Having a prepaid card is great for people who want to manage their money, for teens learning personal finance and for the many unbanked Americans that cannot get a bank account because of their past experiences. Now that you have your prepaid card and have enjoyed the convenience of online and in-store shopping, how do you keep it? One thing is true for all prepaid cards, debit cards and credit cards...they will expire. Below we've answered all of your questions regarding what steps to take when your prepaid card is close to expiring.
Do Prepaid Cards Expire?
Yes, all prepaid cards expire usually 4 years from the month you first register your card. So if you apply for a prepaid card in January 2020 your expiration date will likely be January 2024.
How Do I Find My Expiration Date?
The expiration date can be found on the front of your prepaid card under the 15 - 16 digit number. Some of the new prepaid cards 15-16 digit number is located on the back of the card instead of the front. In this scenario the expiration date will be located on the back of the card still under the 15-16 digit number of your card. The expiration date consist of a two digit month and a two digit year. So if your card expires October in 2022, it will be displayed on your card as "Valid Thru 10/22". An easy way to located your prepaid card expiration date is by finding the text "Valid Thru" because this text is on 99% of all prepaid cards followed by the actual expiration date.
When Do My Prepaid Card Expire?
Most prepaid cards expire 4 years from the date you register and activate the prepaid card. To find the expiration date on your prepaid card please refer to the section above under "How Do I Find My Expiration Date?". Be mindful when your prepaid card is close to expiring and plan accordingly.
What Happens to My Prepaid Card When It Expires?
When a prepaid card is nearing the expiration date, the prepaid card company will contact you, usually through email, to let you know. A new prepaid card will be issued to the address as listed on your current account. This new prepaid card will replace your current prepaid card when it expires. This new prepaid card will have a new 15-16 digit number, a new CVC number and a new expiration date. In some cases you will also be required to change or activate your prepaid card pin number onto the new card. Once you activate your new prepaid card you can toss the old one away. However, we recommend holding on to the old prepaid card for at least 1-2 weeks after the expiration date just in case an issue arise and you need information from your old card.
What Happens to the Money of My Current Prepaid Card?
You will not lose the money on your current prepaid card when that card expires. Your money will still be available to make purchases as you normally would. However, if you take too long to activate your new prepaid card after the old one expires, your account may be closed and any funds remaining in your account will be mailed to the listed address in the form of a check. You will then have to go through the entire process of applying and activating a new prepaid card again. To avoid this simply, activate your new prepaid card as soon as you receive it. For more information check out "Do I Lose My Money" when your prepaid card expires, visit Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.
Do I Have to Pay for My New Prepaid Card?
You do not have to pay for a new prepaid card when your current prepaid card expires. The new prepaid card is completely free. However, if you lost your current prepaid card or it was stolen before the expiration date, there will likely be a fee for the replacement card. The replacement card fee ranges from $3 - $10 based on the prepaid card company, but it varies.
What Should I Do if My Address Has Recently Changed?
If you have recently moved to another location, be sure to change your address on your prepaid card account before the new prepaid card is issued. The last thing you want is to have your new prepaid card shipped to an address you no longer live. By not changing your address in your account will result in a delay receiving your new prepaid card and cause issues when your old card expires.
Here's How to Change the Address of Your Current Prepaid Card Account
- Visit your prepaid card company official website.
- Log into your account using your credentials
- Click on either "Settings", "My account", "Profile" or something similar in your dashboard.
- Some dashboards will have further links that you will need to click on before changing your address such as "Change account information" etc
- Update your address.
- You're all set!
For short answers to common questions regarding reloadable cards please see our FAQs page.