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  • FIRST POST
    • MSE Helen Saxon
    • By MSE Helen Saxon 28th May 15, 11:15 AM
    • 75Posts
    • 44Thanks
    MSE Helen Saxon
    0 WOW
    Prepaid Travel Cards guide
    • #1
    • 28th May 15, 11:15 AM
    0 WOW
    Prepaid Travel Cards guide 28th May 15 at 11:15 AM
    Hi!

    This is the discussion thread for the



    Click reply below to discuss. If you havenít already, join the forum to reply. If you arenít sure how it all works, read our New to Forum? Intro Guide.


    Thanks folks,
Page 50
    • trevor2522
    • By trevor2522 17th Nov 17, 4:06 PM
    • 27 Posts
    • 4 Thanks
    trevor2522
    Monzo Card / Prepaid Comparisons
    I have severe doubts about Monzo:

    1) Not recommended by MSE as a prepaid travel card.

    2) Extremely hard to contact them.

    3) App does not install on iPhone running iOS 11.1.

    4) Trust Pilot users complain that Monzo added foreign-use fees after they got the card.

    5) Apparent shortage of cards / queueing system.

    Overall just too many alarm bells to even consider Monzo.

    We Swap is useless unless travelling to countries which use their 16 listed currencies (Colombia, Madagascar -- forget it). Revolut uses spot interbank rates but charges 2% ATM fee after withdrawing a mere £200 within a month. Fair FX has fixed ATM charges of !!!8364;1.50 each time, which are cheaper. Post Office card is terrible at 3% to 4.5% ATM fees. Sainsburys charges 5.75% foreign exchange fee. Most of these cards are on the MasterCard network. Bank cards tend more towards Visa network. Foreign ATMs shouldn't have any preference or network-related problems -- but welcome comments on this.

    Any others, apart from Revolut & Fair FX, half-decent ... ? Starling bank?
    Last edited by trevor2522; 17-11-2017 at 4:22 PM.
    • EveryWhere
    • By EveryWhere 17th Nov 17, 5:25 PM
    • 357 Posts
    • 155 Thanks
    EveryWhere
    https://www.starlingbank.com/travel/ has the best travel debit card at the mo.
    • Gloomendoom
    • By Gloomendoom 17th Nov 17, 6:43 PM
    • 14,171 Posts
    • 18,778 Thanks
    Gloomendoom
    I have severe doubts about Monzo:

    1) Not recommended by MSE as a prepaid travel card.

    2) Extremely hard to contact them.

    3) App does not install on iPhone running iOS 11.1.

    4) Trust Pilot users complain that Monzo added foreign-use fees after they got the card.

    5) Apparent shortage of cards / queueing system.

    Overall just too many alarm bells to even consider Monzo.

    Any others, apart from Revolut & Fair FX, half-decent ... ? Starling bank?
    Originally posted by trevor2522
    Monzo works fine. Unfortunately, they are severely limiting fee free foreign cash withdrawals from mid December.

    Starling bank isn't pre-paid card. You open a bank account with them and get a debit card that can be used overseas, fee free.
    ďNever argue with stupid people, they will drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience.Ē - Mark Twain
    • Neil49
    • By Neil49 17th Nov 17, 11:09 PM
    • 1,291 Posts
    • 630 Thanks
    Neil49
    I have severe doubts about Monzo:

    1) Not recommended by MSE as a prepaid travel card.

    2) Extremely hard to contact them.

    3) App does not install on iPhone running iOS 11.1.

    4) Trust Pilot users complain that Monzo added foreign-use fees after they got the card.

    5) Apparent shortage of cards / queueing system.

    Overall just too many alarm bells to even consider Monzo.

    We Swap is useless unless travelling to countries which use their 16 listed currencies (Colombia, Madagascar -- forget it). Revolut uses spot interbank rates but charges 2% ATM fee after withdrawing a mere £200 within a month. Fair FX has fixed ATM charges of Ä1.50 each time, which are cheaper. Post Office card is terrible at 3% to 4.5% ATM fees. Sainsburys charges 5.75% foreign exchange fee. Most of these cards are on the MasterCard network. Bank cards tend more towards Visa network. Foreign ATMs shouldn't have any preference or network-related problems -- but welcome comments on this.

