Prepaid cards can be a great way to carry around a little cash without worrying about going over a budget, but as Consumer Reports points out, they have a lot of disadvantages. Chief among them is the lack of protection for purchases, but as they also note, prepaid cards also come with a few fees you might not be aware of.
Image: Kristopha Hohn.
The biggest complaint Consumer Reports has with prepaid cards is the fact you aren’t guaranteed the same protections you are with a credit card. For instance, if you make a big purchase online and the item shows up damaged, you don’t get protection through your credit card and have to go straight through the delivery company. They also point out a bunch of fees you might not be aware of. These include fees to load new funds, to call customer service and even for balance-inquiries.