A new fintech company which I was introduced to previously this year. Currensea Business Card…
It has won a few awards over recent months for what it does (offering you a low-priced way to spend abroad) however what I like about is that it is simple as hell. This is an advantage.
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 just spend as you would on a normal debit card and the money is drawn from your bank account– just without the usual 3% cost.
Oh, and is totally free to apply for, which likewise helps.
There are also some intriguing travel benefits if you choose a paid plan, but the free plan works fine. You can apply here.
There is a company design in fintech which Curve, Revolut, Monzo and so on have all followed:
launch by doing one thing well, and free of charge or cheaper than the competition
add a growing number of features which your existing consumers don’t truly need or desire
add costs, restrictions or charges to the function that made individuals get your item in the first place, removing any competitive advantage
is currently still in Phase 1 of this procedure and will hopefully stay there. Curve, Revolut and Monzo are already in Stage 3 …
is easy enough that it passes my ‘Can you describe it to your mate in the bar in 30 seconds?’ test:
What countries can I use Currensea? Currensea Business Card
It is a free direct debit card to utilize abroad and which automatically charges all purchases to your existing current account in Sterling, less a little 0.5% fee.
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 credit card offering 0% forex fees, then you don’t need a card, unless you want free ATM withdrawals. You can stop checking out now.
Credit cards which offer benefits and charge 0% FX fees are couple of and far between. The only ‘points and miles’ options which provide a partial option are the Virgin Atlantic credit cards which have 0% FX charges in the Euro zone.
IS perhaps for you if:
you do not have a charge card offering 0% FX fees and do not want to impact your credit report by getting another credit card specifically to utilize abroad
you desire an item which permits you to make , 500 of foreign currency ATM withdrawals monthly without any charges and just a minimal FX mark-up (there is a little charge beyond , 500).
you want an item for you, your adult kids, parents, partner or anyone else in your life who needs a simple, easy to understand payment card that will save them cash when taking a trip.
How does operate in practice?
It is, as I stated previously, a very basic process. 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 instantly verifies that you have adequate cash in your account and authorises the deal.
The transaction goes through at either the interbank rate or the Mastercard rate, depending upon the currency. adds a 0.5% fee if you have the free card. If you have one of their paid cards, there are no charges.
You get an automated spend alert via the app, if you pick to install it.
The money is taken from your current account a few days later on.
Here is an example. Without any foreign travel in the journal, 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 set up to leave my HSBC account a couple of days later on:.
However converting pounds was expensive.
A pet peeve of mine is when ATMs forewarn you about the daytime burglary that is practically to take place (frequently in a different language) while not telling you about the inflated currency conversion costs occurring in the background. Don’t get me started. Anyway back to the positives for a bit anyhow.
Luckily over the last few years a handful of fantastic travel debit cards have actually popped onto the scene … and like other great cards promises big cost 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 implies is you can spend money you have in your existing current account with less fret about running out of money and the extra action. That does not mean it is ideal.
In this Currensea evaluation is the great, the bad, the awful and the options, so that you can choose.
While our premium plans have no FX markup, we charge a nominal FX markup on our Necessary Plan of 0.5% per deal, permitting us to make earnings from our Vital Strategy whilst staying much cheaper than other pre-paid cards and high-street debit cards. We likewise charge an FX markup on ATM use over the complimentary amount on all our strategies, complete details can be found on our prices strategies.
We charge an annual subscription charge of , 25 for our Premium Strategy, and , 120 for our Elite Strategy. The membership fee likewise gets rid of all FX markup on transactions.
Whenever you spend with your card we get a little % of the transaction, known as interchange, this comes directly from the merchant and will not be credited you. Currensea Business Card