    Any others, apart from Revolut & Fair FX, half-decent ... ? Starling bank?
    Originally posted by trevor2522
    Monzo is no longer a prepaid card as they now have a full banking licence and are now only offering current accounts.

    I've been a user for nearly a year and had no problems in contacting them. Any response has been quick and provided the answer I required.

    I'm an android user so can't comment on Apple issues.

    I've used my card abroad a lot and never had any foreign use fees added. I've just come back from the USA and had obsolutely no issues using it. I just had to remember to activate the magnetic stripe every day to accommodate their backward approach to accepting card transactions. The exchange rate used has been very competitive and I have no complaints on that front.

    They are currently switching all prepaid accounts to current accounts so will probably be a bit slow opening new accounts.

    Overall I am very pleased with Monzo.
    • trevor2522
    • By trevor2522 17th Nov 17, 11:38 PM
    • 27 Posts
    • 4 Thanks
    trevor2522
    https://www.starlingbank.com/travel/ has the best travel debit card at the mo.
    Originally posted by EveryWhere
    Easy to sign up, unlike Monzo. Can pay money into Natwest branches. My Starling + Barclaycard Platinum largely negate the need for a travel money card but I'll get a Fair FX as a backup. Also trying for a Halifax Clarity in a few months.

    Barclays debit, Halifax debit, Nationwide, Lloyds are all cards from hell for foreign ATM charges.
    • eDicky
    • By eDicky 18th Nov 17, 12:46 AM
    • 3,520 Posts
    • 1,702 Thanks
    eDicky
    Any others, apart from Revolut & Fair FX, half-decent ... ? Starling bank?
    Originally posted by trevor2522
    Try Loot, no fees (including overseas) except £1 per cash withdrawal after the first two per month It gives you a sort code, account number, and can be used to send and receive to/from any other UK account:

    https://loot.io/

    There's nothing wrong with Monzo, but I think there is something wrong with all the overseas card users who compulsively want to withdraw cash to use, at the expense of fee-free card issuers, when they could be using the card to pay directly for purchases. This is why Monzo have been forced to introduce fees for overseas withdrawals, in order to survive financially and with long and consultative process in advance.

    It would be better for those who just want to use cash, or need to do so in the countries visited, to pay the fees without complaining or take cash pounds exchange in-country.
    • Gloomendoom
    • By Gloomendoom 18th Nov 17, 9:27 AM
    • 14,171 Posts
    • 18,778 Thanks
    Gloomendoom
    It would be better for those who just want to use cash, or need to do so in the countries visited, to pay the fees without complaining or take cash pounds exchange in-country.
    Originally posted by eDicky
    Better for who?
    ďNever argue with stupid people, they will drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience.Ē - Mark Twain
    • eDicky
    • By eDicky 18th Nov 17, 10:42 AM
    • 3,520 Posts
    • 1,702 Thanks
    eDicky
    Better for who?
    Originally posted by Gloomendoom
    Better for me and for anyone else who is sick of hearing people complain about Monzo introducing a limit on fee-free withdrawals, when they are probably the ones who caused us all to suffer this because of their obsession with taking limitless amounts of cash out of overseas ATMs instead of just using the card to pay whenever possible. You're not one of those, are you G&D..?
    • Gloomendoom
    • By Gloomendoom 18th Nov 17, 5:46 PM
    • 14,171 Posts
    • 18,778 Thanks
    Gloomendoom
    Better for me and for anyone else who is sick of hearing people complain about Monzo introducing a limit on fee-free withdrawals, when they are probably the ones who caused us all to suffer this because of their obsession with taking limitless amounts of cash out of overseas ATMs instead of just using the card to pay whenever possible. You're not one of those, are you G&D..?
    Originally posted by eDicky
    Oddly enough, no. I pay by plastic whenever I can, at home and abroad. There are some places though where it isn't possible and I'm damned if I'm going to stick my Barclays debit card in a foreign ATM when there are fee free options available.
    ďNever argue with stupid people, they will drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience.Ē - Mark Twain
    • trevor2522
    • By trevor2522 19th Nov 17, 9:52 PM
    • 27 Posts
    • 4 Thanks
    trevor2522
    If Starling Bank can operate fee-free, then why can't Monzo? Panhandling for a bank? ... Pull the other one, Private Snowflake!

