A new fintech company which I was presented to previously this year. My Currensea Card Has Arrived…
It has won a couple of awards over recent months for what it does (providing you an inexpensive method to spend abroad) but what I like about is that it is easy as hell. This is a good idea.
is, effectively, a direct debit travel card. It is a Mastercard which sits between you and your existing current account. There is absolutely nothing to top-up or prepay. You simply invest as you would on a normal debit card and the cash is drawn from your current account– just without the usual 3% charge.
Oh, and is complimentary to get, which also helps.
There are also some interesting travel benefits if you pick a paid strategy, but the complimentary strategy works fine. You can use here.
There is a service design in fintech which Curve, Revolut, Monzo and so on have all followed:
launch by doing one thing well, and for free or less expensive than the competition
add a growing number of features which your existing clients don’t actually need or desire
add restrictions, charges or charges to the function that made individuals get your item in the first place, eliminating any competitive advantage
is presently still in Phase 1 of this process and will hopefully stay there. Revolut, monzo and curve are already in Phase 3 …
is easy enough that it passes my ‘Can you explain it to your mate in the club in 30 seconds?’ test:
What countries can I use Currensea? My Currensea Card Has Arrived
It is a totally free direct debit card to use abroad and which instantly charges all purchases to your existing bank 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 wish to get a card?
If you have a charge card offering 0% forex costs, then you don’t require a card, unless you desire free ATM withdrawals. You can stop reading now.
Credit cards which provide rewards and charge 0% FX fees are couple of and far in between. The only ‘miles and points’ choices which provide a partial service are the Virgin Atlantic charge card which have 0% FX charges in the Euro zone.
IS potentially for you if:
you don’t have a charge card offering 0% FX costs and do not want to impact your credit report by getting another charge card specifically to use abroad
you desire a product which permits you to make , 500 of foreign currency ATM withdrawals monthly with no charges and just a very little FX mark-up (there is a small cost beyond , 500).
you desire a product for you, your adult children, moms and dads, partner or anyone else in your life who needs a basic, easy to understand payment card that will conserve them cash when taking a trip.
How does work in practice?
It is, as I said previously, a very basic 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 bank account bank instantly confirms that you have enough cash in your account and authorises the deal.
The transaction 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. If you have one of their paid cards, there are no fees.
You get an automated invest alert by means of the app, if you select to install it.
The money is drawn from your bank account a couple of days later on.
Here is an example. With no foreign travel in the diary, I chose to splash out and purchase 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 few days later:.
Converting pounds was expensive.
A pet peeve of mine is when ATMs forewarn you about the daylight robbery that is just about to take place (often in a different language) while not telling you about the exorbitant currency conversion costs taking place in the background. Don’t get me began. Anyhow back to the positives for a bit anyway.
Fortunately in the last few years a handful of terrific travel debit cards have popped onto the scene … and like other great cards assures big cost savings (85%) and a fantastic app.
But I believe the very best bit might be what no other card does: links to your existing high street bank account.
What this means is you can spend cash you have in your existing current account with less fret about running out of money and the additional step. However that does not mean it is ideal.
In this Currensea review is the good, the bad, the ugly and the alternatives, so that you can choose.
While our premium strategies have no FX markup, we charge a nominal FX markup on our Vital Plan of 0.5% per transaction, enabling us to make earnings from our Necessary Strategy whilst staying much cheaper than other pre-paid cards and high-street debit cards. We likewise charge an FX markup on ATM use over the complimentary amount on all our plans, complete details can be discovered on our rates plans.
We charge a yearly membership charge of , 25 for our Premium Strategy, and , 120 for our Elite Plan. The subscription cost likewise eliminates all FX markup on deals.
Every time you spend with your card we get a little % of the transaction, referred to as interchange, this comes directly from the merchant and will not be charged to you. My Currensea Card Has Arrived