Offer Prepaid Travel Cards as Quick-to-Market Solution for Members Seeking EMV Cards

Many credit unions have cardholders traveling overseas—for business, vacation or students traveling abroad. But according to a study by Aite, about half of all U.S. travelers have experienced difficulty using their mag stripe cards abroad with EMV-capable merchants.

EMV stands for Europay, MasterCard and Visa, which together form a global standard for authenticating credit and debit card transactions for inter-operation of integrated circuit (IC) cards and IC card-capable point of sale (POS) terminals and automated teller machines (ATMs).

EMV is a joint effort between the three companies to ensure security and global compatibility. IC card systems based on EMV are being gradually introduced worldwide under names such as “IC Credit” and “Chip and PIN.”

As credit unions start working toward October 2015—the target date announced last year by Visa for a domestic transition from mag-stripe cards to EMV-supported IC cards—with their long-term roadmap for the transition to EMV, it is important to also consider more immediate solutions for high-priority members and international travelers.

Card Services for Credit Unions (CSCU) is offering the FIS-sponsored Prepaid Travel Card Program, which can quickly and cost-effectively help put EMV cards into members’ wallets. In fact, this agent prepaid program sponsored by The Bancorp Bank, can be available in as little as two weeks.

How the Sponsored Solution Works:

  • Credit union sets retail card price and retains profit
  • Low per-card fee, as set by the credit union (suggested retail fee is $10-$12 per card)
  • Program is managed, processed, hosted and maintained by FIS
  • Cards are issued by prepaid specialist The Bancorp Bank
  • No risk, no liability and no new compliance obligations
  • Easily sold and loaded via FIS-proprietary internet-based system

Co-branding available Travel EMV Program Features:

  • Worldwide Access: The Travel EMV card can be used worldwide anywhere MasterCard is accepted.
  • Instant Issue: Cards are sold and delivered on site at credit union branches
  • Reloadable: The EMV card can be reloaded in branches via PASSAR, online via a consumer website (upon registration of a bank account), and via GreenDot MoneyPak.
  • Real-Time Approval: CIP is done on all reloadable products systematically and a pass/fail message is received at the POS.
  • Cardholder Service: Online, live member service, or IVR.
  • Implementation: Can be available in as little as two weeks.

For more information, visit CSCU’s website, or contact your account representative with CSCU at 800.930.2728, ext. 332.


Strategic Link is the NWCUA’s wholly-owned service corporation, providing the Association’s member credit unions with exclusive high-quality, competitively-priced products and discounted services. Questions? Contact Sales & Marketing Associate Craig Reed: 206.340.4789,

Posted in Around the NW, CUNA.