Now when a SNAP application is approved the client is issued a plastic Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) card that looks like a credit card and works like a debit card. The Commonwealth of Virginia deposits the benefits to an account which is accessed via a credit card/debit card machine at the checkout line in the grocery store.
An authorized representative of a SNAP card holder will receive a separate card and has unlimited access to the account.
What can be bought with an EBT card?
You can use the EBT card (or SNAP) to buy food or seeds and plants to grow food in your home garden. You cannot use SNAP to buy:
- Alcoholic beverages or tobacco
- Hot foods ready for immediate consumption or foods to be eaten on the store premises
- Pet foods
- Soap or paper products or other non-food items
Using the EBT card at the store
- Know your balance before you go shopping
- Look for the "QUEST" logo where you shop. Authorized EBT retailers will display either the Quest Logo or a picture of the Virginia EBT Card. If you are not sure if the store accepts the Virginia EBT card, ask the clerk before you begin shopping.
- At checkout, tell the cashier that you are using the Virginia EBT card.
- Separate your non-food items from your food items. The EBT card cannot be used for non-food items.
- Check to make sure the total amount entered is correct.
- If you need to spend more than the balance left in your account, you can pay the rest in cash. Let the cashier know if you want to use cash.
- Enter your 4-diget PIN on the PIN pad.
- The machine prints a receipt showing your beginning balance, the amount you spent and the remaining balance in your account.
- Always keep your receipt so that you know your balance the next time you shop.
When should I call the Customer Service help desk?
- Call if:
- You receive your new Virginia EBT card and need to choose a PIN.
- You want to change your PIN.
- Your card is ever lost, stolen or damaged and you need to replace it.
- Someone is using your Virginia EBT card without your approval and you need to report it.
- You need to find out your balance.
- You need help or have questions about your Virginia EBT card or account.
1 (866) 281-2448
For more information, contact Jayne Scholl, (757) 385-3229