For the second time in less than a year Revolut is making changes to its fees and charges for standard customers, including changes to ATM withdrawal fees and international money transfers.
We’re big fans of Revolut here at bonkers.ie. The UK-based fintech has literally helped revolutionise banking since its launch only a few years ago with its beautiful and easy-to-use app, its lack of foreign exchange fees and its largely fee-free day-to-day banking.
And despite a few disgruntled customers voicing complaints online about poor customer service, it’s fair to say not a lot of people have a bad word to say about the company.
It’s not surprising therefore that the company continues to go from strength to strength, both in Ireland and worldwide, with over one million customers in Ireland alone.
However, despite all this success, Revolut has yet to make a profit. In fact it had operating losses of over £100 million in 2019.
As such the introduction of new fees and charges, however small, is probably unsurprising. It has investors and shareholders looking for a return on their money after all.
And although the changes announced today should only affect a tiny fraction of Revolut’s users, they are significant nonetheless and come on the back of other charges introduced less than a year ago.
So, what's changing...?
Currently Revolut users can withdraw €200 fee-free a month. After this, a 2% fee is added. It doesn’t matter how many withdrawals you make as long as it’s not more than €200 a month.
Going forward, Revolut is also introducing a limit of five fee-free ATM withdrawals a month as well as the €200 limit. Both of these limits will apply independently meaning you will start paying a fee as soon as you hit one, even if you haven’t hit the other.
The fee will remain at 2% however a new €1 minimum charge is also being added. This means you’ll be charged either €1 or 2%, whichever is greater.
Give me an example...
1. John withdraws €20 five times in March or €100 in total. He has now reached his limit of five withdrawals in a month.
John then makes a sixth withdrawal for €20 in the same month. Even though he hasn't yet withdrawn €200 in total he has hit his ATM withdrawal limit. He will therefore be charged €1 for this withdrawal.
Any subsequent withdrawals in March, however big or small, will incur a further €1 or 2% fee each time - whichever is greater.
2. Claire withdraws €200 in one go in March. She has now reached her limit of €200 a month.
Claire then makes a second withdrawal for €200 in the same month. She will therefore be charged €4 in fees for this withdrawal.
Any subsequent withdrawals in March, however big or small, will incur a further €1 or 2% fee - whichever is greater.
International money transfers
At the moment Revolut does not charge for the following types of money transfers (and this is is not changing):
- Local bank transfers in euro
- Local and international transfers in euro to any country within SEPA (which includes all EU/EEA countries, the UK, and Switzerland)
- Transfers to other Revolut customers (peer-to-peer) in any country in the world
Outside of this - say you want to send money to an account in the USA or Australia - Revolut offers two types of international transfer options at present: “cross-border” transfers and “SWIFT” payments. They each have two separate allowances:
- Standard and Plus customers currently get one free cross border transfer per month, then pay €0.50 per transfer. SWIFT transfers cost either €3 or €5, depending on the currency.
- Premium and Metal customers do not pay fees for cross-border transfers and get one free SWIFT transfer per month, and then pay €3 or €5, depending on the currency.
Revolut is now combining “cross-border” and “SWIFT” transfers into one category it calls “international payments”.
International transfer fees will range from between €0.30 and €5, depending on how much you transfer and where. Premium and Metal customers will still benefit from an allowance of payments for free. However standard customers will no longer get one free cross border transfer each month.
- Standard and Plus. No fee-free allowance.
- Premium. One fee-free international payment per month.
- Metal. Three fee-free international payments per month.
Revolut also allows customers to easily buy and sell shares through its app at a competitive price.
However it’s restructuring its trading allowances and pricing as follows:
- Standard users will receive only one commission-free trade per month (previously 3).
- Plus users will receive three commission-free trades per month (no change).
- Premium users will receive five commission-free trades per month (previously 8).
- Metal users will continue to receive unlimited commission-free trading.
Lastly, the custody fee will change from 0.01% of the asset value per annum to 0.12% of asset value per annum.
When will the changes take effect?
The trading changes will take effect from February 18th, while the changes to ATM withdrawal fees and international money transfer charges will take effect on April 9, 2021.
Not all bad news
Revolut still provides exceptional value for money and has a premium, first-class app.
Also, as the acceleration towards a cashless society continues, Revolut’s own data shows that fewer than 1% of its customers actually withdraw from an ATM more than five times a month.
But if you do like using cash and need it for your day-to-day living then a Revolut standard account probably isn’t the best option for you.
With regards to trading, Revolut is still far cheaper than the main incumbent stockbrokers by a huge margin and it remains the only Irish current account to even offer the service.
And as far as transferring money goes, it’s still entirely free to send money to other Revolut users anywhere in the world at the click of a button through the app or to send money in euro to any country in SEPA.
And of course you’ll still get all your other day-to-day banking for free as well as zero fees on foreign exchange purchases up to €1,000 a month.