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The Best Debit Cards in the Philippines (2019)

best debit cards in the philippines

Online shopping, gaming, and subscriptions are shaping the digital and buying habits of Filipinos.

While cash remains the “King of the Hill” when paying merchants (especially in wet markets and flea markets), debit cards offer convenience for online transactions and while shopping at larger brick-and-mortar shops.

You can open an account, whether savings or checking, at your local bank, to get a debit card. There are also prepaid electronic debit cards that aren’t linked to any of your bank accounts or don’t require any application or maintaining balance.

One of the perks, if you own one, is that you can control and track your expenses.

Unlike credit cards, acquiring a debit card isn’t that complicated – the process may only take a few days, and you can get the physical card either 7-14 days.

Here’s a rundown of the best debit cards in the Philippines and what they offer.

Debit Card Initial Deposit Restrictions
Visa Debit Card via Basic Savings Account by EastWest Bank P100 Daily withdrawal limit

  • Customisable

Maintaining balance

  • P500
Debit Mastercard via Kaya Saving by BPI P200 Daily withdrawal limit

  • P20,000

Maintaining balance

  • P0

Every customer-initiated debit transaction is charged P5.00

EON Visa Debit Card by Union Bank P350 for the annual fee; any amount at your discretion. Daily withdrawal limit including purchases

  • P20,000

Maintaining balance

  • P0
Visa Debit Card by Landbank P500 Daily withdrawal limit

  • P30,000

Maintaining balance

  • P500
Mastercard and Visa ATM Debit by BDO P2,000 Daily withdrawal limit

  • P50,000

Maintaining balance

  • P2,000

The initial deposit is subject to change if you’re opening a checking account or other types of savings account, which could be between P1,000 – P25,000. (BPI Express Teller Savings is P3,000, and you also get Debit Mastercard)

The lower the initial deposit and maintaining balance, you also need to check the additional charges involved when initiating transactions. If you will use this card for online banking, online shopping, and subscriptions, it’s best to check the key features where you can use the card to pay bills, top up your transportation cards, free mobile bank transfer, and more.

Visa Debit Card via Basic Savings Account by EastWest Bank

For as low as P100 as your initial deposit, you can get a Visa debit card and also earn 0.1.25% per annum at EastWest Bank. It also serves as your savings account and debit card to pay for your online transactions.

Enjoy cashless shopping, dining, and other types of online purchases, recurring subscriptions, bills, and premium insurances that you can link to this account.

Key features of EastWest debit card:

  • EMV-Chip-enabled for added security
  • Offers lowest initial deposit and maintaining balance required
  • Accepted to more than 30 million Visa-affiliated merchants and stores worldwide, and 350,000 online merchants
  • Receive remittance directly from the debit card using Visa direct
  • Track your account and transactions via internet banking
  • Support mobile app for convenient mobile banking on the go

Debit Mastercard via Kaya Savings Account by BPI

You don’t have to worry about the maintaining balance of your account when you avail the Kaya Savings, which is automatically linked with your debit card. BPI Express Teller usually has a P3,000 initial deposit that’s also evident with a debit Mastercard.

However, the downside of Kaya Savings is you’ll be charged P5 for your transactions, EPS/24/7 banking channels, withdrawals, and purchases. By the time of this writing, e-commerce features and online shopping purchases are not yet supported.

Key features of the BPI debit card:

  • EMV-Chip-enabled for added security
  • Access other deposits and cards with easy account linkage feature
  • Convenient and upgraded internet and mobile banking experience
  • Easy fund transfer to other BPI accounts, accept remittance directly
  • Has a long, comprehensive list of merchants, establishments, organisations for bill payments, insurance, investments, non-profit organisations, utility, telcos, and more
  • Accepted to Mastercard-affiliated merchants both local and abroad
  • Easy and frictionless debit card use at local supermarket and grocery stores nationwide

EON Visa Debit Card by Union Bank

EON Visa debit card is every online shopper’s and freelancer’s favourite. Aside from not having any maintaining balance, you only need to pay for the annual P350 fee. Opening an account is similar to opening a regular savings account – the process is pretty straightforward and you can even open one or register online.

