In 2014, Airtel Kenya partnered with Chase Bank and Visa in launching a prepaid debit card called Airtel Money Visa Card. The card allows customers to withdraw cash from any Visa or Kenswitch ATM and importantly the card mirrors the customer’s personal Airtel Money account. This means whatever balance the customer has on his personal Airtel money account, is equivalent to how much he has on the Airtel Money card.
Earlier this year, Chase Bank which was one of the partners on the project faced financial headwinds which saw the bank come near collapse. The events of the bank had adverse effects not only on customers and the entire financial sector but also on already established partnerships. The Airtel Money Visa Card was one of the affected services by these events. Customers could not access the core functionalities of the card such as withdrawals from ATMs or even making payments.
The telco has today announced that the card is back and as such customers can go ahead and continue using it. Airtel Kenya has also announced that customers can further make online payments using the card including airline ticket purchases, bookings or online donations. The announcement comes on the back of an announcement by Airtel Kenya’s rival Safaricom that the firm will soon launch a Lipa na M-Pesa card that will also mirror a user’s M-Pesa account. The card will however not have the capability to make online payments.
The Airtel Money Visa Card is available for free to Airtel Money customers. Airtel Money customers can obtain the card by filling a form at any Airtel Shop in Kenya, and attaching a copy of their ID card or passport. The card is then processed in a few minutes and you are free to use it. Customers can also order for the Airtel VISA Card from their Airtel line via USSD by dialing *222*3#. Cash withdrawal charges using the card at ATM’s range from Kshs.30 to Kshs.50 and Kshs. 250 internationally.