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This article was last updated Nov 01, 2019. Terms and conditions may have changed. For the most accurate information, please consult the issuer website.
If you’ve ever had to split the check at dinner, cover your portion of the cable bill or simply pay for services that may not accept credit cards (like dog-walking services), chances are you’ve used a peer-to-peer payment app, like Venmo.
But in addition to allowing you to send and receive money via a mobile app, Venmo also offers a debit card issued by The Bancorp Bank. The Venmo Debit Card is a physical debit card that’s linked to your Venmo account and can be used to make purchases anywhere Mastercard is accepted in the U.S. Each time you make a purchase using your card, funds will automatically be debited from your Venmo account balance.
If you attempt to make a purchase that exceeds your available Venmo balance, it’s possible to cover the remaining amount through “reloads.” When you enable reloads, funds will automatically be pulled from your selected bank account — in increments of $10 — to cover the full purchase amount.
You can apply for the Venmo Debit Card through the Venmo app. Once you are approved, you will receive your Venmo Debit Card at your home address within seven to 10 business days.
In this review, we’ll break down the pros and cons of the Venmo Debit Card, as well as show how it compares to the PayPal Prepaid Mastercard®.
In this post:
- Where the Venmo Debit Card stands out
- Where the Venmo Debit Card falls short
- Compare it to the PayPal Prepaid Mastercard®
- The bottom line
Where the Venmo Debit Card stands out
Mastercard acceptance. You can use the Venmo Debit Card anywhere Mastercard is accepted in the U.S., both in stores and online, as well as at ATMs that display the Mastercard, PULSE, Cirrus or MoneyPass acceptance marks.
Venmo rewards. Like most debit cards, the Venmo Debit Card does not offer a traditional rewards program. However, the card does offer special cashback incentives from time to time. For example, cardholders currently can earn 5% cash back (up to $10 per day) on purchases made using your Venmo Debit Card at Target, Target.com and the Target app.
To see if this offer is still available and to view a current list of participating merchants and offers, visit the Venmo app.
Additional Venmo Debit Card benefits
- ATM access
- Instantly disable and enable card from app
- Choose from 6 different card colors
- Contactless payment
Where the Venmo Debit Card falls short
Fees. With the Venmo Debit Card, you will incur a fee of $2.50 per ATM withdrawal within U.S. (plus any amounts charged by the ATM owner). Additionally, you will be charged an over-the-counter withdrawal fee of $3.00 per signature withdrawal if a signature is required to obtain cash.
Not for international use. The Venmo Debit Card cannot be used to make purchases outside of the U.S. or with international merchants — even if the purchases are made online from the U.S.
Compare it to the PayPal Prepaid Mastercard®
Venmo’s parent company, PayPal, offers the PayPal Prepaid Mastercard®, which is linked to your PayPal account and can be used at stores, over the phone and online — anywhere Mastercard is accepted. Additionally, the card can be used at ATMs around the world.
See how the cards compare side by side in the table below.
Venmo Debit Card vs. PayPal Prepaid Mastercard®
|Venmo Debit Card||PayPal Prepaid Mastercard®|
|Additional fees||$3.00 per signature withdrawal if a signature is required to obtain cash.
$2.50 per ATM withdrawal within U.S. (plus any amounts charged by the ATM owner).
|$4.95 monthly plan fee
$1.95 per ATM cash withdrawal, plus ATM owner surcharge fee, if any
$2.50 over-the-counter withdrawal fee at financial institutions
$5.95 rush card replacement request
2.5% foreign transaction fee
Although the PayPal Prepaid Mastercard® doesn’t come with an annual fee, it does charge a $4.95 monthly plan fee — which adds up to $59.40 per year. However, the ATM fees are comparable to those of the Venmo Debit Card.
If you are a PayPal user who doesn’t want to pay a monthly fee and who wants to earn cash back on every purchase, you may want to consider the PayPal Cashback Mastercard® instead. The card comes with a $0 annual fee and offers 2% cash back on every purchase.
The bottom line
If you regularly use a payment app to send and receive money — and you want the ability to use your balance to make purchases in stores and online, the Venmo Debit Card and the PayPal Prepaid Mastercard® are both solid options. Just keep in mind that, while the PayPal Prepaid Mastercard® can be used outside of the U.S., it also comes with more fees.
But if you are partial to the Venmo app and would prefer a credit card over a debit card, you’ll be happy to know that the first-ever Venmo consumer credit card — issued by Synchrony — is expected to launch in the second half of 2020. Details of the upcoming card have not yet been released. However, according to a recent press release, the card “will combine Venmo’s expertise in mobile design and social user experience with Synchrony’s industry-leading technology.”