Single Use Card Currensea – Best Travel Cards

A new fintech business which I was presented to earlier this year. Single Use Card Currensea…

It has won a few awards over recent months for what it does (providing you an affordable way to spend abroad) but what I like about  is that it is easy as hell. This is an advantage.

is, effectively, 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 just spend as you would on a normal debit card and the money is taken from your current account– just without the usual 3% charge.

Oh, and  is totally free to get, which likewise helps.

There are also some fascinating travel benefits if you choose a paid plan, however the free strategy works fine. You can apply here.

There is a service design in fintech which Curve, Revolut, Monzo etc have all followed:

launch by doing one thing well, and for free or less expensive than the competitors
add more and more features which your existing consumers don’t truly require or desire

add fees, charges or limitations to the function that made people get your product 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 already in Phase 3 …
is simple enough that it passes my ‘Can you describe it to your mate in the bar in 30 seconds?’ test:

It is a free direct debit card to use abroad and which instantly charges all purchases to your existing bank account in Sterling, less a small 0.5% cost.

That’s it.

You don’t (yet …) make 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% forex charges, then you do not require a  card, unless you want totally free ATM withdrawals. You can stop reading now.

Credit cards which offer rewards and charge 0% FX costs are few and far in between. The only ‘points and miles’ 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 don’t have a charge card offering 0% FX costs and do not want to affect your credit report by getting another charge card specifically to utilize abroad
you want an item which permits you to make �,� 500 of foreign currency ATM withdrawals monthly with no costs and only a minimal FX mark-up (there is a small charge beyond �,� 500).
you want a product for you, your adult kids, parents, partner or anybody else in your life who requires a basic, 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, an extremely easy procedure. You utilize your Currensea card in the same way as your existing debit card.

You make your purchase in regional currency (any currency, worldwide).
Your current account bank automatically confirms that you have sufficient money in your account and authorises the deal.
The transaction goes through at either the interbank rate or the Mastercard rate, depending upon the currency. includes a 0.5% cost if you have the complimentary card. If you have one of their paid cards, there are no fees.
You get an automatic spend alert by means of the app, if you select to install it.
The cash is drawn from your bank account a few days later.
Here is an example. Without any foreign travel in the diary, I chose to splash out and buy 1,000 MeliaRewards points for EUR5.

This is what you see in the Currensea app, which shows �,� 4.33 arranged to leave my HSBC account a few days later on:.

However transforming pounds was costly.

A pet peeve of mine is when ATMs forewarn you about the daylight robbery that is just about to happen (often in a different language) while not telling you about the exorbitant currency conversion fees occurring in the background. Don’t get me began. Anyway back to the positives for a bit anyway.

In recent years a handful of terrific travel debit cards have popped onto the scene … and like other excellent cards Currensea promises huge savings (85%) and a terrific app.

I think the best bit might be what no other card does: connects to your existing high street bank account.

What this means is you can invest cash you have in your existing current account with less stress over lacking cash and the extra step. That does not mean it is perfect.

In this Currensea evaluation is the good, the bad, the ugly and the alternatives, so that you can choose.

FX markup.
While our premium plans have no FX markup, we charge a small FX markup on our Necessary Strategy of 0.5% per transaction, enabling us to make earnings from our Essential Plan whilst staying more affordable than other prepaid cards and high-street debit cards. We also charge an FX markup on ATM usage over the complimentary amount on all our strategies, complete information can be discovered on our rates strategies.

Subscription fees.
We charge a yearly membership fee of �,� 25 for our Premium Plan, and �,� 120 for our Elite Strategy. The subscription cost likewise removes all FX markup on transactions.

Interchange.
Every time you spend with your card we receive a small % of the deal, called interchange, this comes directly from the merchant and won’t be credited you. Single Use Card Currensea