A new fintech business which I was introduced to earlier this year. Poppy Card Currensea…
It has won a few awards over current months for what it does (using you an affordable way to spend abroad) but what I like about is that it is basic as hell. This is an advantage.
is, successfully, a direct debit travel card. It is a Mastercard which sits between you and your existing current account. There is nothing to top-up or prepay. You simply invest as you would on a regular debit card and the money is drawn from your bank account– simply without the typical 3% cost.
Oh, and is totally free to obtain, which likewise assists.
There are also some interesting travel advantages if you pick a paid strategy, however the free plan works fine. You can use here.
There is a business design in fintech which Curve, Revolut, Monzo and so on have all followed:
launch by doing something well, and for free or more affordable than the competitors
add a growing number of features which your existing customers don’t really want or need
add charges, restrictions or fees to the function that made people get your product in the first place, eliminating any competitive advantage
is presently still in Stage 1 of this process and will hopefully remain 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 bar in 30 seconds?’ test:
What countries can I use Currensea? Poppy Card Currensea
It is a complimentary direct debit card to use abroad and which instantly recharges all purchases to your existing current account in Sterling, less a small 0.5% charge.
You do not (yet …) earn any airline company miles or points for utilizing it.
Why would I wish to get a card?
If you have a charge card offering 0% foreign exchange charges, then you do not need a card, unless you want free ATM withdrawals. You can stop reading now.
Nevertheless, credit cards which provide rewards and charge 0% FX charges are rare. The only ‘points and miles’ choices which provide a partial solution are the Virgin Atlantic charge card which have 0% FX charges in the Euro zone.
IS possibly for you if:
you do not have a charge 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 a product which enables you to make , 500 of foreign currency ATM withdrawals per month without any costs and only a very little FX mark-up (there is a little fee beyond , 500).
you want a product for you, your adult children, moms and dads, partner or anyone else in your life who requires a basic, easy to understand payment card that will conserve them money when travelling.
How does work in practice?
It is, as I said earlier, a really basic procedure. You use 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 automatically validates that you have enough money in your account and authorises the deal.
The transaction goes through at either the interbank rate or the Mastercard rate, depending upon the currency. adds a 0.5% charge if you have the complimentary card. There are no costs if you have among their paid cards.
You get an automated invest notice by means of the app, if you pick to install it.
The cash is taken from your bank account a couple of days later on.
Here is an example. Without any foreign travel in the journal, I chose to sprinkle out and buy 1,000 MeliaRewards points for EUR5.
This is what you see in the Currensea app, which reveals , 4.33 set up to leave my HSBC account a few days later on:.
But converting pounds was pricey.
A pet peeve of mine is when ATMs forewarn you about the daylight burglary that is practically to happen (often in a different language) while not telling you about the inflated currency conversion charges occurring in the background. Don’t get me began. Anyhow back to the positives for a bit anyway.
Thankfully recently a handful of great travel debit cards have popped onto the scene … and like other great cards assures big savings (85%) and a great app.
But I believe the very best bit might be what no other card does: connects to your existing high street bank account.
What this means is you can spend cash you have in your existing current account with less stress over lacking money and the extra action. However that does not suggest it is ideal.
In this Currensea evaluation is the great, the bad, the unsightly and the alternatives, so that you can decide.
While our premium plans have no FX markup, we charge a small FX markup on our Essential Strategy of 0.5% per transaction, enabling us to make profits from our Important Plan 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 totally free quantity on all our strategies, full information can be discovered on our rates strategies.
We charge an annual subscription cost of , 25 for our Premium Strategy, and , 120 for our Elite Plan. The subscription charge likewise eliminates all FX markup on transactions.
Whenever you spend with your card we receive a small % of the deal, called interchange, this comes straight from the merchant and won’t be charged to you. Poppy Card Currensea