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Monzo Singapore Review

Meet the poster child of digital banking.

Monzo is a digital bank with over 4 million users across the UK and soon, the US. It offers various plans to help users manage finances conveniently online. This review covers what you need to know about using Monzo in Singapore.

Is Monzo available in Singapore?

At the time of writing (December 2020), Monzo hasn’t launched in Singapore so you’ll not be able to sign up for an account. You can join a waitlist on the app’s site until it rolls out the details of its launch here.

However, you can use Monzo in Singapore if you already have an account. Current Monzo users travelling to Singapore will continue to find it reliable and accessible. Monzo cards are well-accepted island-wide and ATM withdrawals are free. Monzo can also be used to pay for a temporary EZ-link public transport card, which is used on buses, trains and select taxi services.

What is Monzo?

Monzo is a favoured digital bank launched in 2017 in the UK. Focused on young professionals, it advertises the ability to access your money through a smartly designed smartphone app without the need for physical branches⁠. Help is available through the app’s chat feature, by phone or by email.

How does Monzo work?

In the UK, Monzo works a lot like a regular checking account. Each account comes with a bright coral Monzo Mastercard. The card is controlled via the app, which allows for person-to-person payments and instant notifications after transactions.

To help you see where your money goes each month, transactions are broken down into 12 categories:

  • Transportation
  • Groceries
  • Eating out
  • Cash
  • Shopping
  • General
  • Entertainment
  • Bills
  • Holidays
  • Expenses
  • Personal care
  • Family

What are the benefits of a Monzo account?

  • Save. Create Savings Pots to earn up to 1.02% interest, meeting your short-term savings goals
  • Make payments. Set up Direct Debits to send money to any other UK bank accounts instantly
  • Use Apple Pay and Google Pay. Make payments on the go with Apple Pay or Google Pay
  • Stay organised. Manage your spending, savings and bills through the Monzo app.
  • Spend globally. Make international payments. Spend in any country that accepts a Mastercard with no fees added to current exchange rates.
  • Split the bill. Use Monzo’s Shared Tabs feature to split bills easily.
  • Send money abroad. Transfer money to loved ones using 1 of 16 different currencies offered by Monzo

How do Monzo accounts work?

Monzo currently offers four accounts: a standard Monzo current account, a premium Monzo business account, Monzo joint accounts, as well as Monzo 16-17 accounts. Here’s a quick summary of what each account stands to offer.

The following information is accurate as of 9 December 2020 and subject to change.

Monzo accountsFeatures and benefits
Current account

(Free, no minimum term)

  • Free UK current account:
    • Save and receive money
    • Loans
    • Overdraft facility
  • Fee-free UK bank transfers via direct debit system
  • Create ‘Pots’ to set aside money for various saving goals
  • Apple and Google Pay compatible
  • Fee-free overseas withdrawals, up to £200
  • Instant notifications
Plus account

(£5 per month, 3 months minimum)

  • Exclusive holographic card
  • Manage other bank accounts and credit cards within the same app
  • Fee-free overseas withdrawals, up to £400
  • 1% interest on your balance and regular Pots
  • Up to 5 digital virtual cards
  • Grow your savings with advanced roundups
  • Divide payments into multiple, custom categories
  • Export records of past transactions automatically
  • One free cash deposits at PayPoints across the UK
  • Enjoy exclusive offers with partner merchants
  • Credit score tracker
Premium account

(£15 per month, 6 months minimum)

  • Exclusive metal card
  • All features from Monzo Current and Plus accounts
  • Fee-free withdrawals abroad, up to £600
  • 1.5% interest on your balance and regular Pots
  • Phone and worldwide travel insurance
  • Up to 5 free cash deposits at PayPoints across the UK
  • Discounted airport lounge access
Business account

(No fees for Business Lite, £5 per month for Business Pro)

  • Business debit card
  • Apple and Google Pay compatible
  • Free, instant UK bank transfers
  • Set aside money with Pots
  • Compatible with accountancy tools like Xero and FreeAgent
  • Budget and manage spending with team members
  • Manage scheduled payments
  • Cash and cheque payments
  • Digital receipts
  • Instant notifications
  • Advanced security features
  • 24/7 customer support
  • Business Pro features:
    • Tax pots
    • Integrated accounting
    • Multi-user access (Ltds only)
    • Invoicing
    • Exclusive offers
    • 6 months Xero free (optional)
Joint account
  • Link accounts of current Monzo users
  • Simple and efficient set-up process
  • Shared dashboard and expense tracker
  • Separate joint account card with different designs
  • Set separate spending budgets
16 – 17 Accounts
  • Contactless debit card
  • Free UK current account:
    • Save and receive money
    • Set up direct debits
    • Set up standing orders
  • Same features as Monzo Current account
  • Apple and Google Pay compatible
  • Smart budgeting tools
  • No overdraft facility
  • Blocked spending on restricted categories (e.g gambling)
  • Instant spend notifications

