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Saturday, September 26, 2020

Chase Prepaid Card — Liquid Debit Card Review & Top 3 Alternatives

Chase Prepaid Card Review

credit card advice

Brittney Mayer
By: Brittney Mayer
Updated: May 28, 2020
Advertiser Disclosure

When I opened my first checking account, I thought it was about the coolest thing ever. In return for opening a totally free account, I received a giant book of checks and a sweet signup bonus: my very own George Foreman Grill. Now, not only could I use the power of my pen to make a purchase — but I could cut the fat and seal in the flavor.

Nowadays, most checking accounts are dripping with fees, not flavor. In today’s digital world, though, it’s hard to escape the need for a checking account, whether for mandatory direct deposits or just the little plastic debit card that makes online purchasing possible.

For those who want to skip the account but keep the plastic, there is the Chase Liquid card. A reloadable, prepaid debit card, Chase Liquid is one of the most affordable ways to pay with plastic without having the hassle of a checking account. Keep reading for our Chase prepaid card review. We’ll also take a look at some of our top choices for alternatives to the Chase Liquid card that may be better suited to your unique financial situation. Finally, we’ll address Chase’s gift card offerings — or lack thereof.

Liquid Card Review | Top 3 Alternatives | Chase Gift Cards

The Chase Liquid Prepaid Card: 4.0/5.0 Rating

One of the first things most people ask about a reloadable card is likely one of the most important things to you, too: the fees. Well, unlike some other prepaid cards on the market, the Chase Liquid doesn’t charge any fees to open, load, buy, or reload your card.

In fact, other than a non-Chase ATM fee and the standard gambit of special service fees — for things like money orders and currency exchanges — the Chase Liquid is just about fee-less. Your Liquid Card will only cost you a flat monthly rate of $4.95.

The card will even come with a variety of benefits typical of many checking accounts, including online bill pay and a mobile banking application. Your Chase Liquid card is accepted anywhere Visa Debit is accepted, and you can access your funds, for free, from any of the more than 15,000 Chase ATMs around the country.

Screenshot of Chase Liquid Prepaid Homepage

The Chase Liquid Prepaid Card comes with many of the same benefits of a traditional checking account while offering the control of a reloadable card — all for a flat monthly fee.

Your card can be loaded at any Chase branch, through a Chase DepositFriendly℠ ATM, via a fund transfer from an eligible account, or through direct deposit. Cash and direct deposits are available the same day, with checks taking at least one business day to process.

If the Chase Liquid Card can be said to have any particular drawback, it’s likely the limited availability. To open a Liquid Card, you must head into a local Chase Bank location — which is fine, unless you live in one of the 24 states without a Chase branch. You can use the location finder on Chase’s website to see if there is a branch near you.

When you do head in to open your card, be sure to take two forms of identification, including a valid photo ID. Your card can be opened with as little as $25, and you’ll be able to walk out of the bank with a fully activated card.

Top 3 Prepaid Card Alternatives

For those who don’t live near a Chase branch and are interested in a prepaid or reloadable card, don’t worry — tons of great options are out there. Start your search by checking out our top four picks for prepaid cards.

PayPal Prepaid Mastercard® Review

at Netspend'ssecure website

PREPAID RATING

★★★★★
4.8

OVERALL RATING

3.6/5.0
  • Move money from your PayPal account to fund your prepaid card account.
  • Earn cash back and personalized offers, just for using your card.
  • With Direct Deposit, you can get paid faster than a paper check.
  • Card issued by The Bancorp Bank, Member FDIC. Card may be used everywhere Debit Mastercard is accepted.
  • Click PayPal Prepaid Mastercard® for additional features & program details, and to request a Card.
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
N/A
N/A
N/A
Variable Monthly Fee
Not applicable
Bluebird by American Express® Review

at the issuer'ssecure website

PREPAID RATING

★★★★★
4.8

OVERALL RATING

4.0/5.0
  • Get your paycheck up to 2 days faster with free direct deposit
  • Cash your checks to your Account with the Bluebird Mobile app. Access your money in minutes for a fee or in 10 days for free if your check is not returned unpaid.
  • Enjoy Card Membership benefits such as Purchase Protection and Fraud Protection when making purchases online or in store with Bluebird
  • Get free ATM access at over 30,000 MoneyPass® ATM locations. You can also pick up cash at over 4,500 Walmart® stores with Cash Pickup Powered by Ria®.
  • Pay no monthly fees or overdraft fees
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
N/A
N/A
N/A
$0
Not applicable
NetSpend® Visa® Prepaid Card Review

at Netspend'ssecure website

PREPAID RATING

★★★★★
4.8

OVERALL RATING

3.5/5.0
  • With Netspend Direct Deposit, you can get paid faster than a paper check.
  • No late fees or interest charges because this is not a credit card.
  • No Overdraft Fees on purchases using your card.
  • Use the NetSpend Mobile App to manage your account on the go and get text message or email alerts (Message & data rates may apply).
  • Card issued by MetaBank®, Member FDIC. Card may be used everywhere Visa Debit cards are accepted. Click "Get My Card" for full details.
  • See additional NetSpend® Prepaid Visa® details.
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
N/A
N/A
N/A
Variable Monthly Fee
Not applicable

+See More Prepaid Debit Cards

Chase Bank No Longer Offers Gift Cards

Our modern reliance on the power of plastic for our purchases is particularly pervasive; it’s hard to escape the necessity of a debit or credit card. Not only do we use them to buy just about everything we need (and don’t need) in our day-to-day lives, but they’ve also started to supplant the gift — in the form of the gift card. No longer must we tirelessly shop for just the right present; instead, we buy just the right gift card.

For some, purchasing a bank-branded gift card that acts like a debit card is the ultimate universal gift — and those who receive them tend to agree (especially if they’re teenagers). Unfortunately, if you have your sights set on a Chase gift card, you’re going to be disappointed, as Chase Bank no longer produces branded gift cards.

Instead, you can head into nearly any grocery or convenience store to pick up one of the many other issuer- or bank-branded gift cards sure to please your paramour. It seems like I pass two or three endcaps packed from floor to ceiling with gift cards every time I go grocery shopping. Or, consider something more from the heart — such as a versatile, powerful, “Lean, Mean, Grilling Machine” — because small appliances are the gifts that keep on giving.

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