Prepaid cards, which have been a big hit in the U.S., have traditionally been less popular in Canada. But as people are seeing the benefits of prepaid cards, the Canadian market is growing. As with any financial product, the cards come with some risks, but it seems that, for many, they are outweighed by the benefits.
Four out of five of Canada's major banks have a prepaid card in their repertoire: Bank of Montreal, Scotiabank, CIBC and Royal Bank of Canada (RBC). All but one of them -- CIBC -- along with American Express and MasterCard belong to the Canadian Prepaid Providers Organization (CPPO). The CPPO is a non-profit created to raise awareness and educate businesses and consumers on the potential of open loop prepaid cards; that is, reloadable cards with no maximum limit.