6 tips for controlling prepaid card fees
Read the card's fine print
Before selecting a card, examine the terms and conditions. These also may be listed under "what it costs," "fees" or something similar. Currently prepaid debit cards have no uniformity in their standards for fee disclosure, says Bruce McClary, manager of public policy and government relations for ClearPoint Credit Counseling Solutions in Seattle. If you can't find the list of fees on the institution's website or on the card's packaging in a retail store, ask for a complete list of fee disclosures.
"Since fees don't come in one single flavor, you should be mindful of how you intend to use the card when reviewing the costs," McClary says. "Some cards charge fees for reloading your balance, and others may charge a fee each time you check your balance."
If you see something you don't understand in the fee section, ask for clarification from the card issuer or a credit expert. The embarrassment of asking a question pales in comparison to the feelings experienced after going broke because of an uninformed financial decision, McClary says.