Like an EFTPOS card, a debit card allows you to electronically withdraw or deposit funds in your bank account.

The benefits

A debit card allows you to access available funds in your transactional accounts to make purchases using EFTPOS so you don’t need to carry so much cash around.

Unlike an EFTPOS card, some debit cards, including those issued by Visa and MasterCard, can also be used to make purchases online or by phone.

A debit card may help manage your spending as you must have sufficient funds available in your nominated account to make a purchase.

A debit card can be used at many retailers in New Zealand to obtain cash at the same time as paying for purchases.

You can also use a debit card to withdraw cash from your account via an ATM.

Things to keep in mind

Banks will generally accept responsibility for fraudulent transactions on your debit card unless the card holder disclosed, or did not keep safe, their Personal Identification Number (check your bank’s terms and conditions).


A PIN is usually required to be entered when you make a transaction using your debit card.

A debit card is safer than carrying large amounts of cash.