KOHO vs. STACK vs. MOGO: Prepaid Card Options in Canada for 2021

If you are looking to spend cash, avoid credit, and still earn the rewards that typically accompany credit cards, reloadable prepaid cards such as KOHO, STACK, and MogoCard may suit your needs.

The best-prepaid cards available in Canada offer users an opportunity to save on bank fees, earn cash back automatically, and enjoy real-time insights on how their money is being spent.

Similar to prepaid credit card options in Canada, these cards allow you to easily shop wherever Visa or Mastercard is accepted and you can only spend the money you load on them. This is really helpful if you are trying to combat overspending.

Read on to find out how STACK, KOHO, and Mogo stack up against each other.

KOHO vs. STACK vs. MOGO

Prepaid CardsKOHO VisaSTACK MastercardMogoCard
Monthly Account FeesNoneNoneNone
Earn interest1.20% on all balancesNoneNone
FX Fees0% to 1.5%0%2.50%
Rewards0.5% to 2.00% real cash back and in-app discountsMultiple in-app discounts and cash back2% bitcoin cash back
Automatic SavingsAvailable (roundups and saving goals)Available (roundups and saving goals)
Referral Bonus$20 sign-up bonus$5 sign-up bonus
Smartphone AppYesYesYes
Partner BankPeople’s TrustPeople’s TrustPeople’s Trust
Budgeting ToolAvailableAvailableAvailable
Card TypeVisaMastercardVisa
Credit CardNoNoNo
Build CreditOffers Credit Builder programNoNo
Other PerksJoint accounts and KOHO Premium available;
Present in Quebec; Free financial coaching
Free replacement card and No ATM withdrawal feesOffset carbon emission

Benefits of a Prepaid Visa or Mastercard

There are many reasons why individuals choose prepaid credit cards over a regular credit card.

1. There are no monthly or annual fees: You can avoid the $100 or more in annual fees that come with a lot of credit cards these days.

2. You don’t need good credit: For your credit card application to be approved, your credit score will need to meet the minimum requirement set by the credit card provider. However, prepaid cards do not pull up your credit score and even if your credit profile is damaged or you don’t have a credit history, you can still obtain one.

3. It is easier to budget: If you are always overspending and racking up debt and interest costs on your credit card, prepaid cards can help you deal with your spending problem since you can only spend what you have.

4. You can still earn rewards: When you choose one of these best paid prepaid cards in Canada, you will earn rewards on your spending similar (and in some cases, even better) to a credit card.

KOHO Prepaid Visa

KOHO offers a free prepaid and reloadable Visa card and app that makes banking easier, cheaper, and more fun. Opening an account is easy and once set up, you can easily load funds using e-Transfer or Payroll deposit and start enjoying the following benefits:

  • No monthly fee for the basic KOHO account.
  • Earn 0.5% cash back on all purchases. Cash back is credited to your account in 1-2 business days. KOHO Premium (has a small fee) offers 2% cash back on select categories of purchases.
  • Earn a 1.20% interest on your balance when you set up direct deposit.
  • Automatically roundup your purchases to the nearest $1, $2, $5 or $10, and save the difference. For example, if you spend $3.25 on coffee, you can choose to save $0.75, $1.75, or $6.75.
  • Real-time insights into your spending to help your budgeting efforts.
  • Set up pre-authorized debit, pay bills, and accept payroll deposits easily.
  • Earn $20 per referral when you share your KOHO referral code.
  • Enjoy Visa’s acceptability worldwide.
  • Get free financial advice from a certified financial coach.
  • Free Early Payroll offer
  • Free joint accounts
  • In-app support
  • Available in Quebec
  • Note that if you use your KOHO card to conduct foreign currency transactions, you can expect to pay a 1.5% fee (except for KOHO Premium).

Sign up for a KOHO account here and get a $20 welcome bonus when you use the KOHO referral code “CASHBACK“.

STACK Prepaid Mastercard

The STACK prepaid Mastercard and app is a powerful combination that can save you tons of money particularly if you travel abroad frequently.

It took me about 3 minutes to open a free account and access the following benefits:

  • No monthly fee
  • No foreign exchange fees – this is a 2.5% to 3% upfront savings when you make purchases in foreign currencies.
  • No ATM withdrawal fees.
  • Referral bonus – get a $5 bonus when you sign.
  • Instant cash back on everyday purchases including gas, groceries, and entertainment. They have partnerships with Amazon, Foodora, Lyft, Netflix, Spotify, Adidas, Reebok, and many others.
  • Automatic savings plan using the innovative roundup feature.
  • Real-time insights into your spending habits with Financial IQ plus instant notifications when you spend, save, send or receive money.
  • Enjoy Mastercard’s acceptability worldwide.
  • In-app support.

You can easily load up your account with cash using Interac e-Transfer, Visa Debit, direct payroll deposit, or STACK-to-STACK transfer.

Sign up for a STACK Prepaid Mastercard to get your $5 bonus (smartphone)

koho vs stack vs mogo

MogoCard Prepaid Visa

Mogo offers a variety of financial services including personal loans, cryptocurrency trading, mortgage loans, credit monitoring, and credit scores.

