personal reloading their prepaid card

10 Ways to Use a Reloadable Prepaid Card

May 9, 2023

Controlling your spending can be as easy as using a reloadable prepaid card rather than the debit card linked to all the money in your bank account.

If you haven't heard of reloadable prepaid debit cards already, then you might be missing out on an invaluable budgeting tool. Prepaid cards make it incredibly easy to control your spending and completely avoid overdrafting and overdraft fees. 

A prepaid debit card is a hybrid between a gift card and a regular debit card. Besides a few key differences, reloadable prepaid cards and debit cards work very similarly and do many of the same things. 

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Reloadable Prepaid Card vs Debit Card 

venn diagram showing the differences and similarities between prepaid cards and debit cards

There are both similarities and differences between prepaid cards and debit cards that you'll want to know about. Once you know how a reloadable prepaid debit card works and what makes it special, you'll be able to take full advantage of its unique features. 

How reloadable prepaid cards and debit cards are similar:

Prepaid cards and debit cards work in very similar ways. They are both cards that have money on them and can be used to make in-store and online purchases. 

How reloadable prepaid cards and debit cards are different: 

Prepaid cards are not linked to a bank account while regular debit cards are linked to a bank account. Because of this, prepaid cards do not require users to have a bank account while regular debit cards require users to have a bank account. 

To put money on a prepaid card you just need to log into your online account with the prepaid card provider or visit a store that offers prepaid card reload services.

To put money on a debit card you need to have a bank account where you can deposit funds by going to your bank or logging into your online bank account. 

How to Get a Debit Card

To get a debit card you'll need to apply for a bank account with a bank. If you meet the bank's requirements and get approved for a checking account, then you will receive a debit card that goes with that checking account. 

How to Get a Reloadable Prepaid Card

To get a prepaid card you'll need to visit a store like Check City where prepaid cards are offered. You will just need to fill out a quick application and provide a photo ID to get approved for a card. 

If you're approved, you'll get your reloadable prepaid card and be able to load funds directly onto it. To load more funds onto your card later, just visit a prepaid card store like Check City or log into your account on the prepaid card provider's website. 

10 Ways To Use a Reloadable Prepaid Card

There are pros and cons to both debit cards and reloadable prepaid cards. One pro to using prepaid cards is that even if you have a debit card, you can still benefit from having a prepaid card as well. 

Prepaid cards also come with fewer requirements than debit cards with some banks. With a prepaid card, you can enjoy a simple card experience with no overdrafts, no overspending, no minimum balance requirements, and no credit checks (depending on the prepaid card provider you've chosen). 

Below are a few of the many ways you can use prepaid cards to your own advantage: 

1. Manage personal spending 

Prepaid cards can be a great way to manage your personal spending. You probably have lots of household expenses each month like bills, groceries, and dish detergent, but what about when you want to buy something for yourself? 

It can be hard to find ways to effectively set money aside for yourself each month. But a little bit of luxury spending or personal spending is important to get the things you want and have some fun every once in a while. 

Get yourself a reloadable prepaid card and load it with money that is meant just for you. 

2. Allowance for the kids 

Allowance can be a great thing for kids. It can be used as a reward system for when they get good grades, it can be a payment method for doing extra chores or babysitting younger siblings, or it can be used as a teaching tool to help kids understand finances on a smaller scale. 

But where does your child put their allowance? You can give them cash to store in a piggy bank but as children get older it's nice to offer them a more streamlined allowance solution. 

Get a prepaid card for your child and load the money for their allowance onto that card. Now they'll have a modern, convenient, safe, and easy way to store and use their allowance. 

3. Grocery budget 

One of the things everyone needs to buy all the time is food. We all need food every day of our lives and it can be easy to overspend at the grocery store when we don't have a clear plan or when we're already hungry. 

Instead of going to the grocery store on an empty stomach with no plan, eat first and get yourself a reloadable prepaid card just for grocery shopping. Now you can load up your food budget onto that card and never overspend on food again! 

4. Eating out 

So many financial advisors encourage their followers and clients to avoid eating out. But for many of us, that just isn't going to happen. Eating out is a fun way to enjoy your food, spend time with the people you go out to eat with, and make your day a little easier by taking cooking dinner off the table. 

Instead of cutting out take-out, get a prepaid card specifically for your eating-out budget. Now you'll have a controlled amount to spend on eating out each month and a controlled way to keep and use those planned funds. 

5. Clothes shopping

shopping bags

Spending money on clothing can feel like a luxury expense you should avoid as much as possible. But keeping your wardrobe fresh, updated, and full of essentials for work and for your personal life is a necessary part of life. 

Instead of feeling guilty every time you buy a new shirt, use a prepaid card to store and use your clothing budget. Prepaid cards can even be used to make online clothing purchases from all your favorite brands. 

6. Travel money 

Set up your finances for traveling using a prepaid card. These cards can be used to help budget money for a trip in so many ways. 

This card could hold your gas budget, travel budget, food budget, restaurant budget, or souvenir budget. Now you can have guilt-free fun on your trip because those travel expenses have been planned and organized in an easy-to-use, convenient way. 

7. Giftcard 

This type of card makes a great gift because it's essentially a reusable gift card. What's more, your gift recipient can use this card anywhere debit cards can be used. This includes online!

Give a prepaid card as a gift and you'll be giving them gift card money they can use anywhere and a prepaid card they can reload and reuse as often as they want. Now they have gift money for some fun personal shopping and a useful money management tool. 

8. Bankless payments 

Not everyone has a bank account. Not having a bank account can make your life difficult in some ways, especially when it comes to receiving payments. You want the easy convenience of a card but you don't want the fees and requirements that come with opening an entire bank account. 

That's where prepaid cards come in handy. You can have all the convenience of a debit card without the hassle of a bank account.

Now when you get paid you can upload your money to a reloadable prepaid card without the hassle of opening an entire bank account. This is also a great way to set up a payment method for teenagers you hire to mow your lawn or babysit your kids. 

9. Save up for something

A savings account at a bank can come with requirements that overcomplicate saving. You just want a safe, secure, and accessible place to store your savings. By loading savings money onto a prepaid card you can save up for virtually anything and then easily access your savings money just by using the card. 

You could save up for a vacation, a new laptop, a new desk for your home office, and more! You could even store some savings for a rainy day like if your car breaks down and needs repairs. 

10. Business spending

business building with a card for making payments

Use this card to buy things for your business. By using a reloadable prepaid card for business purchases you can keep a strict budget, keep careful records, and keep small business expenses separate from your personal expenses and financial accounts. 

Otherwise, you might have to invest in opening an entire business bank account. For bigger businesses, this might make sense, but when you're a freelancer or entrepreneur a prepaid card might be all you need to keep your business expenses separate and organized. 

Check City isn't a bank, it's a simpler financial institution made with consumers in mind. That's why we provide simpler, bankless options like reloadable prepaid cards.

Everyone needs some financial services but that doesn't mean you have the time or the energy to deal with the many aspects of banks, bank accounts, and debit cards. 

Visit Check City and enjoy accessible, simplified financial services that are designed to make your life easier.