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If you own a small business, keeping track of all of your business expenditures is vital. A prepaid debit card program is a great way to do that. It lets you determine not only who can spend money, but also how much, when, and where they can spend it. 

Bento for Business’s prepaid debit card and expense management program starts with an FDIC-insured bank account at The Bancorp Bank, our financial partner. The account can be funded with cash or with a Bento line of credit. It is managed through a digital platform that allows payments through physical debit cards, virtual debit cards, Bento Pay digital payments, and ACH transactions.

Using the digital platform, account administrators can determine which employees are allowed to make payments, how much money to assign to their prepaid debit cards, and what other permissions should be given. They can manage online and telephone transactions through virtual debit cards, and pay vendors through email with Bento Pay, and send payments to 

If you are able to control your spending categories, you can protect your company from losses and understand where your business is at financially at any given time. A great way for businesses to monitor their spending and to keep it under control is by using a prepaid business account. These types of accounts can help you to see the purchases that are made whenever you’d like and can help you to plan your budget more effectively while also preventing fraud and waste.

Setting up your Bento prepaid debit card account

In order to sign up for a Bento prepaid card, a process that can take as little as 60 seconds, you will need to link and verify a bank account. Your prepaid debit cards can only be used if you have an available balance in your Bento account, which means you will need a method for transferring funds into the account.

There are two methods for linking your account. The first is instant account verification. You will need to use your login credentials for this method, but there is no need to worry about your security. All account verification is protected by a 256-bit Secure Socket Layer (SSL). Your data is encrypted to keep it safe.
The second method for linking your bank accounts is the Deposit Verification method. This method may be necessary if your bank or credit union is not listed with Bento or if your bank does not have online access. You enter your bank routing and account number into Bento’s secure screen. In one to two days, two small deposits will be made into your account. Simply sign into Bento, enter the deposit amounts in the verification screen and your account will be linked. Your bank must allow ACH transfers in order to use it with Bento, so be sure to check with your bank or your transfers could fail.

Once your accounts have been verified, you can begin loading your employee prepaid debit cards for use. You can add up to ten employee cards for $29 per month. In addition, you can add or remove employees, add more funds to their card or change the locations where they can use the card 24 hours per day, 7 days per week from anywhere. All accounts are protected with up to $250,000 of FDIC insurance as well.

Managing funds in your account

Transfers from your bank account are normally available from your Bento prepaid debit cards within two to three business days. When you manage your funds, you can see exactly when a transfer will be available for you and your employees to use. If there is a bank holiday or you attempt to transfer just before a weekend, there may be a delay in funds. For example, if you load funds by 4 PM on Monday, funds should be available by 11 AM on Wednesday. However, a transfer on Thursday by 4 PM may not be available until Monday at 11 AM. 

Setting up payments and controls

The Bento account is simple to use and to understand. When your account is funded, you then determine how much money to fund each debit card with. You can also make digital and ACH payments on your account platform. This replaces costly and inefficient checkwriting, A primary goal of most small businesses and startups is to get spending and expenses under control.

A Bento for Business Visa debit card can help you accomplish this goal. You can designate that different employees are only able to use their cards for the types of purchases that their jobs require. For instance, an office employee who is tasked with tracking and reordering office supplies may be limited to only making those types of purchases. Another employee who must travel might be limited to making pump-only gasoline purchases at different convenience stores. If employees try to make unauthorized purchases, the transactions will be declined. You are able to see what is being spent at any time by accessing your online platform. Your business debit cards can be turned on and off with the click of a button 24 hours per day and seven days per week from anywhere.