Let’s make this a different review this time, apart from merely stating the facts about the accounts we will tear apart and compare the good and bad points of PerkStreet platinum Visa debit card.
It’s a debit card
Since it’s a debit card, you do not need high interest cash back from credit cards. Withdrawing money from ATMs is fee free as long as the ATM is within Star/Visa network.
PerkStreet claims their network as widest than Bank of America, that is because of an alignment with Star network.
Cons – Since it’s not credit card you can’t build credit history with this card. Many credit card perks are missing. Especially the glamorous offers from American Express or Citi. If you’re rich, this is not ideal replacement of a prestigious credit card.
When you need to buy an items which costs more than your checking account balance, you simply can’t buy it, because PerkStreet will only allow you to charge up to your checking account balance.
You are also not entitled for interest free balance transfer offers which other credit issuer put forward.
You are also not entitled to various travel rewards like, ticket protection, lost baggage coverage or auto car insurance, etc perks.
Clearly some missing perks on the streets here.
PerkStreet platinum Visa debit card has 1% return on all purchases, 2% cash back return on some retail outlets (may be temporarily to attract new applicants) like, Walmart, Amazon, etc. PerkStreet platinum Visa debit card also offers 5% cash back on rotating categories.
This is as good as you can get from a credit card. You can redeem at 35,000 retail outlets or simply get cash deposited in your checking account.
Nothing is missing here as compared to a regular credit card cash back rewards. We just hope that 2% and 5% rotating categories are here to stay, it wasn’t there when the card was first introduced. PerkStreet may have introduced this seeing lackluster acceptance of its card.
Checking account is otherwise fee free, except the inactivity fee of $4.5. I you don’t use the debit card, don’t transfer money between your accounts you will be charged with this. PerkStreet don’t want you to just keep the account open and do nothing.
This is annual fee free debit card, which you may in about 70% of the credit cards. Only 30% or so charge an annual fee.
Other checking accounts do not have this inactivity fees. Some banks even waive over limit fee, return check fee or check cancellation fee. For some reason, PerkStreet decided against extending this perks.
I bank at Bank of America, Ever Bank, Capital One bank and Discover bank. They all charge these fees, except Ever bank.
I like the fact that PerkStreet offers free check book and cash/check deposits are postage free. Just drop them in UPS mailboxes with prepaid stamps.
The main disadvantage is you don’t have access to fund for couple of days at least, this is not the case with brick and mortar banks where money is for you to use the next day after fund deposit.
No matter how hard they try to convince you, I can’t believe they have a better customer service than a AMEX, Citi or Chase. Even Bank of America should have better service than PerkStreet. I do not have first hand experience with them and read about a few complaints in online forums already.
You’ll have hard time convincing them about fraudulent transactions. Where as big brands don’t wait for you to call up, they call customers detecting fraudulent transactions on their accounts.
It happened to me twice and on both occasions I got the charges removed from my account, Chase and Amex both sent me replacement cards promptly. had they not called me up, I would not have clue about those $3, $2 charges I was incurring every month.
PerkStreet Financial Debit MasterCard® is protected by the MasterCard Zero Liability Policy, which ensures you won’t be held liable for any unauthorized transaction – as per their website. (but, as long as they can detect or you can convince them successfully)
Any bank with decent money can buy banking package from software companies, PerkStreet website runs as good as any other online bank website. Don’t try to compare it with feature rich Chase or bank of America portal. They are only in checking account business, they have no need to build a comprehensive website.
PerkStreet proudly declares 128 bit encryption, which is now a standard anyway. But We are not sure how vulnerable their data center is. these days rarely data is stolen in transit, they are stolen directly out of the database. We hope PerkStreet maintains state of the art security firewall system in their internal network.
if you are enticed towards getting rewards on debit cards without having to use a credit card and probably have started with application process. Let us remind you that this is a nice attempt towards getting cheap deposit source.
PerkStreet is not in business of debt cards, it’s in business of checking account. A checking account which doesn’t pay interest that is. Let’s do a quick math here.
let’s say your deposit amount is $20,000 in a checking account, if you keep it in high yield checking accounts, you may earn interest as high as 1.2%. Making your monthly interest income somewhere around $23 – $24
Now if you keep this amount with PerkStreet and transact for around $1,000 per month. You will earn only $10 in cash back, with those 2% and 5% categories, maximum you can go up to $15.
For my personal use, I will not apply for this account. I am happy to earn credit card rewards of 3% between my 4 credit cards and for my checking account I am just fine with high yield accounts.
Based on pure mathematics, we do not recommend ParkStreet for wise credit card user. But, if you are too weak to keep credit card spending in control, PerkStreet platinum Visa debit card can be your ideal companion.
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