A brand-new fintech company which I was presented to previously this year. Currensea Silver Card…
It has won a few awards over recent months for what it does (offering you a low-cost method to spend abroad) but what I like about is that it is easy as hell. This is a good thing.
is, successfully, a direct debit travel card. You merely spend as you would on a normal debit card and the money is taken from your existing account– just without the typical 3% cost.
Oh, and is free to make an application for, which likewise helps.
There are also some intriguing travel benefits if you pick a paid strategy, but the free plan works fine. You can use here.
There is a company design in fintech which Curve, Revolut, Monzo etc have actually all followed:
launch by doing one thing well, and free of charge or less expensive than the competitors
add a growing number of features which your existing clients don’t actually desire or require
add restrictions, charges or costs to the function that made individuals get your product in the first place, removing any competitive advantage
is currently still in Stage 1 of this process and will hopefully remain there. Monzo, revolut and curve are currently in Phase 3 …
is basic 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 Silver Card
It is a totally free direct debit card to utilize abroad and which instantly recharges all purchases to your existing bank account in Sterling, less a little 0.5% cost.
You do not (yet …) earn any airline miles or points for using it.
Why would I want to get a card?
If you have a charge card offering 0% foreign exchange costs, then you don’t require a card, unless you desire totally free ATM withdrawals. You can stop reading now.
Credit cards which provide benefits and charge 0% FX fees are few and far between. The only ‘points and miles’ alternatives which provide a partial solution are the Virgin Atlantic credit cards which have 0% FX fees in the Euro zone.
IS perhaps for you if:
you do not have a credit card offering 0% FX fees and do not want to impact your credit report by getting another charge card specifically to utilize abroad
you want a product which permits you to make , 500 of foreign currency ATM withdrawals monthly without any costs and only a minimal FX mark-up (there is a little fee beyond , 500).
you want an item for you, your adult kids, moms and dads, partner or anybody else in your life who requires a simple, easy to understand payment card that will save them money when travelling.
How does operate in practice?
It is, as I said previously, a really simple procedure. 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 current account bank instantly verifies that you have adequate 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. adds a 0.5% charge if you have the free card. There are no costs if you have among their paid cards.
You get an automated spend alert through the app, if you pick to install it.
The money is drawn from your bank account a few days later on.
Here is an example. With no 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 shows , 4.33 scheduled to leave my HSBC account a couple of days later:.
Transforming pounds was costly.
A pet peeve of mine is when ATMs forewarn you about the daytime break-in that is almost to happen (often in a different language) while not telling you about the expensive currency conversion costs happening in the background. Do not get me started. Anyway back to the positives for a bit anyway.
Luckily in the last few years a handful of excellent travel debit cards have popped onto the scene … and like other fantastic cards assures big cost savings (85%) and a fantastic app.
However I think the very best bit might be what no other card does: links to your existing high street bank account.
What this implies is you can spend cash you have in your existing current account with less stress over lacking cash and the extra action. That does not imply it is best.
In this Currensea evaluation is the excellent, the bad, the unsightly and the options, so that you can decide.
While our premium strategies have no FX markup, we charge a small FX markup on our Vital Strategy of 0.5% per deal, allowing us to make income from our Essential Strategy whilst remaining much cheaper than other prepaid 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 pricing plans.
We charge a yearly membership fee of , 25 for our Premium Strategy, and , 120 for our Elite Strategy. The subscription cost also gets rid of all FX markup on deals.
Each time you invest with your card we receive a small % of the transaction, called interchange, this comes directly from the merchant and won’t be charged to you. Currensea Silver Card