A brand-new fintech company which I was presented to earlier this year. Currensea Activate Physical Card…
It has won a couple of awards over recent months for what it does (offering you a low-priced method to invest abroad) but what I like about is that it is basic 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 absolutely nothing to top-up or prepay. You just invest as you would on a regular debit card and the money is drawn from your bank account– just without the usual 3% cost.
Oh, and is free to request, which likewise helps.
There are likewise some intriguing travel advantages if you select a paid strategy, however the free strategy works fine. You can use here.
There is a company design in fintech which Curve, Revolut, Monzo and so on have all followed:
launch by doing something well, and free of charge or less expensive than the competition
add a growing number of features which your existing clients don’t really require or desire
include fees, charges or restrictions to the feature that made people get your item in the first place, eliminating any competitive advantage
is currently still in Phase 1 of this procedure and will ideally remain there. Curve, Revolut and Monzo are already in Phase 3 …
is simple 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? Currensea Activate Physical Card
It is a totally free direct debit card to utilize abroad and which instantly charges all purchases to your existing bank account in Sterling, less a little 0.5% fee.
You do not (yet …) earn any airline miles or points for utilizing it.
Why would I want to get a card?
If you have a credit card offering 0% foreign exchange fees, then you do not need a card, unless you desire totally free ATM withdrawals. You can stop checking out now.
Credit cards which provide benefits and charge 0% FX costs are couple of and far in between. The only ‘miles and points’ choices which provide a partial option are the Virgin Atlantic charge card which have 0% FX fees in the Euro zone.
IS possibly for you if:
you do not have a charge card offering 0% FX charges and do not want to affect your credit report by getting another credit card particularly to use abroad
you want a product which allows you to make , 500 of foreign currency ATM withdrawals monthly without any charges and only a very little FX mark-up (there is a little cost beyond , 500).
you want a product for you, your adult kids, moms and dads, partner or anybody else in your life who requires a simple, easy to understand payment card that will conserve them cash when travelling.
How does work in practice?
It is, as I said previously, an extremely simple procedure. You utilize your Currensea card in the same way as your existing debit card.
You make your purchase in local currency (any currency, internationally).
Your bank account bank automatically confirms that you have sufficient money in your account and authorises the transaction.
The deal goes through at either the interbank rate or the Mastercard rate, depending on the currency. If you have the totally free 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 cash is drawn from your current account a few days later on.
Here is an example. With no foreign travel in the diary, I decided to splash out and purchase 1,000 MeliaRewards points for EUR5.
This is what you see in the Currensea app, which shows , 4.33 scheduled to leave my HSBC account a few days later on:.
However converting pounds was costly.
A pet peeve of mine is when ATMs forewarn you about the daylight break-in that is almost to take place (typically in a different language) while not telling you about the exorbitant currency conversion costs occurring in the background. Do not get me began. Anyhow back to the positives for a bit anyhow.
In recent years a handful of terrific travel debit cards have popped onto the scene … and like other fantastic cards Currensea assures huge 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 checking account.
What this implies is you can invest cash you have in your existing current account with less worry about lacking money and the additional action. However that does not imply it is perfect.
In this Currensea review is the excellent, the bad, the awful and the options, so that you can decide.
While our premium strategies have no FX markup, we charge a small FX markup on our Important Strategy of 0.5% per transaction, enabling us to make income from our Vital Plan whilst remaining much cheaper than other pre-paid cards and high-street debit cards. We also charge an FX markup on ATM use over the free quantity on all our strategies, full details can be discovered on our rates plans.
We charge an annual subscription fee of , 25 for our Premium Strategy, and , 120 for our Elite Strategy. The membership charge also removes all FX markup on deals.
Whenever you spend with your card we receive a small % of the transaction, known as interchange, this comes straight from the merchant and will not be charged to you. Currensea Activate Physical Card