A brand-new fintech company which I was introduced to previously this year. Currensea Bitcoin Debit Card…
It has won a couple of awards over current months for what it does (offering 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 in between you and your existing bank account. There is nothing to top-up or prepay. You simply spend as you would on a normal debit card and the money is taken from your bank account– simply without the usual 3% fee.
Oh, and is totally free to request, which also assists.
There are also some fascinating travel benefits if you pick a paid plan, however the free plan works fine. You can apply here.
There is a business model in fintech which Curve, Revolut, Monzo and so on have actually all followed:
launch by doing one thing well, and for free or cheaper than the competition
include a growing number of features which your existing clients do not actually require or desire
include constraints, charges or fees to the feature that made people get your product in the first place, getting rid of any competitive advantage
is presently still in Stage 1 of this procedure and will hopefully remain there. Curve, Revolut and Monzo are currently in Stage 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? Currensea Bitcoin Debit Card
It is a free direct debit card to use abroad and which automatically recharges all purchases to your existing current account in Sterling, less a small 0.5% cost.
You don’t (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 fees, then you don’t need a card, unless you want complimentary ATM withdrawals. You can stop checking out now.
Credit cards which provide rewards and charge 0% FX charges are couple of and far between. The only ‘miles and points’ alternatives which provide a partial service are the Virgin Atlantic charge card which have 0% FX costs in the Euro zone.
IS potentially for you if:
you do not have a charge card offering 0% FX costs and do not wish to impact your credit report by getting another charge card specifically to utilize abroad
you want an item which allows you to make , 500 of foreign currency ATM withdrawals monthly without any fees and only a very little FX mark-up (there is a little cost beyond , 500).
you desire a product for you, your adult kids, parents, 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, a very basic procedure. You utilize your Currensea card in the same way as your existing debit card.
You make your purchase in local currency (any currency, globally).
Your bank account bank instantly verifies 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 free card, includes a 0.5% cost. If you have one of their paid cards, there are no charges.
You get an automatic spend alert by means of the app, if you choose to install it.
The money is drawn from your bank account a couple of days later.
Here is an example. With no foreign travel in the journal, I decided to sprinkle out and purchase 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:.
However converting pounds was pricey.
A pet peeve of mine is when ATMs forewarn you about the daytime break-in that is practically to occur (often in a various language) while not telling you about the outrageous currency conversion costs happening in the background. Do not get me started. Anyway back to the positives for a bit anyway.
Thankfully over the last few years a handful of excellent travel debit cards have actually popped onto the scene … and like other terrific cards guarantees 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 checking account.
What this means is you can invest money you have in your existing bank account with less worry about running out of cash and the additional step. That does not suggest it is ideal.
In this Currensea review is the good, 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 Essential Plan of 0.5% per deal, enabling us to make revenue from our Important Strategy whilst staying much cheaper than other pre-paid cards and high-street debit cards. We also charge an FX markup on ATM use over the complimentary quantity on all our strategies, complete details can be discovered on our rates plans.
We charge an annual membership fee of , 25 for our Premium Plan, and , 120 for our Elite Strategy. The membership charge likewise eliminates all FX markup on transactions.
Every time you spend with your card we receive a little % of the transaction, called interchange, this comes straight from the merchant and will not be credited you. Currensea Bitcoin Debit Card