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Revolut is taking over Europe. Not in Europe? Don’t worry. Keep reading to hear some exciting news.

It’s 2019 and like most people, you’re probably still getting your foreign currency from the bank or Post Office before you travel.

Maybe you’re still using travelers’ cheques. Or are you using your credit card abroad and not noticing those hidden fees on your bank statement?

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Your bank has likely fooled you into thinking you are getting FREE ATM withdrawals.

We’ve already talked about how to save money on flights in 2019. But what is the point of saving money on flights, if you’re going to waste it on bank fees and crappy conversion rates?

However, most people don’t give much thought into how they will manage their money abroad. Why? Who knows! Maybe we just got used to handling our money in these ways.

Do you remember not so long ago when mobile phone providers would charge us a fortune to make calls and send texts from any other country in Europe?

You would hop over to Paris and suddenly be smacked with outrageous roaming charges.

Why? Because they could get away with it. And they did get away with it until an EU law forbid it

The same goes with banking. Banks want your money. They want their commission. They’ll make sure they get it, even if it means letting you think you’re getting free withdrawals abroad.

What I’m about to share with you will change the way you handle your money abroad, forever!

Whether you live in a foreign country, or spend 2 weeks of the year abroad. This will save you money and make you ditch all your other bank cards and credit cards.

Welcome to the world of Revolut, the digital banking alternative. The smart way to manage your foreign currency.

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What is Revolut?

Revolut is a world beyond banking. It’s a secure, mobile-based current account that allows you to convert currency at the best possible rate, transfer money internationally at no cost and spend money around the world without any fees.

Having launched in July 2015, Revolut already has over 3 million users and claims to have saved them over 160 million dollars in bank fees.

The founder of Revolut, Nikolay Storonsky, was a former trader at Credit Suisse and Lehman Brothers, and an avid traveler. During an interview with Forbes, he stated:

I thought of the business a few years ago. At that time, I was traveling a lot and wasting hundreds of pounds on foreign transaction fees and exchange rate commissions which I just just didn’t feel right. As someone with a financial background, I knew exactly the rates I should be getting. As a solution, I tried to find a multi-currency card and was later told it wasn’t possible. But I was determined to make it work.

And lucky for us, he did!

Why should I choose Revolut?

Whether you travel abroad for the occasional beach holiday or city-break, or you’re a regular international traveler. What is for certain is – at some point, you’re going to use foreign currency.  

The number one reason for choosing Revolut is that they offer free foreign ATM withdrawals. Not only that, the exchange rate they give you is the best rate on the market.

Your bank might be able to offer you free withdrawals abroad, but are you checking what currency conversion rate they are giving you? Probably not!

It’s really not easy to see what conversion rate they are using. The bank had you when they said FREE withdrawals abroad and you probably didn’t question it.

Remember, banks want your money. The money that they don’t make from withdrawal fees, they’ll certainly make up for by giving you a poor conversion rate.

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On the other hand, Revolut uses the interbank exchange rate. The interbank exchange rate is the rate that banks use to swap currencies between one another. It is a real-time rate.

You can think of it as the wholesale rate of foreign currency.

The intention of Revolut when they started in 2015 was to revolutionize the banking world, and it has.

What other benefits are there?

IT’S A MULTI-CURRENCY ACCOUNT

The pre-paid mastercard from Revolut is a mult-currency card. This means you can top up your account with a debit or credit card in 16 different currencies.

You can store the money in these different currencies, meaning that there is no need to keep converting. The currencies include GBP, EUR, USD, AUD, CAD, CHF, CZK, DKK, HKD, JPY, NOK, PLN, RON, SEK and CAR.

Always top up in the currency that your bank account is hel in. For example, if you have a UK bank account make sure you top up in GBP. If you don’t, your bank will convert the money and you’ll be charged a conversion fee.

You can spend abroad in over 150 countries. Revolut will always use the interbank exchange rate if the currency you’re using is not one which is already stored in your account.

TRAVEL INSURANCE FOR £1 PER DAY

Another thing we have to worry about before jetting off abroad is travel insurance. Revolut offers insurance from health to your phone for as little as £1 per day. It is so easy to activate, just make sure you do it before you get on the plane!

There is even a setting that lets Revolut automatically detect when you’re abroad. So even if you forget to activate your insurance, Revolut won’t. It’ll even detect if you’re near ski resorts and therefore offer you winter sports cover. I told you this was the bank of the future, didn’t I?

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SEND AND REQUEST MONEY AT THE TOUCH OF A BUTTON

Splitting a bill in a restaurant? Revolut has got your back. It’s easy to send and request money from any of your phone contacts.

Since 2018, Revolut has offered all customers an IBAN number. You can now send and receive money for free.

SUPER SECURITY FEATURES

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) regulate Revolut and therefore your money is protected if Revolut face any problems.

The app is also super safe. It is protected by a password or by fingerprint ID.

If you’ve ever lost your bank card, you know how stressful it is. You need to call your bank and have them freeze your card immediately but all of this takes time and, in that moment, it feels like forever! If you’re abroad, calling your bank is not always so easy to do.

