The Curve app is a fintech offering that allows you to connect all your accounts via one smart card and your smartphone.
The Curve app is available in 31 countries in Europe – from the United Kingdom to Spain and Sweden. The Curve smart card is in conjunction with Mastercard. It is issued by Wirecard Card Solutions Ltd, under the Mastercard International Inc license, and authorized by the Financial Conduct Authority in the UK.
Sign up is all on your smartphone – after downloading the Curve app from the Google Play Store or App Store, you can order a Curve Mastercard after following sign up instructions – you are then sent a confirmation email. After being verified, you can load your Mastercard or Visa cards (both debit and credit) to the app.
Both Curve personal and business accounts only require a £1 identity verification charge, which is later refunded. There are no fees when using the Curve Mastercard itself in the UK, and it will cost you nothing to deposit money, withdraw money, or make transfers. Abroad, you are charged 0.5 percent for transactions on the weekend, but nothing during the week. There is a withdrawal limit of £200 from foreign ATMs for personal accounts, with £500 for business accounts. There are also daily spending limits from £2000 upwards.
In terms of the cards – Curve Blue is free with no monthly subscription. You will enjoy benefits such as 1 percent cashback from retailers such as Amazon and Netflix for the first 90 days of your plan. Curve Black costs €9.99 per month and offers 1 percent cashback from selected retailers for an unlimited time and €800 worth of gadget coverage and €15M medical travel insurance.
One way of working out which option – Curve Blue or Curve Black – is better for you is to weigh up your spending against the expected annual cost. If you aren’t likely to be spending enough to justify the Curve Black fee, it might be better to stick with Curve Blue, which can still offer you the advantages of cashback and low foreign exchange fees. If you regularly travel and withdraw large amounts of money, Curve Black will be far more suitable.
Curve Black holders enjoy 1 percent cashback from a number of retailers for an unlimited time, whereas this offer stands for 90 days for Curve Blue holders.
Rather than adding funds, you can add various cards to Curve. These include Mastercard and Visa debit and credit cards, but do not include Maestro, American Express, UnionPay or JCB.
The Curve app must be commended for its user-friendliness. A simple yet functional layout gives you easy access to features such as a dashboard that allows you to check all the balances of your cards, manage them, add new cards, and view your rewards. There is also a transaction timeline.
The higher withdrawal limit from foreign ATMs (£500) with no fee makes Curve Black a compelling option for frequent travelers, although Curve Blue also offers no foreign exchange fee on transactions, so it can still be useful to moderate spenders overseas.