Ben Todd | Apr 16, 2017 | 3
AccountNow Gold Prepaid Debit Card Review
While conducting our AccountNow Gold Prepaid debit card review, we discovered that the account is administered by Green Dot. The Green Dot prepaid card isn’t of a very high quality, so our expectations were rather low. As is usually the case, our expectations were right on the money. The AccountNow Gold prepaid debit card has high fees and they punish people for working with cash rather than with digital money online.
I have seen people reviewing the AccountNow MasterCard. We did not sign up for the AccountNow MasterCard (not even sure it exists). We signed up for an account with AccountNow and they issued us with a Visa card.
AccountNow Gold Prepaid Debit Card Review – Benefits And Features
- No inactivity fees
- You are not charged a fee for closing your account
- You will not have to pay to receive a card if you order it online
- It is a Visa card, which is more widely accepted than MasterCard
- There are no purchase fees
- You are not charged for declined transactions
- There are numerous ways to add cash to your account
- You may pay for expedited check clearing
- Pay bills with your account without paying a fee
- It is free to transfer money between AccountNow accounts
- The card is easy to get
Perks And Downsides
[+] You receive a $15 bonus if you set up a direct deposit and you deposit $500 or more for two consecutive months. It is a perk, but its only benefit is that it offsets your fees a little bit.
[+] There are no fees for closing the card, which is a perk these days because some prepaid cards are cheeky and money grubbing enough to charge people for closing their accounts.
[+] You do not have to pay for making a purchase, which is a perk because some prepaid card companies do. If you have to choose between a card that asks for a high maintenance fee and one that charges for purchases, it is often better to opt for the high monthly fee card.
[+] They have free text alerts that you can opt into. They tell you things such as if you have enough money in your account, or if one of your transactions has been declined.
[+] You are able to transfer money from your AccountNow Gold Prepaid Debit Card to another AccountNow account without paying a fee. You may also transfer money for free to PayPal accounts and other Green Dot cards.
[-] The AccountNow Gold Prepaid Debit Card comes with a steep monthly fee that you cannot avoid. You will have to pay at least $9.95 per month, which is $119.40 per year. Unlike with many other prepaid cards, there is no way of avoiding the monthly fee.
[-] There is no free way of uploading cash onto your card. There are plenty of ways to add cash, but no free ways. AccountNow offers some free methods you may use to add money to your card, such as by adding a check to your account via a mobile check deposit.
[-] If you want to add a check and have it processed the same day, then it will cost you between 1% and 4% of the total amount of your check. Obviously, you can avoid this charge by waiting ten days for the check to clear.
[-] As is usually the case with prepaid cards that are loaded with fees, it is easy to get one. There are no credit checks and very few eligibility criteria for you to contend with. If you have a poor credit rating, then it won’t matter to the AccountNow card issuers.
[-] What is wrong with their servers? We read a few online complaints about their website being unavailable from time to time, but we never thought we would see it for ourselves. There were quite a few times when we couldn’t access either the accounts we had set up, or even the website itself.
AccountNow Gold Prepaid Debit Card Review – Limits
You may put as much as $1500 cash money onto your card every day at a reload location. The $1500 limit is a little more than many other prepaid cards allow you to load in one day. You may load as much as $10,000 onto your card as a maximum balance. Many other cards allow a maximum of $10,000; it seems to be a common maximum balance figure.
You may withdraw as much as $300 from your account every day from an ATM. That is rather low, as the market average is around $550. For example, Mango allows you to withdraw $600 per day from an ATM. Kaiku allows you to withdraw $500, and NetSpend allows you to withdraw $940 per day.
AccountNow Gold Prepaid Debit Card Review – Fees And Charges
You cannot reload your account with a transfer from your bank account, which is rather unusual. There is also a fee for ACH debits.
The AccountNow website claims you can get around their ATM fees by requesting cash back when you shop for things, but there is still a chance you will be charged for it. Since they charge extra fees for ATM withdrawals abroad, you should probably try the cash-back trick over there.
