A new fintech company which I was presented to earlier this year. Currensea Thailand…
It has won a couple of awards over recent months for what it does (providing you a low-priced way to spend 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. It is a Mastercard which sits between you and your existing current account. There is nothing to top-up or prepay. You merely spend as you would on a normal debit card and the money is taken from your current account– just without the usual 3% cost.
Oh, and is free to apply for, which also assists.
There are also some interesting travel advantages if you pick a paid plan, however the complimentary strategy works fine. You can use here.
There is an organization design in fintech which Curve, Revolut, Monzo etc have all followed:
launch by doing one thing well, and for free or more affordable than the competition
include increasingly more functions which your existing consumers do not actually desire or require
add charges, costs or limitations to the feature that made people get your product in the first place, getting rid of any competitive advantage
is currently still in Stage 1 of this procedure and will hopefully stay there. Revolut, monzo and curve are currently 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 Thailand
It is a free direct debit card to utilize abroad and which automatically recharges all purchases to your existing current account in Sterling, less a little 0.5% fee.
You don’t (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% foreign exchange fees, then you do not need a card, unless you want free ATM withdrawals. You can stop checking out now.
However, credit cards which use rewards and charge 0% FX costs are scarce. The only ‘miles and points’ choices which offer a partial option are the Virgin Atlantic credit cards which have 0% FX costs in the Euro zone.
IS perhaps for you if:
you do not have a credit card offering 0% FX charges and do not wish to affect your credit report by getting another credit card specifically to use abroad
you desire a product which allows you to make , 500 of foreign currency ATM withdrawals each month without any charges and only a very little FX mark-up (there is a little cost beyond , 500).
you want an item for you, your adult kids, moms and dads, partner or anyone else in your life who needs a basic, easy to understand payment card that will save them cash when travelling.
How does work in practice?
It is, as I stated previously, a really basic process. You use your Currensea card in the same way as your existing debit card.
You make your purchase in regional currency (any currency, worldwide).
Your bank account bank automatically validates that you have sufficient money in your account and authorises the deal.
The deal goes through at either the interbank rate or the Mastercard rate, depending upon the currency. includes a 0.5% fee if you have the totally free card. If you have one of their paid cards, there are no costs.
You get an automatic invest alert via 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. Without any foreign travel in the diary, I decided to sprinkle out and purchase 1,000 MeliaRewards points for EUR5.
This is what you see in the Currensea app, which shows , 4.33 scheduled to leave my HSBC account a few days later on:.
Transforming pounds was costly.
A pet peeve of mine is when ATMs forewarn you about the daylight break-in that is practically to happen (typically in a different language) while not telling you about the inflated currency conversion fees occurring in the background. Don’t get me began. Anyway back to the positives for a bit anyhow.
In recent years a handful of excellent travel debit cards have actually popped onto the scene … and like other great cards Currensea guarantees big cost savings (85%) and a terrific 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 invest cash you have in your existing current account with less fret about running out of cash and the additional step. However that does not indicate it is best.
In this Currensea evaluation is the good, the bad, the unsightly and the alternatives, so that you can choose.
While our premium strategies have no FX markup, we charge a small FX markup on our Essential Strategy of 0.5% per deal, allowing us to make profits from our Vital Strategy whilst remaining much cheaper than other pre-paid cards and high-street debit cards. We likewise charge an FX markup on ATM usage over the totally free amount on all our strategies, full information can be discovered on our prices strategies.
We charge an annual subscription charge of , 25 for our Premium Strategy, and , 120 for our Elite Plan. The subscription fee also gets rid of all FX markup on deals.
Whenever you invest with your card we receive a small % of the deal, known as interchange, this comes directly from the merchant and will not be charged to you. Currensea Thailand