Revolut, a financial technology company established in 2015, has emerged as a prominent digital banking alternative for individuals and businesses globally. This in-depth review aims to provide a comprehensive analysis of the platform’s offerings, focusing on account types, currency exchange, security measures, and other notable features. By examining these aspects, readers will acquire an extensive understanding of Revolut’s benefits and limitations, ensuring informed decision-making when considering the platform for personal or business use.
Account Types and Features
Revolut offers a variety of personal account options to accommodate the diverse needs of its user base, including Standard, Premium, and Metal accounts
The Standard account serves as an entry-level option, providing basic banking services such as a UK account number and sort code, a European IBAN, and free ATM withdrawals up to a certain limit. This account type also includes access to the platform’s budgeting tools, analytics, and peer-to-peer (P2P) payment features.
Premium accounts offer additional benefits, including higher ATM withdrawal limits, overseas medical insurance, priority customer support, and exclusive access to certain offers and promotions. Premium account holders also enjoy unlimited free currency exchange and a range of travel-related perks, such as delayed baggage and flight insurance.
The Metal account, Revolut’s most comprehensive personal account offering, includes all the features of the Standard and Premium accounts, along with several exclusive benefits. Metal account holders receive a distinctive metal card, a dedicated concierge service, and cashback rewards on eligible transactions. Additionally, they have access to exclusive offers, discounts, and experiences through Revolut’s partner network.
Revolut caters to entrepreneurs and companies by offering a range of business account options, including Start, Grow, and Scale accounts.
The Start account is designed for small businesses and freelancers, providing essential features such as multi-currency accounts, expense management tools, and access to Revolut’s Open API. This account type also includes free local and international payments up to a certain limit, making it a cost-effective option for businesses with modest transaction volumes.
The Grow account, tailored to businesses with more substantial transaction volumes or international operations, offers all the features of the Start account, along with additional benefits. These include higher payment limits, priority customer support, and access to exclusive offers and discounts. Grow account holders can also take advantage of advanced payment features, such as batch payments and bulk payouts.
The Scale account, aimed at larger enterprises and high-growth companies, provides a comprehensive suite of features and benefits. In addition to the offerings of the Start and Grow accounts, Scale account holders receive a dedicated account manager, customized onboarding assistance, and priority access to new features and innovations. This account type also offers unlimited free local and international payments, making it an attractive option for businesses with significant transaction volumes.
Revolut offers Junior accounts for children aged 7 to 17, allowing parents to introduce their children to responsible money management while maintaining oversight and control. Parents can transfer funds, set spending limits, and monitor transactions through the Revolut app, while children receive a dedicated debit card and access to a simplified version of the app.
Revolut provides a savings feature called Vaults, which allows users to set aside money for specific goals or purposes. Users can create multiple Vaults, each with a designated currency, and fund them through one-time transfers or recurring deposits. Additionally, users can enable the “round-up” feature, which automatically rounds up each transaction to the nearest whole number and deposits the difference into the chosen Vault. This feature encourages users to save consistently without requiring significant effort.
Perks and Rewards
The platform offers various perks and rewards to its users, particularly Premium and Metal account holders. These benefits may include cashback on specific transactions, discounts on partner products and services, and access to exclusive events or experiences. Revolut aims to provide added value to its users through these partnerships and promotions, enhancing the overall experience and fostering customer loyalty.
Currency Exchange and International Money Transfers
Revolut supports over 150 currencies, enabling users to exchange, send, and receive money in multiple currencies with ease. This extensive coverage simplifies international transactions and allows users to manage their finances in various currencies through a single account.
The platform offers competitive exchange rates, typically close to the interbank rate, providing users with cost-effective currency conversion compared to traditional banks. For Standard account holders, foreign exchange transactions are free up to a monthly limit, while Premium and Metal account holders enjoy unlimited free currency exchange.
Transfer Fees and Limits
Revolut does not charge fees for most local and international money transfers (read our reviews of the best international money transfer services). However, certain transactions may incur fees, depending on factors such as the recipient’s bank, the transaction currency, and the user’s account type. Additionally, the platform imposes limits on the total value of transactions per month, which vary according to the user’s account type.
Weekend and Market Hours Markups
A small markup applies to certain currency conversions during weekends and outside market hours. This markup aims to account for potential fluctuations in exchange rates when markets are closed. Users should be aware of these markups when planning their currency conversions to avoid incurring additional costs.
Revolut strives to offer fast and efficient international money transfers, with many transactions processed within minutes. However, the actual transfer speed may vary depending on factors such as the receiving bank’s processing times, the transaction currency, and the time of day. In some cases, transfers may take up to a few business days to complete.
