Debit Cards are widely used these days for making payments and transacting on nearly every occasion. One of the primary reasons for this is its simplicity and convenience. So, don’t worry if you’re a Debit Card newbie with no prior experience with the card.
Debit cards are quite handy to use. All you have to do is remember a few fundamentals. In this article, I will share the basics about debit cards, the types of debit cards, if debit cards are safe to use, what pins are, and the various things you can use your debit cards for.
What is a debit card?
Debit cards are similar to ATM cards and credit cards in several ways. You can use them to receive cash from a bank’s automated teller machine, as with the former, or to make purchases, as with the latter. In reality, many banking institutions are replacing their plain vanilla, single-purpose ATM cards with debit cards provided by major card-payment processors such as Visa or Mastercard.
These debit cards are automatically included in your bank account.
The debit card operates in the same way whether it is used to receive cash or to purchase something: it takes funds directly from the associated account. As a result, your spending is restricted to what is accessible in your checking account and the exact amount of money you have.
Types of debit cards
Visa Debit (the most prevalent) and MasterCard Debit are the two primary types of debit cards in Nigeria that may be used whenever you see their insignia. There are just a few disparities between both types of debit cards. With a few minor exceptions, all debit cards are essentially the same.
You can easily get any of these cards from your bank and they can be used both for ATMs and online payments
Are debit cards safe to use?
Debit cards are very safe to use, as long as you secure them with a PIN. Once you acquire a debit card, you must create a PIN number that you will use when making purchases. This provides an extra layer of security. It is critical not to choose a predictable PIN, such as your birthday or address, and not to reveal your PIN number, as those who know it have access to your bank account and all the funds in it.
What is a PIN?
“PIN” stands for Personal Identification Number. When you receive a debit card from a bank or credit union, you’ll be given a PIN. You can personalize your PIN to a number you can easily remember but cannot be easily decoded. When using a debit card, you must enter your PIN on a keypad. This is one method the bank tries to prevent dishonest persons from obtaining your money by using your debit card.
What do I use my debit card for?
A debit card may be used practically any place credit cards are accepted. Restaurants, merchants, internet shops, government agencies, and others are included. There are a few exceptions, but for the most part, it’s as simple as swiping your debit card at the register (or if paying online, by typing in your card number).
- To make payments at retail shops: Most times all you have to do is swipe the black magnetic strip on the back of your card through the card reader and sign for the transaction. Card readers are commonly used by retailers. After entering the amount, you enter your unique 4-digit PIN or Personal Identification Number. The request is processed and the transaction is completed by the bank account associated with your card.
- Pay for your purchases. You may use your debit card anywhere that accepts credit cards, and you will not be charged interest on your transactions. From your favourite coffee truck to the farmer’s market, most retailers and sellers now accept credit cards, so consider outside of the grocery store and big-box stores. You will not be required to carry cash or pay interest on your purchase.
- Pay for services rendered. Most hairstylists, lawn care services, and even heating and air conditioning technicians accept debit cards as payment, and most systems enable you to leave a tip (though your AC man probably won’t expect one!). You’re back to your hectic schedule in no time.
- Pay online: You can pay bills, and subscription fees, and make international transactions with your debit card. all you need is the 16-digit number on your card, your CCV, and your pin to make payments.
The use of debit cards is almost limitless and it is up to you to decide what you use it for.