bank rates

Amex Launches A Good Prepaid Debit Card

We’re adding the new American Express PASS card to our list of the best prepaid debit cards for kids.

PASS comes with many of the UPside Prepaid Visa card’s most attractive features.

Parents can monitor their teen’s spending online, and teens can only spend the amount loaded onto the card, so there’s no fear of overdraft charges or going over their credit limit.

But PASS also includes purchase protection, roadside assistance and emergency assistance while traveling.

While there’s no fee for making purchases with PASS, there’s a monthly membership fee of $3.95 (although that’s waived through Oct. 1, 2011).

ATM withdrawals cost $1.50, plus any charges from the bank the ATM belongs to, although parents have the option of turning off ATM access.

Parents can load money onto PASS online or over the phone with an American Express card or a bank account. All loads are free.

In the long run, PASS will almost certainly cost more than an UPside Prepaid Visa card to own.

But it may be worth the extra expense if American Express offers better customer service because our readers have had some pretty harsh things to say about their dealings with UPside.

Read the comments on this post about UPside to see what we mean.

Don't miss out on the next bank deal. Get the newest deals delivered straight to your inbox!

Comments (4)
1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (5 votes, average: 4.20 out of 5)
4 Existing Comments
  1. Bob said:
    on December 27th at 09:18 am

    Limited availability at this time but the American Express @ Target will be more flexible for adding funds since that can be done with cash at Target stores.

  2. Jason said:
    on December 27th at 03:00 pm

    the MasterCard myplash product is a good one too. It can be reloaded at Walmart and thousands of other retail locations or online too. teens can choose from hundreds of licensed images of music artists, teen brands..etc. Both the Amex card and Myplash are great for teens.

  3. RateRunner said:
    on January 4th at 02:24 pm

    I just got a mailing that says American Express is offering a $25 bonus for PASS cards ordered and reloaded before March 31. The bonus will be credited after the first reload. But you must order your PASS card at and use the promotion code PASSBONUS.

  4. Mike Cetera said:
    on September 29th at 10:05 am

    The Amex card no longer charges a monthly fee. The first ATM withdrawal per month is free; after that its $2 per transaction.