If you're new to the prepaid card industry or you need a refresher on the terminology in this ever-changing industry, the following prepaid-specific terms, courtesy of Global Prepaid Exchange, (formerly Giftex Prepay Ltd.), will set you in the right direction.
breakage: The unredeemed or unspent funds on a gift or prepaid card.
closed-loop: Cards (such as retail gift cards) issued by a single corporate entity. Such cards can only be redeemed within that entity or within a series of entities that have agreed to take the cards.
expiration date: Date after which a card can no longer be used. Most network-branded cards have an expiration date. Some closed-loop cards expire after a certain period of inactivity or after a certain date, although this is becoming increasingly rare.
general purpose/general spend card: An open-loop or network-branded card whose sole purpose is to facilitate normal spending transactions, with functionality similar to a debit card but without the need for a bank account.
gift card mall: A physical or virtual rack or display unit that allows customers of a destination retailer to buy a prepaid card issued by a range of different prepaid card issuers. Also referred to as "gift card center" and "gift card shop."
network-branded: A prepaid product that can be accepted as payment by any merchant subscribing to that network's service. Also called open-loop.
non-reloadable: A prepaid product with a fixed value. Additional funds cannot be added to the existing value.
payroll card: A reloadable, network-branded prepaid card on which is deposited an employee's salary (usually through a bank transfer). Used as an alternative to cash or check where the employee does not have a bank account or prefers this method of payment.
program manager: The entity responsible for managing the core attributes of a prepaid card program. Program managers can either manage for other companies, or be responsible for issuing their own prepaid card products. For MasterCard Worldwide, entities are required to have an ISO/MSP license in order to become program managers.
remittance card: A card that enables the user to transfer funds to another party, normally overseas, and often in another currency. No bank is required to transfer the money, and the recipient has instant access to the funds made available, either to spend in a retail outlet or to obtain cash through an ATM.
restricted authorization network: Pertains to cards issued by a corporate entity, or group of corporate entities. They can only be redeemed within a restricted selection of corporate entities, defined by geography, type of business, type of terminal et cetera. Also known as restricted loop card or semi-open-loop cards.
To see the entire Prepaid glossary go to: www.greensheet.com/glossary.php
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