It wasn’t long after I predicted changes to Ryanair’s credit card regulations that they were actually introduced. In fact what it took was a massive rise in publicity of the Visa Electron trick and the availability of cheap or even free accounts where these cards were offered. I did take advantage of my Visa Electron on 2 or 3 occasions before it was disqualified. And I’m still happy because I got this card free of charge.
The new Ryanair ruling requires you to actually purchase a card which is supposed to put people off using them when buying tickets. But what I noticed is it’s actually not the payment itself that’s annoying (I paid 7 pounds for mine and am charged 2% for every transaction) but the fact you can only load it at Post Office unless you can afford further 3% charge when loading in any of the PayPoints.
My pre-paid Master Card doesn’t offer the option to transfer money directly from my account. You can set up a direct debit so a certain amount of money is transferred to this account every month. But you can’t transfer directly to your credit card.
And this is a real pain because I usually buy tickets in the evening or late at night. That means I’d have to wait at least 12 hours before I can top up my card. This obviously means prices are unlikely to be the same after that time.
Another thing is I want to avoid keeping too much money on the pre-paid card in case I need it on my account. Withdrawing money from my pre-paid account also incurs a fee. Obviously I could use it to pay for goods like with a regular credit card but you have to know exactly how much money you have on it otherwise you’ll be embarrassed when it’s declined.
Anyway, I only managed to use my pre-paid Master Card once. It didn’t cost me a penny on the Ryanair website and I’d have to pay additional £30 without the card. But I spent a total of £19 to buy the card and top it up which still saved me a tenner.
So I’m not hating it yet because at least I saved on my first purchase and would have to spend that money anyway. But going to the Post Office to top up is quiet a hassle.
And just so you know, I did believe Bread when I was ordering my card that you can top it up from your own account. But this is semi-true. You can top up via direct debit but not by bank transfer which is a pain!
I’m using the Bread pre-paid Master Card and did shop around for a better option. But couldn’t find anything cheaper and better suited for my needs.