Smartcreds is a pay-as-you-go system. You use your own money which you pay into a Smartcreds account, and then use your card to but online, like a credit card.
Smartcreds.co.uk is a brilliant site, which allows anyone to buy Internet goods by cash. If you’re a teenager and are tempted by the deals on the net, but don’t have a card, which works for paying for stuff on the Internet, or you prefer to pay by cash for your goods, or even if your worried about accidentally overspending and theft, then this site and what it can do is for you. Smartcreds works as a pay as you go debit card, and it works just like when you top up a mobile. You pay the money in a shop ‘pay point’ or post office, they swipe your card and it credits it to your online account to spend! The Good points Smartcreds offers a way to pay for online goods with cash. Which means that you can support yourself, buy your own presents and things – one more giant leap towards independence! They have an ever-growing and still very large selection of shops to choose from. On the ‘shopping’ screen your are knocked back by how many there are, and on this screen the give you all the newest and best shops for that month. There’s then a list of categories to choose from, each containing about 5 or over shops from cards, to CDs and DVDs to cosmetics and even an online tattoo store! The shops offer very competitive prices, often cheaper than anywhere else. For example Cdwow.com sells the latest chart CD albums for only £8.99 and free postage & packaging. Much better than Virgin where you can often expect to pay upwards of £12 for the same stuff! Also the top up card they send you looks cool, similar to a proper credit card, with a hologram and all! They send you a monthly e-mail newsletter, telling you where the bargains are, of competitions and new shops which have become available. You may have heard of Splash Plastic, which is a similar site offering a similar service. On Smartcreds I found that the registration process was much easier, and didn̵
7;t take so long; having tried both of them. Also the card looks better manufactured, as the one from Splash Plastic seems to be made of some sort of card, rather than plastic as the Smartcreds ones are. I’ve also found that Smartcreds offers a better and greater selection of shops to choose from and is more often updated than Splash Plastic. One other bonus of this site, rather than Splash Plastic is that it is run by the Post Office, so not only does it mean that it is easier to find a place to top up, but also it is a bigger company so if it goes bust your more likely to get your money back! The Bad Points It can take quite a while for your credit to come into your account. For example I put £15 in and it took 2 days before it was registered on the site and I could use it, which can be a little worrying when you don’t know where your money’s gone! One big down, which can’t be helped I guess, is that it can only be used on the internet, and only at the selected stores, which is a little annoying and off-putting, but the choice of places to spend your money makes up for this. Sometimes you are left with money in your account which you can’t spend, for example if you spend £9.99 a couple of times you’re left with odd pennies which aren’t usable anywhere, and you can’t claim them back, unfortunately! Also one you’ve paid the money in you can’t get it back so you have to spend it, so you’re not quite getting the same freedom as with cash, so my advice is decide what you want to buy, where from and how much, then top up. However this site offers a very convenient and I believe, useful service particularly if you live miles away from any shops! But other than a few disadvantages, a very helpful site, and it’s free! How to get hold of a card – Go onto their site www.smartcreds.co.uk. Click on ‘register here.’ Enter your e
-mail address in the box. Then enter a few personal details, like your address etc. Then wait a couple of weeks while they send you the card. When you get the card, you go back onto their site and click ‘activate card.’ Then you type in your password and e-mail address which you created last time you were on the site, enter your card number and your ready to go! Enjoy!
A notice in my local post office about a Pay as you go Internet credit card caught my eye, so I decided to look into it and see what it was all about. Smartcreds is a fantastic idea for people who cannot or will not get a credit card. You can do your online shopping without having to worry about spending money you haven’t got. If you are like me and you are not very sensible with money then this is definitely for you. Smartcreds is a top up credit card that you can top up by direct debit, with cash at your post office or local garage in fact anywhere that has a paypoint sign in there window. You can get either a swipe card or scratch cards to top up your card. Pretty similar to the mobile phone top up cards. You can register for a Smartcreds card at their secure site at http://www.smartcreds.co.uk or you can pick up a form at the post office. I don’t suppose you could really call it a credit card because you aren’t actually getting credit. You are paying in advance and can only spend what money is on your card. More like a debit card I suppose. Another good thing about the smartcreds card is that you don’t have to be eighteen to get one. You do have to send them proof of your age however so that under 18’s can’t use it to buy alcohol or 18 rated films etc but you can use it if you are under 18 to purchase CD’s, clothing, computer games, toys etc. There are no fees for using the card smartcreds make their money by charging the retailers a small fee. Which sounds great to me. Once you have registered for your card you are under no obligation to use it. They will not charge you anything for not using it. So far you can only shop at sites listed on the smartcreds site. There are loads of sites which already accept the smartcreds card such as CD Wow.com, urban junkies.com, blushing buyer.com in fact far too many to list here. New sites are co
ming on board every day. I have registered for and received my card although I haven’t actually got any money on it yet, as I am skint as usual. The reason I thought this card would be such a good idea is because, many ISP’s such as Freeserve and AOL won’t let you pay for their services by direct debit any more, you have to sign up with a credit card. I don’t have a credit card and am having trouble getting a good ISP on unlimited access. Smartcreds do not have an ISP on board yet so my plan backfired. I have emailed them and suggested that getting the likes of Freeserve or Aol on board would be a good idea so I will just have to wait and see what happens.