A new fintech business which I was introduced to earlier this year. Currensea Card Bank…
It has won a couple of awards over current months for what it does (using you an inexpensive method to invest abroad) however what I like about is that it is easy as hell. This is a good thing.
is, effectively, a direct debit travel card. You simply spend as you would on a typical debit card and the money is taken from your existing account– simply without the usual 3% charge.
Oh, and is free to apply for, which likewise helps.
There are also some intriguing travel benefits if you choose a paid strategy, but the free strategy works fine. You can use here.
There is an organization design in fintech which Curve, Revolut, Monzo etc have actually all followed:
launch by doing something well, and free of charge or less expensive than the competitors
add increasingly more features which your existing customers don’t really require or desire
add charges, costs or limitations 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 process and will hopefully remain there. Curve, monzo and revolut are currently in Phase 3 …
is basic 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 Card Bank
It is a complimentary direct debit card to utilize abroad and which instantly recharges 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 want to get a card?
If you have a charge card offering 0% forex costs, then you do not need a card, unless you desire free ATM withdrawals. You can stop reading now.
Nevertheless, charge card which use benefits and charge 0% FX costs are rare. The only ‘miles and points’ options which offer a partial service 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 credit card offering 0% FX charges and do not want to affect your credit report by getting another charge card particularly to utilize abroad
you want a product which allows you to make , 500 of foreign currency ATM withdrawals per month with no charges and only a minimal FX mark-up (there is a small cost beyond , 500).
you desire a product for you, your adult children, parents, partner or anyone else in your life who requires a simple, easy to understand payment card that will save them cash when taking a trip.
How does work in practice?
It is, as I said earlier, a really easy 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 current account bank instantly verifies that you have adequate cash in your account and authorises the transaction.
The deal goes through at either the interbank rate or the Mastercard rate, depending upon the currency. If you have the free card, adds a 0.5% cost. If you have one of their paid cards, there are no charges.
You get an automatic spend notification through the app, if you choose to install it.
The money is taken from your bank account a couple of days later on.
Here is an example. Without any 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 reveals , 4.33 scheduled to leave my HSBC account a couple of days later:.
However converting pounds was pricey.
A pet peeve of mine is when ATMs forewarn you about the daylight robbery that is practically to take place (typically in a various language) while not telling you about the inflated currency conversion fees taking place in the background. Do not get me began. Anyway back to the positives for a bit anyhow.
In current years a handful of fantastic travel debit cards have actually popped onto the scene … and like other excellent cards Currensea guarantees huge cost savings (85%) and an excellent app.
However I think the very 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 current account with less fret about lacking money and the additional step. However that does not suggest it is best.
In this Currensea review is the great, the bad, the ugly and the alternatives, so that you can decide.
While our premium plans have no FX markup, we charge a small FX markup on our Necessary Strategy of 0.5% per deal, permitting us to make earnings from our Essential Plan whilst remaining much cheaper than other prepaid cards and high-street debit cards. We also charge an FX markup on ATM use over the totally free quantity on all our strategies, complete details can be discovered on our pricing plans.
We charge a yearly subscription charge of , 25 for our Premium Strategy, and , 120 for our Elite Strategy. The membership charge also eliminates all FX markup on deals.
Every time you spend with your card we get a little % of the deal, called interchange, this comes directly from the merchant and will not be charged to you. Currensea Card Bank