currency conversion fees.
The pre-paid Visa travel debit cards have higher fees, as has been mentioned. If you can get your own checking account, that would be a better option. You can get a separate one from your normal everyday account, if you feel better about that.
However, if you cannot get a checking account because of past errors on your part, a pre-paid card would be a better option than travelers checks.