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Charlie Barton is a publisher at Finder. He specialises in banking and investments products, including banking apps, current accounts, share-dealing platforms and stocks and shares ISAs. Charlie has a first-class degree from the London School of Economics, and in his spare time enjoys long walks on the beach.
What is Revolut?
Revolut is a digital challenger bank that aims to offer hassle-free global spending. It prides itself on being a “world beyond banking, working for those who never stop moving forwards.”
Revolut increased revenue by almost 5 times between Jan 1 and Dec 31, 2017.
Users tripled, from 450,000 to 1.3 million in the same period — and they’re now approaching to 3 million.
Monthly transaction volumes jumped from $200 million to $1.5 billion.
How does Revolut work?
Once the app is available in the US, you’ll be able to sign up and request a contactless Revolut card. Customers have complete control over their card, with the ability to freeze and unfreeze it at the touch of a button — a feature that provides added security and convenience.
The app is simple, easy to navigate and streamlined. Features include:
Accounts. View the balance and transaction history on your accounts and set up monthly budgets in the app.
Payments. The app enables you to transfer money to 24 currencies at the interbank exchange rate (the same rates banks give each other). You will have to pay a 0.5% fee for anything above $6,500 a month, and the app may mark up sending on weekends or to certain currencies.
Pay friends. Pay friends with ease or use the split bill feature to divide a group spend.
Analytics. View your spending habits categorized by type of transaction, merchant or country.
Manage your cards. Freeze a card if you lose it, unfreeze your card if you find it, set monthly spending limits and enable additional security.
Using Revolut abroad
Revolut’s most unique and appealing feature is that it enables you to spend at the interbank rate in 150 currencies. You may be charged a fee of 0.5% for payments above a certain unspecified amount, along with a flat markup on weekends and in certain currencies.
You’ll also need to pay a 2% fee on international ATM withdrawals over $300 a month.
Is Revolut safe?
Revolut has partnered with Metropolitan Commercial Bank to hold client funds, giving customers standard FDIC insurance on balances up to $250,000, and debit card transactions are protected by Visa, Mastercard or Maestro card processing rules.
The smartphone app 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.
Revolut also has location-based security — if your card is used in a different location than your phone, you’ll get a notification and the purchase can be blocked.
What is Revolut cryptocurrency?
When it comes to cryptocurrencies, Revolut stands out from its competitors. In 2017, it became the first challenger bank to let customers buy cryptos in its app. UK users are currently able to buy and sell five major cryptocurrencies and track market fluctuations in the app, but it’s too early to tell if US users can expect the same features.
Pros and cons of Revolut
Spend abroad in 150 currencies with no or low fees.
24-hour customer service.
User-friendly app with control over accounts and cards.
Transfer money at the interbank exchange rate.
Instant top ups from your main account.
At weekends, when the markets are closed, Revolut applies an unspecified markup to foreign currency transactions.
Some foreign currencies have an additional unspecified markup.
Foreign transfers over $6,500 a month come with a 0.5% fee.
No branches, which can put off those who prefer face-to-face customer service.
If cryptocurrency isn’t what you’re in for, or you just want to get a good look at what your other options are, compare your mobile banking options before joining the waitlist.
How does Revolut compare to other transfer services?
Revolut‘s gained a lot of buzz over the last couple of years, and it’s easy to see why. Its travel-friendly features, built-in cryptocurrency exchange and elegant app make it stand out from the crowd. It’s just starting to invite waitlisted customers in the US, so you can add your name if you’re eager to get your hands on it.
Frequently asked questions
Premium subscribers pay a monthly fee, and Revolut also earns money from merchants every time you spend on your Revolut Card. It also makes money on ATM withdrawal fees, card delivery fees and exchange rates. Business customers also pay fees depending on their top up limits.
Yes, Revolut is accepted in all retail outlets that accept prepaid Mastercards.
Yes, Revolut is a great option for travelling to multiple countries. You can top up your card in your home currency (eg. GBP) and then let Revolut is geared toward travelers and lets you spend in 150 currencies.
No, Revolut will automatically exchange your money to the local currency of wherever you use your card.
Revolut currently only supports countries in the European Economic Area and Switzerland. So, you can only get a card if you’re a legal resident from one of the following countries: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Republic of Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom for now. But they are launching across the world soon, so stay tuned.
Yes, you need the app installed on your Android or iOS device.
Revolut supports over 150 currencies, so you can travel and use the card around the globe. Europe, South America, North America, Africa, Asia and Australasia are all covered to some extent. Check Revolut’s website to make confirm specific country coverage.
No, unfortunately Revolut is not currently able to be linked with PayPal.
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