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Visa Debit & Visa Electron

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rosejhale | 18:07 Wed 16th Aug 2006 | How it Works
3 Answers
I currently had a visa electron which I needed to replace the bank has sent me a Visa Debit card insted of my typical Visa electron is there a difference between the two cards if so what are they??


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Both cards do the same job (i.e. they allow you to pay for things directly from your bank account or to use cash machines) but your new card has far fewer restrictions than your old one.

For example, many retailers (especially places like filling stations) accept 'Visa' but won't accept 'Visa Electron'. Similarly, you might have found that your Visa Electron card wasn't accepted at all cash machines (or for some online transactions). Your bank has effectively lifted these restrictions. Your new card will now be accepted everywhere that takes Visa. in practice, that means that you can use your card at almost any retail outlet in the world which accepts 'plastic'. Similarly, you can now withdraw cash from any cash machine in the UK as well as the vast majority of machines throughout Europe and the rest of the world.

Visa Electron cards are often issued to people with poor credit ratings. The fact that you've now been issued with an ordinary Visa card means that your credit status must have risen.

In addition to the great info above, here's some boring info that might save you amassing bank charges. In theory, every single transaction that you make with a Visa Electron card has to be "authorised" (approved) by the bank. If your bank balance is �8.55 and you try to spend �9 it could be declined.

With the new and 'improved' Visa Delta card, this isn't always the case. Different shops have different "floor limits" and if your payment is below their floor limit (say theirs is �20) then your payment is approved by the shop alone/locally : the bank possibly don't even know you've made the payment until a few days later.
This way, you could spend that �9 and go a whopping 45p overdrawn and be charged about �50 for the pleasure.

A bargain at twice the price!!
The 2 morals of the story are :
1. Banks are a bunch of thieving gypos.
2. You need to make sure you have enough money in your account before spending. Don't assume that just because your card wasn't declined that your balance is fine.

Finally, Visa Electron cards never (to my knowledge) double as cheque guarantee cards whereas a Visa Delta card often does.

Prizes for anyone still awake!
Hey the visa debit is alot better as it is more widely accepted and you can have an overdraft with the visa debit i think!!! ive just applied for a visa debit as i find the visa electron isnt accepted in that many places particularly while shopping online!

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