Amazon Cash Lets You Shop Without a Bank Card - Geek.com

Amazon

Amazon Cash, the company’s latest ploy to attract new customers, is aimed at folks without a credit or debit card.

The service acts as a sort of reverse ATM: Display your unique barcode at participating retailers to deposit cash into your Amazon account.

To get started, generate a code online; opt to print a physical copy, or have it texted to a Web-enabled phone. Users can then save the barcode to an Android home screen or iOS digital wallet, or simply bookmark the mobile website.

Amazon Cash is currently available at a handful of major retailers, including CVS Pharmacy, Speedway, Kum & Go, D&W Fresh Market, Sheetz, Family Fare Supermarket, and VG’s Grocery. Additional vendors are expected to sign on “soon,” according to the e-commerce giant.

Customers can deposit any amount between $15 and $500 per transaction. Funds are immediately available in your Amazon Balance, where that credit may be used just as you would a gift card.

“It’s simple, quick, and there are no fees,” the product FAQ page said. “Your Amazon Balance can be used to shop for millions of eligible physical products and digital content.”

This move puts Amazon in direct competition with Walmart and PayPal, both of which already offer similar services for the 27 percent of so-called “unbanked” Americans.

According to the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation’s 2015 national survey, some 9 million US households are unbanked, with no checking, savings, money market, or credit account. An additional 24.5 million may have a checking or savings account, but also obtain financial services outside the banking system.

Walmart’s five-year-old “Pay with Cash” option lets customers shop a broader selection of items online and pay for them with banknotes at brick-and-mortar stores.

The PayPal My Cash Card, meanwhile, works like Amazon’s barcode at 70 merchants across the country, including Rite Aid Pharmacy, Dollar General, and 7-Eleven.

Amazon Cash Lets You Shop Without a Bank Card – Geek.com

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