Security Measures and Regulations
Revolut is authorized and regulated by the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), ensuring adherence to stringent regulatory requirements. This oversight provides users with the assurance that the platform operates in compliance with established financial standards and guidelines.
To safeguard user funds, Revolut maintains segregated accounts at reputable financial institutions. This practice ensures that customer funds are kept separate from the company’s own accounts, providing an additional layer of protection in the event of insolvency or financial difficulties.
Encryption and Data Security
Revolut employs advanced encryption technology to protect user information and transaction data. By implementing industry-standard security protocols, the platform seeks to prevent unauthorized access and ensure the confidentiality and integrity of customer data.
The platform offers two-factor authentication (2FA) to enhance account security. With 2FA enabled, users must provide a secondary verification method, such as a one-time password or fingerprint, in addition to their standard login credentials. This added layer of security helps to protect user accounts from unauthorized access.
Card Security Features
Revolut provides users with the ability to lock and unlock their cards instantly through the app. This feature enables swift action in the event of loss or theft, minimizing the risk of unauthorized transactions. Additionally, users can customize their card security settings, such as setting location-based restrictions and spending limits, to maintain control over their finances and reduce the risk of fraudulent activity.
Peer-to-Peer Payments and Group Bills
P2P Payment Features
Revolut simplifies peer-to-peer (P2P) payments by allowing users to send and request money instantly through the app, even in different currencies. The platform’s intuitive interface facilitates seamless transactions, enabling users to transfer funds with just a few taps.
The platform supports cross-currency transactions, allowing users to send and receive money in various currencies without the need for manual conversions. Revolut automatically converts the funds at the prevailing exchange rate, streamlining the process and providing a convenient solution for international P2P payments.
Group Bills Functionality
Revolut’s Group Bills feature facilitates the splitting of expenses among friends or family members. Users can create a shared group within the app, add individual expenses, and allocate portions to each group member. The platform then calculates the total amount owed by each participant, enabling users to settle balances easily.
Use Cases and Benefits
The P2P payment and Group Bills features are particularly useful for a variety of situations, such as splitting restaurant bills, sharing household expenses, or reimbursing friends for shared purchases. By simplifying these transactions, Revolut helps users manage their finances more efficiently and maintain positive relationships with their peers.
Budgeting and Analytics
Revolut’s in-app budgeting tools automatically categorize transactions, allowing users to track their spending habits more effectively. By grouping transactions into categories such as groceries, transportation, or entertainment, users can gain insights into their spending patterns and identify areas for improvement.
Budget Creation and Management
Users can set monthly budgets for specific categories, helping them to allocate their funds more effectively and monitor their progress throughout the month. Revolut provides real-time updates on the remaining budget for each category, enabling users to make informed decisions about their spending habits.
Spending Notifications and Insights
Revolut offers instant spending notifications, alerting users to each transaction as it occurs. This feature provides users with a clear understanding of their account activity and helps them maintain control over their finances. Additionally, the platform delivers weekly insights into spending patterns, offering a snapshot of the user’s financial habits and performance.
Goal Setting and Progress Tracking
Users can set financial goals within the app and track their progress over time. By establishing specific targets and monitoring their achievements, users can work towards improving their financial health and developing responsible money management habits.
Customer Support and Resources
Revolut provides various support channels to assist users with their inquiries and concerns. Users can contact the platform’s customer support team through email, phone, or in-app chat, ensuring they receive prompt assistance when needed.
Help Center and FAQ
The platform’s Help Center contains a wealth of information, including frequently asked questions (FAQs), guides, and troubleshooting tips. By consulting these resources, users can often find answers to their questions without the need to contact customer support.
In-App Chat Functionality
Revolut’s in-app chat feature allows users to communicate directly with customer support representatives, streamlining the process of resolving issues and addressing concerns. This feature is particularly useful for time-sensitive inquiries, as it enables users to obtain assistance quickly and efficiently.
The platform offers a community forum where users can engage with fellow Revolut customers, share tips and advice, and discuss their experiences with the platform. This forum serves as a valuable resource for users seeking additional support or insights from the broader Revolut community.
Integrations and Partnerships
Integration with Accounting Software
Revolut’s business accounts provide integration with popular accounting software such as Xero and QuickBooks, streamlining financial management for entrepreneurs and companies. By automating the synchronization of transaction data, users can save time and reduce the risk of errors associated with manual data entry.
Third-Party Financial Services
The platform offers access to various third-party financial services, enabling users to manage multiple aspects of their finances within a single app. These services may include investments, insurance, and credit products, providing users with a comprehensive suite of financial tools and resources.
