Money Matters: Decoding the Maestro vs. MasterCard Conundrum for International Travellers

Money Matters: Decoding the Maestro vs. MasterCard conundrum for International Travellers

Maestro and MasterCard are basically two important names in the world of debit and credit cards. Understanding maestro vs MasterCard and what they offer can help you choose the best card that aligns with your lifestyle.

Basics about Maestro

Maestro is a type of debit card issued by MasterCard. In 1991 MasterCard introduced Maestro. It became the first debit card network for online point of sale transactions initially it was just the primary debit card accepted across most of Europe but with Maestro you can now make payments at stores and withdraw cash from all the ATMs some of the cards can also allow online purchases.

MasterCard vs maestro

MasterCard issues Maestro debit cards so it is very easy to get them confused. The main difference lies in the type of card each brand offers. Basics play a very important role in maestro vs MasterCard understanding.

Maestro is ideally a debit card, and you can either link it to a bank account or it can be prepaid. You can refer it as Maestro credit card, but all the cards are generally debit cards

On the other hand a MasterCard can be credit card, a bank debit card or a prepaid card. It offers plenty of card types. In simple terms Maestro only offers debit cards while MasterCard provides different options like credit bank debit and prepaid cards.

Maestro card provider:

Credit card provider


Bunq logo

New player on the market. Sustainabiliy is central in their approach to banking. You can get a Maestro card fairly easily. Open the bunq app, tap “Cards”, tap “Add Debit Card” or “Add Credit Card”, choose the card you want. The card will arrive in the mail within 10 business days.

How does Maestro debit card work?

Maestro debit card works similarly to your MasterCard debit card. Both the cards will allow you to make in-store purchases or withdraw cash from ATMs. Security measures are similar for online transactions with a Maestro card. The MasterCard secure code system adds an extra layer for identity verification often using a one time passcode.

If the transactions exceed a given limit, then it might require your signature or pin. Cash withdrawals at ATMs truly necessitate a pin. In short both the cards offer contactless payments.

Where can you use MasterCard vs maestro?

Or at least 400 million Maestro cards globally With major popularity in Europe especially in countries like Austria Germany Netherlands Belgium and Switzerland. MasterCard boasts a great network which is twice the size of Maestro. It supports a large number of e-commerce transactions. But Maestro is not compatible with all online platforms because it has a unique format of card numbers which go around 19 digits.

There are several retail stores that display logos for MasterCard over Maestro acceptance and online merchants generally highlight the logos at checkout. Furthermore, possessing a Maestro card provides access to the MasterCard cirrus ATM network which is one of the largest. No matter which card you use you can securely withdraw cash from millions of ATMs globally through this network.

MasterCard provider:

Credit card provider


mastercard logo

Mastercard is the most used credit card in the Netherlands – accepted almost everywhere – low withdrawal costs and no hidden fees!

Wrap up

Both the cards are accepted widely by dinners ensuring convenient access to plenty of stores. Furthermore, you can conveniently withdraw cash from an ATM using these cards. If you prefer your debit card especially for use in Europe, then Maestro proofs to be completely beneficial. MasterCard is your best bet if you are opting for a credit card as it provides you with more flexibility for online purchase orders, credit and debit options.