I know Privacy  is one possible alternative, but it's debit based rather than credit based like Final is, and they require linking a bank account by username and password, which AFAIK makes you entirely liable for any fraudulent activity for the account, so that's a non-starter for me. Anyone aware of any other services that provide virtual cards like these?
EDIT: just found out about Token , which seems similar. But the fact that it makes you enter your phone number to get a link to the app seems rather shady... I can't seem to find their app on the Play Store so I'm going to assume they're iOS only and skip it. Can anyone comment on their experience with the service?
I messaged them back when they first opened to complain about the username and password requirement and the response was basically "fraud prevention but we're going to require it for you to use our service."
I do use Privacy's service but point it at a "play" bank account that I keep relatively little money in at a different institution than my regular account.
Bank of America and Citibank offer virtual credit card creation which is very close to what Final does. Their UI is very clunky but does the trick without worrying about the liability part.
Well, it turned out that some of them weren't necessarily scams, and there were whole forums dedicated to actually completing the offers, keeping proper documentation and claiming the prizes.
Most of the free trial offers validated your credit card for the initial free month, and then made it incredibly difficult to cancel the service. So I'd just sign up with a ShopSafe number that was valid for 1 month with a $1 limit.
Typically, instead of actually shipping you the Xbox or whatever the prize was, if you completed the offer they'd just send you a check. The year after I got out of college when I had plenty of free time, I managed to get about $1,200 thanks to those offers and ShopSafe.
It's not a feature I'd use enough to have it dictate my overall credit card choice, but I'd love it if more issuers added to their products.
I even made a crappy WinForm app that would generate a ton of credit card numbers at once: https://github.com/ch4/ss_gen
Hopefully the service will still be there when I finally get my hands on that card.
I've heard good things about Discover IT Secured https://www.discover.com/credit-cards/secured/ no fees, has rewards, and it automatically converts to a non secured version quickly.
Oh yeah, Citibank's website absolutely sucks. Very buggy.
Maybe I will consider trying out Privacy after all? Probably with a secondary account at first.
I found, probably like a lot of others, I just didn’t put much volume through it. The rewards were just too weak compared to any of my other cards to justify using it as a primary card.
The rewards (1% cash back) would never pay for the (initial) yearly cost. When I called to cancel my card citing the yearly fee they waived it- and two weeks later announced they were killing the yearly fee.
In the two-ish years I had the card I put roughly $1,500 through. Comparatively, I have averaged over $9K/mo through my AmEx Platinum in the last two years.
Also, one thing that Privacy gets right that Final didn't was the UX around virtual card generation. Privacy had browser extensions that let you generate new cards and autofill them on just about any website. Final never did, and that made making online purchases with a one-time Final virtual card a huge chore (though still less so than using a regular physical credit card).
If someone makes a Final clone that has 2% flat cashback, no foreign transaction fees, and a browser extension, I could totally see myself putting all of my purchases on it by default without a second thought.
The reason you were asked for the phone number is to make your life easier and to text you the link :)
Enjoy token and let me know how it works for you.
Also, I do online shopping on my desktop browser much more often than I do on my phone, so the lack of a web app and web extension makes the app much less usable for me.
All it does is drive away privacy conscious users who generally aren't willing to hand out phone numbers to random websites.
It'd suck to be a stable startup with plenty of funds/cashflow in a similar niche to a company closing like this, and have people not willing to try your product because they're now too timid.
Something like a credit card is, of course, vulnerable to what you say. But the benefit to this sort of timidity is that companies making IoT things ought to lean more heavily into ensuring that their products will work even if they go under.
1 - https://usa.visa.com/dam/VCOM/download/merchants/Visa-USA-In...
What does this mean? Apologies if it's something obvious I should know; I'm not cool anymore so this terminology escapes me. :)
"He ghosted me after finding out I have kids."
For instance, you can ghost from a bar or party, which is essentially just disappearing without saying goodbye and trying to avoid anyone noticing you leaving. Also called an Irish Goodbye.
The phrase is probably a bit hyperbolic here.
TBH, I'm not deeply involved in payments, but what they're doing is extremely unique and I could totally appreciate a larger company (such as a paypal competitor like stripe) wanting a piece of what they're doing.
The points I would usually get from my other cards were better.
Also for online transactions, which was supposed to be the strong point of Final, I never use my card on unreputable sites. But even if I did, disputing transactions is so easy these days.
Sorry that you didn’t make it folks. Good luck in your future adventures.
Came here to say this.
Amex has a more compelling offering (and a better website), Discover offers better rewards, same with pretty much every card I have.
Now let's hope Privacy doesn't also decide to close one day. (It does just virtual cards with your bank ACH backing it)
Are there any alternatives out there for doing this?
Is anyone aware of a similar offering that is available in Germany?
I wouldn't think so, after all most people here don't even have a credit card. We do have debit/ATM cards, but they use a separate payment network developed in German and are not interoperable with Visa/MasterCard.
On that note, I wouldn't mind not getting any benefits since most cards here don't offer any notable ones either. This is probably a direct consequence of there being a pretty strict cap on transaction fees (iirc 0.3% on credit cards).
If it's legit, I'm saddened. Final had a great idea in virtual cards. I hope someone can explain why they are closing down.