PayPal Prepaid Mastercard Review: Should You Get One?

GOBankingRates Score

4.0
Quick Take: The PayPal Prepaid Mastercard offers a convenient way to spend money both in person and on the go. It has cash back reward opportunities, and you can access your funds up to two days early if you deposit your paycheck directly to a PayPal prepaid card. However, the card has a $4.95 monthly fee that you can't waive. Plus, it has no ATM networks, so you can expect to fork out $2.50 and ATM operator fees every time you make a cash withdrawal.
  • Card Features
    4.2
  • Mobile App
    4.1
  • Rewards
    4.1
  • Fees
    3.7
How did we calculate this?

Pros

  • Access to high-yield savings account with up to 5% APY
  • No-cost transfers from PayPal balance to the prepaid card
  • Payback Rewards opportunities at eligible stores
  • Numerous reload options

Cons

  • Unavoidable $4.95 monthly fee
  • Must have PayPal account to access the full suite of online features
  • Not a credit card, so it won't build your credit score

What Is the PayPal Prepaid Mastercard?

The PayPal Prepaid Mastercard, issued by Bancorp Bank, member FDIC, works like any other prepaid card. But, you must have a PayPal account to use it, meaning you can link your PayPal account to the card. You can use it online, in stores or anywhere Mastercard debit cards are accepted across the nation. You can also withdraw money using the PayPal Prepaid card at any ATM bearing a MasterCard, Cirrus or PULSE acceptance mark. 

PayPal Prepaid Mastercard Pros

With a PayPal Prepaid card, you can access your funds up to two days early if you deposit your paycheck directly to your card. Plus, you get access to a high-yield savings account through Bancorp Bank that features tiered interest. You can earn 5% APY on balances up to $1,000, and an APY of 0.50% on the portion of your savings balance that exceeds $1,000.

What’s more, you’ll earn cash back at selected stores when you opt in to the PayPal Prepaid Card Cash Back Rewards Program. And through the Refer-A-Friend program, both you and your friend could get a $20 credit for meeting eligibility requirements. Additionally, you can download the PayPal Prepaid Mastercard app on both the App Store and Google Play, which will allow you to monitor your account balance, review transactions, load checks, find reload locations and receive alerts. 

PayPal Prepaid Mastercard Cons

Despite the benefits, the card comes with fees as well. To use this card, you’ll pay a $4.95 unavoidable monthly fee. And since PayPal doesn’t have ATM networks, you’ll incur another $2.95 fee for each withdrawal plus any surcharge fee from the ATM operator. If you ever lose your card, you’ll have to pay a $5.95 card replacement fee.

How To Get a PayPal Prepaid MasterCard

You can get a PayPal Prepaid Mastercard by ordering one online or visiting a retail location that sells them. Ordering a card online is free, whereas if you purchase one at a retail location it will cost around $4.95, though the price may vary by location. 

While you can load money onto the card if you purchase it at a retail location, you will also need to take steps to activate this temporary card and have your identity verified so you can receive a personalized card, add more money to the card and access card features, such as direct deposit. You must activate the temporary card within 120 days of its purchase or else it will expire.

If you don’t need the card right away, it might be more convenient to order it online. 

Who It’s Best For

  • PayPal users
  • Anyone who wants the convenience of using their card where Mastercard is accepted
  • Those who want to receive direct deposits up to two days earlier
  • People who want to earn a decent APY with a prepaid card

Final Take

PayPal Prepaid Mastercard is a great choice for anyone who is already using PayPal. This type of card allows you to receive direct deposits, make online purchases, pay bills and manage funds on the go. Plus, it’s easy to acquire a prepaid card since it doesn’t require a credit check.

However, it’s important to look at various options when shopping for a prepaid card. This card has several fees you’ll want to be aware of before committing to it.

PayPal Prepaid Mastercard FAQ

Here are the answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about the PayPal Prepaid Mastercard.
  • Where do I get a PayPal Prepaid Mastercard?
    • You can order a PayPal Prepaid Mastercard online or visit a retail location to buy a temporary PayPal prepaid card and activate it.
  • Are there any fees to get the PayPal Prepaid Mastercard?
    • Purchasing a temporary card comes with a fee and the price varies by location. Also, the minimum initial load is $10 or $20. Upon purchase, you'll be automatically enrolled in the $4.95 monthly fee, which will be deducted within 36 hours after your purchase.
  • How do you reload the PayPal Prepaid Mastercard?
    • There are several ways to add money to your PayPal Prepaid Mastercard 一 PayPal balance transfers, direct deposit, over 130,000 Netspend reload network locations and tax refunds.

Cynthia Measom contributed to the reporting for this article.

Editorial Note: This content is not provided by PayPal. Any opinions, analyses, reviews, ratings or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author alone and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by PayPal.

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About the Author

Lydia Kibet is a freelance writer specializing in personal finance and investing. She's passionate about explaining complex topics in easy-to-understand language. Her work has appeared on GOBankingRates, Investopedia, Business Insider, The Motley Fool and Investor Junkie. She currently writes about investing, banking, insurance, real estate, mortgages, credit cards, loans and more. Connect with her on Twitter or moneycredible.com.
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