    Sadly, the reality of using cards for purchases is that they are copied and cloned by unscrupulous merchants, or their employees -- especially in certain 'developing' countries. Even in the UK I always buy my vehicle fuel cash, rather than disclose my card number. At least with ATMs, apart from the very rare cloning scam, the card number is secure, for ever-flexible cash to be used for purchases.

    https://www.money.co.uk/prepaid-cards/travel-prepaid-cards.htm

    Recommends Easy FX travel money card. Also get a Barclays Platinum credit card or Halifax Clarity credit card. Bear in mind that, although the Platinum may have a credit limit of £5,000, only £1,500 of that is for cash withdrawals. Plus Starling bank, some emergency cash of destination, or US$. Sorted.
    Last edited by trevor2522; 19-11-2017 at 10:25 PM.
    • PeacefulWaters
    • By PeacefulWaters 20th Nov 17, 4:23 AM
    • 8,318 Posts
    • 10,656 Thanks
    PeacefulWaters
    If Starling Bank can operate fee-free, then why can't Monzo?
    Originally posted by trevor2522
    Because Starling are at a different stage of evolution in their business model to Monzo.

    Monzo was a one trick pony to build up a customer base. That one trick was a massive loss leader. We've already seen other players give up. Monzo introduced a fee. They'll still lose money though.
    • eDicky
    • By eDicky 20th Nov 17, 9:51 AM
    • 3,520 Posts
    • 1,702 Thanks
    eDicky
    My belief is that Monzo had no particular intention to be regarded as a 'travel' card at first. Until a year ago there was no visible mention of their being fee-free overseas and I had to ask on their chat about fees and exchange rates. So it's likely that they never factored in the substantial cost of all the users who subsequently made lots of fee-free overseas ATM withdrawals. Their only revenue, the interchange fees etc when the card is used for purchases, was not enough to cover the unexpected cost and survive, without introducing the foreign fee-free withdrawal limit.

    Starling have seen this happen to Monzo and others, so may have taken it into account, being a full bank from the outset with other potential revenue stream. But if enough people like Trevor use them solely to withdraw foreign cash I can see them also having to introduce limits/fees at some point.
    • Topcat2007
    • By Topcat2007 28th Nov 17, 3:38 PM
    • 46 Posts
    • 14 Thanks
    Topcat2007
    Which card work in the USA best?
    My son & gf are off to New York for NY. Earlier this year they went to Orlando & had dreadful problems with their PO prepaid travel cards not being accepted, or card machines voiding transactions. It was both of their cards, so not a rogue card. In the end they took all the cash out in one go - not the safest thing to do, but they were desperate. Can anyone tell me if they have used a pre paid card in New York without problems. I don't think fees or exchange rates are their main concern - they just want ones that work! Thank you.
    • odieuk
    • By odieuk 15th Dec 17, 4:28 PM
    • 4 Posts
    • 1 Thanks
    odieuk
    Up until today I had a cashpassport euro card (that was issued by Sainsburys) and a cashpassport multi currency card (that was issued by tescos. In both cases, i asked for a second card for a secondary user - this being my mother. This would allow us to both top up the cards when/where we liked. both cards ultimately end with the same company which is R. Raphael & Sons.
    i had nothing but problems with both cards - especially with the websites and loading more money. passwords became a major problem. however, use abroad in shops, drawing money from ATMs was easy peasy. as others have stated, use at petrol stations - both Europe (Spain) and USA - would NOT accept the cards. For car hire extras at depot - on collection i would give them a regular credit card, but tell them on drop off i would use a different card and apart from a problem at Denver, this worked extremely well in US and Europe.
    Today when attempting to load the multi currency card - it kept locking me out of the website, and then refusing mums debit card to top up. Yet again i had to phone the company. only this time, they told me that the extra card linked to account was only in my name and no top ups etc allowed from mum. using a possible scenario, I asked what would happen if i was in Philippines (i knew call centre was there), no cash, no access to website, no way to topup etc, and whether they would accept mums debit card with her phoning it thru....response was NO!
    i asked how come Tesco had sold me this product, 2 forms signed and filled out etc, yet now after 2 yrs of use and website top up problems, they were now making it even more useless! so i asked to close the account, which they agreed...went through all the blurb blah blah, and then they said - on top of crap exchange rate - their would be a charge of £6 to close account! i went mental...and asked for a Manager to deal with this. Within 2 mins i was advised NO £6 charge!
    Ultimately this turned out to be a HUGE mistake having this card with all the problems....what is wierd is that the single currency card allows two linked users, but not multi currency!
    so i am now on the search for a good alternative. we go away sunday, so know its too late for this trip (i do have a santander zero).
    any good suggestions please gratefully received..
    • eDicky
    • By eDicky 16th Dec 17, 1:35 AM
    • 3,520 Posts
    • 1,702 Thanks
    eDicky
    Use your Santander Zero, as you should have been doing instead of paying dearly to use the likes of Tesco and Sainsbury cards, even using your regular bank debit cards overseas would have likely cost you less.
    • Jude49
    • By Jude49 31st Dec 17, 9:48 AM
    • 1 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    Jude49
    Age restriction for prepaid travel cards?
    My son is going on a college trip to New York three days after his 18th birthday and I am trying to find out the best method of paying for things without taking loads of cash.
    Does anyone know if there is an 18 age limit to apply for cards - prepaid or otherwise?
    Thanks
    • gettingtheresometime
    • By gettingtheresometime 31st Dec 17, 10:50 AM
    • 3,727 Posts
    • 9,238 Thanks
    gettingtheresometime
    My son is going on a college trip to New York three days after his 18th birthday and I am trying to find out the best method of paying for things without taking loads of cash.
    Does anyone know if there is an 18 age limit to apply for cards - prepaid or otherwise?
    Thanks
    Originally posted by Jude49
    Revolut has an 18 age limit as would your standard credit card.

