A brand-new fintech business which I was presented to earlier this year. Currensea Business Card…
It has actually won a few awards over current months for what it does (providing you an inexpensive way to spend abroad) but what I like about is that it is simple as hell. This is a good thing.
is, effectively, a direct debit travel card. It is a Mastercard which sits between you and your existing bank account. There is nothing to top-up or prepay. You just spend as you would on a typical debit card and the cash is taken from your current account– just without the usual 3% charge.
Oh, and is complimentary to request, which likewise assists.
There are also some intriguing travel advantages if you choose a paid strategy, however the free strategy works fine. You can use here.
There is a company model in fintech which Curve, Revolut, Monzo etc have all followed:
launch by doing something well, and free of charge or cheaper than the competition
include a growing number of features which your existing consumers do not really want or require
include charges, charges or restrictions to the function that made individuals get your product in the first place, removing any competitive advantage
is presently still in Stage 1 of this process and will ideally stay there. Curve, Revolut and Monzo are already in Phase 3 …
is basic enough that it passes my ‘Can you discuss it to your mate in the club in 30 seconds?’ test:
What countries can I use Currensea? Currensea Business Card
It is a free direct debit card to use abroad and which automatically charges all purchases to your existing current account in Sterling, less a small 0.5% cost.
You don’t (yet …) earn any airline miles or points for using it.
Why would I wish to get a card?
If you have a credit card offering 0% foreign exchange costs, then you don’t need a card, unless you desire free ATM withdrawals. You can stop checking out now.
Nevertheless, credit cards which offer rewards and charge 0% FX charges are few and far between. The only ‘miles and points’ choices which use a partial service are the Virgin Atlantic credit cards which have 0% FX fees in the Euro zone.
IS perhaps for you if:
you don’t have a charge card offering 0% FX costs and do not want to affect your credit report by getting another credit card specifically to use abroad
you want an item which permits you to make , 500 of foreign currency ATM withdrawals per month without any fees and only a minimal FX mark-up (there is a small charge beyond , 500).
you want a product for you, your adult children, parents, partner or anybody else in your life who requires a basic, easy to understand payment card that will conserve them cash when taking a trip.
How does operate in practice?
It is, as I stated earlier, a very simple process. You use your Currensea card in the same way as your existing debit card.
You make your purchase in regional currency (any currency, internationally).
Your current account bank immediately confirms that you have sufficient cash in your account and authorises the transaction.
The deal goes through at either the interbank rate or the Mastercard rate, depending upon the currency. If you have the complimentary card, adds a 0.5% cost. There are no costs if you have among their paid cards.
You get an automated spend notification via the app, if you pick to install it.
The money is taken from your bank account a couple of days later on.
Here is an example. Without any foreign travel in the journal, I decided to splash out and buy 1,000 MeliaRewards points for EUR5.
This is what you see in the Currensea app, which shows , 4.33 arranged to leave my HSBC account a couple of days later on:.
But converting pounds was expensive.
A pet peeve of mine is when ATMs forewarn you about the daylight burglary that is practically to take place (typically in a different language) while not telling you about the inflated currency conversion fees occurring in the background. Don’t get me began. Anyhow back to the positives for a bit anyway.
In recent years a handful of terrific travel debit cards have actually popped onto the scene … and like other terrific cards Currensea assures big savings (85%) and an excellent app.
I believe the best bit might be what no other card does: connects to your existing high street bank account.
What this means is you can invest cash you have in your existing bank account with less worry about running out of cash and the additional step. But that does not mean it is ideal.
In this Currensea evaluation is the excellent, the bad, the unsightly and the options, so that you can decide.
While our premium plans have no FX markup, we charge a small FX markup on our Essential Plan of 0.5% per transaction, allowing us to make earnings from our Vital Plan whilst remaining much cheaper than other prepaid cards and high-street debit cards. We also charge an FX markup on ATM usage over the totally free quantity on all our plans, complete information can be discovered on our rates strategies.
We charge an annual subscription charge of , 25 for our Premium Plan, and , 120 for our Elite Strategy. The membership cost also gets rid of all FX markup on transactions.
Whenever you invest with your card we get a small % of the transaction, known as interchange, this comes straight from the merchant and will not be charged to you. Currensea Business Card