Review of RushCard Prepaid Cards – An Excellent Choice for the Unbanked

No bank, no problem. A RushCard Prepaid card may be exactly what you’re looking for. It’s even safer than carrying cash!

RushCard review

Have you been having difficulty getting a bank account or credit card due to poor credit history? Or are you concerned about using your credit card or bank debit card for online purchases from unknown merchants? If either of these situations apply to you, the answer may be a prepaid debit card.

RushCard Prepaid Cards are one of the best prepaid cards available. Your credit history is not a factor in determining your eligibility. And as a Visa card, it can be used in the very same ways as credit cards and debit cards issued by banks.

What is RushCard?

Rushcard Prepaid Visa ReviewLearn More

RushCard is a prepaid credit card that was established in 2003. Since then, it has been used by millions of consumers. RushCard has partnered with MetaBank and Visa to offer the card. It offers point-of-sale purchases, ATM access, direct deposit, and all the features of a bank debit card.

With the Visa tie-in, you can use RushCard anywhere Visa debit cards are accepted. You can use your card for purchases, but you can also use it to get in-store cash back, or cash at an in-network ATM machine. You can even withdraw cash inside most bank branches.

The RushCard prepaid Visa debit card is perfect for anyone who can’t qualify for a traditional credit card. But it’s also an excellent financial tool to have to protect your finances. Not only are you protected from unauthorized transactions when you use the card, but if the card is hacked, your liability will be limited to the amount of cash on the card. A thief won’t have access to your bank account or other financial accounts, nor the ability to run up a credit balance.

RushCard Review: Apply now

How RushCard Prepaid Cards Work

The RushCard prepaid Visa debit card can be used anywhere Visa debit cards are accepted. That includes purchase activity, as well as access to cash through ATM machines.

You can also use the card to:

  • Set up recurring payments
  • Manage monthly bills with Online Bill Pay (see below)
  • Shop securely online

You don’t need good credit to apply for a card. In fact, RushCard doesn’t even perform a credit check. Charges on the card can be run as either a credit or debit–your choice.

You have the option of choosing one of two different plans, the Rush Unlimited Plan and the Rush Pay As You Go Plan. The difference between the two is the fees charged on each plan.

The Rush Unlimited Plan is a monthly plan. You pay a monthly fee, then have access to unlimited signature and PIN purchases. The Rush Pay As You Go Plan is a “per use” plan. There is no monthly fee, but you pay a fee of $1 per purchase. Otherwise, each plan offers the same benefits and features.

RushCard goes beyond a simple debit card, and offers many services commonly found in checking accounts.

For example, the card comes with Online Bill Pay. You can pay recurring expenses, such as loan payments and utility bills. You can also pay nonrecurring expenses, like doctor bills, or your daycare center if you have children. You can even pay your rent using the card. There are no fees and no limits for the Online Bill Pay feature.

RushCard Rewards

RushCard is a prepaid debit card that also offers rewards. The RushCard Refer-a-Friend Program pays you a $30 bonus for each friend who applies for a card, and funds their account. Your friend will also receive the bonus. You can earn as much is $600 per year by referring friends.

As a participating Visa card, you’re also entitled to discounts through the card with more than 90 merchants and vendors. For example, you can receive discounts at select restaurants, hotels, and retail outlets.

RushGoals

RushCard allows you to set savings goals. For example, you can save for a family vacation, an emergency fund, or even longer-term goals, like college tuition. You can set up as many goals as you like, and the feature will track your progress. And as a RushCard Reward, you will receive a refund of up to $2 for each month that you maintain an average balance of $500 or more in your goal account.

One disadvantage of RushGoals is that the money held in each goal account does not earn interest. It’s an excellent way to save money if you don’t have a regular banking relationship, or if you’ve had difficulty saving money in the past in the past. But it’s not a place to earn interest on the money you save.

RushCard Account Limits

  • Maximum card balance:$10,000 at any time
  • ACH/Direct Deposit limit: $10,000.
  • Maximum amount of over-the-counter withdrawals from a bank: $3,000 per calendar month
  • Maximum amount of ATM withdrawals: $3,000 per calendar month
  • Maximum amount of point-of-sale transactions: $5,000 per day

Funding Your RushCard

RushCard offer several convenient ways to fund your card. RushCard does not charge a fee for funding your card. But be aware that some funding methods do involve the payment of fees to third-party providers.

