Prepaid Services at Online Casinos
A Prepaid service is effectively a “foreign” credit card, although because it requires the funds to be “prepaid”, it acts more like a debit card – an advantage to those at risk from borrowing more than they can afford too as well as residents of repressed nations such as the USA. A rising star in this field (mainly because they allow US players) is Ecocard (list: online casinos accepting ecocard), which has become the most popular option, or an alternative (that has also recently abandoned the USA) is Netspend. The aforementioned two are affiliated to VISA: there is also eCount which is affiliated to Mastercard, though you will need to check that gambling transactions are acceptable as you read this.
Taking Entropay as an example (they are all similar-ish), when you sign up, you are issued a VISA card which you can top up from your own bank checking account or via Internet banking. The difference between a Prepaid card and your bank’s credit or debit card is that Entropay VISA’s have fewer restrictions for use online in countries where online gambling is illegal or discouraged. You are in effect acquiring a VISA card from a foreign country where online gambling is legal. So if you live in a country where credit card providers disallow online gambling with a credit card, such as the USA, this could be an ideal solution.
There was, until recently, a similar service called “Prepaid ATM” which was commonly used to fund casino accounts. However, this service went out of business in 2006, with debts which were bought out and are being honoured, so whether we’ll see a Phoenix from the PPATM ashes, only time will tell. You should find that any casino that supports VISA deposits accepts an Entropay or a Netspend VISA card, while those that support Mastercard should take a Netspend card, however you should check to make sure that the casino is able to refund winnings to it. If not, and you do not have an eWallet, you may have to receive your winnings by cheque or by bank wire (or “ACH” in the USA) which may incur a small fee at some casino properties.