Prepaid debit cards are one way to manage your money without the hassle of going to a bank. These cards often come with the ability to manage your account online, or through mobile apps. Plus, some prepaid cards even offer rewards and other perks.

While you should choose your prepaid programs carefully, paying attention to the fees charged, one thing you can look for is refer-a-friend programs.

There are prepaid cards with refer-a-friend programs that can net you a decent return–as long as you follow the program rules and make sure the return outweighs the costs.

Related: 6 No Limit/High Limit Prepaid Debit Cards

7 Prepaid Cards with Refer-a-Friend Programs

Referral programs are used to incentivize consumers for spreading the word about products and services they love. If you’re looking for a good prepaid card, here are some options that will give you a bonus when you refer a friend and they accept.

1. AccountNow

One of the most generous referral programs is AccountNow, which offers a Gold Visa Prepaid Card. You can earn $20 per referral, while your friends each earn $10. This is a great deal for both of you, and provides an incentive for your friends to actually use your referral code.

There are three steps you need to follow in order to take advantage of this program:

  • Enroll and set up your personal referral code
  • Refer your friends online, giving them the referral code
  • Get paid after your friends use your referral code when enrolling using the online form

On top of the referral program, AccountNow also offers a Direct Deposit bonus. You could make pretty decent money if you refer enough friends and if you sign up for Direct Deposit as well.

2. Mango

Mangos money management system allows you to manage everything online as well as earn money for all your referrals, but the Mango prepaid card offering also has a specific program that gets you $10 for each friend you refer.

In order to qualify for the offer, you need to set up your own referral link based on your own Mango prepaid card. Next, you share that link. You won’t receive money for referrals unless the friend is a new cardholder who sets a PIN and sets up a Direct Deposit worth at least $50. So, if you decide to use Mango’s program, make sure your friends are clear about what they need to do.

3. PayPal

Over the years, PayPal has become more than just a payment facilitator. It now offers an array of financial services, including a prepaid card. The PayPal Prepaid Mastercard comes with a connected savings account that pays up to 5% APY, as well as a refer-a-friend program.

With PayPal’s prepaid card refer-a-friend program, you and your friend both get an extra $5 when they sign up, activate their card, and load it with $10. This is a great way to spread the news and get a little extra in your account.

4. Netspend

Another of the more generous prepaid cards with refer-a-friend programs is the Netspend offering. You can earn $20 for each friend you refer, and they get $20 as well. However, you need to make sure your friend uses your tailored referral and they need to load at least $40.

Once you get that squared away, you can both enjoy the extra money.

5. Control

With the Control Prepaid MasterCard, there are a number of features available, including prescription discounts and the ability to receive discounts on your monthly plan. However, there is also a refer-a-friend program. When your referrals load at least $40 into their new account, or gets it through Direct Deposit, you can get up to $20 in credit–and your referral gets up to $20 as well.

6. Walmart MoneyCard

If you choose the Walmart MoneyCard, you can get a $5 bonus when friends or family refer you. They should give you a referral code, and then you follow the steps to activate the card and get your bonus. Heres how it works:

  • Buy a MoneyCard at Walmart for $3, and load it with at least $20
  • Go online to activate your Card by the expiration date
  • Enter your referral code where prompted
  • Your $5 bonus should appear on your Card within 30 days

7. PEX

This is a little different. PEX offers prepaid expense cards, mostly for businesses. If you become an ambassador, and you refer businesses to the services, you can earn $400 for each client that signs up. While it’s not exactly a traditional way to go, it’s a way that you can make serious money through prepaid card referrals.

What to Know Before Signing Up for a Prepaid Card

Before you sign up for a prepaid card (and convince your friends to sign up as well), it’s a good idea to carefully consider the situation.

Many prepaid cards come with monthly fees and other costs. A good example is the Walmart MoneyCard. Sure, you get a $5 bonus when you use a referral code from one of your friends or family. However, you’ve already spent $3 just to buy the card. Your net benefit is $2.

Related: Best Free Prepaid Credit Cards

If you’re paying monthly fees, that can start to add up. When you look at prepaid cards with refer-a-friend programs, think about how much you’re spending just to be a card member. If you refer enough friends, and if the program doesn’t have a cap on referrals, you can make up for the fees fairly easily.

Another consideration is other perks. Some prepaid cards offer cash back rewards–even though they aren’t credit cards. You can also get some bonuses like prescription discounts or have some of your fees waived if you have a recurring Direct Deposit. Carefully read through the terms and conditions before moving forward with any prepaid card program.

Finally, don’t forget about the tax implications. First of all, when you get cash bonuses like this, the IRS does expect that you’ll report them in your income. Additionally, realize that some card issuers will issue 1099 forms, especially if you earn a high amount in referral bonuses. Be on the lookout for a 1099 so that you don’t get tripped up when tax time comes around.

Prepaid cards are increasingly popular, and you can find prepaid cards that offer perks and bonuses, but you do need to weigh the benefits against the fees you’re likely to pay. Make sure that you’re coming out ahead before you sign up with any prepaid card.


  • Miranda Marquit

    Miranda Marquit is a nationally-recognized financial writer and money expert. She has contributed to NPR, Marketwatch, Yahoo! Finance, U.S. News & World Report, FOX Business, The Hill and numerous other publications. Miranda is an avid podcaster and writes about money and freelancing at her website, []. She lives in Idaho and loves reading, board games, travel, the outdoors and spending time with her son.