Acquiring this debit card unlocks upgraded mobile banking which can pay bills, transfer funds to other banks, receive remittance directly, top-up your Beep card and more.

There’s a whole lot of features within the app and benefits to using this debit card, both for online and in brick-and-mortar shops.

Key features of the EON Visa debit card:

  • No maintaining balance, no penalty fees
  • Easily link to Paypal account (receive P200 cash back from now until June 30, 2019, if you transfer from PayPal to EON Visa)
  • Hassle-free top-ups for your gaming subscriptions, Beep, Easystrip, and prepaid mobile numbers, Gcash for cashless payments and more
  • Upgraded mobile and internet banking
  • 24/7 mobile banking via InstaPay allowing you to transfer funds to other partner banks instantly up to P50,000, with P10 fee per transaction
  • Receive by end of day deposits to other banks via PesoNet
  • Pay bills, utilities, insurance premiums, and other subscriptions and credit cards.
  • Check the other establishments and comprehensive list here.
  • Easy fund transfer and receiving remittance directly
  • Ideal for shopping online and in retail stores
  • Convenient for motorists and commuters alike; easy top-up of Beep card, Easystrip,
  • AutoSweep RFID, Grab voucher
  • Comes with another EON reloadable prepaid card for online purchases

Union Bank also offers debit cards for gamers like the PlayEveryday Visa and for frequent travellers, the GetGo Visa to earn more points for Cebu Pacific flights.

Visa Debit Card by Landbank

This debit card has a low initial deposit and minimum maintaining balance of P500. It’s also linked to a deposit account, and you can earn 0.10% per annum if you maintain P2000 as daily balance.

The EMV-chip-enabled debit card is ready for activation via any of the Landbank ATM machines to start using it on your online purchases and even when you dine, pay bills, and more.

Key features of the Landbank Visa debit card:

  • You can have a savings account for as low as P500 as the initial deposit
  • Easy shopping for online and in-store purchases
  • Accepted to over 40 million merchants and 2 million ATMs around the world and wherever Visa is available.
  • Pay bills over 80 billers and transfer funds via mobile and internet banking
  • Easy access to services via Landbank (MBA) Mobile Banking Application
  • Transfer funds to other banks (BANCNET-member banks)
  • Mastercard or Visa ATM Debit by BDO

BDO is one of the most popular banks in the Philippines and most of its debit cards are accepted at establishments, restaurants, hotels, supermarkets, grocery stores, and retail stores nationwide.

BDO offers two variants, Mastercard or Visa, which you can use for online purchases, bills payments, and enjoy mobile banking using the BDO mobile app.

Key features of the BDO Mastercard and Visa ATM debit card:

  • Easy link to your Savings/Deposit account
  • Accepted to any of the Mastercard or Visa-affiliated merchants nationwide and overseas
  • Easy withdrawal of money from local ATMs and also overseas
  • Easy shopping for online and in-store purchases
  • Pay bills and transfer funds via mobile and internet banking using BDO mobile app
  • Enjoy promos and discounts or earn rewards points when you use this card during the promo period
    A. Up to P300 OFF at Lazada (BDO Mastercard, Credit and Debit card)
    B. Extended Travel sale (BDO Mastercard, Credit and Debit card)
    C. Raffle Promo (BDO Visa debit card)

Generally, when establishments and stores accept credit cards, they also accept debit cards as your mode of payment.

While the perks and benefits you get from debit cards are few compared to credit cards that offer cash rebates, discounts, and eligibility to join promos, the former – debit cards – allows you to pay directly from your bank.

No need to borrow money and think of your next bill and other charges.

So, what do you think? Will you avail any of these debit cards mentioned above or apply for a credit card instead?