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I was reading my guestbook when I noticed a note from lil_kayb telling me to get writing, so here goes:
::::VISA ELECTRON CARD::::
I have had an account at Lloyds TSB since I was about eleven years old, this was then known as a Young Savers Account, When you get to 16, it changes to a Current Account. All I had to go with the account was a paying in book and a cashpoint card.
When I was fifteen I damaged my Cashpoint card and requested a new one, a few days later I recieved a letter from the bank containing my new card, only it wasn't the card I'd wanted. They had sent me a cheque guarantee card, only problem was I didn't have a cheque book! I rang later that day to tell them what i'd requested and what i'd recieved, the lady on the phone was very helpful and assured that my cashpoint card would be through the post very shortly. Ok, two days later my postman brings me a new package from the bank, only this time, guess what was inside . . . . No, not my Cashpoint card but a cheque book! At least now I had some way of getting to the money in my account, but I STILL wanted my Cashpoint Card!!! I telephoned the helpline AGAIN and told them exactly what had happened, they said that my Cashpoint card had already been posted and I should contact them again tomorrow if I still haven't recieved anything! Sure enough, next morning, my Cashpoint card arrived.
I was now the only 15year old in my whole school with a cheque book! (I'm not sure how old you're meant to be?) At the time I thought writing cheques was great, and as for been able to use mail order without asking permission from my mom, that was even better!! But as like most other things, it was a novelty and I soon got bored of it! I decided that wanted a Debit Card, surely I could have more fun with that!??
So, I went to my bank and asked for an application form to get a debit card, they gave me an application form to fill out, and return to them, the form was very straight forward to fill out, just asking for name address and bank details.
When I had filled this form out I took it back to the bank and handed it to the cashier, About a week later, Mr Postman delivered me another letter from the bank, this time containg my Debit/Cashpoint Card.
The card itself is the same shape and size as any other normal card, it has an issue and expiery date, and your bank details. Mine is blue and green and has Visa Electron wrote on the bottom right hand corner. It also says "Electronic Use Only" on the front. The card is NOT a cheque guarantee card.(As it tells you on the reverse)
::::CAN YOU USE IT ONLINE?::::
This is a big disadvantage, the answer is YES, but on only about 2% of all websites! When I first recieved my card I tried it out on quite a few websites, only to be told "SORRY, WE DO NOT ACCEPT THIS PAYMENT METHOD" Why bother telling me that after I have spent the last 20 minutes writing down my address details etc??
I booked my driving theory test online and used my Electron Card to pay for that, this was one of the few sites that do accept it. I also used it quite some time ago on a webiste to order a CD, I cant remember what this site was.
::::WHICH SHOPS ACCEPT IT?::::
Most major stores accept it, including Adams, JJB, First Sport, HMV, Petrol Stations, Some pubs/Clubs Sainsbury's, Tesco, Asda etc
::::WHO DOESN'T ACCEPT IT?::::
I know for certain that Dorothy Perkins doesn't (Another embarrassing moment!), along with many mail order companies, catalogues and on-line stores.
::::CAN YOU GET OVERDRAWN?::::
NO, you can only use what money is in your account at the time of using the card. This is good as you can't ever get into debt with this card, if you don't have enough money in your account, the card will simply be rejected.
::::WHY ELECTRONIC USE ONLY?::::
The card is quite different to most cards as the numbers / account details are engraved instead of raised like most cards. This means that the card can only be accepted by machines that can "read" the card.
::::WOULD I RECOMMEND THE CARD?::::
Sorry to disappoint the people who created the Electron card, but I wouldn't really recommend the card for anything else other than the Cashpoint! I don't use mine very often, as you have to remember when you last used it, how much you spent, if you've got enough money in your account to cover the cost of your next purchase and even worse, does the shop even accept it???
::::ADVICE ON IMPROVING THE PRODUCT::::
The card needs to be accepted in more places, including use on the internet.
I have a Mastercard and Visa Electron, If I must cover for electron not working I switch to mastercard. Alot of retail stores seem to be accepting visa electron more these days I've noticed compared to say 3 years ago alot of people also don't realise if you see "electron" sign your card is accepted too not just the visa electron logo. As for online what alot of people don't know is if you select your card as a VISA rather then looking for electron as an option 80% of the times it works. I've been doing it for a long time.
DarkDave 02.12.2003 22:36
I had one of these..can't really grumble - it got me all round Ireland when I was touring on my own a couple of years ago. Upgraded to "proper" Visa as soon as I turned 18 though. Good op...Dave
whoopidoo 12.09.2003 11:29
I used to be a cashier - it's not nice when you tell people who have spent an hour or so shopping that you can't take their card. Some get quite nasty. For that fact alone I never got one of these cards. Great op :o)