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I have a Citi prepaid VISA Debit card (these kind of cards) that has been issued in the US. I live in Australia, and would like to move money off of the card into my bank account. For reference, the amount is around $5000, and it is the payment for completion of Google's Summer of Code 2011. The card itself has my name on it.

The destination bank account is in Australia.

Via the online portal for the card I have access to an ACH transfer, but international ACH is not available. There are no other options for money transfers.

  • I have tried XE Trade but could not complete an ACH transfer (either an "invalid sort code" error from the online portal, or the transfer to XE cancels itself after 3 or 4 days if I attempt to dangerously substitute an alternative sort code). I have a completely ID-verified XE Trade account though so if there's something I've missed here it's still an option!
  • I have also tried XOOM, but the fees are quite significant and it seems my transactions set off a flag of some sort (no valid US address & sender = receiver, perhaps?) that causes them to be automatically cancelled.
  • Paypal may be an option, but their fees are high and I am concerned the sudden movement of a large amount of money might be an issue with their security.

What are my options here? I'd prefer a solution that doesn't involve an intermediate cash step if that is possible.

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Have you tried contacting your bank or Citi about it? Probably not something your bank sees often but Citi might be able to help you out, that link you posted has customer support contact info. –  DKnight Aug 30 '11 at 16:45
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1 Answer 1

Congratulations on completing the GSoC.

I think the short answer is No, and you ought to just hang on to the card and gradually spend it down on your day-to-day expenses: you can spend money off a US prepaid card in Australia, or with online US merchants. That will probably be a better deal than trying to cash it out, unless you really desperately need the cash.

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Also keep an eye on exchange rates -- since they are a few cents off the all-time high (AUD to USD) right now, you are probably best off taking poolie's advice and spending it as you need it. –  NickC Feb 12 '12 at 8:49
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