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Vancity supports federal regulations for prepaid cards

For immediate release -- December 3, 2013

Vancouver, B.C. - Citizens Bank of Canada, a subsidiary of Vancity announced today it supports the new prepaid card regulations made by the federal government and provided input into the creation of the regulations to help ensure consumers are getting clear and transparent value.

Citizen’s Bank and Vancity are pleased with the transparency these regulations provide to consumers. The regulations announced today are the first of their kind for prepaid cards and provide a new foundation for the industry and consumers across the country. Citizen’s Bank prepaid gift cards being sold in the market today offer consumers no monthly fees if the card is used before its good through date.

“As one of Canada’s largest Visa prepaid gift card issuers in the country, our cardholders told us they wanted prepaid cards with less conditions and fees,” says Mohamed Ladak, vice-president of payment solutions and its member service centre. “We started working with our partners a couple of years ago and believe we now have a consumer-friendly prepaid Visa card in the market that is aligned with our values.”

Did you know?

  • Prepaid cards are not credit cards. They do not incur interest.
  • There are three different types of prepaid cards, each with different uses and regulations:

    - Single load gift cards These do not provide access to ATM withdrawal and can be
       purchased and gifted to anyone. This is the gift card most consumers purchase
       and gift to someone else to use.

    - Single load promotional cards are gifted and used as promotional and incentive
       products by businesses. These do not provide access to ATM withdrawal and
       are gifted to clients, staff and other individuals.

    - Reloadable cards provide multiple use/load cards that are purchased by
      a person and used by that same person. These cards require identity verification,
      and are personalized with the cardholder’s name. They provide access to ATM
      withdrawals and can be used for recurring payments.

Our prepaid cards sold today offer the following:

- If cardholders use their card before the good through date there will be no monthly fees.

- Cardholders can call our call centre any time before or after the card expires
  on a toll free number at no charge and get a replacement card at no cost.

- There are a few fees applicable to our consumer-purchased prepaid gift cards. These fees
  are shown on the package. One is applied if the card is not replaced by the good through date,
  then a fee of $2.50 per month will be charged . Foreign currency fees may apply and an
  upfront activation fee is paid at the time of purchase.

Citizens Bank of Canada, a subsidiary of Vancity with it’s partners, offers prepaid Visa cards
as one of the largest issuer networks in Canada. Vancity’s enviro Visa prepaid Visa gift cards
are available at any Vancity community branch.


About Vancity

Vancity is a values-based financial co-operative serving the needs of its more than 492,000 member-owners and their communities through 57 branches in Metro Vancouver, the Fraser Valley, Victoria and Squamish. As Canada’s largest community credit union, Vancity uses its $17.1 billion in assets to help improve the financial wellbeing of its members while at the same time helping to develop healthy, sustainable communities. Member deposits enable the credit union to loan to other members, businesses and organizations that are creating positive economic, social and environmental impact in their communities. Vancity is a Living Wage employer and a member of the Global Alliance for Banking on Values, a network of the world’s leading sustainable banks sharing a commitment to achieving triple-bottom-line impact through responsible banking practices.

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For more information:

Lorraine Wilson | Vancity

T: 778-837-0394