This digital banking alternative is transforming the way that consumers engage with their finances.
The banking industry as we know it today is changing at a rapid pace. The days of walking into your local branch to open an account with countless documents are a thing of the past.
Revolut is paving the way for everyone to perform the vast majority of their everyday banking needs at the click of a button.
Founded as recently as 2015 by two russian developers – Nikolay Storonsky and Vlad Yatsenko, the platform is now home to more than 4.5 million users.
What is Revolut?
Revolut is effectively a digital banking mobile app targeted at those who want to take their money abroad. This makes Revolut one of the most attractive app-only current account cards available on the market.
It is worth noting that on the weekend Revolut typically applies a mark-up between 0.5% and 1% to the interbank rate (depending on the currency). This is because foreign exchange markets are closed.
If you have any money left over from your holiday that you wish to change back to your home currency, you can do this straight away fee-free.
Revolut is not a credit card, but a debit card. This means that you must first send money to your Revolut account before you can use it.
The main advantages are better exchange rates, the possibility of opening accounts in many world currencies, ATM withdrawals without a fee, virtual payment card and spending statistics.
* Send friends money quickly or split the bill accurately
* Spend money abroad in 150 different currencies, at the correct exchange rate
* A prepaid debit card that enables cash machine withdrawals in 120 countries
* A crypto-currency exchange allowing users to convert currencies into Bitcoin, Litecoin, Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash or XRP
* Save or budget your spare change using Vaults
* Mobile phone and overseas health insurance
* Freezing your card, prohibit withdrawals and set spending limits
With standard accounts, users get a free UK current account and a free euro IBAN account. There are no fees on exchanging in 24 currencies, up to £5,000 a month, and you can withdraw up to £200 a month from cash machines.
What can Revolut do?
You can get set up in a matter of minutes, unlike the major banks which require mountains of paperwork.
You’ll need to add money to your account to get started. This is technically how Revolut does its first security check. This shows you have a verified existing bank account that is under your name.
The app is straightforward to use and well designed. Revolut customers can pay for items using ApplePay and contactless, as well as using the traditional pin pad.
The first step is to choose your account. There are three options to choose from – a free current account, a premium account at £6.99 per month or a metal account at £12.99 per month.
Revolut customers can order a physical or virtual card. The former is a prepaid contactless debit Visa card, which can be used in retailers across the UK and abroad. A physical card can be ordered via the app for £4.99. Customers with Premium accounts receive a physical card for free.
The main difference between the physical and virtual cards are that the virtual card doesn’t have a pin, so it can’t be used to withdraw money at an ATM and isn’t valid at some payment terminals. In addition, some of the security features are not available for the virtual card. However, Revolut claims that using the virtual card for online payments can help to protect against online card fraud. This is because the card can be deleted every few months and replaced with a new one.
Cryptocurrency support comes standard with all Revolut accounts which makes for an easy way for people to get started buying and selling crypto.
The app provides a portfolio tracker so you can view the performance of your cryptos over time and also lets you set alarms with push notifications should you wish to buy or sell at certain price points.
You can also spend your cryptocurrency using your card as you would any of the other foreign currencies within the app.
The only downside is that Revolut is a custodial solution, so you can’t withdraw your cryptos to other wallets or exchanges, so for serious users we wouldn’t recommend Revolut, but for someone wanting to dip their toes in the water it can make a suitable start.
If you’re travelling abroad or going on holiday and don’t want to take all your bank cards with you, Revolut is an excellent choice.
Revolut offers its customers real savings by using the interbank exchange rate. It represents a market leader in this respect and it is a great solution for anyone looking to use a card for their next holiday.