Direct Deposit

By adding direct deposit to your RushCard you can get your pay up to two days sooner than depositing a paper check. There is no additional fee to enroll. You can also direct deposit government benefit checks.

Income Tax Refund

You can do this by direct depositing your refund check, the same way you do with payroll checks. When you fill out your tax return, just enter the RushCard routing number and your account number (which is your RushCard 16 digit direct deposit ID number), and mark the “Checking” box on the refund line of your return. Your tax refund will be automatically deposited onto your RushCard, just the way it would be in a bank account.

Cash Deposit

You can load cash onto your RushCard at thousands of retail locations nationwide. These include Dollar General, CVS pharmacy, Family Dollar, Kmart, Rite Aid, 7-Eleven, and Walgreens stores. You can deposit cash of up to $2,999 per day.

You can do this through several services, which are quick, but each charges a fee:

  • MoneyPak ($5.95 fee)
  • MoneyGram ($3.95 fee)
  • [email protected] ($4.95 fee)
  • Western Union ($3.95 fee)

Check or Money Order

You can do this one of two ways. You can either take a picture of your check and load the funds using the RushCard Mobile App, or you can cash and load a check in person at participating Walmart stores for a small fee.

Bank Transfer

You can transfer funds to your RushCard from your checking or savings account by ACH electronic money transfer.

Paypal

Transfer money onto RushCard directly from PayPal. There is no charge from PayPal for such transfers. You can also link your bank account to your PayPal account, in case your bank doesn’t offer ACH transfers.

RushCard Features and Benefits

Customer Service

You can contact RushCard by phone or by email, 24 hours a day, seven days per week. The RushCard Support Team is available with live assistance. You can also set up RushTEXT Alerts to monitor your account activity.

RushCard Mobile App

You can use the mobile app the same way you would a traditional mobile banking app. The app is available on iPhone and Android devices. It’s even available with fingerprint access in lieu of a password.

It can be used to check your card balance, view your transaction history, cash checks or make mobile deposits, use the Pause Protection tool (see below), transfer money to other RushCards, find an ATM, or find a location to fund your account. You can even use the app to manage your direct deposits.

RushCard Mobile

Pause Protection

This is a security feature that is available on RushCard to partially freeze your account in the event of a threat. If activated, withdrawals and debit transactions will not be authorized. However, deposits will continue to be accepted on the card, as will ACH debit transactions and recurring bill payments. You can initiate or remove the protection feature at any time.

Visa Zero Liability Protection

As part of the Visa family, you’ll have $0 liability for unauthorized use of your prepaid debit card.

Free Financial Counseling

You can get free, one-on-one credit counseling from Operation Hope, a leading provider of financial education and empowerment programs. This program is available through the partnership with MetaBank.

FDIC Insurance

The balance on your card is protected by FDIC insurance through MetaBank, which an FDIC Member bank.

RushCard Prepaid Card Pricing

 Unlimited PlanPay as You Go Plan
One-Time Card Fee$3.95 - $9.95$3.95 - $9.95
One-Time Card Activation Fee
No FeeNo Fee
Monthly Fee (with direct deposit)$5.95No Fee
Monthly Fee (without direct deposit)$7.95No Fee
Direct DepositNo FeeNo Fee
Cash (third party money transfer service fees may apply)
No FeeNo Fee
Transaction FeeNo Fee$1.00 each time you make a purchase
Bill Pay Service Fee
No FeeNo Fee
Card to Card Transfer Fee (to/from your own RushCards)
No FeeNo Fee
Card to Card Transfer Fee (to any other RushCard Member)
$0.99$0.99
ATM Withdrawal Fee--In NetworkNo FeeNo Fee
ATM Withdrawal Fee--Out of Network$2.50$2.50
Store Cash Back with PIN Purchase
No FeeIncluded in the Transaction Fee
Over the Counter Withdrawal Fee
$2.50$2.50
Call with Live Customer Service agent
No FeeNo Fee
Toll Free Telephone Balance Inquiries
No FeeNo Fee
ATM Balance Inquiry Fee
$0.50$0.50
Replacement Card Fee
$5.00$5.00
Expedited Card Fee (for a replacement card)
$30.00$30.00
Expedited Cash Fee
$30.00$30.00
Maintenance Fee
No Fee$1.95 except where prohibited by law
ATM Decline Fee
No FeeNo Fee
International Transaction FeeNo Fee$2.00
Currency Conversion Fee
3% of transaction amount3% of transaction amount

How to Apply for a RushCard

You can apply online or by phone, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. You must be either a U.S. citizen, or a permanent resident with a valid Social Security number in order to apply. You are eligible for the card if you are at least 13 years old, however parental consent is required if you are under age 18.

