The Pros & Cons of Using Debit Cards

Learn how to protect yourself from debit card fraud.

Laura Adams, MBA
5-minute read
Episode #82

Having a debit card in your wallet is a great tool for making convenient purchases. In this episode I'll discuss the pros and cons of using them and share lots of tips on how to lower their associated risks.

Advantages of Using a Debit Card

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Ok, let's start out with the major advantages of paying with a debit card instead of paying with cash, check or a credit card:

1. Convenience is certainly the number one advantage in my book! You don't have to carry just the right amount of cash, write out a paper check and enter it into a register, or make a credit card payment at a later date.

2. It takes less time to complete a purchase. Debit cards are accepted by merchants with less scrutiny than are checks or credit cards. And swiping a card is much faster than writing out a check.

3. It keeps you within budget. When you use a debit card you're limited to spending the amount of money you have in the associated account. This prevents you from accumulating debt or being charged interest and those annoying late fees from a credit card company.  Quick Tip: opting out of overdraft coverage and enrolling in a linked acount ensures that you don't overspend and avoid hefty fees.

4. They're easier to get than a credit card. Most bank checking and savings accounts offer you the option to have a debit card linked to your account, without having to complete a lengthy application.

5. You can easily get cash. You can opt for "cash back" at most stores or use your debit card as an ATM card at cash machines.


About the Author

Laura Adams, MBA

Laura Adams received an MBA from the University of Florida. She's an award-winning personal finance author, speaker, and consumer advocate who is a frequent, trusted source for the national media. Money-Smart Solopreneur: A Personal Finance System for Freelancers, Entrepreneurs, and Side-Hustlers is her newest title. Laura's previous book, Debt-Free Blueprint: How to Get Out of Debt and Build a Financial Life You Love, was an Amazon #1 New Release. Do you have a money question? Call the Money Girl listener line at 302-364-0308. Your question could be featured on the show.