API Access for Developers
Revolut grants API access to developers, allowing them to create custom integrations and applications that leverage the platform’s features and functionalities. By providing this access, Revolut supports innovation and encourages the development of new solutions that enhance the user experience.
Comparisons with Competitors
Compared to traditional banks, Revolut offers a more streamlined and user-friendly experience, with a focus on digital services and innovative features. The platform’s competitive fees, real-time notifications, and extensive currency support provide distinct advantages over many conventional banking institutions.
Other Digital Banks and Fintech Companies
Revolut faces competition from other digital banks and fintech companies, many of which offer similar services and features. However, the platform’s extensive range of account options, seamless currency exchange, and commitment to innovation help it stand out in the increasingly crowded fintech landscape.
Key Advantages and Disadvantages
Revolut’s primary advantages include its competitive fees, extensive currency support, and user-friendly app. The platform also offers a wide range of features and functionalities that cater to diverse user needs. However, some disadvantages may include potential weekend exchange rate markups and varying transfer speeds, which could impact certain users.
User Reviews and Testimonials
Many users report positive experiences with Revolut, praising the platform’s competitive fees, seamless currency exchange, and innovative features. The user-friendly app and instant spending notifications also receive widespread acclaim, with customers appreciating the ease of use and transparency offered by the platform.
Some users report negative experiences with the platform, citing issues such as delayed transfers, account freezes, or difficulties with customer support. While these experiences are not universal, they highlight potential areas for improvement within the platform.
Common Themes and Trends
Common themes in user reviews include praise for the platform’s competitive fees, extensive currency support, and innovative features. However, some users express concerns about weekend exchange rate markups and varying transfer speeds, indicating potential areas for improvement.
Pricing and Fees
Revolut’s pricing structure varies depending on the user’s account type, with fees for certain features and functionalities increasing as users move from Standard to Premium and Metal accounts. Users should carefully review the fees associated with their chosen account type to ensure they select the most cost-effective option for their needs.
ATM Withdrawal Fees and Limits
The platform imposes limits on ATM withdrawals, with free withdrawals available up to a certain threshold, depending on the user’s account type. Beyond this limit, additional fees apply. Users should be aware of these restrictions and fees when planning their ATM usage.
Currency Conversion Fees and Markups
Revolut offers competitive exchange rates and minimal fees for most currency conversions. However, weekend and market hours markups may apply to certain transactions. Users should take these markups into consideration when planning their currency exchanges.
Additional Service Fees
Some additional service fees may apply, depending on the user’s account type and transaction activity. Users should review the platform’s fee structure and terms of service to ensure they understand any potential costs associated with their account.
Availability and Accessibility
Revolut is available in a growing number of countries, including the United Kingdom, European Economic Area, United States, and Australia. The platform continues to expand its reach, aiming to provide its services to customers around the globe.
The Revolut app is compatible with both Android and iOS devices, ensuring accessibility to a wide range of users. The platform’s commitment to mobile-first design ensures that users can manage their finances seamlessly, regardless of their device type.
Revolut supports multiple languages, catering to the diverse needs of its user base. By offering support for a variety of languages, the platform ensures that users can navigate the app and access customer support services in their preferred language.
REvolut Pros and Cons
- Competitive fees and minimal currency conversion charges
- Extensive currency support, with over 150 currencies available
- A wide range of features and functionalities, including budgeting tools, P2P payments, and savings Vaults
- User-friendly app design and instant spending notifications
- Access to third-party financial services and integrations with popular accounting software
- Potential weekend and market hours exchange rate markups
- Varying transfer speeds, with some transactions taking longer than others
- Some users report difficulties with customer support or account-related issues
In conclusion, Revolut offers a comprehensive suite of financial services and features that cater to the diverse needs of its users. With competitive fees, extensive currency support, and a user-friendly app, the platform provides an attractive alternative to traditional banks and other fintech companies. While there are some drawbacks, such as potential weekend exchange rate markups and varying transfer speeds, the platform’s innovative features and commitment to customer satisfaction make it a strong contender in the digital banking space.
Frequently Asked Questions
Matt is a veteran of the moving industry, a recognized moving expert and is the founder of Mover Focus. Matt holds a Bachelor of Commerce (BCom) majoring in Finance and Marketing and Bachelor of Arts (BA) majoring in Economics and History. He also has completed the EiM (Essentials in International Moving) course from the FIDI Academy. His advice has been featured in Reader’s Digest, Yahoo Finance, MSN Money, Business News Daily and The SpareFoot Blog Go. Read more.