Does using Revolut lead to significant savings in comparison to similar services?
What is Revolut?
Revolut was initially conceived as a multi-currency bank account that reduced multiple bank charges and commissions applicable during transactions carried out in foreign currencies. It was successful within the EEQ region and managed to raise several million euros, and now aims to become an actual online bank. Today, Revolut has crossed the United Kingdom's borders and now offers its services in several European territories, the United States, Canada, Singapore, and many others.
How does Revolut work?
Opening a Revolut account is a straightforward process. Users don't need to be geeks to register. The only prerequisites are legal age (except for the junior account), being a resident of a country eligible for its offers, having proof of identity, and a mobile phone number. Visit the Revolut app sign-up page and enter your mobile number to open an account. An SMS containing a link to download the application will be sent. It only takes a few minutes to become a customer.
Revolut targets individuals with four distinct offers to appeal to all profiles. It also offers a bank account for professionals (business). Besides, you get a physical and a virtual card. Both Revolut cards allow you to manage a “Freeze/Unfreeze” feature within the application. Other significant functionalities include managing the setting for additional security and devising a spending budget on a monthly basis. Account-holders can remove the virtual card every few months, which will make it more difficult for hackers to copy your data or clone your card. Revolut also offers a “disposable” non-physical card that wipes and resets the users’ details after every payment.
- No account maintenance fee
- The possibility of making investments
- Attractive foreign currency exchange fee
- Customer support is good at dealing with users and solving problems
- Access to credit via Revolut credit card
- No cash or checks deposits
- A limited insurance offer
It costs no money, including management fees. You also get a free card for which only delivery is payable. The account also offers the possibility of exchange in over 30 currencies (£1,000 max. per month) without hidden costs and spending in over 150 currencies.
It is attractive for people travelling abroad and those who want to control their budget. Of course, users can't claim the moon with this offer. It only allows withdrawing up to £ 200 through ATMs per month at no cost, which is a bit disappointing for cash lovers.
For £6.99 monthly fee, you can access more services with this account. Though even with a name like that, cashouts are still a problem. This time, the fee is non-existent when you withdraw £400 per month through ATMs. This account also removes the monthly limit on trading in 30 currencies and offers disposable virtual cards. Besides, users can benefit from various services: medical insurance abroad, baggage insurance, priority customer service, and junior bank accounts for two children. In my opinion, the price is justified.
Revolut's new digital current account tier joins the company's Standard, Premium, and Metal offerings. All the capabilities of the Revolut Standard current account are included in the app-based Revolut Plus account. Some of those features include but are not limited to:
- Free ATM withdrawals of up to £200 each month
- 30 currencies are available for free interbank international payments.
- No transaction fees when using your Revolut card domestically or internationally
- Possibility to have a balance in up to 30 different currencies on the Revolut app
Revolut's plus account adds some more features to the carryover ones from the standard account. Those new features include enhanced refunds, ticket reimbursement, purchase protection, and many more.
With the account at £12.99 per month, free ATM withdrawals reach £800 per month, which is better. The services offered by the Premium account are automatically acquired. Besides, there is the exclusive Revolut Metal card and cashback for card payments. Additionally, account holders can claim 0.1% cashback for payments in European Union countries and 1% everywhere else.
This account allows kids to learn how to manage a bank account and control their budget. From 7 to 17 years old, children manage their accounts themselves via the application and benefit from a bank card. However, this offer is limited to children whose parents have a Premium or Metal account.
Account for Self-Employed and Businesses
Revolut has also targeted companies and the self-employed (freelancers). The latter would need to sign-up for a business account that offers a free account and a pro account at just £7 per month. Companies have four choices: a free bank account; a Development account at £25 per month; a Growth account at £100 per month; and a Large Company account, the fee of which is evaluated according to your needs. More details about the plans and services can be viewed here or on the Revolut Business official page.
