John Matarese looks at the best and worse prepaid debit cards.
By now many of us have heard that Justin Bieber is coming out with his own debit card.If you're an adult, you probably laughed. But if you're the parents of a teenage girl, she may want one.Which brings the question: Are these prepaid cards any good?
Convenient to use, but...Justin Bieber is now lending his name to the SpendSmart prepaid card. Many consumers who don't qualify for or just don't want a checking account -- like Jasmine Morgan -- love the convenience of prepaid."I'm a plastic girl," Morgan said. "I don't use a lot of cash. So they're pretty OK to have, since you don't overspend or anything like that." But the financial website Bankrate.com cautions that many prepaid debit cards are bad deals, with high fees.Greg McBride, Senior Financial Analysts of Bankrate.com said "the charges themselves may only be $1.25, $2, or $3, but that can be a per transaction basis.Bankrate cautions that celebrity cards -- from the ill fated Kardashian Kard to the Bieb's card -- tend to be among the more expensive.Mcbride said "a lot of them, like the Justin Bieber card, are appealing to teenagers who may or may not be paying the bill, and certainly are not very price sensitive." Bankrate's worst prepaid debit cards, when it comes to fees are: -MoneyGrams Prepaid Visa: $10 per month, plus a $2 ATM fee, and $1 fee to check your balance. -Achieve Card Prepaid Visa: Also $10 a month, with a $1.50 ATM fee.Bankrate's best prepaid debit cards: -American Express Prepaid. -Walmart American Express Bluebird card: Both have no monthly fees, and the first ATM withdrawal is free each month.They're nowhere as sexy as Justin Bieber, but quite a bit cheaper. Bottom line: A prepaid debit card can be a good way to teach a teen smart spending habits. And it can be a be a godsend if you have poor credit. But check those fees so you , don't waste your money.__________________________Don't Waste Your Money is a registered trademark of the EW Scripps Co."Like" John Matarese on FacebookFollow John on Twitter (@DWYM)