You’ll need to provide your Social Security number, date of birth, email address, and your physical mailing address. In addition, you’ll be required to provide a copy of your driver’s license or other documents as required, to verify your identity, consistent with federal law.

Once your card is approved, you will receive it within 5 to 7 business days. You will be required to set up a PIN to activate the card.

RushCard Prepaid Card Pros & Cons

Pros:

  • RushCard is an excellent choice for someone who does not have a banking relationship, but wants the benefits of a debit card.
  • Your credit history is not a factor in determining your approval. RushCard doesn’t even perform credit checks.
  • The card is safer for online purchases than a credit card, since an online vendor will not have access to your financial accounts.
  • RushCard is safer than carrying cash. If it’s stolen, you can activate Pause Protection, cancel the card, then order a replacement card.
  • Like a traditional debit or credit card, RushCard comes with $0 liability for fraudulent charges.
  • The tax refund deposit feature is an excellent option for someone who does not have a bank account to receive the refund.

Cons:

  • Money held in a RushGoals account does not earn interest. It will work best for consumers who don’t have access to a regular bank account.
  • Some car rental companies don’t accept prepaid debit cards for car rentals.

Should You Sign Up with RushCard?

The RushCard Prepaid Card is an excellent choice for two types of consumers:

  • Consumers who don’t have a bank relationship. This is usually due to a poor credit history. Since RushBank doesn’t even check your credit history, the card is available to anyone. It can be used just like a debit or credit card issued by a bank. You can use it for regular purchase activity, online purchases, or as an ATM card.
  • Anyone who makes frequent online purchases, and doesn’t want to compromise their identity. The card is not linked to a credit card or bank account, so a potential thief would not have access to either account. The card comes with $0 liability for fraudulent activity, so you’re protected against a less-than-reputable vendor.

You can choose the Unlimited Plan for regular use of the card, or you can go with the Pay As You Go Plan if it will only be for limited use.

If you’d like more information, or if you’d like to sign up for the card, visit the RushCard website.

Rushcard Prepaid Visa

Rushcard Prepaid Visa
8.8

Features

9.0 /10

Fees

8.0 /10

Ease of Use

9.0 /10

Customer Service

9.0 /10

Pros

  • Excellent Features
  • Ease of Use
  • Customer Service

Cons

  • Fees
  • No Interest on Savings
Topics: Credit Cards

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16 Responses to “Review of RushCard Prepaid Cards – An Excellent Choice for the Unbanked”

  1. I am a new customer to RushCard and I would like to know if there are any issues with using the card online for international transactions? Do I need to call customer service first and tell them to allow me to make my international purchase and take the block off it or am I allowed to use it without contacting them? If anybody has made a international transaction could you please reply and let me know if it was a simple process. Thanks

  2. deanna

    Russell… you have to add funds to the card to activate it.
    Yvonne I have no idea why they would be holding your tax payment. I’ve had my card for 5yrs and my efiles come thru like a breeze… Sometimes faster than I expected. I kno it takes about a week and a half for them to post a money order to your account when you mail it to them… that got the hell on my nerves so I stopped doing that. Other than that I’m pretty content with both my rushcards. And I like the refer a friend option. I’ve been making money off of that plus. 🙂

  3. as a rush card as well as a diamond rush card user, i can honestly say its the best ive dealt with. wether you use the regualr rush card or black diamond the fees are reasonable but honestly these are prepaid debit cards showing these things wont get u the best seat at the tavern on the green. but with the regular rush card the $1 per transaction is capped at 10 bucks so any fees incurred over that are returned to the card the next month so its like cash back. with the black diamond or purple diamond its a 9.95 fee for unlimited credit transactions and 1.00 for PIN transactions ( everyone takes credit so i never use debit) and u get 2 free atm withdrawls after that its only 1.95 plus whatever the atm fee is. and they now have the plus rushcards so u can divide the funds between different cards so its like a second account i suppose u could say so if you were saving up for something that would be the way to do it.

