Revolut Review (Oct 2021) – Everything You Need to Know

Could Revolut Be Your New Banking Solution?

Are you tired of relying on multiple platforms to handle different aspects of your money? If so, Revolut could be the answer. 

Revolut offers a one-stop-shop for all things finances, providing everything you need to save, send, invest, and spend your money well. You'll also enjoy the freedom of spending and transferring money abroad without fuss and extortionate fees. 

Sound good? Then stick with us as we take an in-depth look at Revolut. This mobile app promises comprehensive support for both personal and business accounts.

Revolut may be one of many international payment platforms. Still, it offers some stand-out features, making it one of the fastest-growing finance apps on the market. 

That's enough preamble; let's dive into the nitty-gritty of this review…

Revolut Review: A Brief Overview

revolut review - homepage

As we just hinted at, Revolut is the fastest growing digital bank and offers an impressive number of built-in features and optional extras, but where did it all begin?

Launched in 2015 by Vlad Yatsenko and Nikolay Storonsky, a former trader, Storonsky grew Revolut out of his frustration with the unfair conversion rates that came with transferring and receiving money abroad. What began simply as a prepaid card and app quickly expanded to include a vast range of features. It now has over 5 million users worldwide using the platform to manage their everyday finances.

With the goal of putting money management back into account holder's hands, the multi-currency debit card and its complimentary app are designed to help you better understand your finances and ensure you get the most out of your money. 

That means no unscrupulous currency exchange fees. With Revolut, you only ever use the Real Exchange Rate.

So, while at its core Revolut is a digital payment service, its sheer volume of services makes it so much more than just that. So, whether you’re someone looking to better understand their money or a business owner or freelancer after a secure way of sending and receiving business transactions, Revolut comes in handy. 

Revolut Pros and Cons

Revolut Pros 👍

  • It's ultra-fast to set up: You can create an account within minutes, and from setup to approval, you rarely have to wait for more than a couple of days.
  • No credit checks are needed to set up the account.
  • You get access to a free multi-currency current account with the flexibility of holding up to 30 different currencies.
  • You don't incur any fees for using your card abroad.
  • The app is very user friendly.
  • You'll enjoy unrivaled control over all aspects of your finances.
  • There’s no overdraft, so there's no risk of accidentally going into the red.
  • You get access to 24-hour customer service.
  • It's easy to save you money with Revolut's ‘vaults' feature. 
  • Excellent fraud prevention tools
  • The budget feature works well to track not only how much you’re spending but where you’re spending to identify areas where you could tighten your belt.

Revolut Cons 👎

  • Unlike some of Revolut's competitors like Monzo, it isn't currently a fully licensed bank. So, if something goes wrong, you're not covered by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) up to £85,000. That said, you do get some degree of protection because Revolut's regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).
  • The foreign exchange rate fluctuates at weekends.
  • There are limited free cash withdrawals.
  • There isn't an option for face-to-face consultation, as, at the time of writing, Revolut doesn't have any existing branches.
  • There isn't an option to create a joint account.

Revolut Review: Revolut's Pricing

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Getting started with Revolut needn’t be costly. In fact, depending on the particular feature you’re looking for, you could create a personal or business Revolut account today for nothing at all! 

The first step is choosing the right plan for you, so let’s look at the plans on offer, how much they'll set you back, and what you can expect in return:

The Standard Account: (Free)

  • You can spend in over 150 major currencies (euros, USD, GBP, etc.) using the interbank exchange rate.
  • You can exchange money in 28+ fiat currencies up to $1,000 a month (no hidden fees)
  • Fee-free ATM withdrawals for up to $300 a month
  • A free Revolut card (there's a delivery charge)
  • Generate 0.25% APY on your savings
  • You get instant access to two cryptocurrencies (like Bitcoin)
  • You get a Revolut Junior account for one kid.

