Have you ever wanted to sign up for a free trial of some product or service, but were hesitant to give your credit or debit card number? Maybe you don’t know much about the company and are leery of this unknown entity having your number, or maybe you’re afraid you’ll forget to cancel the service in time to avoid the eventual charge. Whatever your reason, you don’t want to use your card.
This method provides several benefits:
1) If you don’t want to sign up and there’s a problem with the cancellation, you’re only out the small balance on the card.
2) If it turns out that it really was a shady website, they might have your few dollars, but they don’t have your real debit/credit card number.
And, of course, if you like the product/service and want to sign up, you only have to change the billing info to your real card before the trial is over.
One caveat: The person who told me about this said he’d only had one situation in which the trial transaction didn’t go through due to the low balance on the card. So there’s that possibility.
All things considered, it’s certainly worth a try!