Money Saving Expert Currensea – Best Travel Cards

A brand-new fintech business which I was presented to earlier this year. Money Saving Expert Currensea…

It has actually won a few awards over recent months for what it does (offering you a low-priced way to invest abroad) but what I like about  is that it is easy as hell. This is a good thing.

is, successfully, a direct debit travel card. It is a Mastercard which sits in between you and your existing current account. There is absolutely nothing to top-up or prepay. You simply invest as you would on a typical debit card and the cash is taken from your current account– simply without the typical 3% fee.

Oh, and  is complimentary to apply for, which likewise helps.

There are likewise some intriguing travel benefits if you pick a paid plan, however the complimentary plan works fine. You can apply here.

There is a service design in fintech which Curve, Revolut, Monzo and so on have all followed:

launch by doing something well, and for free or cheaper than the competitors
include a growing number of features which your existing consumers don’t really need or desire

include costs, limitations or charges to the feature that made people get your item in the first place, removing any competitive advantage
is currently still in Stage 1 of this process and will ideally remain there. Revolut, curve and monzo are already in Stage 3 …
is simple enough that it passes my ‘Can you describe it to your mate in the pub in 30 seconds?’ test:

It is a totally free direct debit card to utilize abroad and which automatically charges all purchases to your existing current account in Sterling, less a small 0.5% cost.

That’s it.

You do not (yet …) earn any airline company miles or points for using it.

Why would I wish to get a card?
If you have a charge card offering 0% foreign exchange charges, then you don’t need a  card, unless you desire complimentary ATM withdrawals. You can stop checking out now.

Credit cards which offer benefits and charge 0% FX charges are few and far in between. The only ‘points and miles’ options which offer a partial service are the Virgin Atlantic credit cards which have 0% FX charges in the Euro zone.

IS potentially for you if:

you do not have a credit card offering 0% FX fees and do not wish to affect your credit report by getting another charge card specifically to use abroad
you desire a product which enables you to make �,� 500 of foreign currency ATM withdrawals per month with no costs and only a very little FX mark-up (there is a small charge beyond �,� 500).
you desire an item for you, your adult children, moms and dads, partner or anybody else in your life who needs a simple, easy to understand payment card that will save them money when travelling.

How does  work in practice?
It is, as I said earlier, an extremely simple process. You use your Currensea card in the same way as your existing debit card.

You make your purchase in local currency (any currency, internationally).
Your current account bank automatically confirms that you have adequate cash in your account and authorises the deal.
The deal goes through at either the interbank rate or the Mastercard rate, depending on the currency. includes a 0.5% charge if you have the free card. There are no costs if you have one of their paid cards.
You get an automated spend alert through the app, if you pick to install it.
The cash is taken from your bank account a couple of days later.
Here is an example. With no foreign travel in the diary, I chose to sprinkle out and purchase 1,000 MeliaRewards points for EUR5.

This is what you see in the Currensea app, which reveals �,� 4.33 scheduled to leave my HSBC account a few days later:.

Transforming pounds was expensive.

A pet peeve of mine is when ATMs forewarn you about the daylight burglary that is practically to occur (frequently in a different language) while not telling you about the outrageous currency conversion charges taking place in the background. Don’t get me started. Anyhow back to the positives for a bit anyway.

Thankfully in the last few years a handful of excellent travel debit cards have actually popped onto the scene … and like other great cards  assures big savings (85%) and an excellent app.

However I think the best bit might be what no other card does: connects to your existing high street savings account.

What this indicates is you can spend money you have in your existing bank account with less worry about running out of money and the additional action. But that does not imply it is perfect.

In this Currensea review is the excellent, the bad, the awful and the alternatives, so that you can choose.

FX markup.
While our premium plans have no FX markup, we charge a nominal FX markup on our Essential Strategy of 0.5% per deal, allowing us to make profits from our Vital Plan whilst remaining much cheaper than other prepaid cards and high-street debit cards. We likewise charge an FX markup on ATM usage over the totally free quantity on all our strategies, complete information can be discovered on our rates plans.

Subscription costs.
We charge a yearly membership charge of �,� 25 for our Premium Strategy, and �,� 120 for our Elite Strategy. The membership cost likewise removes all FX markup on deals.

Interchange.
Every time you spend with your card we receive a little % of the transaction, known as interchange, this comes straight from the merchant and won’t be charged to you. Money Saving Expert Currensea