You do not want to communicate your credit card number to a merchant site? There are many alternatives to shop safely on the internet without taking it out.
The e-commerce sector is doing well and will record 13.8% growth in 2022 according to FEVAD. In total, the French carried out more than 2 billion online transactions, with an average basket of 65 euros, up nearly 7% compared to 2021.
If placing an order on the internet is as easy as it is fast, paying by credit card is just as easy. But opting for this online payment method is not always without risk. Between fraudulent sites and hacking, credit card numbers can be compromised. Fortunately, there are alternative solutions to pay online securely and without having to take out your bank card. We have listed them here.
The virtual bank card
Before you want to do without your “real” bank card completely, you can explore the possibilities offered by your bank. Most banking institutions offer, in fact, solutions for virtual bank cards. They are available in two forms:
- a physical card equipped with a liquid crystal display which displays a temporary card number;
- a virtual card number that can be generated from the bank’s customer interface.
The e-credit card has the advantage of having a temporary single-use number. Once the payment has been made, it then takes on a new number. Thus, you never have to communicate the “real” number of your traditional bank card and do not risk seeing it reused abusively without your knowledge.
This option is available on request from your bank. Before subscribing to it, however, check with your adviser, as it may be billed in addition.
The PayPal electronic wallet is one of the most widely used in France and has already won over more than 7 million French people. This solution offers several notable advantages, including enhanced security for your bank details. At no time does the merchant site access your account or credit card number. These are filled in when you create your PayPal account and when paying for your purchases, all you have to do is enter your PayPal username and password.
In addition, PayPal is one of the only platforms to offer a payment solution to users who do not have a bank card. Indeed, it is possible to choose to be debited directly from your bank account rather than from your credit card.
PayPal also offers additional guarantees for purchases made on the internet and reimburses you partially or in full in the event of a dispute with the seller.
Not to mention that PayPal is totally free for individuals, which is why this service is so successful.
Google Wallet, Apple Pay and other virtual wallets
In line with PayPal, the tech giants have developed completely free electronic wallets in recent years to facilitate online and in-store payments. As with PayPal, all you have to do is create an account and enter your credit card number along with its expiry date and the security code. And once on the site, all you have to do is enter your login data.
More and more websites are offering to pay for your purchases via Google Pay or Apple Pay and thus preserve the confidentiality of your bank details.
In addition to traditional means of payment, some banks offer prepaid and therefore blocked cards. These work like traditional bank cards and can be used to pay for purchases online or in stores.
On this principle, PaySafeCard also issues prepaid bank cards, with a large ceiling of 1000 euros per transaction. Everything you need to shop online with complete peace of mind. This solution is free if you use the credits of the card quickly (under 1 month without registration and under 12 months with a PaySafeCard account).
Transfers, checks: traditional means of payment
Although relatively rare, some online stores allow payment by bank transfer. But opting for such an alternative implies accepting some compromises, in particular on delivery times. The merchant generally does not validate the order until receipt of the funds, which can take several days.
With direct debit, the company can, on the other hand, immediately launch the delivery, but this solution remains exceptional and reserved more for subscriptions than for purchases of physical goods.
Finally, if you opt for payment by check, you must be very patient. Between postal delays, the time it is processed by the accounting department of the company and it is delivered, it can take weeks. Better not be in too much of a rush.
Each of these alternatives may generate additional costs levied by your bank depending on the tariff conditions in force, or even by the seller. For all these reasons, they are only rarely privileged to make online purchases.
Payment on delivery
A final solution is proposed for furnishing products or mainly large household appliances: payment on delivery. This is the most secure alternative, since your bank details are not communicated via the internet and you have already received your package. However, it remains quite rare and often incurs additional costs.
There is therefore no ideal payment method, but multiple alternatives to choose from depending on the product purchased, the desired delivery time and your current banking conditions.