Sunday, August 7, 2011

AMW Bulletin: Pay Now: Debit Cards

One thing that I can be proud of myself, is the way I handle my finances!  I remember owning my first supplementary credit card during senior high!  I had this card all throughout until I graduated College!  I never owe any bank anything as I always pay on time.

The Secret?
I treat my credit card as a Debit Card.  Meaning, I put aside the cash right after I swiped the card.

What's the point of using credit cards then if you pay upfront?
The fact that I don't need to bring cash and having a good credit standing.

The only complaint I could think of in situations like these,  I need to withdraw cash from the bank and set aside the money as payment for the credit card company.  (I actually have a small pink envelope were I put all my cash and sales receipts)

Let's not forget the long lines plus the hassle of carrying big amount of money is not safe at times like these!

That is why, when dear friends from OMD Digital, Chin and Cristel reached out to me and wanted to set a meeting for me to learn about the new Visa Debit Card, I really took time out of my busy schedule to meet up with them to understand the benefits of owning a Visa Debit Card because I know readers like YOU would appreciate this knowledge sharing as well!

It pays to live life to the fullest!  Spend your hard-earned cash on purchases you want and not by paying through debts!

Here are some key points I learned about the Visa Debit Cards ---
  • Visa Debit Cards function exactly like any Visa card but they access funds from a checking or savings bank account and work like you were paying with cash!  It's like "buy now and pay now" scheme.
  • With debit cards, you will need to have money in the bank to cover your purchases because the funds are immediately withdrawn from your checking or savings bank account and transferred into the account of the store or business where you completed the transaction.  This gives you the capacity to spend within the budget and keep you out of debt!
Benefits of Debit Cards ---
  • Can be a valuable financial management tool for budgeting, monitoring funds on deposit and for keeping track of spending.
  • Just like a credit card, it can be used to pay for purchases at various merchant locations like restaurants, gas stations, department stores and hotels.  
  • Visa Debit Cards are accepted worldwide in more than 200 countries and territories especially online shopping!
  • Visa Debit Cards allow access to foreign currency from ATMs around the world that carry the Visa logo.  Travel lovers out there, hear ye! hear ye!
  • Debit cards are tied to the card holder's existing checking or savings account.  Meaning, no need to bring loads of cash, safe indeed!
  • There are no monthly payments or debt accrued.
  • Debit cards can be used in ATMs to withdraw cash just like an ATM card.  I was told the charging rate is lower than that of withdrawing from a credit card.
  • Debit cards are perfect for students and young professionals who are just starting out, need the budget skills.
Tips on using Debit Cards (base on personal experiences) ---
  • Always keep sales receipts as reference.  I never throw them away at least after 3 months.
  • Remember to account for any bank fees that may apply.  It pays to ask before you purchase.
  • Review statements carefully.  I do that on ALL my bills and computers or humans behind this aren't perfect, someone in someway can still make a mistake!  So please check your bills and contact the bank right away if you suspect a mistake.
  • Always follow up with a confirmation letter for the bank, this would eliminate suspicions of identity theft.
  • Last but not the least, if I may have to add, NEVER write down your passwords.  Try to keep your password as difficult as possible!  Change your passwords annually.
For more Visa's financial literacy materials.  You may visit

I wish I've applied earlier, I was in Shanghai just last week and I was carrying around different currencies Peso, Dollar and Chinese Yuan (RMB) and I was getting paranoid each time someone bumps into me!  And guess what?  It's also an "in" thing to use Visa in Shanghai!  See the huge billboard? 

Thanks Cristel and Chin for this!  I am appreciate Visa Debit Cards more and I think I needed this more than anything else!  Saves me the time to go to ATM machines to withdraw!

I hope I was able to relay the things I learned out of the meeting!
I am in no way connected to the company, I personally use VISA and I love it!

Where to apply?
Visit BDO, Chinatrust Commercial Bank, Equicom Savings Bank, Inc., HSBC, Standard Chartered Bank, Sterling Bank of Asia and Unionbank.

Keep smilin'
Stay happy!


  1. I used debit card exclusively for shopping for a year but it was too much hassle to punch in the code every single time, not to mention my bank (a big and notorious one) always finds a way to charge you some fee...(A friend of mine got charged 500 dollars of over-redrawal free when she redrew less than a 100 bucks!). Anyway, if you pay on time, credit care is a good choice (I got quite a bit of reward!).

  2. nice tips ate nikki. i've been a good girl with my credit card, never ako nalate sa payments :) now i use a debit card and i like it better. no need to carry cash and you spend within your budget :)

  3. ms nikki,
    where can we apply for one?

  4. @Citrine Wow really? Thanks for sharing your experience!

  5. @miemiemie Ah really? That's nice to know na nagamit mo na din ang debit card, I'm just new to this :)

  6. @Anonymous I already updated the post and included the banks where you can apply :)

  7. I was able to try debit cards before but I when I got my credit card, I switched hahaha! But I always pay the card as soon as the charges are posted online. I don't like incurring interest and I might get carried away from swiping the card and have a hard time paying once the due date comes hihihi :)

  8. Started using debit cards when I was still in college, as I had some online writing jobs which pay via Paypal. I have a Union Bank Eon Visa and a site-issued Payoneer MasterCard. :) Still loving the convenience it brings.

  9. @ChinaDoll good to know! Paying for interest really sucks :( glad you learned how to manage your finances at this early age! Proud!!! :)

  10. @stylus ignotus wow! Hats off for doing side jobs while studying! :)


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