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Walmart’s New Pre-Paid Debit Card Is Basically a Free Checking Account — Dollars and Sense

Daniel Aguilar, Getty Images

Walmart plans to unleash a new no-fee prepaid debit card by American Express later this week called Bluebird that will be offered nationwide at some 4,000 Walmart stores and through the Bluebird website.

According to Walmart’s vice president of financial services, Dennis Eckert, the new Bluebird card is unlike other prepaid cards because there are no hidden charges or start-up fees, no minimum balance and no overdraft fees. “Our customers tell us they’re tired of navigating a complex maze of do and don’ts to avoid the ever-growing list of fees found on checking products,” said Eckert. “We thought we could deliver a better way for Americans to manage and control their everyday finances. Bluebird is a checking and debit alternative that is chockfull of features without the fees.”

Some of those features include check deposit by smartphone, ATM usage, electronic bill pay, person-to-person money transfers and more. Industry experts say that Bluebird is “pretty exciting news,” for those looking for an alternative to a checking account, and even though it is not the only prepaid card with low fees, “these fees are as low as you get with these types of cards.”

Experts say that while Bluebird is a solid financial alternative to traditional banking and is backed by two major corporations, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation does not insure it. It also does nothing to help establish credit or improve credit scores.

[NBC News]

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