Your debit card’s expiration date is the date listed next to the phrase “valid thru” or “good thru.” This date is the month and year (MM/YY) your debit card is valid until. In other words, the card expires after that day in that month.
Typically, debit cards are only valid for two to three years after the date they are issued. Once the date of expiration arrives, debit cards expire and are no longer valid. This is also true of prepaid cards. Here is everything you need to know about debit cards and expiration dates.
How to check a debit card’s expiration date?
The expiration date for a debit card is usually printed near the front lower left side.
One good thing about a debit card’s expiration dates is that your bank most likely keeps a record of your expiration dates. Consequently, they send a new card about 30 to 60 days before your current card expires. Banks will sometimes send a letter or an email alerting customers of an upcoming expiration date. This is to ensure you keep a lookout in your mail for a replacement.
However, you can continue to use it, even when a card is about to expire. For instance, an expiration date of 12/21 means that your debit card will expire on the last day of the printed month. In this case, your card will expire on December 31, 2021. Most people receive a new debit card without issue.
Why do debit cards expire in the first place?
Having a debit card that never expires may sound like a good idea, but there are good reasons for getting a new card from time to time. Here are three.
1. Wear and tear from frequent usage
Debit cards aren’t designed to last forever. Normal wear and tear can affect their effectiveness. Also, cards with new EMV chip technology may stop working overtime. Chip malfunction may accompany normal wear and tear, resulting in the inability to complete transactions.
However, if you receive a new card every three to four years, you’re less likely to encounter strip or chip malfunction.
2. Fraud prevention
Having a debit card expire from time to time can also help prevent fraud because the CVV changes with each new card.
Fraudsters are becoming increasingly clever, and they can get debit card numbers even if the card is in your possession.
However, they may be unable to get your CVV which is a three or four-digit number printed on the front or back of a card.
3. Updated card design
Card designs and technology also change. Therefore, the expiration of debit cards helps banks get new card designs out to the general public. For example, giving customers cards with new security features such as EMV chip technology and sending out cards with rebranded names and logos.
How long do debit cards last?
Typically, a debit card expires every two to three years. When it is close to expiring, your bank/ card issuer should automatically send you a new one.
Expired debit card with money
Have you ever tried to use an expired debit card, then you probably have experienced the sinking feeling that comes with your card getting declined. This explains why expired debit cards cannot be used to make purchases of any kind, and in the cases of automatic payments, you will probably get an email alert that your card was declined. This is one good reason why you should care about your debit card expiration date.
What to do after my debit card expires?
Like I mentioned earlier, you should have received the replacement card weeks or even months before its expiration date. This is because banks and financial institutions automatically issue replacement cards without you requesting them.
But in a situation where you’re closing in on the end of the month of your debit card’s expiration date and you’re yet to receive your replacement card, here are the steps you can take:
1. Check your mail again
Maybe because of prior experience, you expect that your replacement debit card will arrive in the mail in an envelope with your bank/card issuer’s name on it, then that’s always not the case. Most card issuers now practice sending out sensitive mail in unmarked white envelopes to prevent mail from being intercepted and to increase opening rates.
Therefore, you should check your mail once again by opening them one by one in case you probably missed the envelope. If you know that your debit card is expiring soon, be on the lookout for your mailbox to make sure you don’t miss the mail.
2. Call the customer service number printed on your card
If you have searched carefully and cannot find the mail, then proceed to call the customer service phone number printed on your card or published on the website of your bank. Call this number to ask the customer service agent whether your new card has been issued yet.
This may require you to provide some verification details or answer security questions for the agent to ascertain that it is really you on the phone and not just someone who is trying to divert your replacement debit card and consequently defraud you.
3. Check whether the mailing address of the card is current
If the agent tells you that the card has been issued, confirm the date when it was issued and what address it was mailed to. There are cases where customers forget to change the mailing address on their accounts, and the bank unknowingly sends it to their old address.
4. Request for a replacement debit card
Now, if the mailing address and every other information are correct, you can ask the agent to issue you a new card. This process will typically take a week, but some banks will allow a rush delivery depending on whether this service is available.
Do I need to wait for my old card to expire before activating the new one I just received?
You can activate your new card upon receiving it. You don’t have to wait until the expiration date of your old card before activating the new one.
Activating the new card early gives you more time to sort out all your accounts linked to that old debit card.
Does the activation of my new debit card automatically deactivate the old one?
Once you activate your new debit card, this will automatically deactivate the old one. This means that once your new debit card is activated, you can no longer use your old debit card even if it is not yet past the expiration date.
