What is a Revolut Card ?

Revolut is a smartphone payment app that comes with a prepaid card.
Although Revolut is based in the UK, it is available in Ireland and the rest of the European Economic Area as well as Australia, Canada, Singapore, Switzerland, and the United States.

Revolut was launched in July 2015 and now has over 7 million customers.

You can Join Revolut Here


Is Revolut a Bank ?

Revolut is not a bank, it is an “Electronic Money Institution” based in the UK. It was granted a banking license in Lithuania in 2018, but this is currently not operational outside Lithuania

Because of Brexit – Revolut will be moving all their Irish customer’s accounts to Lithuania. Their UK e-money licence will no longer be valid in Ireland at the end of 2020. Over the past few months, Revolut has been asking some Irish customers to provide fresh id in the form of a passport because a driving licence is not valid id under the EU e-money licence.

Eventually, Revolut plans to be granted an e-money licence by the Central Bank of Ireland. When they get that, all of Revolut’s Irish customers will be migrated to the Irish entity.

One of Revolut’s main competitors in Ireland is N26 – which has a full EU banking licence. More here about Revolut compared to N26



The Revolut app allows customers to :

  • Top up with a debit or credit card, or by making a bank transfer .
  • View spending habits: your spending can be categorised by type of transaction, by retailer or by country.
  • Send money to other Revolut users instantly
  • Control your card and account. You can lock and unlock your card in the Revolut app as well as set monthly spending limits.
  • Save money. Revolut’s Vault feature lets you build up funds for a specific funding goal
  • Buy shares – you can only buy US listed shares on Revolut (Nasdaq and NYSE). Charges are $1 per trade (first 3 every month are free). Maximum trade $1000. Shareholding fee of 0.01% (i.e $1 on $10,000 worth of shares) .
  • . See details of other Online Share Dealing Services

It is easy to open an account with Revolut. You just enter your phone number and they will send you a sign-up link to download the app on your phone. You will then need to verify your identity by providing a picture of a valid ID document and taking a selfie.
After you sign up, you can request your contactless Revolut card and begin using your account. Since Autumn 2020 – you can check your Revolut account on your PC or laptop.

You can Join Revolut Here



Alternatives to Revolut

Revolut was one of the first digital payment apps to launch in Ireland – and they have picked up a lot of customers. But there are now a few alternatives to Revolut.

Compare Online Stock Trading in Ireland


A Summary of Revolut Charges and Limits

REVOLUTStandard
(No Monthly Fee)
Premium
(€7.99 per month)
Metal
€13.99 per month)
ATM WithdrawalsFirst €200 free per month than a 2% feeFirst €400 free per month than a 2% feeFirst €800 free per month than a 2% fee
Currency ConversionInterbank rate with a 1% mark up at weekendsInterbank rate with a 1% mark up at weekendsInterbank rate with a 1% mark up at weekends
Money Exchange/Spending in Non Euro First €1000 is free then 0.5% fee.No limits . Fee Free No limits . Fee Free
Sign Up Apply HereApply Here Apply Here
Extras Instant access to 5 cryptocurrencies.

Revolut Junior account for 1 kid
Overseas medical insurance.

Delayed baggage & delayed flight insurance.

Priority customer support
Instant access to 5 cryptocurrencies.
Disposable virtual cards
Airport LoungeKey Pass access
Overseas medical insurance.

Delayed baggage & delayed flight insurance.

Priority customer support
Instant access to 5 cryptocurrencies.
Disposable virtual cards
Airport LoungeKey Pass access.

0.1% cashback within Europe and 1% outside Europe on all card payments. (capped at €13.99 a month)
Car Hire Excess Cover

.
Fully Metal Card

Revolut Exchange Rates

When spending outside the Eurozone, Revolut says they use the “Interbank” rate.

We did a comparison on 14 random dates in 2019 – including 4 weekend days. We looked at purchases made in Sterling using Euro currency and compared Mastercard’s rates Vs the Interbank rate as used by Revolut.
(For the interbank rate we used the rates provided by Xe.com who state that all their figures are based on live mid-market rates.)

Weekdays

On average –for weekdays,the Interbank rate was just 0.265% better than the Mastercard rate.
In real money terms that would mean spending £100 would cost you just €0.26 cents more using a Mastercard compared to the Interbank rate used by Revolut.

A spend of £1000 would cost you €2.65 more with the Mastercard than Revolut. (Excluding any fees the card provider adds on for currency conversion. See how much the banks in Ireland add on here)

Weekend Exchange Rates

On Saturdays and Sundays, Revolut adds 1% mark up to their exchange rates.

So at weekends, based on our small survey, Revolut would cost on average about 0.735% more than Mastercard.
So, assuming spending was equal on every day of the week – this would make the overall average difference over the full 2 weeks just 0.02% .

(Mastercard rates slightly better than Revolut)

Overall – the difference is probably not enough to worry about for day to day spending abroad or online unless you are spending thousands a month.


Is Your Money Safe With Revolut ?

Revolut Ltd is currently authorised in the UK by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) under the Electronic Money Regulations 2011. This means that Revolut must separate the customer’s funds from their own funds and, when held at the end of the business day following the day on which they were received, place them in an account with an authorised credit institution.

From Jan 2021 – because of Brexit , all EU customer accounts at Revolut will be regulated by the Lithuanian Central Bank. Revolut plan to eventually get a licence from the Irish Central Bank.

If a Revolut customer in Ireland has a complaint before Brexit – they will need to complain to the FCA in the UK here. After Brexit they will need to contact the Lithuanian Central Bank .