Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Is the Bento Card a Credit Card or Debit Card?

The Bento for Business Card is a Visa® business debit card, which you can use at any establishment that accepts Visa debit cards. Bento is a credit card alternative that you can swipe as a credit card. If a merchant asks “credit or debit?” it’s ok to say credit, and because it is a business debit card there’s no credit risk since the card is funded with cash from your bank account. Bento does not extend credit and is not a credit card.

How does Bento work?

After you sign up, you connect your bank account and safely transfer funds into your Bento account. Your very first card is in the business owner and company’s name, and mailed to the business owner immediately after signing up. All of your Bento cards use the same account, so you can easily distribute Bento funds to your cards. The business owner or account admins (unlimited number) can set spending controls for each card, and create additional cards at any time by logging into Bento. Any newly created card will be mailed to the business owner immediately.

Is Bento safe?

Yes. Bento uses 256-bit Secure Socket Layer (SSL) encryption to ensure your personal data is protected. Your personal information is stored in highly secure data centers, which utilize state-of-the art electronic surveillance and multi-factor access control systems. Funds held within Bento are FDIC insured to at least $250,000 through The Bancorp Bank; Member FDIC.

How do I sign up for Bento? How long does it take?

Signing up for Bento is easy and only takes about three minutes. Currently, you can sign up only online at https://bentoforbusiness.com/app/signup. Provide some basic business and personal information and you may be instantly approved (upon successful ID verification). Then link your bank account (checking or savings) for easy fund transfer to Bento. Here is the timeline for each of these actions:

  • Sign-up approval  – Immediate, once your business is verified
  • Bank VerificationImmediate – 2 business days
  • ACH Fund Transfer2 – 3 business days
  • Card Delivery7 – 10 days

Do I need a bank account?

Yes. Currently, Bento can only transfer funds from an existing, verified checking or savings bank account. Bento is not a traditional bank account; there is no Bento account number or Bento routing number. Funds held within Bento are FDIC insured to at least $250,000 through The Bancorp Bank; Member FDIC.

Can employees get cash back or withdraw from an ATM?

No. Bento is designed to allow business owners to control company expenses and support employee spending, not support disbursements to employees. Only the business owner can withdraw funds via ATM with the business owner card (with PIN created) under their name, and this is the only card on the account that can be used at ATMs.

Additionally, Bento does not support direct deposits. Only the business owner can deposit money into Bento from their external bank account via banking industry standard ACH transfer.

How much does Bento cost?  Are there other fees?

Bento is free to use for the first 60 days * (up to 20 Cards or Admins), starting from the day your application is approved. We’ll notify you when the end of your 60-day free trial is approaching, and you can remove Cards or Admins at any time. No surprises. No risk. No long-term commitment.

After your 60-day free trial, you will be charged a monthly fee to use Bento. We have four monthly plans to suit your business needs: Starter (free), Team, Professional and Enterprise.

Starter

Up to 2 cards

Free

Team

Up to 10 Cards or Admins

$29/mo

MOST
POPULAR

Professional

Up to 25 Cards or Admins

$69/mo

Enterprise

Unlimited Cards or Admins

$149/mo

Each new Card OR Admin you add to the account will count toward your monthly subscription plan.

Spending more than $20,000/month? Call us to learn how you can get Bento for your team for free today at 866-285-7549, or email us at friends@bentoforbusiness.com

 

Most customers only need to pay a monthly fee while using Bento.

* Other Fees: Free trial and monthly plan pricing do not cover fees based on certain account activities. Here is a list of possible card fees:

Why is a Bento card better than other fuel cards?

Using your Bento card as a reloadable gas card or prepaid fuel card has numerous benefits over traditional commercial gas cards:

  • It can be used at any gas station that accepts Visa debit cards; not limited to “in-network” gas stations
  • The business owner can enable/disable additional spending categories in real-time as needed: vehicle repairs, meals, car rentals, and any other merchant categories the owner defines
  • You can set daily, weekly, or monthly spend limits on each card
  • You can turn cards on or off with a single click (as needed)

Because gas stations can put a “pre-authorization” hold of up to $100 when you first swipe your card (this applies to all credit card and debit card transactions and is not unique to Bento), it is always best to have at least $200 accessible by each card that will be used to purchase gas even if you need to buy less gas than that.

How does Bento billing work?

The total number of Admins and Cards you have at the end of the free trial will determine what plan you will be billed for the first month following the trial. You can change your plan at any time by contacting customer support. Note that if you want to downgrade to a lower plan, you may need to delete some Admins or Cards from your account. Here are the different plans:

  • Up to 2 Cards and/or Admins – Starter Plan: $0/month
  • Up to 10 Cards and/or Admins – Team Plan: $29/month
  • Up to 25 Cards and/or Admins – Professional Plan: $69/month
  • More than 20 Cards and/or Admins – Enterprise Plan: $149/month

After your free trial ends, billing will occur on the same day of the month that you signed up for Bento, for the upcoming 30-day period (Example: If you signed up on the 5th, then your billing day will be the 5th of each month). It’s important to note that Bento will charge you from the same cash balance that you use to fund your Bento cards—so there’s no need to pay with a separate credit card, check, or wire transfer.

