Is a Naira card better than a prepaid dollar card?

Credit Card Nigeria

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Posted by on Thursday February 28, 2013 at 13:27:25:

Banks in Nigeria nowadays do have a wide range of cards that they offer to customers depending on their choice. As a bank customer with a good account, you can get a naira credit or debit card easily from your bank. You may also decide to get a prepaid card denominated in US dollars.

The question then is - Are naira cards better than a prepaid dollar card?

I think it depends on the type of transactions you do with your kind and the kind of job you do.

If you are a frequent traveller who goes to cities like London, China or New York to do shopping or need to make payments frequently at foreign outlets, going with a prepaid dollar card can be safe as you can spend the dollar anywhere you go and stay restricted to your budget. It would also help you avoid having your funds converted to the dollar since it is already funded with dollars.

You can as well also travel to these global places and still pay with a naira credit card as long as it is supported with trusted names like Visa and Mastercard. The only difference with shopping on foreign stores with a Nigerian issued naira card is that you naira would have to be converted to the foreign currency at the time of making payment.

Another issue with shopping on foreign stores with a naira card is that it is most likely linked to your bank account and this kind of makes you spend more than you originally budgeted. Imagine someone who gets a Visa card linked to his bank account that has a N2m balance. He may just be willing to spend just $2000 in Dubai but ends up spending $5000 just because he finds it easy to access his bank account with a naira card.

Most USD cards issued in Nigeria tend to come with limited budget friendly funds unlike the naira cards which tend to have more funds so trying to stick to a budget on a naira card may be hard but not impossible.

It could also be an advantage to some people who may run out of cash if they exhaust funds in their prepaid USD card, carrying a naira card can help them in their times of need.

A prepaid USD card has its advantage such as allowing the holder to fund his account at his agreed exchange rate for the dollar. This eliminates the effect of daily exchange rates applied on a naira card when used on foreign stores. For instance, the holder can fund his usd card with $5000 at N150 to the dollar rather than having to sit by as banks use their discretion to charge your naira card exchange rate.

They both have their benefits and demerits and I think it is probably better to go with both if you can as a back up plan.

You can use a naira card to make withdrawals from atms globally from visa and mastercard supported machines.


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