A brand-new fintech company which I was introduced to previously this year. Currensea Currencies…
It has actually won a couple of awards over current months for what it does (providing you an affordable method to spend abroad) however what I like about is that it is basic as hell. This is an advantage.
is, efficiently, 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 simply invest as you would on a typical debit card and the cash is taken from your bank account– just without the normal 3% cost.
Oh, and is totally free to get, which likewise assists.
There are also some interesting travel benefits if you choose a paid strategy, but the complimentary plan works fine. You can apply here.
There is a company model in fintech which Curve, Revolut, Monzo etc have all followed:
launch by doing one thing well, and totally free or more affordable than the competition
add a growing number of functions which your existing consumers do not truly need or desire
include charges, restrictions or charges to the function that made people get your product in the first place, removing any competitive advantage
is currently still in Phase 1 of this process and will hopefully remain there. Monzo, curve and revolut are already in Stage 3 …
is basic enough that it passes my ‘Can you explain it to your mate in the pub in 30 seconds?’ test:
What countries can I use Currensea? Currensea Currencies
It is a 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% cost.
You do not (yet …) make 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 costs, then you do not need a card, unless you desire totally free ATM withdrawals. You can stop reading now.
Credit cards which provide benefits and charge 0% FX charges are few and far in between. The only ‘miles and points’ options which use a partial service are the Virgin Atlantic charge card which have 0% FX costs in the Euro zone.
IS perhaps 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 charge card specifically to utilize abroad
you desire a product which allows you to make , 500 of foreign currency ATM withdrawals monthly with no charges and just a very little FX mark-up (there is a little cost beyond , 500).
you want a product for you, your adult kids, parents, partner or anyone else in your life who needs a simple, easy to understand payment card that will conserve them cash when travelling.
How does operate in practice?
It is, as I stated earlier, a very simple process. 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 instantly confirms that you have sufficient cash 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 free card, includes a 0.5% cost. There are no charges if you have one of their paid cards.
You get an automated invest notice by means of the app, if you select to install it.
The money is taken from your bank account a couple of days later.
Here is an example. With no foreign travel in the diary, I decided to sprinkle out and buy 1,000 MeliaRewards points for EUR5.
This is what you see in the Currensea app, which reveals , 4.33 arranged 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 occur (typically in a various language) while not telling you about the outrageous currency conversion fees occurring in the background. Don’t get me started. Anyway back to the positives for a bit anyhow.
Luckily recently a handful of great travel debit cards have popped onto the scene … and like other great cards guarantees huge savings (85%) and a fantastic app.
I believe the finest bit might be what no other card does: links to your existing high street bank account.
What this means is you can spend money you have in your existing current account with less fret about running out of cash and the extra step. That does not suggest it is best.
In this Currensea evaluation is the excellent, the bad, the ugly and the alternatives, so that you can decide.
While our premium plans have no FX markup, we charge a nominal FX markup on our Vital Strategy of 0.5% per deal, allowing us to make profits from our Vital Plan whilst staying much cheaper than other pre-paid cards and high-street debit cards. We also charge an FX markup on ATM usage over the complimentary quantity on all our plans, complete details can be found on our rates plans.
We charge a yearly membership charge of , 25 for our Premium Plan, and , 120 for our Elite Plan. The subscription fee also eliminates all FX markup on deals.
Every time you spend with your card we receive a small % of the transaction, called interchange, this comes straight from the merchant and won’t be credited you. Currensea Currencies