$1.00 per month for people statements
$2.50 debit fees
$10.00 to replace your Visa card
$10.00 to acquire a second card for your account
$25.00 to expedite your card replacement
$1.50 to check your balance at an ATM
$0.00 to pay your bills with your account
$9.95 to pay your bills and have them processed the same day
3% for foreign currency transactions
1% – 4% of your total check amount is deducted for same-day check clearing
$4.95 to add cash money to your account
Whom Should Take Note Of This AccountNow Gold Prepaid Debit Card Review?
People on benefits who are unable to get a bank account and are unable to get a cheaper prepaid card should consider an AccountNow Gold card. AccountNow Gold prepaid debit card seems to prefer money from benefit checks, deposited checks and cash from reloads at physical locations. The company does not charge you extra for paying bills or making purchases, so the biggest fee you have will be the monthly fee.
While writing our AccountNow Gold prepaid debit card review, we discovered that the only ways to get digital money into your account are with a paycheck, or a government issued check. Direct deposits from government/benefit agencies are also acceptable. That is what we were told about direct deposits, I couldn’t do my own research into that one because I am not owed money by the government.
User Comments And Reviews
[+] You can pay to have your checks cleared a little earlier. They may be processed the same day. The fee depends on how much your check is worth.
[+] Have your bills paid right away by paying for same-day processing. Usually, your bank processes your bills right away, but some prepaid cards will not. AccountNow Gold doesn’t process your bill payments right away, but you can pay extra so that they will.
[+] Government checks, especially benefit checks, are often cleared an average of two days earlier. If you have a bank account, you will find that your AccountNow Gold Prepaid Debit Card clears your government checks two days earlier than your bank.
[+] You are able to deposit your checks online by typing in the information and taking a photo of your check. Some banks and prepaid card companies use an app, but there is no app with AccountNow.
[+] It is a handy card to have if you have just lost your bank account and you need something to replace it quickly. If you load a lot of money into your card at one time, then they will require more identification than just your personal details and social security number.
[-] Many people have complained online about the fact that the customer support staff speaks broken enough. They also appear to be reading from a script because they repeat the same things over and over again.
[-] The fact they charge to check your balance at an ATM is disgraceful as it is, but the fact they charge $1.50 to check your balance is absolutely scandalous.
[-] Quite a few people online have complained that AccountNow has blocked or frozen their account because they put slightly larger amounts of money into their account. There are quite a few people complaining about this online, and about how they had to send extra verification information.
[-] The customer service seems to be fairly powerless. If you have the same problem and cannot get it resolved, the customer service department seems unable to escalate the problem. They also seem unable to offer extra help other than what they say originally.
[-] Though it is a difficult claim to confirm, there are some people online that claim AccountNow do not investigate fraud and/or identity theft. They say that AccountNow simply close down compromised accounts and refuse to allow victims to reapply for a card. If this is true, then AccountNow are setting themselves up as big targets for scammers, hackers and identity thieves.
Conclusion – AccountNow Gold Prepaid Debit Card Review
To conclude our AccountNow Gold prepaid debit card review, I have to say that the AccountNow Gold prepaid debit card is missing some key features. Loading your account with money is not as easy as it should be, their ATM charges are a joke, and their customer support is ineffective. Their fees are far too high. Their only redeeming feature is that they do not charge you for making purchases (which prepaid cards shouldn’t be doing anyway). There is no mobile app, there is no free way to load cash, and their frickin website kept going offline and/or making itself unavailable to us.
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My AccountNow Gold Prepaid debit card review said earlier that people who are on benefits should probably consider this type of prepaid card, but that is only if you are desperate. Prepaid companies such as this are targeting people with very little money or people who are in financial trouble–and companies such as this are making those people’s troubles worse. AccountNow is not the worst prepaid debit card on the market, but I can’t in good conscience recommend them until they start doing a better job and stop charging such ridiculous fees.