If you’re heading abroad, you’ll need to make sure that you’re spending your money wisely. While the things you’re likely to spend money on can’t always be controlled, the way in which you spend it can be. That’s where WeSwap comes into play. It’s a prepaid Mastercard that’s designed specifically for travel.
What is WeSwap?
WeSwap’s Mastercard allows travellers to spend money anywhere in the world, swapping Sterling for Euros, Dollars and 15 other currencies. As well as being able to swap money into any currency, users’ home WeSwap matches travellers heading in opposite directions and directly swaps their travel money. Based in London, WeSwap was fully launched in 2015 and currently supports 18 different currencies.
Read on to find out more about what WeSwap has to offer, and whether you should get your travel money through them before you go abroad.
How does WeSwap work?
WeSwap simply swaps your currency directly with other travellers. Here’s a step by step guide to how the process works:
- Load. Each customer gets a WeSwap card. You load it up securely with £s using your debit card or online account (you don’t need one).
- Spend (& enjoy!). Once this has been done, your card will now have some new currency on it. The card is then ready to use worldwide wherever MasterCard is accepted.
What currencies can I order through WeSwap?
Here’s a list of some of the main currencies that are available with WeSwap:
- Euro (EUR)
- Norwegian Krone (NOK)
- Hong Kong Dollar (HKD)
- Japanese Yen (JPY)
- Swedish Krona (SEK)
- Swiss Franc (CHF)
- Hungarian Forint (HUF)
- Polish Zloty (PLN)
- Singapore Dollar (SGD)
- New Israeli Sheqel (ILS)
- Turkish Lira (TRY)
- South African Rand (ZAR)
- New Zealand Dollar (NZD)
- Canadian Dollar (CAD)
- Croatian Kuna (HRK)
- US Dollar (USD)
- Danish Krone (DKK)
- Andorra (AND)
- Austria (AUT)
- Belgium (BEL)
- Cyprus (CYP)
- Estonia (EST)
- Finland (FIN)
- France (FRA)
- French Guiana (GUF)
- French Southern Territories (ATF)
- Germany (DEU)
- Greece (GRC)
- Guadeloupe (GLP)
- Ireland (IRL)
- Italy (ITA)
- Latvia (LVA)
- Lithuania (LTU)
- Luxembourg (LUX)
- Malta (MLT)
- Martinique (MTQ)
- Mayotte (MYT)
- Monaco (MCO)
- Montenegro (MNE)
- Netherlands (NLD)
- Portugal (PRT)
- Reunion (REU)
- Saint Barthelemy (BLM)
- Saint Martin (MAF)
- Saint Pierre And Miquelon (SPM)
- San Marino (SMR)
- Slovakia (SVK)
- Slovenia (SVN)
- Spain (ESP)
- Aland Islands (ALA)
- Bouvet Island (BVT)
- Norway (NOR)
- Svalbard And Jan Mayen (SJM)
- Hong Kong (HKG)
- Japan (JPN)
- Sweden (SWE)
- Liechtenstein (LIE)
- Switzerland (CHE)
- Hungary (HUN)
- Poland (POL)
- Singapore (SGP)
- Lesotho (LSO)
- Israel (ISR)
- Turkey (TUR)
- Namibia (NAM)
- South Africa (ZAF)
- Cook Islands (COK)
- New Zealand (NZL)
- Niue (NIU)
- Pitcairn (PCN)
- Tokelau (TKL)
- Canada (CAN)
- Croatia (HRV)
- American Samoa (ASM)
- Bonaire (BES)
- British Indian Ocean Territory (IOT)
- Ecuador (ECU)
- El Salvador (SLV)
- Guam (GUM)
- Haiti (HTI)
- Marshall Islands (MHL)
- Micronesia (FSM)
- Northern Mariana Islands (MNP)
- Palau (PLW)
- Panama (PAN)
- Puerto Rico (PRI)
- Timor-Leste (TLS)
- Turks And Caicos Islands (TCA)
- United States (USA)
- British Virgin Islands (VGB)
- U.S. Virgin Islands (VIR)
- Denmark (DNK)
- Faroe Islands (FRO)
- Greenland (GRL)
How much can I transfer with WeSwap?
For your security as well as WeSwap’s, there are some limits on how much you can load onto your WeSwap card – and how much you can carry on your card at once.
Minimum you can load: £50 or equivalent in other currencies.
Maximum single load: £3,000 or equivalent or equivalent in other currencies.
Maximum you can load in one year: £12,000 or equivalent in other currencies. This means that you cannot load more than £12,000 during any given year.
Maximum you can carry at one time: £6,000 across all currencies. This means that you cannot have more than £6,000 on your WeSwap card at any time.
Remember, it’s free to load your WeSwap card.
How soon can I get my money?
Perhaps the biggest downfall of WeSwap is the fact that you have to wait for your card to arrive. This takes 3-5 days.
WeSwap can be a great option if you’re planning a trip in advance, but less convenient for those who forget their travel money and need a quick solution just before they jet off.
How safe is my money?
Money is uploaded securely through your bank’s online payment services – so this aspect of the transfer is totally secure.
Are there any fees I might have to pay?
It’s completely free to use your WeSwap MasterCard online or at point of sale.
Where you should expect to incur fees is at ATMs. You are able to withdraw twice a day for free if the withdrawal is £200 or more. For smaller withdrawals, you will incur a charge of £1.50 per withdrawal.
It’s a good idea to withdraw larger amounts less often. (This is a general rule of thumb for all travel money providers!)
It’s always free to use your card to spend at shops and restaurants, so it’s recommended that you pay with your WeSwap card rather than with cash whenever possible.
Here’s a table of WeSwap’s fees:
|Swap Speed||Fee Charged|
|3 Day Swap||1.3%|
|7 Day Swap||1.0%|
*For all users who registered prior to 08/05/2017, the immediate swap fee is 1.4%
And here’s a table of the other additional fees WeSwap may charge:
|Additional Fees||Fee Charged|
* This fee is chargeable under certain rare circumstances (if you request an additional service from us which we normally do not provide), but we will always notify you in advance if and when the fee applies.
** Monthly fee applied after 12 consecutive months of inactivity.
*** Annual fee for residents of the Republic of Ireland only. This is deducted from the balance on the account, or from the first load of the year.
What’s the alternative?
A strong alternative to getting your travel money with WeSwap is to do so with a digital banking app. Leaders in this field, such as Starling, Revolut and Monzo, offer travel money with zero transaction and withdrawal fees. It can also be managed from anywhere in the world, and “topped up” easily and for free, as this is done in exactly the same way standard bank transfers are.
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