The Revolut Premium Plan: ($9.99 a month)

You get everything in the Free package, plus:

  • Free ATM withdrawals for up to $600 a month
  • Overseas medical insurance
  • Global express delivery
  • Priority customer support
  • You'll generate 0.50% APY on your savings.
  • You get a premium card with exclusive designs.
  • You'll get disposable virtual cards.
  • LoungeKey Pass access
  • You'll enjoy free lounge passes for you (and one other) if your flight is delayed by less than an hour.
  • Revolut Junior accounts for up to two kids.

The Metal Plan: ($16.99 a month)

You get everything listed above, plus:

  • Surcharge-free ATM withdrawals for up to $1,200 a month
  • Delayed baggage and delayed flight insurance
  • An Exclusive Revolut Metal card
  • You'll get free lounge passes for you (and up to three friends_ if your flight is delayed by under an hour.
  • You'll get Revolut Junior accounts for up to five kids.
  • Once free SWIFT transfer each month.

The above plans relate to personal accounts. Suppose it’s a business account you’re after. In that case, pricing differs again, and the structures become a little more in-depth as they can be scaled up or down, in-line with your business growth. There's also a separate set of options for freelancers.

Don’t worry; even with a Revolut business account, you can still get up and running for absolutely nothing. That said, there are three paid options: The Grow, Scale, and Enterprise plans, which increase in price, respectively. To find out more and to see which suits your current business needs best, check out Revolut's pricing page for more details.

Revolut Review: Transfer Fees

One of Revolut's stand-out features is its affordability, offering free cash transfers within your foreign exchange allowance limit. This is great if accessing affordable exchange rates isn't your primary reason for using Revolut. As if you rely heavily on cross-currency bank transfers, you could face a fee of 0.5% on the amount exchanged when you go beyond your allowance.

For this reason (along with others, of course), the different price plans are helpful. If you’re likely to transfer money regularly, opting for one of Revolut's premium accounts empowers you to do so without incurring hefty charges.

Typically, you can expect Revolut's exchange rate to be much more competitive than bureau-de-changes and most other card suppliers. However, it’s worth noting, Revolut's rates differ at weekends. During this time, you can expect a mark up between 0.5% and 2.5%.

Revolut Review: Payments

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Whether at home or abroad, Revolut allows you to pay your way with either a virtual or physical card. Both are free (no transaction fees), but you'll have to cover postage costs if you opt for a physical card (which varies depending on your chosen delivery method).

Revolut Review: Physical Card

You get a prepaid Mastercard or Visa with contactless abilities (which one you're assigned depends on your location). You can use this at ATMs as well as most retailers both at home and abroad. You can top up the card up with your domestic currency or exchange it for a different currency. If you opt for the latter, you'll lock in at the current exchange rate, meaning that if the rate drops, you can still use it without issue!

Alternatively, you can use your card abroad as-is. Revolut will automatically apply the correct currency with the exchange rate that's right for that moment. 

Either way, you're required to set up a PIN for your physical card to enable chip-and-pin payments and magstripe card payments. 

Revolut's exceptional security settings enable you to freeze your card at the touch of a button via the app. You can also disable cash withdrawals and eCommerce transactions if you suspect your card is being used fraudulently. 

Revolut Review: Virtual Card

Revolut review

Much like the physical card, the virtual counterpart connects to your account on the Revolut app. Where, again, you can easily control your virtual card. 

A virtual card is free to order and takes next-to-no time to set up, but of course, with no physical card, there's no pin, and it can’t, therefore, be used to withdraw cash at an ATM. 

Additionally, the virtual card lacks some of the other security features that accompany the physical card, including:

  • Magstripe payment disabling
  • Location-based security
  • Contactless payment disabling
  • ATM withdrawal disabling
  • eCommerce transaction disabling

However, there are some perks to opting for the virtual card, especially if you do most of your spending online. A virtual card can protect you against online card fraud as they're deleted every few months and replaced with a new one.