Revolut Banking Services
Account-holders can benefit from a range of services:
- Instant and free payment to Revolut customers;
- Simple and fast external transfers;
- Sharing of expenses with relatives who have a Revolut account;
- Send money instantly in 30 currencies benefiting from an attractive exchange rate;
- Budget planner for each expense category;
- Real-time budget monitoring;
- Google Pay and Apple Pay to simplify and secure payments;
- Possibility of donations with Revolut in a few clicks.
Revolut also offers wealth management tools via Revolut Trading, where users can buy stocks listed on the NYSE and NASDAQ exchanges from $1. Standard account holders are allowed only three trades in a month for free, Premium ones are also limited by only eight free trades per month, but there is no restriction on free trades for Metal account holders.
Since the buying and selling of shares are done in US Dollars, you should pay attention to the exchange rates. You can find more details on the Revolut Trading website. A great feature of this trading tool is the possibility to purchase fractional shares (you don’t buy the whole share that could cost a lot but a fraction of it) for as low as $1. Hopefully, in the future, Revolut will offer European and UK stocks too. You may also explore Askwallet's listing of the best European EMIs for trading and foreign exchange.
If cryptocurrency seems complex to understand, don't worry, as Revolut has simplified crypto exchanges by offering a Vault to manage the buying and selling of cryptocurrencies. Account-holders can start investing from just $1.
For users looking for a safe haven to protect their money against inflation, Revolut offers commodities trading such as gold, silver, etc. Users follow the market in real-time to better manage their buying and selling operations and set up an alert when prices fluctuate.
With Revolut Travel ltd, standard users gain access to travel insurance by purchasing Revolut's insurance partners' plans. I highly suggest reviewing the legal disclosure and other legal bits to know more about this offer.
Is Revolut Safe?
Yes, it is a safe option to transfer funds internationally as FCA is authorized. However, the Financial Services Compensation does not cover the account holder’s funds. Keeping this in view, I would suggest analyzing and comparing the charges and disclosures of Revolut and similar options before you decide to make an international money transfer to get the best deal.
If you are wondering how to transfer money to Revolut, then follow these simple steps:
- Navigate to the “Accounts” tab and select the “Use Money” option.
- Enter your bank account or debit card details.
- Tap “Continue.”
- Enter the amount of money.
- Click the “Add Money” option.
After receiving your Revolut card, you need to make a payment at a physical terminal- ATM or a store to activate it.
Navigate to the “Settings” section of your Revolut App. Now, select the “Close Account” option, and follow the instructions.
You can contact Revolut support through their phone number +442033228352 or online chat via their contact page.
Revolut account holders can easily withdraw cash from any ATM worldwide that supports MasterCard and Visa. Please keep in mind that some ATM operators may apply fees. You should always select “Without Conversion” when completing an ATM transaction i.e. choose to be charged in the local currency of your current location.
Overall, Revolut has a good reputation among customers; the app is convenient to use, and customer support is good at dealing with customers. There have been a few cases where accounts were blocked as the cards expired and the users had not replaced them. So, it is essential to contact customer support to guide you to continue using the account. For me, the price offer is also reasonable considering the range of services. Investing in cryptocurrencies and commodities also makes Revolut stand out.
When it comes to deciding whether Revolut is the cheapest money transfer option, there is a catch. Though the service states that you can send money to more than 140 destinations for free, you should know that you might be charged a wire transfer fee. If the beneficiary bank is not in the EU region or the amount sent is not in Euros, the transaction is completed via SWIFT; you will need to pay the international wire transfer charges. Therefore, before using Revolut, analyze these factors, and compare the fee with other options to get the best deal.
Revolut has free offers, and I wish the limits on the standard account's withdrawals could be reviewed. My overall impression of the Revolut app: why make it complicated when users want it convenient? With safe management of funds, optimal budget spending settings, simplicity of transfers, control of the account, and cards from A to Z, other services should be better watched out.