CI First Look – Visa Simple

by on Aug 01, 2012

altLaunched in late 2011, Visa Simple takes a new approach to banking. Simple offers web and mobile applications, offering various online and mobile account management and banking capabilities, without the need for a “traditional” bank.

Despite being around for over nine months, Simple is still in Beta release. To join, individuals must request an invitation online. Fortunately, the invitations are easy to acquire on the Simple website. Users are asked to enter their name and email address, and told they will be notified when their invitation is ready.

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Request an Invitation Page

Simple Banking Services
Though Simple is not a bank, it does partner with The Bankcorp Bank, where client’s funds are placed in FDIC-insured accounts. A Simple Visa Card, issued by the partner bank, allows users to make purchases and withdraw money from ATMS. The card is offered in conjunction with the Simple web and mobile applications, where customers can set up direct deposit, pay bills, transfer money, perform mobile check deposits and access budgeting tools.

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Simple Website

Fee-Free Model
Unlike traditional banks, Simple offers a no fee program, meaning no monthly debit cards fees, account maintenance fees, low balance fees, overdraft fees or fees for domestic funds transfers. Additionally, Simple is part of Allpoint’s fee-free ATM network which features over 40,000 locations where clients can withdraw money without incurring an ATM fee. Simple will also not charge a fee for clients using a domestic out-of-network ATM, however that ATM proprietor may charge a fee.

Looking Ahead…
Ideas for new products and services are highlighted within the Simple website’s FAQ section though no specifics are offered. Credit cards, brokerage accounts, CDs, mortgages, loans, small business services and joint accounts are some of the offerings Simple hopes to rollout in the future.