Quick guide on how to use a debit card

Debit cards may be a new financial instrument to you, or it is possible that you may need a guide on how these work. You might need to have a clear idea of how to make use of a debit card so you get the most out of it and also avoid problems.


How to use it 

There are ways to use a debit card to be able to make a payment transaction in places where they accept credit card payments. The establishments and facilities that accept debit and credit card payments are many. These include making an online payment to government organizations, merchants, and restaurants. It is easy to make a payment transaction using a debit card. It is possible to use it by swiping, using a contactless terminal, and by making an online payment at a virtual terminal by checking out the cart.

How to pay

To pay using a debit card, it is possible to either run that black magnetic strip at the back of the card through the credit/debit card machine or perhaps insert that square smart chip, if your debit card and the retailer uses chips. There might be a need to sign for the payment transaction, though that is usually optional when it comes to small sales and those online purchases. In some facilities and establishments, when you pay using a debit card, you might have to hand it to one of the employees who in turn will run it through a card reader on your behalf so that the payment transaction can be completed.

Keep your card safe

Keep in mind that handing your debit card to just anybody is risky, so it should only be given it to somebody that is trustworthy, like a waiter in a restaurant who then will hand it to the cashier.  Note that anybody who does have your debit card in their possession may be able to copy the information from the debit card, to potentially use that sensitive information for making a fraudulent payment transaction.

Withdrawing cash 

To use a debit card to withdraw cash from an ATM, you need to insert it into the machine’s card reader. There is usually a diagram that indicates which side of the debit card has to face up for the magnetic strip or chip to be read. After this electronic payment system has read the debit card, it will ask for the personal identification number (PIN) to be entered. You need to key in the PIN and follow the instructions displayed on the screen to be able to check your balance, transfer funds, or make a withdrawal. If in case the machine captures your card because you keyed in the wrong PIN, contact the ATM bank and the debit card company immediately to make a report.