A new fintech company which I was presented to previously this year. Currensea Vs Starling…
It has actually won a couple of awards over recent months for what it does (using you a low-cost way to invest abroad) however what I like about is that it is basic as hell. This is a good idea.
is, successfully, 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 merely invest as you would on a regular debit card and the money is taken from your bank account– simply without the normal 3% cost.
Oh, and is free to request, which also assists.
There are also some intriguing travel benefits if you select a paid plan, however the totally free plan works fine. You can use here.
There is a service design in fintech which Curve, Revolut, Monzo and so on have actually all followed:
launch by doing one thing well, and free of charge or less expensive than the competition
include increasingly more functions which your existing clients do not really desire or need
add costs, charges or limitations to the function that made people get your product in the first place, getting rid of any competitive advantage
is presently still in Phase 1 of this process and will ideally remain there. Monzo, revolut and curve are already in Stage 3 …
is easy enough that it passes my ‘Can you discuss it to your mate in the club in 30 seconds?’ test:
What countries can I use Currensea? Currensea Vs Starling
It is a complimentary direct debit card to use abroad and which automatically charges all purchases to your existing bank account in Sterling, less a little 0.5% charge.
You don’t (yet …) earn any airline miles or points for utilizing it.
Why would I wish to get a card?
If you have a charge card offering 0% forex fees, then you do not need a card, unless you desire complimentary ATM withdrawals. You can stop reading now.
However, credit cards which offer benefits and charge 0% FX fees are rare. The only ‘points and miles’ alternatives which offer a partial service are the Virgin Atlantic credit cards which have 0% FX costs in the Euro zone.
IS perhaps for you if:
you don’t have a credit card offering 0% FX charges and do not wish to impact your credit report by getting another credit card particularly to use abroad
you desire an item which permits you to make , 500 of foreign currency ATM withdrawals each month with no charges and just a very little FX mark-up (there is a small fee beyond , 500).
you desire 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 travelling.
How does work in practice?
It is, as I stated earlier, a really simple procedure. You use your Currensea card in the same way as your existing debit card.
You make your purchase in local currency (any currency, internationally).
Your current account bank immediately validates that you have adequate cash in your account and authorises the transaction.
The transaction goes through at either the interbank rate or the Mastercard rate, depending upon the currency. If you have the complimentary card, includes a 0.5% fee. There are no charges if you have among their paid cards.
You get an automated invest notice by means of the app, if you choose to install it.
The cash is taken from your bank account a couple of days later on.
Here is an example. Without any foreign travel in the diary, I chose to sprinkle out and buy 1,000 MeliaRewards points for EUR5.
This is what you see in the Currensea app, which reveals , 4.33 set up to leave my HSBC account a couple of days later on:.
Converting pounds was pricey.
A pet peeve of mine is when ATMs forewarn you about the daytime robbery that is practically to take place (typically in a different language) while not telling you about the expensive currency conversion costs happening in the background. Don’t get me started. Anyhow back to the positives for a bit anyhow.
Fortunately recently a handful of excellent travel debit cards have popped onto the scene … and like other terrific cards promises huge savings (85%) and a terrific app.
I believe the finest bit may be what no other card does: connects to your existing high street bank account.
What this indicates is you can invest cash you have in your existing current account with less fret about running out of cash and the extra step. But that does not suggest it is ideal.
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 nominal FX markup on our Important Plan of 0.5% per transaction, allowing us to make profits from our Important 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 totally free quantity on all our plans, full details can be found on our prices plans.
We charge a yearly membership charge of , 25 for our Premium Strategy, and , 120 for our Elite Plan. The subscription cost likewise gets rid of all FX markup on transactions.
Whenever you invest with your card we get a little % of the deal, known as interchange, this comes straight from the merchant and won’t be charged to you. Currensea Vs Starling