ecoCard is a prepaid debit card that allows you to make purchases online or offline without giving anyone your personal debit card. When you play at ecoCard poker sites, your actual card details are never given to anyone else. All payments are made instead with your ecoCard and this results in enhanced security. In short, you could call it a firewall that firmly separates your bank account and your poker account.
EcoCard was once a standalone product but it is now offered as a part of the ecoAccount e-wallet service offered at ecoPayz.com. It may have a funny name, but ecoCard has been in business for years and is trusted by all the biggest names in online poker. If you’re in need of a safer way to play real money poker, this is an option worth considering.
How it Works
Between ecoCard, ecoAccount, ecoVirtualcard and ecoPayz.com, it’s understandable if you’re a little confused about how this whole business works. I’m not going to speak on their branding decisions, but I can explain how they organize everything.
First of all, ecoPayz.com is the main website that operates all the associated “eco” services. Their main product is an e-wallet account that works sort of like PayPal or Skrill. They call it ecoAccount and this account allows you to store money online, make deposits and receive payments from poker sites.
You can load funds to your ecoCard through a variety of top-up options such as direct bank transfers, Visa, MasterCard and even other prepaid debit cards. You can link your bank account to your ecoAccount, but it’s not necessary unless you want to withdraw funds back from ecoAccount to your bank account.
Once you have an account, you can then apply for an ecoCard. This is a physical debit card that you can use both online and in the real world wherever MasterCard is accepted. Your ecoCard is linked to your ecoAccount, so you can only spend whatever you have in your ecoAccount.
This is where you see the safety benefits. Your ecoCard works just like a normal debit card but it isn’t linked to your actual bank account. If it gets stolen, the thief will have no access to your actual bank account. You can simply deactivate the card or withdraw all funds from your ecoAccount and everything is safe. There’s no need to close your bank account and rearrange all your personal affairs.
You can also apply for a virtual debit card attached to your ecoAccount. This is called the ecoVirtualcard and it works just like the physical card except it exists online only. This one can also be used to make purchases online and fund your poker account.
ecoAccount supports 45 currencies for online payments. Most of you reading this will have no trouble getting started and making deposits in your native currency. Here’s a quick list of all supported ecoAccount currencies:
|Euro||British Pound||US Dollar||Argentine Peso||Australian Dollar||Bosnia-Herzegovina Convertible Mark||Bulgarian Lev|
|Brazilian Real||Chilean Peso||Canadian Dollar||Colombian Peso||Swiss Franc||Chinese Yuan||Costa Rican Colón|
|Czech Republic Koruna||Danish Krone||Georgian Lari||Hong Kong Dollar||Hungarian Forint||Israeli New Sheqel||Indian Rupee|
|Icelandic Króna||Japanese Yen||Moldovan Leu||Macanese Pataca||Malaysian Ringgit||Mexican Peso||Nicaraguan Córdoba|
|Norwegian Krone||New Zealand Dollar||Panamanian Balboa||Peruvian Nuevo Sol||Polish Zloty||Romanian Leu||Serbian Dinar|
|Russian Ruble||Swedish Krona||Singapore Dollar||Thai Baht||Turkish Lira||Venezuelan Bolívar||Ukrainian Hryvnia|
|Uruguayan Peso||Uzbekistani Som||South African Rand|
I should note that this list only applies to your online ecoAccount. Prepaid cards only come in GBP, EUR and USD formats. You can keep up to three different cards (one in each currency) if you need.
How much does it cost to use ecoCard?
Your ecoAccount and ecoCard are both free to get started. You can sign up for an account at the ecoPayz.com website and get started with a classic account. Once you verify your identity, you will be upgraded to a silver-level account.
Funding your ecoAccount with a credit card will come with a fee of 1.69 to 2.90% depending on the card issuer and your location. It costs nothing to deposit to or withdraw from poker sites that accept ecoCard. If you would like to withdraw money from your ecoAccount to your bank account, there is a fee of 5.9 to 10 EUR depending again on your bank and where you live.
Currency conversions have a fee of 2.99%. This is a little higher than normal, so you might want to see if your poker site can do it cheaper. The best poker sites deal with an international players base and are usually pretty good about keeping their conversion fees low.
Deposit limits vary depending on your ecoAccount level. You start out as a silver account holder after you verify your identity and can then move up to gold, platinum and VIP based on how much you use the service. For now, we’ll stick with basic silver account limits.
The most you can deposit at any one time with your ecoAccount or ecoCard is €10,000. Furthermore, there is a maximum limit of €10,000 per day, €50,000 per week and €100,000 per month. These limits can bump up to as high as €10,000/€20,000/€85,000/€150,000 as you move up through the various account levels.
For cashing out your poker winnings, ecoAccount will allow you to withdraw as little as €5 and as much as €500,000 per transaction. You can withdraw up to €1,000,000 per month in total at all account levels.