  4. There are certainly several card options out there that are intended to give consumers access to a universally accepted debit card (Visa or MasterCard). The one I recommend is a relatively newcomer: its the Mango Prepaid Visa Card, found at mangomoney. This card is free when ordered online and has none of the negative fees that others have, including no overdraft fees or fees for customer service. It has a VERY simple fee structure meant to be completely transparent to the consumer: $5 monthly fee, with this fee being waived if the customer deposits $500 a month; $2 ATM fee; $0.50 for ATM balance inquiry; and $0.50 for a mobile person to person transfer. That’s it. If you deposit $500 a month and not use ATMs but instead get cash back at point of sale, this card can be completely FREE to you. It also has very cool mobile payment features, such as ability to send money to anyone else in the US…as long as they have a cell phone, and a virtual card that allows you to shop right away while you wait for your card to arrive in the mail.

    • Rene, it’s funny that you mention Mango, as I just heard about that prepaid card earlier this week. I’ve heard good things about this prepaid card, and I’ll put up a more detailed review in the next few days. Thanks for mentioning it.

  5. Wow, your research is seriously flawed if it resulted in this being one of the less expensive cards out there. MoneyManager card no fees at all (only accepts direct deposit) includes completely free ATM transactions (as does Greendot now).AAA Travel Money card. Free to reload at AAA, no monthly fee, no transaction fees. Personalized card available. $5 for members to get and $10 for non members ( non members – still free to reload at AAA locations).MoneyNetwork cards sold at 7-Eleven $2 to reload at 7-Eleven no transaction fees, $2 a month fee. Great cash card because its so cheap to reload and convenient. They swipe the card and you are all set (unlike Greendot).Greendot, Western Union, H&R Block, PayPal and probably 6 more cards are less expensive than this pos.What kind of research did you do?

    • Bob, the fees you pay for any prepaid card will depend in large part on how you use the card. With the Rushcard, the activation fees are currently being waived with direct deposit. And if you use signature transactions and minimal ATM usage, you can use the card for about $10 a month. I’m not suggesting that’s the lowest fee card out there, but it’s certainly reasonable. As for the prepaid cards you mention:

      MoneyManager is card designed for payroll deposits only. It requires your employer to participate in the program; you can’t just apply for the card on your own. While it’s costs are low, it’s not free, again depending on how you use the card. There is a fee for ATM withdrawals outside their network, a fee for paying bills with the card (AccountNow offers free bill pay), a fee for paper statements, a fee if the card hasn’t been used in 90 days, and a fee to close your account if it has a balance.

      The AAA Travel Money card is designed for traveling, has a maximum of 3 reloads and expires after 2 years. The card does not offer direct deposit, and can be loaded only at AAA clubs or through a DDA transfer which takes up to 7 days. This card may be fine for traveling, but it’s not comparable to a standard prepaid card.

      We like the Greendot card, too, and have reviewed it before. Still, it charges some fees like all prepaid cards.

      The Western Union prepaid card actually has significant fees ranging from reloading the card to bill pay.

      The H&R Block Prepaid MasterCard also has a long list of fees, including $2 just to call customer service.

      PayPal card is a debit card, not a prepaid card. It also charges fees including $3 for a signature transaction and $1 for an ATM fee.

      Is the Rushcard for everybody? No. Does it charge fees? Yes, like all prepaid cards depending on how you use them. But we think it is a reasonable option for those considering a prepaid card.

      • As someone who uses these cards I know the fees to worry about are the monthly fee, transaction fees, the reload fees and ATM fees. Customer service calls to IVR are almost always free and the need to reach a human are limited. Everyone has different needs and some people do not want or do not have direct deposit for them the reload fee is the biggest fee. If the reloads are free the ATM charges are less important since you only put whatever you want on the card when you want and can make small withdrawals when needed by cash back without charge. PIN transactions are often required for small and other purchases if cash is not available also so that $1 Rush card fee is unreasonable. For instance I belong to Sams Club which only takes Mastercard signature transactions but allows debit on Visa. There the Rush card is $1 to use.

