53 responses

  1. The Biz of Life
    January 10, 2012

    No Suze Orman cards for me….. or books, or TV shows, etc. Not impressed.

    • moneycone
      January 10, 2012

      The card is definitely a let down. With so many fees I don’t know how this will help someone just getting started financially.

    • Thomas (Vaerdi Financial)
      January 11, 2012

      wow – I am so not impressed with Ms. Orman’s latest gimmick. I agree that she is very skilled in presenting complex personal finance issues – but at the same time I can’t stomach her over-the-top pesonality, she’s off-putting. This pre-paid card is another example of how everybody is in it for themselves, and that endorsing/selling products trumps proper consumer advice. Thanks for writing this post!!

  2. DIY Investor
    January 10, 2012

    Nice analysis of why her card is not the way to go. Like you I am impressed at her ability to explain some complex subjects. I’m am most impressed, however, at her self promotion ability.

    • moneycone
      January 10, 2012

      I agree Robert. The card promotions make it sound like a great deal, but this card really is no different from Visa’s prepaid card.

  3. Jeffrey
    January 10, 2012

    Sounds like another lame credit/debit card being marketed to a certain crowd. Do students or people with little or no credit even know who Suze Orman is? Maybe they’re expecting parents to convince their kids it’s a good idea.

    It seems like the best cards (or even banking products in general) out there don’t always get a fair shake since they’re probably less profitable to the companies that provide them. That’s a shame.

    Hey, still can’t beat that Kardashian card! :)

    • moneycone
      January 10, 2012

      Looks like Suze did not get the memo on the Kardashian card!

  4. Little House
    January 10, 2012

    Maybe I’m missing something, but isn’t the Suze Orman card designed to build credit for those with little or negative credit history? I know that debit card transactions don’t report to a credit bureau, but credit card payments are reported to credit bureau’s which help build a credit history. Even pre-approved cards report payment history and that can help improve a person’s credit.

    You have a good point of the pros and cons, but I think the point of the the prepaid Orman card is that a person with little or no credit history (or damaged credit) can begin rebuilding credit with this card. No?

    • moneycone
      January 10, 2012

      LH, the wording is very clever and seems like it would. But here’s what the fine print says:

      “The Approved Card is not designed to improve your credit record, history, or rating. Use of The Approved Card will not and cannot improve or fix your credit score or rating.”

      If you opt in to share your purchase and payment data, the data is shared anonymously. If it is anonymous, it can’t help build your history, can it now?! :)

      • Little House
        January 16, 2012

        That is sneaky!

  5. moneycone
    January 10, 2012

    Very true Philip. Very deceptive marketing and not in the best interest of consumers.

  6. Roshawn @ Watson Inc
    January 10, 2012

    Great analysis! I love the side-by-side comparison of the fees and lack thereof depending on the choice you choose.
    Suze is VERY likable and connects with her audience; I do think you are being generous in your commentary, which is very laudable and mature. I’m not a fan of this particular deal for the reasons you stated and my personal bias against CC in general. There I said it. Cheers!!!!

    • moneycone
      January 13, 2012

      Good for you Roshawn! I was reading the entire fine print with a frown on my face!

  7. Maggie@SquarePennies
    January 10, 2012

    This is outrageous. I can’t believe Suze has put her reputation behind it. Just another sellout. What a disappointment.

    • moneycone
      January 13, 2012

      I do hope no one falls for this card. Very bad deal.

  8. cashflowmantra
    January 11, 2012

    This is the first I had heard of it, but it is really a terrible idea. You are right to have expected more from a “financial guru”. Seems like the almighty dollar is interfering with ethics.

    • moneycone
      January 13, 2012

      Did Suze really think people would approve of this card?

  9. Barb Friedberg
    January 11, 2012

    Suze Orman has done a lot of good. A fee based prepaid card does not fit in that category. Pay cash instead! Or get a no fee debit card from a bank.

    • moneycone
      January 13, 2012

      Exactly Barb!

  10. LaTisha @YoungAdultFinances
    January 11, 2012

    I was pretty disappointed as well. I expect a Kardashian card to be all about fees but not from someone who advises you to stay away from fees.

    • moneycone
      January 13, 2012

      I’m sure this card will go the way of the Kardashian card. Matter of when, not if.

  11. Jessica, The Debt Princess
    January 11, 2012

    Great article. I like the way you make the comparisons. (You’ve also helped sell me on Ally)

    I’m adding this post to my list of reactions to Suze Orman’s card.

    • moneycone
      January 13, 2012

      Thanks for the visit and your comment Jessica! I’m glad you covered this topic as well. The more the merrier.

      No one should fall for this rip-off card.

  12. Miss T @ Prairie Eco-Thrifter
    January 11, 2012

    There doesn’t seem anything special about this card. A CC is a CC. I use my visa for everything and pay it off in full every month.

    • moneycone
      January 13, 2012

      This is a prepaid card loaded with fees. Fee to check your balance, fee to use the atm, fee to pay bills…

  13. Christa
    January 11, 2012

    I’m disappointed that Suze sold out on this. She could have done so much better by using the card for good: some people have such bad credit that they cannot qualify for a checking account. This subset is what these types of cards were made for; people who want the ease of a debit card but can’t qualify. What Suze should have done was partner with a bank or something to make the card activity reportable to credit companies. Then the card owners can build credit as well, and this would be worth some of her hefty fees.

    • moneycone
      January 13, 2012

      Suze is preying on the most vulnerable. I find that very sad Christa.

  14. SB @ One Cent At A Time
    January 11, 2012

    Nah! I won’t go for this one. A credit card can earn you money and I have no problems with paying a CC every month so, I would rather earn money from my cards rather than paying a monthly fee.All the good features you mentioned are allreay available on Credit cards.

