If you have a checking account, you can get a debit card that is linked to your bank account. A debit card is a secure and convenient way to make purchases online and on-site. Unlike credit cards, you are not borrowing money when you use a debit card. Instead, you are spending the money that you already have in your bank account.
You can use a debit card to access your cash at ATMs. Many financial institutions are replacing their basic ATM cards with debit cards issued by major card payment providers such as Visa or Mastercard. These debit cards can be used to withdraw cash from a bank’s ATM or to make purchases, just like credit cards.
Debit cards are usually rectangular pieces of plastic that resemble credit cards and store cards. They are linked to your checking account at a bank or credit union. The amount of money you can spend with a debit card is tied to your account’s balance. You cannot make a purchase with a debit card if you do not have enough money in your bank account to cover the cost.
In many countries, debit cards have replaced checks and cash transactions. You can use your debit card to make payments online, with mobile payment platforms like Apple Pay, Samsung Pay, Google Pay, Venmo, and Cash App. Unlike credit cards, debit cards do not have interest rates or annual fees.
How do I get a debit card?
You can get a debit card by opening a checking account at a bank or credit union. Once you have an account, your financial institution will issue you a debit card.
Can I use my debit card internationally?
Debit cards issued in one country can be used in other countries. However, you should check with your financial institution to see if there are any international transaction fees or restrictions.
What happens if I lose my debit card?
You should report a lost or stolen debit card to your financial institution immediately. They will cancel your old card and issue you a new one.
The Bottom Line
A debit card is a convenient and secure way to make purchases online and on-site. It is a payment card that is linked to your checking account. You can use it to withdraw cash at ATMs and make purchases at vendors that accept debit card payments. Unlike credit cards, you are spending the money that you already have in your bank account when you use a debit card.