Visa Gift Card ? The Smart Credit Card Alternative

Posted by Nick Niesen on October 29th, 2010

A visa gift card is similar to a debit card and represents money deposited with the issuer (Visa). This card can be used for purchases up to the limit on the card at all outlets where visa card is accepted. The difference between debit card and visa gift card is that debit card is usually issued in an individual?s name where as visa gift card is issued without any name. Further there is a PIN in debit cards where as for visa gift cards there is no PIN. The amount varies from $25 to $2,500. There are two types of visa gift cards, domestic and international. Domestic can be used only within the US while international visa gift cards can be used internationally.

The visa gift card looks just like any debit card. It has a magnetic strip embedded in it on which the number is encoded. The remaining value in the card can be assessed by radio frequency identification. There are other ways, like entering the printed number on the card into a telephone or other numeric keypad. The simplest way to know the balance on your visa gift card is to call the toll free number on the card and give the card number.

The visa gift card can be given as a reward or gift on various occasions. Some visa cards are automatically activated whereas some have to be activated. The instructions for activation are written on the card. It is important to sign on the back of the card to prevent unauthorized people using your card. The purchase receipt has to be signed on every purchase.

The usage of the card is very simple and similar to using a credit card. The card has to be swiped through the keypad and the credit button has to be pressed. The amount spent on purchases is automatically deducted from the account. However unlike credit card the amount of purchase is limited to the amount in the card and no overdrawing is possible. If the amount of purchase is more than the amount in the card, the card is declined. Therefore it is necessary to know the balance amount in the visa gift card before hand. In case one wants to purchase an article of value more than the amount in the card, the difference amount can be paid by cash, check or credit card.
If a card is lost or stolen, dial the toll free number given on the card or the number in the back of the card materials. To issue a fresh card the card provider will need the visa gift card number. Hence it is better to note the card number and the toll free number in a separate paper and keep it in safe place. When gifting the visa gift card the gift card materials should also be given with the visa gift card.

Visa gift cards are available quite easily and at many locations. To purchase a visa gift card online, or to know the locations where it is available, visit

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Nick Niesen

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Nick Niesen
Joined: April 29th, 2015
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