    • moneycone
      January 13, 2012

      Good point SB! A credit card may not be an option for those who have no credit or have a bad credit. But this option is just terrible.

  15. Darwin’s Money
    January 11, 2012

    I loved following the drama on Twitter last night where she called dissenting voices “idiots”. Granted, she apologized today, but holy crap. For a TV personality of that stature? Seems a little defensive; wonder why?

    • moneycone
      January 13, 2012

      I’m glad this was captured and posted! Unbelievable!

  16. World of Finance
    January 11, 2012

    I’m disappointed in Suzy… she encourages people not to pay bank fees and look at all the fees associated with her card. Apparently, it’s all about the money, quite sad. :(

    • moneycone
      January 13, 2012

      It is sad indeed WoF.

  17. Credit Cards Canada
    January 11, 2012

    That was a very good breakdown of the costs comparisons with your Ally card. I think of more concern is that this card is being pitched to the masses, rather than the very small niche for which it would be useful. So not only does it pelt the user with unnecessary fees, but most of those users probably have no use for it in the first place.

    • moneycone
      January 13, 2012

      Exactly!

  18. retirebyforty
    January 12, 2012

    Oh man, that card has tons of fee. There is no way I would saddle anyone with one of these. It’s disappointing that she is pushing this crappy product.

    • moneycone
      January 13, 2012

      I don’t expect this card to last for long RB40.

  19. Doctor Stock
    January 12, 2012

    It seems I’ve read a lot of articles on this lately, all with a general sense of how crazy it is. Let’s face it… most people are helping us with our money because it makes them money!

    • moneycone
      January 13, 2012

      It does seem so Doc!

  20. Monica
    January 13, 2012

    Another excellent article about the drawbacks of her Approved card. One of my biggest issues with her card is the disingenuous way she has portrayed it as a way to build credit. She is trying to capitalize on people desperate for a way to obtain credit, improve their finances, etc. Overall, she is akin to a snake oil salesman.That sounds harsh, but she really angered me when she attacked the pf bloggers who only try to help people, not line their pockets.

  21. marissa
    January 13, 2012

    Im upset up the fact that she thinks her audience is not smart enough to be able to spot a bad deal.

    Great analysis.

  22. 101 Centavos
    January 13, 2012

    Looks like Suzee has her niche market figured out. People with no credit and a short TV attention span.

  23. David Sneen
    January 14, 2012

    This bodes extremely poorly for Suze Orman. She gives great advice—and then promotes an overpriced credit card. How hypocritical! Thank you for your excellent breakdown. It is good to be enlightened.

    The best result of this whole fiasco would be if Suze would lose her credibility with the masses. For knowingly pitching an overpriced piece of plastic to her adoring, ignorant fans; she is knowingly giving terrible advice. She should lose her position. Unfortunately, this will not happen.

  24. Juan
    January 14, 2012

    A little bit of product comparison really does pay off. I hadn’t looked into Ally’s card before, thanks for the info.

  25. Six Figure Investor
    January 14, 2012

    The pf blogosphere is full of criticism of this card. I agree that it’s a poorly marketed card, it doesn’t fit well with Orman’s presumed fan base.

    But, there is a case to made that these cards have their place. There are millions of people who are unsophisticated in finances or who do not have enough money to be able to afford the lower cost bank accounts. This card and other like it are filling a need that is growing: the transition to a cashless society.

    If you have a bank account with limited resources, you have to traverse the landmines of hidden and excessive fees. On paper these bank accounts are “free” or low cost but the reality is banks make money by fines and fees.

    This debit card doesn’t have this issue. You know what the costs are ahead of time because they publish them upfront.

    Also, take a step back and think about an institution that is providing service (a card, access to networks, support, online access) for customers with presumably low assets. Should they get it for free? Absolutely not, the bank or institution have every right to charge for a service that they are providing.

    There is no free lunch.

  26. Shilpan
    January 14, 2012

    It’s incredible that Suze Orman can promote card that she won’t sign up for herself.

    BTW, I linked your article in my latest article,
    http://www.streetsmartfinance.org/2012/01/14/how-to-grow-your-retirement-account-fast/

    I simply love your blog. It’s outstanding!

    Shilpan

  27. Buck Inspire
    January 14, 2012

    Terrific review MC! Looks like Ally is a pretty great deal. Surprised Suze is going the way of the Kardashians. What is this world coming to?

  28. Untemplater
    January 15, 2012

    Wow I had no idea she was branching into this type of business. I wonder if it was Master Card’s or Suze’s idea first to do this prepaid card deal. The fees should be a big red flag for their target clients so hopefully people will read the fine print before they go out and sign up! -Sydney

  29. clarence thomas
    January 16, 2012

    I think charging fees for all transactions are crazy,clarence.

  30. Aloysa @ My Broken Coin
    January 17, 2012

    Loved this post because it finally described all details of that unfortunate card. I like Suze for the same reasons as you do. I was somewhat shocked when I found out what she came up with. What was she thinking?

  31. MoneyforCollegePro
    January 20, 2012

    Unfortunately, this is far too often what happens when Hollywood, fame and money get in the way of values and beliefs.

  32. Molly (Mike and Molly’s House)
    January 30, 2012

    I was unimpressed too. Mostly from my own experience. I didn’t get into debt until I was in my 30′s. I was frugal and didn’t spend what I didn’t have. At some point I bought into the myth that I needed to spend money to make money and the debt followed.
    A debit card would not have helped…a savings account would have ;)

  33. John
    February 11, 2012

    Remember…she, like all others, is trying to make money.

    Now, that is not a bad.

    However, I think she is using her public financial status to “corral” the sheep and the ignorant that will always follow their “idols” blindly.

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