Their latest product is the Mogo Platinum Visa Prepaid card which is expected to provide users with the following benefits:

  • No monthly or annual account fees
  • 2% bitcoin cash back
  • Easy budgeting, in-depth tracking of your spending, and real-time transaction notifications
  • Free credit scores
  • Carbon emission offset on your spending

Note that there is a $1.50 fee for domestic ATM withdrawals and $3 for international ATMs, a $1.99 inactivity fee, and a 2.5% fee for foreign currency purchases.

Learn more about it in this MogoCard review.

KOHO vs. STACK vs. Mogo Prepaid Cards

My review of the KOHO Visa, STACK Mastercard, and MogoCard is positive and I keep all three of them in my wallet.

From a monthly or annual fee standpoint, all three cards offer a no monthly account fee service. If you travel abroad often or make purchases in a foreign currency, the STACK Mastercard’s 0% foreign exchange fee is easily a savings of 2.5% to 3%.

KOHO Visa Card charges a 1.5% fee on FX transactions and Mogo Visa levies the typical 2.5% fee. If you prefer to go with either KOHO or Mogo, you can match them up with a no-FX credit card to take care of the foreign currency exchange charges. Or, you can choose KOHO Premium and have the FX fees waived.

STACK and KOHO do not charge ATM fees, however, the ATM provider you use may charge a fee. As for Mogo, you can expect to pay $1.50 to $3 for ATM transactions.

Looking at rewards, I like the 0.50% cash back I receive every time I pay for purchases using my KOHO card. The cash back shows up in my account in 1-2 days after the transaction, which is great. This is in addition to KOHO’s other in-app rewards like 4% cash back on Foodora orders, free credit score, and other discount offers.

Also, your cash balances grow at a 1.20% interest rate if you set up direct deposit to your KOHO account.

STACK has exclusive offers and promotions that change from time to time, for example, $5 off your grocery purchase, $150 off Contiki trips, savings on Amazon Prime, etc.

Mogo gives you 2% bitcoin cash back on all purchases and they also offset your carbon footprint.

If you are concerned about the security of your funds, KOHO, STACK, and Mogo all use People’s Trust Company which is a CDIC-insured financial institution. Also, Visa and Mastercard protect you from unauthorized transactions with their Zero Liability Protection.

Lastly, I like free money, and KOHO and STACK offer free money when you refer friends. KOHO will pay you a $20 bonus per referral.

Related Posts

Conclusion

I prefer my KOHO and STACK prepaid cards to plain vanilla Mastercard and Visa gift cards which are not reloadable and can give you a rude shock with their unexpected fees.

If you’d like to sign up for KOHO, Mogo, or STACK, you can use the links below.

Sign up for KOHO and use promo code CASHBACK to get up to 2% in cash back ($20 welcome bonus).

Sign up for STACK (mobile phone link) and get up to a $5 bonus

Get the MogoCard and free credit score.

Tell us about your experiences with the apps in the comments!

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KOHO vs. STACK vs. MOGO: Prepaid Card Options in Canada for 2021
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Author

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Enoch Omololu

Enoch Omololu is a personal finance expert and a veterinarian. He has a master’s degree in Finance and Investment Management from the University of Aberdeen Business School (Scotland) and has completed several courses and certificates in finance, including the Canadian Securities Course. He also has an MSc. in Agricultural Economics from the University of Manitoba and a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree from the University of Ibadan. Enoch has a passion for helping others win with their personal finances and has been writing about money matters for over a decade. His writing has been featured or quoted in the Toronto Star, The Globe and Mail, MSN Money, Financial Post, Winnipeg Free Press, CPA Canada, Credit Canada, Wealthsimple, and many other personal finance publications.

His top investment tools include Wealthsimple and Questrade. He earns cash back on purchases using KOHO, monitors his credit score for free using Borrowell, and earns interest on savings through EQ Bank.

6 thoughts on “KOHO vs. STACK vs. MOGO: Prepaid Card Options in Canada for 2021”

  1. Thanks for the info! However, your STACK affiliate link only connects me to the Google Play store page, even if the app is already downloaded. It does not provide the credit.

    Reply
    • @Nathan: The $25 bonus is credited after you have activated the card you receive in the mail. Simply click on the link, download the app, create your account and wait for your physical card. Activate it once received.

      Reply
  2. Please note that the MOGO card does NOT offer any rewards. You say that they offer “1.5% cash back on CAD purchases and 3% cash back on foreign currency purchases” however this is NOT TRUE, there is ZERO cashback on all purchases.

    While Stack and Koho do have some benefit (Stack has 0% Forex and $0 ATM Fee and occasional decent fixed cashback rewards, and Koho offers everyone 0.5% cashback and $0 ATM fee) there is literally NO benefit or reason to choose the Mogo card!

    Reply
  3. They do offer cashback now in the form of Bitcoins. Whatever 2% is equivalent to in Bitcoins at the time of transaction is what they are giving.

    Reply
  4. The Mogo rewards are by far the best, 2% cashback + they offset 1lb of CO2 for every dollar you spend. For me this checks off two boxes, I get rewards and I am doing something to help the planet, this puts the Mogo card way ahead of the other 2.

    Reply
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