Walmart MoneyCard Prepaid Debit Card Review

Opening Walmart box

Get rewarded with the Walmart MoneyCard

The Walmart MoneyCard is basically a prepaid debit card in disguise. It works just like a credit card, and it’s ideal for Walmart loyalists. You simply load up your MoneyCard with an amount that suits you and use it wherever Visa or Mastercards are accepted. You can pay for goods at stores and online, settle bills and even use it for travel. It’s safe, convenient and more importantly, you’ve got full control over the limit on your card.

One of the few prepaid debit cards on the market with a rewards program, the Walmart MoneyCard also lets you earn tiered cash back rewards for Walmart purchases then use them for whatever you want. Overall, the MoneyCard is a great card to manage your spending — if you can deposit $1,000 each month to avoid the monthly fee.

What to expect from the Walmart MoneyCard

  • APR: None
  • Annual Fee: $60 ($5 a month, waived each month when you load $1,000 or more to your card)
  • Reward Rates: Earn 3% cash back at Walmart.com, 2% at Walmart/Murphy USA fuel stations, and 1% at Walmart stores, up to the annual maximum of $75.
  • Intro Offer: None

Even better

  • Get paid up to two days earlier and up to four days earlier for benefits.
  • Convenient payment tool: Use wherever Visa or Mastercards are accepted either in-store or online, with no fees for purchases within the U.S.; you can also make bill payments for free.
  • Enhanced security: Protection against identity theft when shopping online, as stolen prepaid card details won’t lead to direct access to bank account.
  • Flexible rewards: Use cash back for whatever you want.
  • Avoid overdraft fees: Lack of overdraft feature means you won’t be hit with unexpected fees.
  • Free savings account: Move money into Vault, a savings feature with an incentive program for a chance to win monthly cash prizes.
  • Free accounts for teens: Get up to four cards per account for kids aged between 13 to 18, and use it to teach them how to use a bank account and how to budget. It’s a great way to give their allowance and monitor how funds are being used.
  • FDIC insured: Peace of mind knowing up to $250,000 of deposits are safeguarded from bank failure.
  • Cash withdrawals: $0 for withdrawals at Walmart stores and $2.50 for ATM or teller withdrawals.
  • No cancellation or inactivity fee.

But keep your eyes open for pitfalls

While the Walmart MoneyCard has strong rewards potential for a prepaid debit card, you’ll have to wait for a whole year before you can access your cash back.

However, the real drawback with the MoneyCard is fees. For starters, you’ll also need to deposit a sizeable $1,000 monthly to avoid the monthly charges. Then there are other potential charges for reloading, withdrawing cash or enquiring about your account balance. For example, when reloading, it’s free when you use the Walmart MoneyCard app, but it costs $3 for reloading at a Walmart store and $5.95 for other reload agents. There’s also a $0.50 ATM balance inquiry fee and a 3% foreign transaction fee.

Although most can be avoided, you’ll need to read the fine print and keep them in mind when using your card. This makes the MoneyCard less user-friendly and more expensive compared to options like the Starbucks Rewards Visa Prepaid Card, which charges no monthly, annual or reload fees.

Another consideration is that the savings account feature doesn’t earn any interest. It’s not exactly a deal-breaker since it’s a separate feature to the prepaid card, but if you’re serious about building up your savings, you are likely to be better off depositing your money elsewhere.

How to maximize your Walmart MoneyCard rewards

It’s easy to get started with the Walmart MoneyCard. Simply open an account online or pick up a starter card at a Walmart store. Anyone over 18 can buy it.

Now here’s the (unsurprising!) thing: you’ve got to shop at Walmart if you want to build some cash back rewards. Remember, it’s worth shopping at Walmart.com if you can because it will earn the highest rewards at 3%. Fuel purchases at Walmart/Murphy USA fuel stations will earn 2% and in-store purchases will get you 1%.

You should also manage your finances using your smartphone to keep fees low. Download the MoneyCard Mobile App for free, and use it to check your account balance, review transactions and deposit cash. There are over 4,700 Walmart stores across the country, so try to use them instead of bank tellers and ATMs if you want to withdraw cash for free.

Of course, one of the main reasons why people are interested in prepaid cards like the Walmart MoneyCard is to control spending and avoid getting into debt. To this end, you can ensure your finances remain healthy by only loading to the card your planned or budgeted expenditure.

Bottom line

The Walmart MoneyCard is a fantastic option for someone who wants to take charge of their spending and is happy to study the fine print to fend off potential fees. It’s ideal for the smartphone savvy, as the dedicated mobile app offers a great way to manage your account for free.

The opportunity to earn cash back for your spending is highly attractive, though they’ll need to be Walmart purchases to qualify. It’s too easy if you’re already a Walmart fan. The best thing about the cash back offer is that you can use rewards for anything.

While the fees associated with the Walmart MoneyCard are mostly avoidable, those who prefer a simpler product they won’t need to think about might like to consider the Starbucks Rewards Visa Prepaid Card instead. The latter has no monthly or reload fees and operates a rewards program, but you won’t be able to get cash out from an ATM.