Let’s say you received your new debit card on December 20, 2021, but your old debit card is not due to expire until January 31, 2022. If you choose to activate your new card before January 31, 2021, then you can no longer use your old debit card even if you still have over a month before it expires.
What should you do when you get a new debit card?
At times, obtaining a new debit card can be a little inconvenient, but as I mentioned earlier, one of the major reasons for this is that it is necessary for your financial protection. Because I have been through many expired debit cards, I can tell you some things you should do when you get a new debit card.
Here are the four practical steps I recommend you take once you are issued a brand new debit card:
1. Activate your new card
Once you get your debit card in the mail, you will notice an activation sticker on the front. Typically, there will be an activation number that you can call, which is the option I always choose. Call the number and follow the prompts. Usually, you will need to enter your 16-digit card number, the CVV number, and then your pin. And in no time, your card is activated, ready to be used.
Another way to activate your debit card is to simply use your new debit card to make an in-store purchase using a card reader. The transaction should be run as a debit (not credit) and enter your pin to activate it.
This is a much simpler option, but you may risk mishaps if, for instance, you’re at a grocery store with people in line behind you. Also, for this method to work, you must have a previously established pin for your debit card.
Finally, another great method you can use to activate your debit card is to use an Automated Teller Machine. If you use your new debit card to make a deposit or withdrawal through an ATM at your bank or credit union and enter your pin, your card will be activated automatically.
2. Update the information on your card
If you use your debit card for your online transactions, ensure you update the information on accounts linked to your debit card. This is even more pertinent if you chose an autopay option on your bills. By doing this early, you can avoid missed payments and late payment charges owing to an expired card.
3. Dispose of your expired debit card
Once you have activated your new debit card and you have ascertained its activeness, it is time for you to get rid of it.
However, I think it is a bad idea to just throw it away. Instead, you can either shred it or cut it into small pieces before disposing of it.
4. Protect your debit card information
Your debit card, new or expired, is a financial property that you should be kept safe and confidential because of its sensitivity. Note that even if your old debit card has expired, fraudsters in their mischief can still use the information printed on the card to do illegal activities. Therefore, it is advised that you dispose of it properly, as I mentioned earlier.
Your expired debit card holds information like your full name, the name of your bank, your debit card number, and your signature. These are valuable pieces of information that could help identity thieves and fraudsters. It is then crucial that you always endeavor to keep your debit card info secure. You can also discover more new things you probably never knew about your debit card here.
What does mm/yy mean on a debit card?
The abbreviation mm/yy signifies the expiration date of your debit card. It is found in the front of the card, below “expires end of”. “mm” refers to the two-digit representation of the month. Similarly, the term “yy” refers to the two digits of the year of expiration.
Do banks automatically renew debit cards?
If your debit card expiration date is close, you may be wondering whether you need to request a replacement from your bank. Here is how to go about it:
You typically don’t need to request a new debit card if it will expire soon. Your debit card provider should automatically issue you a new debit card before the one expires. Usually, it’ll be mailed to your address, 4 to 12 weeks from the expiration date of your old debit card.
How long is a debit card expiry date?
A card can be used until the last day of the month it expires. For instance, a card with an expiration date of 12/21 is good through December 31, 2021. Usually, debit cards expire every two to three years, and if you still have an account with the bank, you will be issued a new one with a new expiration date.
Where is the expiration date on your debit card?
The expiration date for a debit or credit card is usually printed near the front lower left side of the card.
Do debit card numbers change with a new debit card?
Typically, the debit card number does not change when you get a new debit card. However, the debit card’s expiration date and the CVV (card verification value) will change on the new debit card. However, if your debit card was lost, stolen, or perhaps mailed to the wrong address, your debit card provider bank may issue you a new debit card with a new number to safeguard you from potential fraud.
Will my credit card account be active after my credit card had expired?
After the debit card expires, your debit card account will still be active unless you wish to close it.
- The expiration date for a debit card is usually printed near the front lower left side.
- Typically, a debit card expires every two to three years. When it is close to expiring, your bank/ card issuer should automatically send you a new one.
- You can activate your new card upon receiving it. You don’t have to wait until the expiration date of your old card before activating the new one.
- A card can be used until the last day of the month it expires. For instance, a card with an expiration date of 12/21 is good through December 31, 2021. Usually, debit cards expire every two to three years, and if you still have an account with the bank, you will be issued a new one with a new expiration date.
Spencer is a top-notch writer with 5 years experience in finance, business and marketing related topics. He believes in the power of finance and this has been his quest to study more as well as to use his knowledge in educating people. When he is not writing, you can probably find him swimming and playing basketball.