Why Prepaid Cards are on Trend This Holiday Season


Holiday trends in 2022 favor in-person experiences and budget-conscious gifting as people search for solutions to help them navigate fraud concerns, limited budgets, and travel complications. Prepaid cards, with their flexibility and varied uses, can help your members glide through these holiday challenges and enjoy the season with their loved ones.


Apprehensions about fraud have increased. According to the TransUnion 2022 Consumer Holiday Shopping Report, the number of consumers who would abandon their carts due to “fraud concerns” has grown by 72% since 2021.

As your members look to protect their information without sacrificing convenience, a well-designed prepaid program can help. Prepaid cards are not directly connected to a member’s account, keeping this sensitive data private while shopping. Tokenization allows prepaid cards to be added to mobile wallets for secure payment in-person or online, encouraging cardholder loyalty across payment channels.

Budget-Conscious Shopping

Concerns about inflation have started many people shopping early as they strive to stay on budget. Prepaid cards can support members’ holiday budget goals. Gift cards in particular make gifting and staying on budget simple for members. In fact, almost half of holiday gift spending this year will be on gift cards with 20% of shoppers likely to purchase digital gift cards (PaymentsJournal). With many people looking for deals and promotions, credit unions can also utilize gift cards as incentives for opening accounts or referrals.

Reloadable prepaid cards are great for budgeting other holiday expenses such as food, home improvement, and decorations for gatherings. Reloadable prepaid cards with flexible loading and reloading options make managing funds easy for members. Cardholders can easily load the exact amount they want to spend on their cards without worrying about accruing interest or debt.

Travel Peace of Mind

Holiday travel continues to recover as in-person celebrations rise by 23% from last year (PaymentsJournal). Travelers are likely to face some challenges and many are particularly concerned about higher costs for transportation and accommodations. Incidents with lost and mishandled luggage during air travel are also expected to increase. Not only can prepaid cards help members budget for travel expenses, but some specialized reloadable prepaid cards come with added travel benefits such as lost luggage reimbursement to help cardholders navigate their travel challenges.

As members look for ways to shop securely and make the most of their budgets, offering tools like prepaid cards can help members achieve their vision for a great holiday season.

While a comprehensive prepaid card program can be a profitable way to give members the payment experience they want, it can also be a challenge for a busy credit union. At Envisant we’re here to help you be the difference for your members. To learn how our team of prepaid experts can help, contact the Envisant sales department at 1-800-942-7124.

Article by Naomi Anderson, vice president of Prepaid for Envisant, California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues business partner.