Monday, January 30, 2012

What is a prepaid card?

While prepaid cards are not a new phenomenon, they are less common than debit cards or credit cards and as such many consumers are unfamiliar with them. In actual fact, if you currently have a debit card or credit card, then you will be very familiar with a UK issued prepaid card - bearing either the Visa or MasterCard logo, prepaid cards are 'chip and pin' - this is the electronic chip in the card which when inserted into a POS terminal or cash machine, requires the user to enter a 4 digit pin number to confirm the transaction.

Prepaid cards have a 16 digit number printed along the front of the card, along with a start date, expiry date and on the reverse you will find the 3 digit CVC number. The majority of prepaid cards are personalised i.e. they have the cardholder's name printed on them, though this is not always the case (it is possible to buy an anonymous prepaid cards in some retail outlets).

Prepaid cards from MasterCard and Visa are a
growing phenomenon in the UK
A prepaid card can be used to withdraw cash from a cash machine, to make a purchase at a retailer, on-line or via telephone. So given that all seems so similar to the existing plastic card you carry around in your wallet, you may well ask what is the difference is between a debit or credit card and a prepaid card?

Well, the fundamental difference is that a prepaid card must be pre-loaded with funds prior to it being used. If you load £100 on your prepaid card, then you may only spend £100 - load £5,000 and you can spend £5,000. You cannot go a penny over your limit - it's as simple as that. There are no exceptions and no associated fees if you do exceed your limit - simply because it's not possible!

The chances are you may already be using some kind of prepaid payment already - whether it's a physical card or not. You may have a prepaid or 'pay as you go' mobile phone, or an Oyster travel card or you may have a Starbucks card. Or possibly you are one of the growing number of consumers in the UK that already have a prepaid MasterCard or prepaid Visa Card.

Either way, we hope you are finding it a valuable and useful payment method. We'll shortly be bringing you some of the advantages of prepaid cards in general and understandably Kalixa prepaid MasterCard in particular.

Friday, January 27, 2012

Welcome to the Kalixa Prepaid MasterCard

Here at Kalixa, we have set-up a new blog home here on blogger.com where we'll be updating you all with various commentary from the team about new product features for Kalixa in the UK, and reporting on a range of cardholder offers and competitions that we run regularly.

If you're unsure what Kalixa is and have just run across this post, then allow us to explain. Kalixa is a combined online eAccount and prepaid MasterCard. Anyone can register online and by simply loading your eAccount with £10, you can be up and running within 2 minutes. With just your username and password, you can use funds from your eAccount at the 20+ websites that show Kalixa as an accepted payment methods.

The Kalixa prepaid MasterCard
Once you have registered, you will receive your plastic Kalixa MasterCard in the post within 7-10 days. This is a regular chip and pin card which can be used in exactly the same way as any other MasterCard: in a shop, or cash machine you will need to enter your 4 digit PIN, and if you use it online or over the phone you quote the 16 digit number across the card, along with the expiry date and 3-digit CVC number on the back of the card.

As it's a prepaid MasterCard, you cannot go overdrawn - you can only spend the balance available on your card. It's easy to load your Kalixa Card and we support a wide range of methods to do this, from a free bank transfer, loading by debit or credit card, Ukash, Skrill (formerly Moneybookers).

It costs £4.95 to register for the card, which is deducted from your initial £10 deposit. After that, there are no monthly account charges, and there are no charges on transactions online or in store. You can load up to £3,000 per week and the card limit it £9,000. A full list of all the fees and limits is available on our website at www.kalixa.com.

One of the best things about the card is when you are travelling. There are no Foreign Exchange (often known as FX) fees on transactions overseas and at Kalixa, we offer you the interbank rate with no commission. This is absolutely the best rate available and so it can save you an awful lot of money when you are travelling. Even better, is that this applies regardless of where you go in the world and when you come back, you can continue to use your Kalixa in the UK without any further fees or penalties (unlike other specialist travel cards!). But we will be updating you more on this later.

In the meantime, please enjoy - if you would like a Kalixa prepaid MasterCard, then you can register online. You can  find out more about the loading options, or fees and limits of the card, or alternatively you can follow us on twitter, or like us on Facebook.

We look forward to catching up with you very soon.

The Kalixa Team