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Managing Money

What to look for in a debit card

2 minute read
Managing Money

If you're in the market for a new bank card, the huge variety of options can be a little overwhelming.

Fortunately, the process of deciding which one is right for you doesn't have to be stressful or time-consuming. Instead, all you need to do is work out which type of card suits your needs, and find the best option from within that category.

The first question you'll need to ask yourself is whether you need a debit card or a credit card. Debit cards are far more common in Australia, with Finder's most recent data from September 2017 revealing there are more than 45 million of them in circulation, compared to just under 17 million credit cards.

So, let's take a look at why a debit card might be a great option for you, as well as what to look for when you pick one.


What is a debit card?

Debit cards and credit cards are very similar in almost every way. However, the big difference is that a debit card allows you to access your own money, rather than a line of credit which you'll need to pay back. If there isn't enough money on a debit card for a particular purchase, you won't be able to use it. This makes debit cards much simpler and safer, eliminating the possibility of overspending and suddenly finding yourself in debt.

The risk-free nature of debit cards has seen their popularity soar over the last few years. In fact, Canstar reports that in the decade 2004-2014, the amount of purchases made by a debit card climbed from 49 percent to 66 percent, while credit card purchases dropped from 51 percent to 34 percent.

Part of the reason for this is that debit cards can be used in the same ways as credit cards. For example, to buy products online and have them delivered to your doorstep. This isn't possible with simple EFTPOS cards, as EFTPOS is an Australian system, not an international payment platform such as Visa.


Choosing the right debit card for you.

If all the benefits of a debit card sound like they would be a perfect fit for you, the next question is which option to choose. Unlike with credit cards, you don't need to worry about finding one with a low interest rate, but it is a good idea to take a look at the fees and features of the various options.

For example, some banks charge you a small fee when you make a purchase, and these can quickly add up. That's why Beyond Bank's Visa Debit card allows you to make simple, fee-free purchases by simply selecting the 'credit' option when paying. In addition, as part of the Visa payment platform, you'll be able to use this card online and overseas, giving you the freedom of a credit card without the additional responsibilities.

Of course, a debit card in 2017 needs to have the latest features, and Beyond Bank's Visa Debit delivers with everything from Visa payWave (tap and go for purchases up to $100) to Android and Apple Pay integration.

To find out more about our debit card and credit card options, get in touch with the Beyond Bank team today.


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