A new fintech business which I was introduced to earlier this year. Currensea Martin Lewis…
It has actually won a couple of awards over recent months for what it does (providing you a low-cost method to invest abroad) but what I like about is that it is basic as hell. This is a good idea.
is, successfully, 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 typical debit card and the cash is taken from your current account– simply without the normal 3% cost.
Oh, and is free to obtain, which also helps.
There are likewise some fascinating travel benefits if you select a paid strategy, however the free strategy works fine. You can apply here.
There is a company design in fintech which Curve, Revolut, Monzo etc have all followed:
launch by doing something well, and free of charge or less expensive than the competitors
add a growing number of functions which your existing consumers don’t actually desire or need
add costs, limitations or charges to the feature that made individuals get your item in the first place, eliminating any competitive advantage
is presently still in Phase 1 of this procedure and will ideally remain there. Revolut, curve and monzo are currently in Stage 3 …
is basic enough that it passes my ‘Can you discuss it to your mate in the club in 30 seconds?’ test:
What countries can I use Currensea? Currensea Martin Lewis
It is a complimentary direct debit card to use abroad and which immediately recharges all purchases to your existing current account in Sterling, less a little 0.5% fee.
You don’t (yet …) earn any airline company miles or points for using it.
Why would I want to get a card?
If you have a charge card offering 0% foreign exchange fees, then you do not need a card, unless you want complimentary ATM withdrawals. You can stop reading now.
Nevertheless, charge card which use rewards and charge 0% FX fees are scarce. The only ‘miles and points’ choices which provide a partial service are the Virgin Atlantic credit cards which have 0% FX fees in the Euro zone.
IS possibly for you if:
you do not have a charge card offering 0% FX costs and do not wish to affect your credit report by getting another credit card specifically to utilize abroad
you want a product which allows you to make , 500 of foreign currency ATM withdrawals per month with no costs and only a minimal FX mark-up (there is a small charge beyond , 500).
you desire an item for you, your adult children, moms and dads, partner or anybody else in your life who needs a simple, easy to understand payment card that will conserve them money when travelling.
How does work in practice?
It is, as I stated earlier, a very easy procedure. You use your Currensea card in the same way as your existing debit card.
You make your purchase in local currency (any currency, worldwide).
Your current account bank immediately verifies that you have sufficient money in your account and authorises the transaction.
The transaction goes through at either the interbank rate or the Mastercard rate, depending on the currency. If you have the complimentary card, adds a 0.5% charge. If you have one of their paid cards, there are no charges.
You get an automatic invest notification through the app, if you pick to install it.
The money is drawn from your current account a couple of days later on.
Here is an example. With no foreign travel in the diary, I chose 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 couple of days later:.
But converting pounds was pricey.
A pet peeve of mine is when ATMs forewarn you about the daylight burglary that is just about to happen (typically in a different language) while not telling you about the outrageous currency conversion charges occurring in the background. Don’t get me began. Anyhow back to the positives for a bit anyway.
In recent years a handful of excellent travel debit cards have actually popped onto the scene … and like other fantastic cards Currensea guarantees big savings (85%) and a terrific app.
But I think the very best bit might be what no other card does: connects to your existing high street bank account.
What this suggests is you can invest cash you have in your existing current account with less fret about lacking cash and the additional step. However that does not indicate it is best.
In this Currensea review is the good, the bad, the unsightly and the alternatives, so that you can decide.
While our premium strategies have no FX markup, we charge a small FX markup on our Important Plan of 0.5% per deal, enabling us to make revenue from our Vital Strategy 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 amount on all our plans, complete details can be discovered on our prices plans.
We charge an annual membership fee of , 25 for our Premium Strategy, and , 120 for our Elite Strategy. The membership charge also removes all FX markup on deals.
Every time you invest with your card we receive a little % of the deal, known as interchange, this comes directly from the merchant and won’t be charged to you. Currensea Martin Lewis