    Having said that though I canít see how revolut would know if you gave your Revolut card to your son to use.....though Iím not advocating that though lol.

    Iíve used mine in Europe as well as Australia & New Zealand and had no problems in either using or topping it up - even hubby was impressed!
    Lloyds OD / Natwest OD / PO CC / Wescott / Argos Card cleared thanks to the 1 debt v 100 day challenge


    Next on the list - JD Williams
    • EveryWhere
    • By EveryWhere 31st Dec 17, 2:31 PM
    • 357 Posts
    • 155 Thanks
    EveryWhere
    My son is going on a college trip to New York three days after his 18th birthday and I am trying to find out the best method of paying for things without taking loads of cash.
    Does anyone know if there is an 18 age limit to apply for cards - prepaid or otherwise?
    Thanks
    Originally posted by Jude49
    https://www.nationwide.co.uk/products/current-accounts/flexone/whats-flexone

    Once he has it by seventeen, he can keep it beyond eighteen, up to the age of twenty three.

    No forex fees nor ATM withdrawal charges.
    • Sunshinemummy
    • By Sunshinemummy 7th Jan 18, 6:09 PM
    • 16,104 Posts
    • 193,925 Thanks
    Sunshinemummy
    Revolut has an 18 age limit as would your standard credit card.

    Having said that though I can!!!8217;t see how revolut would know if you gave your Revolut card to your son to use.....though I!!!8217;m not advocating that though lol.

    I!!!8217;ve used mine in Europe as well as Australia & New Zealand and had no problems in either using or topping it up - even hubby was impressed!
    Originally posted by gettingtheresometime
    Flip GTST, did not know you were an expert in this area

    Advice (from anyone) would be greatly received (idiots format is preferred as I am doh!).

    We are going to Thailand for nearly 5 weeks with a few days to Singapore, (DS1's wedding) and need to figure out what is the best cards to use. We would normally try to put the expenses on a credit card, but on reading it looks like debit card maybe more cost effective (we will need to put some expenses on a credit card as we don't have enough money).

    Any help would be greatly appreciated

    Thanks

    SSM

    Last edited by Sunshinemummy; 07-01-2018 at 10:34 PM.
    184.8
    • eDicky
    • By eDicky 8th Jan 18, 3:58 AM
    • 3,520 Posts
    • 1,702 Thanks
    eDicky
    https://www.moneysavingexpert.com/credit-cards/travel-credit-cards

    Also https://loot.io/

    Note that ATMs in Thailand charge Bt.220 (£5) for use of a foreign card.
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