A brand-new fintech company which I was presented to previously this year. Currensea Free Card…
It has won a couple of awards over recent months for what it does (using you an affordable method to invest abroad) however what I like about is that it is basic as hell. This is a good idea.
is, effectively, 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 merely invest as you would on a typical debit card and the cash is drawn from your current account– just without the usual 3% fee.
Oh, and is free to request, which also helps.
There are likewise some interesting travel benefits if you select a paid plan, but the complimentary strategy works fine. You can apply here.
There is a company model in fintech which Curve, Revolut, Monzo and so on have all followed:
launch by doing one thing well, and free of charge or less expensive than the competitors
include a growing number of functions which your existing consumers do not truly desire or require
include fees, charges or constraints to the feature that made people get your product in the first place, eliminating any competitive advantage
is currently still in Stage 1 of this procedure and will hopefully remain there. Revolut, monzo and curve are currently in Phase 3 …
is easy 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 Free Card
It is a complimentary direct debit card to use abroad and which instantly charges all purchases to your existing current account in Sterling, less a little 0.5% cost.
You don’t (yet …) earn 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 costs, then you do not need a card, unless you want free ATM withdrawals. You can stop checking out now.
However, charge card which use benefits and charge 0% FX costs are scarce. The only ‘miles and points’ options which provide a partial solution 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 credit card offering 0% FX fees and do not wish to impact your credit report by getting another credit card particularly to use abroad
you want an item which allows you to make , 500 of foreign currency ATM withdrawals monthly with no costs and only a very little FX mark-up (there is a little cost beyond , 500).
you desire an item for you, your adult kids, parents, partner or anyone else in your life who needs an easy, easy to understand payment card that will conserve them cash when taking a trip.
How does operate in practice?
It is, as I said earlier, an extremely simple process. You utilize your Currensea card in the same way as your existing debit card.
You make your purchase in regional currency (any currency, globally).
Your current account bank immediately validates that you have enough cash in your account and authorises the deal.
The deal goes through at either the interbank rate or the Mastercard rate, depending upon the currency. If you have the totally free card, includes a 0.5% cost. If you have one of their paid cards, there are no charges.
You get an automatic spend notification through the app, if you pick to install it.
The cash is drawn from your bank account a few days later.
Here is an example. With no foreign travel in the diary, I chose to splash 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 few days later on:.
However converting pounds was expensive.
A pet peeve of mine is when ATMs forewarn you about the daylight break-in that is just about to occur (frequently in a different language) while not telling you about the exorbitant currency conversion fees happening in the background. Don’t get me began. Anyhow back to the positives for a bit anyhow.
In recent years a handful of great travel debit cards have popped onto the scene … and like other great cards Currensea assures huge savings (85%) and a great app.
I think the finest bit may 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 bank account with less worry about lacking cash and the extra step. But that does not mean it is ideal.
In this Currensea review is the excellent, the bad, the awful and the alternatives, so that you can choose.
While our premium plans have no FX markup, we charge a small FX markup on our Essential Plan of 0.5% per deal, permitting us to make profits from our Necessary Strategy whilst remaining more affordable than other pre-paid cards and high-street debit cards. We also charge an FX markup on ATM use over the totally free quantity on all our strategies, full information can be found on our rates plans.
We charge a yearly subscription charge of , 25 for our Premium Strategy, and , 120 for our Elite Strategy. The subscription fee likewise gets rid of all FX markup on transactions.
Every time you invest with your card we receive a little % of the transaction, known as interchange, this comes directly from the merchant and won’t be credited you. Currensea Free Card