A new fintech company which I was presented to previously this year. Currensea Card App…
It has won a couple of awards over recent 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, efficiently, 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 invest as you would on a regular debit card and the money is taken from your current account– just without the typical 3% fee.
Oh, and is totally free to apply for, which also helps.
There are likewise some interesting travel benefits if you choose a paid plan, however the complimentary plan works fine. You can apply here.
There is a company model in fintech which Curve, Revolut, Monzo and so on have actually all followed:
launch by doing one thing well, and totally free or less expensive than the competitors
add a growing number of features which your existing clients don’t actually need or desire
add charges, charges or restrictions to the feature that made people get your product in the first place, getting rid of any competitive advantage
is currently still in Stage 1 of this procedure and will hopefully remain there. Curve, monzo and revolut are already in Stage 3 …
is simple enough that it passes my ‘Can you describe it to your mate in the bar in 30 seconds?’ test:
What countries can I use Currensea? Currensea Card App
It is a totally free direct debit card to use abroad and which instantly charges all purchases to your existing current account in Sterling, less a small 0.5% fee.
You do not (yet …) make any airline miles or points for using it.
Why would I want to get a card?
If you have a credit card offering 0% foreign exchange fees, then you don’t require a card, unless you want totally free ATM withdrawals. You can stop checking out now.
Credit cards which offer benefits and charge 0% FX costs are few and far in between. The only ‘miles and points’ choices which use a partial service are the Virgin Atlantic charge card which have 0% FX costs in the Euro zone.
IS potentially for you if:
you don’t have a credit card offering 0% FX charges and do not wish 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 with no costs and just a minimal FX mark-up (there is a small cost beyond , 500).
you desire an item for you, your adult kids, moms and dads, partner or anybody else in your life who needs an easy, 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, an extremely simple process. You utilize your Currensea card in the same way as your existing debit card.
You make your purchase in regional currency (any currency, globally).
Your current account bank instantly validates that you have sufficient cash in your account and authorises the deal.
The deal goes through at either the interbank rate or the Mastercard rate, depending upon the currency. If you have the totally free card, adds a 0.5% cost. If you have one of their paid cards, there are no fees.
You get an automatic invest alert via the app, if you select to install it.
The money is drawn from your current account a few days later.
Here is an example. Without any foreign travel in the diary, 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 set up to leave my HSBC account a few days later:.
Transforming pounds was pricey.
A pet peeve of mine is when ATMs forewarn you about the daytime robbery that is just about to take place (frequently in a various language) while not telling you about the outrageous currency conversion charges happening in the background. Do not get me began. Anyhow back to the positives for a bit anyway.
Fortunately recently a handful of terrific travel debit cards have popped onto the scene … and like other great cards promises huge cost savings (85%) and a great app.
However I believe the best bit might be what no other card does: connects to your existing high street savings account.
What this implies is you can spend cash you have in your existing current account with less stress over running out of cash and the additional step. That does not suggest it is best.
In this Currensea evaluation is the excellent, the bad, the unsightly and the options, so that you can decide.
While our premium strategies have no FX markup, we charge a small FX markup on our Essential Strategy of 0.5% per transaction, permitting us to make income from our Necessary Plan whilst staying more affordable than other pre-paid cards and high-street debit cards. We also charge an FX markup on ATM usage over the complimentary amount on all our plans, complete details can be found on our pricing plans.
We charge an annual subscription fee of , 25 for our Premium Plan, and , 120 for our Elite Strategy. The membership cost also eliminates all FX markup on transactions.
Every time you invest with your card we get a little % of the transaction, referred to as interchange, this comes directly from the merchant and won’t be charged to you. Currensea Card App