Compare Monzo against other digital banks in Singapore

Name Product Monthly fee Card delivery Supported currencies Mobile payments
Canvas Pre-paid Visa Card and App
S$2.99
Up to 8 business days

1

Apple Pay, Google Pay

Finder special offer of 30 days free trial and $10 credit on each kid’s card upon activation.

Manages your kids’ pocket money and domestic helpers’ access to household expenses digitally.
Wirex Standard
S$0
5 business days

12

Apple Pay, Google Pay

Get a Welcome Bonus of $15 USD in WXT when you sign up with Wirex through Finder.

A multi-currency card that supports over 150 currencies, including more than 8 cryptocurrencies at interbank rates.
YouTrip
S$0
5-8 business days

10

Apple Pay, Google Pay

Use promo code FINDER5 to earn $5 on signup.

A prepaid Mastercard with no monthly fees, contactless payment features and fee-free transactions in over 150 currencies. NOTE: Promo code valid for new signups and Singapore residents only.
Revolut Standard
S$0
Up to 9 working days

21

Apple Pay, Google Pay

Get 20% cashback on all eligible public transport expenses in Singapore when you pay with Revolut. Valid until 31 December 2021.

Enjoy no monthly fees, competitive currency conversion rates, and spend in over 150 currencies with Revolut’s Standard card.
Wise Multicurrency Account
S$0
2 - 3 business days

8

Apple Pay, Google Pay
Wise (formerly TransferWise) is an international account for over 50 currencies, with instant, super-cheap money transfer, a card to spend in any currency, bank details to get paid in 30 different countries and multi-currency direct debits.
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Compare up to 4 providers

Guide on digital banks in Singapore

Using Monzo abroad

Monzo comes with a range of travel-focus features, including:

  • Availability for overseas usage. Unlike most of the banks in Singapore, you don’t need to inform or activate your Monzo card for overseas use.
  • Worldwide acceptance. You may use the Monzo card at any online or retail merchants around the world as long as they accept Mastercard.
  • Mastercard’s exchange rates. All currency conversions will be based on Mastercard’s exchange rate with no added margin
  • Free ATM withdrawals. Enjoy fee-free withdrawals from ATMs in the European Economic Area (EEA). For other countries, you can take out £200 for free every 30 days. Subsequently, you’ll face a charge of 3% so do take note of the amount you’re withdrawing.
  • Travel reports. Be informed about the current exchange rate and receive tips on travelling with your Monzo card in the country you’re in. The app also automatically categorise transactions as holidays or expenses while you’re abroad.
  • Card freeze options. If you lose your card while traveling, freeze its use through the app. Simply defrost your card if it turns up safe.

Monzo fees and limits

For current Monzo users, all Monzo accounts come with complete functionality at no monthly fees.

Withdrawals from ATMs outside the European Economic Area (EEA) are free up to £200 every 30 days. After that, you’ll start paying a fee equal to 3% of your transaction until the 30-day period turns over.

Is it safe to use Monzo?

Monzo is a regulated bank in the UK. As a result, the money in your account is protected up to £85,000 by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS).

Monzo is also equipped with technological safeguards such as 3D Secure technology, fraud detection systems and PIN authentication.

Pros and cons of Monzo

Pros

  • Fully digital bank backed by a solid reputation in the UK
  • Divide your account into “pots” so you can easily manage and save money.
  • Instantly move money between friends without a third-party app.
  • Competitive foreign exchange rates with no fees.
  • Quick money transfers between Monzo accounts

Cons

  • Lack of physical bank branches and in-person support
  • 3% charge for overseas ATM withdrawals that exceed £200 a month
  • Not launched in Singapore yet, so Singapore users will not be able to sign up
  • No reward programme

These pros and cons apply to Monzo as it is now. However, if it offers a Singapore-specific package in the future, we’ll be sure to include any updates.

Frequently asked questions

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