Suppose you opt for the Metal plan. In that case, you get access to unlimited disposable virtual cards, meaning the card details will change after every transaction is made. This makes it very difficult for hackers to track your online billing info and infiltrate your payment details. Not to mention, even if an untrustworthy website leaks your card credentials, you'll remain safe from fraud as the card information is no longer correct.

Revolut Review: Features

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When it comes to features, Revolut truly outshines its competition. It offers users a wide range of benefits, breaking its features down into a handful of categories, which differ depending on whether you’re using a personal or business account. However, some features crossover both styles of account. 

That said, let’s start by looking at the features available for personal account users:

Account:

  • Linked accounts: Thanks to Revolut's open banking facilities, you'll enjoy unrivaled spending control. Simply connect all your external bank accounts with the Revolut app to get an overview of your finances from the convenience of one place. 
  • Budgeting and analysis: You can set monthly budgets based on real-time analytics. Here, you'll get the full picture of the state of your accounts, which works wonders for staying on track for the month. Not only that, but the app uses smart technology to predict your spending habits based on past use. With this info to hand, Revolut provides customized, helpful tips on how to budget better.
  • Cards: From setting spending limits to freezing a lost or stolen card, and with an award-winning anti-fraud system in place, you have full control over your card settings. Revolut also offers a unique single-use card for when you're shopping online or somewhere new or unfamiliar. As their name suggests, these cards can only be used once. Then, once payment's made, the card details change so your account can never be compromised. And – you can use these one-use cards in over 150 countries with competitively low exchange rates.
  • Junior accounts: Introduce the children to money management in a controlled way with Revolut's junior account. These are designed for kids, but fear not, they're completely controlled by you, the parent. You can track their spending, freeze and unfreeze their card, and it comes with a Junior app designed to help kids better understand money management.
  • Pockets: Don’t give your bills or outgoings a second thought by creating money pockets in advance. When you’re paid, the correct amount for these expenses is automatically moved out of your account and into your pockets. Gone are the days where you had to worry about accidentally missing a payment.

Wealth:

  • Stocks: Are you thinking about investing your money into stocks? If so, you'll be pleased to hear that Revolut lets you do just that, commission-free and within your monthly allowance. To help, the app also provides access to Global Market News so that you can stay up to date with your favorite companies and the state of their stocks. 
  • Crypto: Revolut makes investing in cryptocurrencies convenient and straightforward, which is ideal if you’re still a beginner. The app makes it effortless to exchange Bitcoin, Ether, Stellar – to name a few – and you can do so in over 30 currencies. For more experienced crypto investors, you can set up price alerts and auto exchanges to stay ahead of the game.
  • Commodities: From gold and silver to other precious metals- you can quickly and easily get started with exchanging these commodities from inside Revolut's app.
  • Vaults: Is there something you’ve got your eye on? If you're nodding as you're reading this, consider putting your money into a Revolut vault and save up for that thing you want. You can save money in over 30 currencies, including crypto and commodities. Also, if you're saving for an event with friends or family, you can open a Group Vault to pool your savings together.
  • Spare change round-ups: Revolut will round up your card purchases to the nearest whole number. This difference is then stored in your Vault, where it's safely stashed away for a rainy day. Or, depending on your plan – you can opt to convert your spare change into cryptocurrency, transforming it into an investment. The app also allows you to multiply your spare change by as much as ten times its original amount before it goes into your savings – which works wonders if you need a push to save more!
  • Money transfers: Wherever you are in the world, you can pay and be paid without any hidden fees. With over 30 currencies to choose from and using the Interbank Exchange Rate, transferring money has never been easier.
  • Group bills: Never fumble over paying your share of a bill again with group bills. Effortlessly track, settle, and split bills all from one place, instantly. Whether you’re paying your part of the monthly rent or making a one-off payment, simply input your share, and Revolut will work out how much you owe. And, if you’re owed money, the app will send a polite reminder, saving you from any uncomfortable conversations.
  • Subscriptions: This feature provides you with a simple overview of all your subscriptions, direct debits, and recurring payments. If any outdated subscriptions have fallen under the radar, you can quickly block them with a tap, helping you tighten your spending.

