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Philippine Pre-load/Reloadable Debit Cards for travel or online shopping?


JamesMusslewhite

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JamesMusslewhite
Posted (edited)

   I do not want to use either my actual American or Philippine bank's debit card for online shopping. Nor do I want to be carrying my actual American or Philippines bank's debit card in my wallet. I would much rather be able to preload a predetermined specific amount, of independent funds, into an unrelated debit card. If I travel say to Davao, Cebu, Manila or neighboring country; there is the high probability I would be traveling alone. As my wife has personal business interest here which she manages, not always but most. If by unfortunate happenstance I were pick-pocketed, robbed, hotel burgled or simple brain-fart; leading to my being detached from my wallet, my primary bank's debit cards are safe and here with my wife. If I purchase a meal, general purchase, transport or lodging on the road; I do not have the burdensome worry of my actual personal American or Philippine bank's debit card information/access being compromised.

   And if I chose to purchase an item or two online, I do not have to worry as much about internet and debit card scams. an unrelated debit card if hacked or scammed would be held to a minimum. If hacked by a scanner, only a minimum amount is lost (dependent solely on remaining amount contained); and if an online merchant tries to double-bill or later-bill, they actually have no direct access to your American or Philippine bank's debit card information. Just spend a few hundred pesos for a new loadable card and move on. I know they're such cards available here in the Philippines, perhaps even banks offering them as a security option for students. But since before in the Philippines I have never purchased or held one, but with the ever-increasing sophistication of scanner and internet criminality, I see were purchasing and using such cards could be a useful extra protection against the unsavory elements determined to fleece you. 

   Who here actually has personal knowledge and experience with such loadable debit cards? I am sure I am probably not the only one curious. Pros? Cons? Anyone?

Edited by JamesMusslewhite
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Davaoeno

BDO offers a credit card that you can set the maximum amount available. They offer it primarily for online shopping. 

GCash seems to be accepted almost everywhere these days and you could only lose as much as you have  loaded onto it.

 

Just now, Davaoeno said:

BDO offers a credit card that you can set the maximum amount available. They offer it primarily for online shopping. 

GCash seems to be accepted almost everywhere these days and you could only lose as much as you have  loaded onto it.

I have both- but I also carry 3 credit cards and never worry about them for a second. I think maybe my life is much more boring than yours James !!

 

 

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to_dave007
1 hour ago, Davaoeno said:

GCash seems to be accepted almost everywhere these days and you could only lose as much as you have  loaded onto it.

Was thinking the same..  Recently created a GCASH account.. went through their verification process..  and loaded it from HSBC.. and paid a bill..  all without leaving my office.

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to_dave007

@JamesMusslewhite if you DO create a GCASH account, choose the phone number to use carefully, to be the phone number you MOST expect to keep for the longest time.  The SIM card you LEAST expect to lose.

The GCASH account is tied to a phone number, and can NOT be moved.  The cash INSIDE the account can be moved, but not the account itself.  The account dies when the SIM card dies. 

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JamesMusslewhite
10 hours ago, to_dave007 said:

@JamesMusslewhite if you DO create a GCASH account, choose the phone number to use carefully, to be the phone number you MOST expect to keep for the longest time.  The SIM card you LEAST expect to lose.

The GCASH account is tied to a phone number, and can NOT be moved.  The cash INSIDE the account can be moved, but not the account itself.  The account dies when the SIM card dies. 

   That is a good thing to know. My wife and I were thinking of purchasing a new cell phone to keep in the store, solely to use for the little resort. Nothing too fancy and nothing that would be carried further than the store, so it would be perfect as to not be directly connected to either mine or my wife's cells. If either of lose our primary cells then that store's cell would contain the needed SIM card.

   We live on a strict monthly budget. A few years back I experienced partial vision in my right eye, odd is how it effects my vision to my right eye. When I look my mind is tricked into believing I have full unabated 180+ vision, when in fact the far-right half of my eye has an unnoticeable blind-spot. I bump rear-views of parked autos and bikes I literally did not see, kids and short adults that happen to be within the blind-spot. Yet my brain only recognizes a  full unabated 180+ vision illusion, so I now completely prohibit myself from driving any auto of motorbike. So bus, public-transit of boat for me. This means I must rely on the very places where the petty criminals rule the most, and having a walking stick reeks 'EASY TARGETS!' to the lowest of the low. This is why I want as much off my person (important) as possible. An I.D. card, ACR, passport, pocket cash are replaceable with a minimum level of hassle; but a US debit card replacement can easily become a major hassle, and possible taking weeks being replaces. Our US debit card is our only lifeblood. I have not used a credit card in over 14 years (cut them all up just before moving here in 2008) so any that were still active have long since expired. We live on a budget and avoid credit, which is why we manage to stay on-budget. If we need we save, which allows us to stay on budget, and steady advance one step at a time.

