Monese alternatives: A list of alternative banks and apps
Discover the alternatives to Monese and how they compare to this mobile bank account.
Top alternative banks and apps to Monese
The main alternatives to Monese are as follows:
- Monzo: Good for opening an account
- Revolut: Good for budgeting
- Starling Bank: Good for travelling
- Chase: Good for cashback
- Cashplus: Good for improving your credit score
- Curve: Good for connecting apps
Monese is a mobile bank account which you can open within minutes. You don’t need to provide proof of address, pass a credit check or provide any documents other than a selfie and some photo ID.
Your Monese debit card includes generous allowances for spending and withdrawing money abroad. It doubles up as a budgeting app too, providing spending overviews, savings goals, transaction details and downloadable statements.
You can open a personal or business account if you live in one of the 31 countries in the European Economic Area.
But is it the best mobile-only bank account out there? This guide presents five alternatives to Monese and explains how they compare.
Monzo is a popular online bank account with almost 6 million customers.
Once again, all account management is completed through the Monzo app. There are no charges whatsoever for spending overseas. You can also withdraw money at foreign ATMs with no charge up to a set limit.
Monzo offers an overdraft of up to £2,000 and personal loans of up to £25,000.
The app has plenty of budgeting features too.
Monzo has 2 paid-for accounts, as well as its free account. The Plus account costs £5 a month and lets you earn interest on your account balance, offers fee-free withdrawals abroad up to £400 a month, and a credit score tracker. The Premium account costs £15 a month and offers phone insurance, travel insurance, discounted airport lounge access, interest on balances and fee-free withdrawals abroad up to £600 a month.
The Revolut digital banking app has more than 25 million customers.
With Revolut, you’ll have access to free international money transfers and free global spending.
The sign-up process is just as quick and easy as signing up at Monese. The Revolut app has some useful budgeting features too.
You can choose from the free standard account, or upgrade to a paid-for account. The Plus account costs £2.99 a month and the Premium account costs £6.99 a month and comes with overseas medical insurance, plus a bigger fee-free limit for ATM withdrawals (up to £400 per month.) The Metal account costs £12.99 a month and offers even more benefits, including delayed baggage and flight insurance plus winter sports cover.The Ultra account costs £45 and includes benefits such as a platinum-plated card, cashback oppurtunities on transactions, as well as unlimited lounge access.
For all intents and purposes, Starling Bank is very similar to Monese (as well as Monzo and Revolut).
It’s quick and easy to set up, and useful for those spending, sending or withdrawing money abroad.
Starling Bank customers get a euro current account, as well as one for pounds sterling.
It also has a higher fee-free international ATM withdrawal limit (£300 a day).
Opening an account with either Monese or Chase could be a sensible choice if you’re looking to spend on your debit card abroad. Both accounts offer fee-free foreign transactions, although depending on the plan you choose, Monese might impose set limits each month.
Both Monese and Chase also offer a round-ups feature that lets you round up spare change from a transaction and transfer it to a savings pot. The difference is that Chase pays interest on this, while Monese does not. Chase also pays interest on the balance you hold in your current account and customers can earn cashback as they spend for the first year. Monese, on the other hand, lets customers easily transfer money in foreign currencies. You can also open both UK and European accounts with Monese, while Chase only offers a UK account.
Finally, Chase offers FSCS protection, while Monese does not.
Cashplus is another digital only bank account. It offers all the features of a standard current account, including a card, bank payments, ATM withdrawals and direct debits. It also offers an overdraft of up to £2,000.
You can even add a US dollar or Euro card to your account and pay no foreign transaction fees whilst abroad. You can withdraw up to $500/€500 a day.
Cashplus also offers a Creditbuilder add-on which can help those with poor credit improve their credit scores. If you opt for this, you are lent the equivalent of 12 months in account fees. Your payments are then treated as loan repayments and reported to credit reference agencies. You’ll pay £5.95 a month for Activeplus. As long as you keep up with your repayments, your credit score will improve.
Curve works slightly differently as it enables you to connect all of your separate debit and credit cards to your Curve account and then spend from any of them using just one card.
You can use your card abroad and there are no foreign exchange fees on weekdays. You’ll also be able to earn cashback and choose from 4 different plans, one of which is free. Curve X costs £4.99 a month, Curve Black costs £9.99 a month and Curve Metal costs £14.99 a month. Curve Black and Metal offer worldwide travel insurance.
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