If you lose your Revolut card, you can FREEZE it within the app and order a new one to be sent out. If by a stroke of luck you find your card, simply unfreeze it in the app.

Not just that, you have full control of your account from the app. With a simple switch you can turn off contactless or swipe payments or even online payments and ATM withdrawals.

As I mentioned before, Revolut also runs location security. If the card is used in a different location from where you are, they’ll block the transaction immediately.

If like me, and you’re always spending online, you can take advantage of the new disposable virtual card. Each time you use the card, Revolut will detect the transaction and automatically ‘destroy’ the details. It’ll generate new ones for your next use directly into the app.

Banking has never been so easy and safe.

OUTSTANDING CUSTOMER SERVICE

One thing I hate about my other bank accounts is that contacting customer service is always a pain! If you’re trying to contact customer service from abroad, it can become expensive and you can’t always get through to the right team because it depends on the time you’re calling.

Once again, Revolut has put the traveler in mind and set up an easy to access customer service support team via the app.

Whenever I have had a query, the support team have answered in rapid time. They are extremely friendly and well-trained. They are also available 24/7.

Check out the APP!

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Different Type of Accounts

Revolut offers customers 3 different types of accounts. Based on your needs, you’ll be able to choose from one of the following:

revolut card

Personally, I use the standard account. I haven’t found the £200 Free withdrawal limit to be a problem because I use card payments as often as I can. Also, the withdrawals over £200 each month only have a 2% charge anyway.

IMPORTANT TO REMEMBER! 

It is better to withdraw cash during the week, if you’re using foreign currency rather than the currency which is stored on your account. Why?

At the weekend (Friday 00:00 – Sunday 23:59) a small mark up between 0.5% (for major currencies) and 1% (for other currencies) will apply. This is to protect the company from any potential loss due to a fluctuation in the exchange rates.

Who can open a Revolut account?

Revolut is available to anyone who is a legal resident in the European Economic Area and Switzerland.

This includes: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Republic of Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lichtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom.

But don’t worry if your country is not listed. Here is the good NEWS I promised you: Revolut is already in the process of launching across the rest of the world very, very soon.

revolut in america

Ok, it sounds great. Are there any downsides?

Personally I haven’t come across anything I dislike about Revolut but here are some things which you might see as disadvantages:

  • The weekend mark up rate.
  • There is always a 1% markup for Thai Baht, Russian Rubbles, Ukrainian Hryvnia and Turkish Libra. This also means that at the weekend, these currencies will have a markup of 2%
  • All foreign exchanges over 5,000 GBP a month will come with a 0.5% fee.
  • A physical Revolut card has a delivery charge of 4.99 GBP or your currency equivalent.
  • It takes 9 working days to receive the card so make sure you don’t leave it too late to order one!

In conclusion, the most significant benefits of using Revolut is the ability to convert currency at the best possible rates, transfer money internationally at no cost, and spend money across the globe without any fees.

Even your best travel credit cards can’t do that.

Are you going to say NO to all of these advantages? Tell us what you think about Revolut, have you tried it out yet?

Débora Sousa

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36 thoughts on “REVOLUT – Get Ready for a Travel Revolution”

  1. Awesome post on something I knew nothing about! Very informational. Will definitely keep this knowledge for when I get to traveling again!

  2. This is crazy! I was going to recommend it to my dad because he spend a good bit of time in Thailand and Isreal for work, but I noticed the markup for Baht.

    1. It still might be a lot cheaper than most other banks though. I used revolut when I was in Thailand because it was still the cheapest option

  3. I had no idea something like this even existed. It really seems like a no brainier for anyone traveling abroad.

  4. How cool! I am so glad to see there are new, more forward-thinking personal banking solutions coming to the market. Thank you for the very thorough review – this is very useful when considering switching a bank.

  5. Great card. This is one of the better ones on the market that have been coming out to do similar global transactions.

    1. I agree with you. I’m really enjoying it and really can’t fault it. I’ve used others and this is much better!

  6. Revolution is going to be the next revolution for sure while travelling. I am following you as my ultimate dream is to travel the whole world. This post and site will definitely help me in reaching my goal. Thank you.

    1. That’s so great to hear. That’s why we like sharing these tips. Good luck with reaching your goal!

  7. Such an informative post, I live in India, and when I travel I always think about it and I was planning on getting an American Express Card. I will check this out.

    1. Thanks for your comment! Revolut isn’t currently available in India, but hopefully it will be soon for you.

  8. I hope this includes New Zealand soon – we will be doing a trip around Europe in the next couple of years, so will want the best bang for our buck!

  9. Great tips on saving money through card. I am very budget oriented and big on savings. Your tips are very helpful as I always look for better rates and no fee on international conversion. Thank you. I agree with you, what’s the point if you save on flight and spend on currency. You are spot on.

    1. Thanks for your kind comment. I’m really pleased you found the article useful!! Always happy to share what I’ve found.

  10. I am using Revolut for a while a d I was very happy when they also introduced their VISA card next to Mastercard! Now missing a points/miles collecting system a d I will be all set.
    Love the fact that you can see your spending by category!

we would love to hear your thoughts about this!

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