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Fresh
1 hour ago, JamesMusslewhite said:

 Our US debit card is our only lifeblood.

You always want a backup just in case, you should looking into opening a PH bank account, they have debit cards even virtual cc.

This is easier:  https://www.paymaya.com/quick-guide/activate-virtual-card

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Fresh
22 hours ago, to_dave007 said:

Recently created a GCASH account.. went through their verification process..  and loaded it from HSBC.. and paid a bill..  all without leaving my office.

If you have an PH HSBC account, why would you need a GCASH account?

12 hours ago, to_dave007 said:

The GCASH account is tied to a phone number, and can NOT be moved.   The account dies when the SIM card dies. 

Not exactly, if you lose or switch SIM, you have to contact GCASH customer service and if they can verify you, you can give a new #

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OnNo
Posted (edited)

Different but relevant is opening a bank account, for the debit card, then  leaving very little in it as one defines very little. Some banks let you lock the ATM card. Prepaid cards are classified differently then debit cards and so are declined more. Debit card usability is smoother in general, I think. The dedicated phone and SIM advice is terrific. I also use it for spammy companies.

Edited by OnNo
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JamesMusslewhite
39 minutes ago, Fresh said:

You always want a backup just in case, you should looking into opening a PH bank account, they have debit cards even virtual cc.

This is easier:  https://www.paymaya.com/quick-guide/activate-virtual-card

   We have opened a bank here in Surigao that we like and are able to maintain enough to keep it open. We did so to deposit funds earned from the island profits, but these lockdowns have been a hindrance in increasing funds. We in the last 11 months have been been steadily tearing our, tearing down, rebuilding and expansion. But what the constant and erratic lock-downs have not allowed us is to merely start saving-up funds in that Philippine account. But we are now almost completed with this small day-resort project and the new aquaculture projects we are constructing, with only a meager $900 a month living budget. Once this pandemic nonsense finally stops we should come out of this nonsense quite well.

   We have only until 'March First' to ready for the dreaded three year (out-and-in) to make immigration happy. I want both my wife and I to do the trip together, so we can get the B.B. Stamp and spot the monthly immigration re-ups. Then we can finally work on the 13-A once my wife gets all her Philippine documentation finally sorted out. She still needs to obtain a new Philippine passport and a few other documents first. Little steps at a time, but always moving forwards. :dance2:

 

1 hour ago, Fresh said:

If you have an PH HSBC account, why would you need a GCASH account?

Not exactly, if you lose or switch SIM, you have to contact GCASH customer service and if they can verify you, you can give a new #

   We use China Bank for several reasons, first is we really like the C.B. manager. She was an assistant-manager at A.U.B when we first moved here to Surigao in 2008. Later she was offered a better position with C.B. directly across the street, She has been a really close friend over these years. I have yet gone to C.B. to see what she offers but we have a standing account and local ATM. But I am open to check into other local banks, to see what they have to offer, and perhaps HSBC has a local branch here in Surigao City. There is no FDIC protections here on protected fund amounts, so it seems to make sense to spread your eggs into several smaller sound baskets. :biggrin_01:

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JamesMusslewhite
2 hours ago, OnNo said:

Different but relevant is opening a bank account, for the debit card, then  leaving very little in it as one defines very little. Some banks let you lock the ATM card. Prepaid cards are classified differently then debit cards and so are declined more. Debit card usability is smoother in general, I think. The dedicated phone and SIM advice is terrific. I also use it for spammy companies.

   Thank you for the response as it sounds sound advice, especially towards spammy companies. Most I will be using a card for is as protection from spammy internet companies during purchases or as backup for fastfood joints when traveling. :idontknow:

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Paddy

RCBC do have a pre-loadable Visa Debit card. In theory, you don’t need an RCBC account to get one. The one we’ve had for a while has a 100k rolling month load limit. I load it from within my Canadian online banking app (TD Canada Trust - Visa Direct or now, Global Transfers, Send to Card. )

If you lose said card, it will drive you nuts trying to recover any balance on the card. Be warned. 

Oh and they do have some weird fees (not big) that get applied from time to time. I’ve failed to learn their logic re fees. 

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