A new fintech business which I was introduced to earlier this year. Currensea Trustpilot…
It has actually won a couple of awards over current months for what it does (using you an affordable way to invest abroad) but what I like about is that it is simple as hell. This is an advantage.
is, efficiently, a direct debit travel card. You just invest as you would on a typical debit card and the money is taken from your current account– just without the usual 3% cost.
Oh, and is free to make an application for, which likewise helps.
There are also some intriguing travel advantages if you select a paid strategy, but the totally free strategy works fine. You can apply here.
There is a service model in fintech which Curve, Revolut, Monzo and so on have actually all followed:
launch by doing something well, and totally free or cheaper than the competitors
add increasingly more functions which your existing consumers do not really need or desire
include limitations, charges or charges to the function that made individuals get your item in the first place, removing any competitive advantage
is currently still in Stage 1 of this process and will hopefully stay there. Monzo, revolut and curve are already in Stage 3 …
is simple 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 Trustpilot
It is a totally free direct debit card to use abroad and which automatically recharges all purchases to your existing bank account in Sterling, less a little 0.5% cost.
You don’t (yet …) earn any airline miles or points for using it.
Why would I want to get a card?
If you have a credit card offering 0% foreign exchange fees, then you do not need a card, unless you desire complimentary ATM withdrawals. You can stop reading now.
Credit cards which use rewards and charge 0% FX costs are few and far in between. The only ‘miles and points’ alternatives which offer a partial service are the Virgin Atlantic credit cards which have 0% FX fees 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 utilize abroad
you desire an item which enables you to make , 500 of foreign currency ATM withdrawals per month with no costs and just a very little FX mark-up (there is a small cost beyond , 500).
you desire an item for you, your adult kids, parents, partner or anyone else in your life who requires a basic, easy to understand payment card that will conserve them cash when travelling.
How does work in practice?
It is, as I said earlier, a very basic 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 bank account bank immediately confirms 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 on the currency. If you have the complimentary card, includes a 0.5% charge. If you have one of their paid cards, there are no charges.
You get an automated spend notification via the app, if you pick to install it.
The money is taken from your bank account a few days later.
Here is an example. With no foreign travel in the diary, I chose to sprinkle 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:.
But converting pounds was expensive.
A pet peeve of mine is when ATMs forewarn you about the daytime break-in that is practically to happen (frequently in a various language) while not telling you about the outrageous currency conversion charges taking place in the background. Do not get me started. Anyway back to the positives for a bit anyway.
Thankfully recently a handful of excellent travel debit cards have popped onto the scene … and like other great cards assures huge savings (85%) and an excellent app.
I think the best 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 fret about running out of cash and the additional step. That does not mean it is ideal.
In this Currensea evaluation is the good, the bad, the ugly and the alternatives, so that you can choose.
While our premium strategies have no FX markup, we charge a nominal FX markup on our Essential Plan of 0.5% per transaction, permitting us to make earnings from our Important Plan whilst remaining much cheaper than other prepaid cards and high-street debit cards. We also charge an FX markup on ATM usage over the free amount on all our plans, full information can be found on our prices plans.
We charge an annual subscription cost of , 25 for our Premium Strategy, and , 120 for our Elite Plan. The membership fee also eliminates all FX markup on transactions.
Each time you invest with your card we get a small % of the transaction, referred to as interchange, this comes straight from the merchant and will not be credited you. Currensea Trustpilot