Bento will notify you before we bill you each month, and send a confirmation after we successfully bill you. You can always log in to your Bento account to view your billing history, and see your current plan.

Bento pre-bills for the complete upcoming month of service. There are no pro-rated billing options and Bento is unable to refund for partial months if you downgrade at any time during the month.

I am the business owner, and I don’t want a card for myself.

Every business owner is required to have a card with Bento, and this card is automatically created and shipped to you after we approve your Bento account. One unique feature of the business owner card: It’s the only card on your account that can be used to withdraw cash from ATMs once a PIN is created.

How do I use the Bento card to access my Bento funds?

You simply use your Bento card at any location where Visa debit cards are accepted. If the card has a PIN created, it can be used as a debit card, as well as a credit card. Any Bento card can have a PIN created by calling the number on the back of the card. There are three ways to use your Bento card:

  • Credit Card  – Signature based transaction, w/ photo ID verification
  • Debit Card – PIN based transaction (owner or cardholder can set PINs)
  • Online Purchases – 3-digit security code required (on back of card)

Please note that only the business owner can withdraw funds via ATM with the business owner card (with PIN created) under their name, and this is the only card on the account that can be used at ATMs.

How do your most successful customers use Bento?

Most businesses, on average, order 5 Bento cards to better control spending. More Bento cards = More control over spending. Remember, you can order up to 20 cards during your 60-day trial. Here are a few uses for cards that our most successful customers order:

  • Gas or Fuel Cards – Track & control fuel-only purchases; assign one card per vehicle
  • Employee Cards  – Give each employee a Bento card to track expenses & get alerts
  • Project Cards –  Assign a card for each project, supervisor, or area
  • Expense Cards – Control how much you spend on office supplies, subscriptions, etc.
  • Petty Cash Cards – Stop expense leaks caused by hard-to-track cash
  • Virtual Cards (Available upon request) – Instantly create cards for one-off purchases, subscriptions, vendor payments, etc.

Can I downgrade before my 60-day trial ends?

Yes. We want you to fully experience the power and control over spending that Bento offers, so you can have up to 20 Cards and/or Admins at no cost during the 60-day free trial (note that Card and Admin count equally). We’ll notify you before your 60-day trial ends, and at any time you can login to Bento and remove Cards or Admins. Once you pass the 60-day trial, you can simply continue using Bento at your current number of Admins and Cards, and be charged a monthly subscription free according to our pricing plan.

I’m a business owner with bad credit. Can I apply for Bento?

Yes. Because Bento is a debit card product, credit is not extended to your company and we do not run a credit check during the application process. If you are a legitimate, verifiable business and individual, then you can qualify for Bento.

Why was my business unable to qualify for a Bento account?

Bento works to qualify every verifiable business owner and business. As required by our banking partners and in support of the USA PATRIOT Act*, Bento must verify that every applicant is a qualified individual (not a criminal or on the US government terrorist watch list) and a verifiable business. If you believe that you satisfy both of these requirements, here are some steps that you can take to validate that you are a legitimate business:

(1) . File your proper business paperwork with your city/county/state for your business entity, and have the following documentation ready:

  • Sole Proprietorship or Partnership: Certificate of Assumed Name, Business License, and/or Registration of Trade Name
  • LLC: Articles of Organization or Certificate of Formation
  • Corporation: Articles of Incorporation

(2) . Establish a formal business location and provide proof of residence/physical presence at said location (utility bill, executed lease, bank statement, etc.). Once you can document that you are a verifiable business, please apply for Bento again or contact support@bentoforbusiness.com.

* IMPORTANT INFORMATION ABOUT PROCEDURES FOR OPENING A NEW CARD ACCOUNT:  To help the government fight the funding of terrorism and money laundering activities, federal law requires all financial institutions to obtain, verify, and record information that identifies each person who opens a Card Account.  What this means for you: When you open a Card Account, we will ask for your name, address, date of birth, and other information that will allow us to identify you. We may also ask to see a copy of your driver’s license or other identifying documents.

Can I use Bento outside the U.S.?

Bento is currently only available to businesses registered in the United States. However, you can use your Bento card internationally, wherever Visa debit cards are accepted.

What if I want my funds out of Bento?

If you need the funds in your Bento account to use elsewhere, the easiest way is to have the business owner withdraw funds at any ATM once they create a PIN for their own card. Please note that the business owner card is the only card on the account that can be used at ATMs. If you need to withdraw more than your daily ATM withdrawal limit ($500/day), simply send an email to support@bentoforbusiness.com, and we will make an exception to return funds back into your linked bank account via ACH transfer. In the event we are unable to process your ACH transfer, a check will be used and a Refund Check Fee of $15 per check will be applied.

How do I cancel my Bento account?

If you decide you need to cancel your Bento account, please send an email to support@bentoforbusiness.com. While we would hate to see you go, we understand that sometimes things happen. It’s your money, so there are no penalties, fees or surcharges for closing your account. As part of account closure, we will return any remaining available funds in your account back into your linked bank account via ACH transfer. However, in the event we are unable to do that, we will return your funds via check and apply a Refund Check Fee of $15 per check. The account cancellation process generally takes 8-10 business days.

Have other questions?

We are always here to answer them. Please visit the Help Center.