Free virtual cards or e-cards in the USA allow users to make online purchases without using a physical credit or debit card to pay.
Banks and other financial institutions issue these virtual cards for different target customers and purposes, with the top reasons including online security and fraud protection.
This list of the top free virtual cards in the USA highlights the best of these offerings and includes their best features that make each card stand out from the rest.
The Advantages of Using Virtual Cards
Here are the major reasons you may want to consider in favor of getting a virtual card.
- Enhanced Security – Since they do not link virtual cards to a physical card or bank account, they provide an added layer of security.
- Convenience – You can use them on any device on the web and without restrictions such as country or geo-location.
- Flexibility – You can use them to make a purchase, pay for subscriptions, buy services, and more.
- East To Manage – The issuing companies often include interfaces for easily monitoring or managing your card.
- Better Control – They allow you to have spending limits and avoid over-charging your primary account.
6 Best Free USA Virtual Cards
|1.||EzzoCard||Anonymous, USD accounts||ezzocard.com|
|2.||US Unlocked||Offers US billing & shipping address||usunlocked.com|
|3.||Privacy||Full control, freemium offer||privacy.com|
|4.||Emburse||Business & Employees||emburse.com|
|5.||Netspend||Prepaid Visa, flexible||netspend.com|
|6.||Wise||Flexible, 50 currencies||wise.com/gb/virtual-card|
Highlights: Anonymous, USD prepaid cards
EzzoCard provides anonymous USD-denominated prepaid virtual cards from either Visa or Mastercard. The cards are available with slightly different features, but most are free to maintain.
The Green Card, for instance, is a Visa card that you can register to any US address. However, it can pay in US dollars only and cannot be used with merchants outside the US. It has a 24-month validity and is available from $10 to $1,000 denominations.
EzzoCard’s Gray virtual card is also a Visa brand, requires no registration, and is available in $5 to $2,000 denominations. They also limit it to use with US merchants only, it has no monthly fee, and expires 6 months after its date of issue.
2. US Unlocked
Highlights: US billing & shipping address
US Unlocked is a unique business that offers you a virtual card with a US billing address, so anyone from around the world can shop from online US retailers, which would otherwise not be possible.
Though the service is not free, you have the chance to get a free lifetime membership if you also register as a Shipito user.
Shipito is a freight-forwarding company, which makes it easy to buy physical goods in the United States and then have them delivered to you anywhere else outside the US. You can read more about this free membership here.
Highlights: Full control, 12 cards per month free
Privacy.com is a freemium offer that gives you an account for creating and managing virtual cards easily.
You can create a card for 1-time purchase use or a subscription. You can lock a card to a particular merchant, set spending limits on it, pause, or even close the card.
The free Personal account allows you to create up to 12 cards per month, while the Pro plan allows you to create up to 36 cards per month, but it costs $10 monthly.
Privacy also offers a browser extension for ease of use, as well as an API access to their services.
Highlights: Virtual cards for businesses & employees
Emburse is an offering for businesses that allows a business owner to instantly issue physical and virtual cards to his employees with spending limits, rules, and many other features.
There are two available plans, depending on the company’s size. The first plan is for companies with 1 to 100 employees and it is free. The second is the Enterprise plan for companies with more than 100 employees and it comes with custom pricing.
You can use Emburse cards anywhere VISA/Mastercard is accepted. But you will need verifiable US business and banking information, plus be resident in the US to open an Emburse account.
Highlights: Prepaid Visa card, flexible accounts
Netspend offers a prepaid Visa debit card that you can use for a wide range of transactions. The card allows you to manage your money with no minimum account balances and no credit checks to issue.
There are two ways to use the Netspend card. The first and free method is to use the pay-as-you-go plan, which costs $0 to maintain per month. The second method is to use the monthly plan, which costs $9.95 per month.
The difference between the two plans is that you pay a $1.95 fee per transaction with the pay-as-you plan, while you pay $0 per transaction with the monthly plan for $9.95.
Highlights: Flexible management, 50+ currencies
Although Wise is a UK company, they offer amazing services, which include a free virtual card as part of your wise card package.
Wise is a great service for anyone that wants to manage money in multiple currencies or to transfer money from one currency to the other at the lowest possible rates.
You can freeze your virtual card after each purchase, so there’s nothing to worry about. The virtual card is also separate from your physical Wise card for more security.
The system allows you to own up to 3 virtual cards at a time. The cards are global and can be used for shopping anywhere. Wise is available in 30+ countries and is fully regulated by the UK’s FCA.
Frequently Asked Questions
They work the same way that ordinary credit cards work. You need to enter the CC number and related codes to make a payment online. However, many cards offer additional services.
They are considerably more secure than standard credit cards because they are not linked to your main account, and this reduces the risk of online fraud and theft for you.
No, it is not possible because virtual cards are digital and cannot be held in the hand or swiped through a card reader.
Yes and no because it depends on the card, the provider, and the terms of service. So, some cards will work, while others will not.
Virtual cards are called “virtual” because they are not physical cards that you can hold in your hand. Rather, a virtual card only represents a real card and is associated with a particular account for making online transactions.
Reaching the end of this short list of the best free virtual cards in the USA, you have seen the offers out there, as well as their extra features and best-use situations.
Understandably, there is no single best virtual card, since everything depends on your needs. So, the choice here is yours to make.