        Dependent on the situation the WalMart card can be the least expensive because they cash a check and load the card for only $3. I could explain situations where that is advantageous if you aren’t familiar with them.

        I had the Money Manager card directly through them via email. Thats all it takes, emailing them. You are right there are fees for using one of the atm’s outside of the 37,000 nationwide that are completely free, not enough for you?. I guess the Rush card fee plus the 2-3 dollar surcharge would be better for some. The billpay allows pay a check to anyone and is only 50 cents slightly more than the cost of a stamp. I mentioned it only takes direct deposit – you must have missed that. Outside of that its free to pay any bill with through Visa billpay. If you have direct deposit email them and save a bundle over the Rush card. $120 a year in fees minimum.

        AAA clubs are pretty much available within a 5-10 mile radius of everywhere I travel since they are a ‘travel club’. The cash reloads at AAA clubs are instantly available. It can be personalized. What makes it not comparable? It has no fees. Visa billpay is available at Visa.com. Free reloads for those w/o direct deposit is worth $208+ a year versus the Rush card. Now lets take the $10 monthly fee, thats another $120 a year.
        $328 less a year? You are right its not comparable.

        The Western Union card has no monthly fees and no transaction fees. There are reload fees just as there are with the Rush Card but there is no fee to get the card. Its less expensive at almost every comparison. It also allows free direct deposit.

        The H&R Block card is free to obtain, has no monthly fee and has no transaction fees (pin or signature). The advantage of this card is that there are the daily limits are very high for tax refunds $3,000 for ATM $3,500 for spending . Since its a Mastercard and Greendot capable its possible to load this through a card swipe at Radio Shack (Mastercard RePower network) so some clerk doesn’t copy your info down and use it. Thats happened. Thats a disadvantage for any card that can’t be swiped including Western Union some Greendots (I have had trouble with MoneyPaks on occasion) and any card that loads through Moneygram only. When you walk away the money isn’t already on the card. 5 calls a year to a human at customer service are free (enough to handle the need most likely) and IVR calls for balance etc are always free.

        Thats why I included the MoneyNetwork card from 7-Eleven. Normally I wouldn’t recommend a card with any monthly fee and this one costs $2 a month but the $2 reloads plus the convenience and security makes it noteworthy. 25 cents for a pin transaction. Not good but better than a dollar. So $8 less a month. $2 less to reload ($104 a year) and it swipes. 75 cents less on PIN transactions. This card will soon be reloadable at STAR atm’s nationwide that accept envelope less deposits.

        I don’t know where you got your info about the PayPal debit Mastercard but its completely wrong. They are re loadable through Greendot, there is no monthly fee and no transaction fees. There is also a 1% cash back for all signature transactions which means at $5 for a $500 load you get that back making it free in the long term. You need to check your sources I have one and have used it for Redbox rentals and according to you that would cost me $1 + $3 to rent a movie and thats just plain untrue. Also swipe loadable through Radio Shack.

        None of these cards have a monthly fee or any transaction fees outside of the MoneyNetwork card as opposed to the Rush card which is $10 a month (no matter how you use it) plus $1 if you make a debit transaction.

        Swiping the card through Mastercard RePower terminals is a good reason to get the Greendot mastercard as opposed to the Visa (did you know that?) since you avoid the multi step process buying a MoneyPak, applying it and then hopefully having no issues. The comparable Visa reload network Readylink does not work with Greendot and there is a single nationwide reloader – 7-Eleven who does not reload them at many locations despite what the Visa website states. I have been over this with Visa before and they don’t seem to ‘get it’ as they keep locations online that do not reload the cards.

        • Bob, thanks for the detailed response. Hopefully it will help folks make the best decision for their financial needs. By the way, have you checked out the Mango Card that Rene mentions below? It appears to be a really low cost option.

    • Eric, based on my research, Rushcard is not one of the most expensive prepaid cards on the market. Of course, a lot depends on how you use the card, but that’s true of any prepaid card. I’ve not reviewed the UPside card before, but I believe it is designed for teens. But I’ll definitely check it out. Thanks for the tip.

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