Elizabeth Barry is Finder's global fintech editor. She has written about finance for over five years and has been featured in a range of publications and media including Seven News, the ABC, Mamamia, Dynamic Business and Financy. Elizabeth has a Bachelor of Communications and a Master of Creative Writing from the University of Technology Sydney. In 2017, she received the Highly Commended award for Best New Journalist at the IT Journalism Awards. Elizabeth has found writing about innovations in financial services to be her passion (which has surprised no one more than herself).
How does Revolut work?
Revolut is a digital banking app available in Europe, including Ireland. Although Revolut doesn’t have any physical locations, you can choose from one of four tiers and manage your money from the comfort of your own home. With each Revolut account, you’ll get a Euro IBAN account, a UK current account and a bank card. You’ll also be able to spend in more than 150 currencies at the interbank exchange rate and carry out exchanges in 30 currencies fee-free.
When you sign up with Revolut, you have four account options to choose from: Standard, Plus, Premium and Metal.
Key features of Revolut Premium
Revolut Premium is the digital bank’s mid-tier account offering. It comes with all of the features of Revolut Standard as well as additional perks and higher limits.
Here are the main features:
UK and IBAN account
Exchange in 30 fiat currencies for no monthly limit (the limit is €1,000 for Standard)
No fees on ATM withdrawals up to €400 per month (up from €200 per month with Standard)
A range of included insurance covers including overseas medical insurance, delayed baggage and delayed flight insurance and winter sports coverage
Exclusive card designs plus free express delivery
Priority customer support
Disposable virtual cards so you can shop securely online
LoungeKey Pass access plus free lounge passes for you and a friend if your flight is delayed by more than an hour
1 free per month cross-border transfers plus transfers at no cost.
Revolut Premium fees
Keep in mind with following fees which come with Revolut Premium:
Monthly fee of €7.99
An ATM fee of 2% of you go over the monthly withdrawal limit of €400 per month
1 free per month free foreign currency transfers
Pros and cons
Unlimited foreign exchange. There’s no limit on the amount that can be spent, exchanged or transferred at the interbank exchange rate.
Free ATM withdrawals. Withdraw up to €400 fee-free each month (2% fee of withdrawal amount thereafter).
Virtual cards. Add an extra layer of security when you spend online by automatically generating a disposable virtual card.
Revolut Junior. Open accounts for up to 2 children.
No interest on savings. Although Revolut says the feature of interest on savings is in the pipeline, it’s not available in Ireland yet.
No cashback. Cashback on card payments is not available except for Revolut Metal users.
No phone support. Revolut does not offer phone support. A number of Revolut users have also highlighted that its in-app chat support can be slow.
N26 vs Revolut
While both N26 and Revolut are two of the most popular digital banks in Europe, N26 is a lot more similar to a regular bank than Revolut. Simply put, N26 is designed to be a more streamlined and efficient mobile solution than traditional banks, but Revolut leans closer to a new class of financial service providers with its wide range of advanced features.
For N26, you can hold Euros in the app and exchange it for any currency without being charged a fee. Depending on which account you choose, there are some limits for the number of free ATM Euro withdrawals you have each month – but N26 also lets you send, receive and request money from friends instantly and transfer money into 19 currencies using Wise.
Revolut, on the other hand, allows you to hold multiple currencies in your account including cryptocurrencies. You can also set up automatic savings with your family and friends through multiple sub-accounts.
If you travel frequently or transfer a lot of money abroad, this card may be worth considering. The included insurances are especially useful as they’re active constantly, so you won’t need to sign up for a new policy each time.
However, if you aren’t going to use the extra perks available then you may not get enough value from the card for the €7.99 monthly fee.
Revolut scores 4.4 out of 5 based on 93,560+ reviews and is rated Excellent on Trustpilot.
# of reviews
What do customers say
4.4 / 5
“Revolut is the greatest bank innovation in the 21st century financial offering available. I love the transparency, the customer service, the low to non exchange rate, the UX/UI (user experience and user interface) and all the continuous benefits and customer-centric initiatives.” — Dino Jugo
“I use Revolut when travelling abroad. I find the app very simple to use, great for keeping track of spending and you get a great rate of exchange. On the odd occasion, the app has failed when trying to transfer money but that was resolved eventually. The only other downside is you cannot speak to customer service if you have a problem and have to rely on chat.” — Michael Foxler
“When I first downloaded and used the Revolut app and associated services, it was simply brilliant. However, Revolut continue to change the app and have made it increasingly complex and harder to use and now the user experience is rather poor. The services that Revolut offer are still brilliant but please stop ruining the user experience.” — Geoff Wright
*Note: Information provided is based on the reviews and rating on Trustpilot (18 October 2021).
How to apply
You can open an account with Revolut in a matter of minutes from your smartphone. Once you’ve downloaded the app, you will need to register and verify your identity. You can do this by providing a valid form of ID and snapping a selfie.
Once you’re verified, you’ll need to add funds to your account. You will need to wait for your physical card to be delivered but you can use your virtual cards as soon as you have money available in your account.
Revolut does not have a banking licence in Ireland however, pre-Brexit, ROI customers were previously protected under its UK emoney licence from the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority.
In December 2018, Revolut received its banking licence in Lithuania.
As the UK licence became invalid post Brexit, Revolut has temporarily moved financial regulation from the UK to Lithuania so that customers in Ireland are still covered under EU law.
While the digital bank holds a full banking licence from the Bank of Lithuania, only money held by its Revolut customers in Lithuania (up to the value of €100,000) is currently protected by the country’s deposit protection scheme.
Revolut is in the process of applying for a banking licence in Ireland. If approved, this would move regulation from Lithuania to Ireland and protect ROI customers under the Central Bank’s Deposit Guarantee Scheme, however, this licence, as of January 2021, has not been granted. You may decide that your money is safer in a bank closer to home.
That said, as the company is licensed as an institution that deals in electronic money, it still has to hold all client funds in a “segregated account” which is currently held with JP Morgan. Essentially, users’ money is kept separate from Revolut’s finances and Revolut cannot invest it. So, even if something were to happen to Revolut as a company, your money couldn’t be used to pay off its debts.
In terms of Revolut’s smartphone app, it is protected by a password or fingerprint ID. Immediately freeze or unfreeze your card in the app if it’s been misplaced, lost, or stolen. Add further control by turning online, ATM, and contactless payments on or off.
There are subscription fees with the Premium and Metal accounts and Revolut also earns a nominal fee paid to it by merchants every time you spend on your Revolut Card. There are also other fees including excess ATM withdrawals, card delivery fees, and exchange rate fees under some circumstances. Business customers also pay fees depending on their top-up limits.
Yes. Revolut acts like a traditional current account. It is accepted in all retail outlets and venues that accept Mastercard prepaid cards.
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