revolut vaults

Extras:

  • Rewards: You'll enjoy exclusive cashback offers from a range of well-loved brands. Not only does this reward scheme earn you cash back, but it also creates personalized offers based on your shopping habits.
  • Donations: Donating to your favorite charity is made simple, and with no hidden fees, they’ll receive 100% of your gift. Revolut partners with a range of well-known global charities and various ways you can donate, including on-off gifts and recurring payments.
  • Overseas insurance: Only pay insurance for the days you’re abroad, thanks to Revolut's unique geolocation technology. This insurance covers both emergency dental and medical travel insurance, and reimbursements are paid quickly to your Revolut account.
  • Device insurance: From as little as just £1 a week, you can get mobile phone insurance, wherever you are in the world, against all accidental damage. This includes damage done outside of the warranty and can be carried across multiple mobile devices.

revolut rewards

There's also a range of additional features designed to support business owners, allowing you to accept payments at fantastic rates from anywhere in the world. And, with next-day payment settlements, you won’t have to wait days or weeks for your funds to clear.

As a Business Revolut account holder, you can benefit from the features identified above. Plus, you can also open multi-currency accounts. These enable you to make international transfers across 28 different currencies.

All business transfers are done at the real interbank exchange rate. You can also use Revolut's analytics to track all your ingoings and outgoings and keep a handle on company spending. 

In short, a business Revolut account allows you to monitor, send, request, and receive money securely and at the best possible rates anytime, anywhere. 

Revolut Security

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Revolut has pretty much covered all bases to offer you a safe and professional service when it comes to security. Some of their most notable security measures include:

  • Fingerprint identification: You have the option of securely logging into your account using your unique fingerprint
  • Customizable features: For example, you can disable functions like eCommerce payments and withdrawals where fraudulent behavior is suspected. You can also quickly freeze your card with just the click of a button.
  • Disposable virtual cards: You can change your card details after every online payment, which goes a long way to protecting you from online scammers. Even if someone steals the card credentials, these types of cards can only be used once, so they're practically useless if they get into the wrong hands. 
  • The Sherlock anti-fraud system: This provides real-time alerts regarding fraudulent activity.

Revolut Review: Customer Support

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Although 24/7 customer support was once a premium feature, Revolut has now opened it up to all customers. So, wherever you are in the world, you can launch Revolut's app and talk with a support agent about any issues you’re having. 

For an instant response, the in-app chat function can be located at the bottom of the screen. Or, for less pressing matters, you can email Revolut's customer service team at any time. Users also have full access to the Revolut community. Here you can converse with other Revolut users and experts. This is the perfect place to trade tips and advice! Or, you can consult with the online help center. Here you'll find the answers to frequently asked questions as well as plenty of helpful user tips.

Revolut Review: The App

When it comes to Revolut, as you've probably already guessed, the app is the hub of everything you do. It’s where you go to manage all aspects of your finances. The app itself is free to download and offers a simple to use interface.

Revolut customers can use Apple Pay, Google Pay, contactless, or chip and pin payments with a physical card. All actions you take send notifications to your phone (or Apple Watch if you download the Apple Watch app), making it straightforward to keep on top of things. 

From the home screen of the app, you can navigate to one of four areas;

  1. Your accounts
  2. Cards
  3. Linked accounts 
  4. Junior accounts

Or you can choose to navigate to other areas of the app. For instance, checking your investments, sending payments, setting up shared bills, accessing additional features, or even earning rewards. 

Navigating your way around the Revolut app is nothing short of intuitive. With very little time, you can familiarize yourself with where everything is. It really is as straightforward as a few clicks to take action or review an account, making it incredibly accessible for all types of users. 

Revolut Review: Signing Up

If simple is what you’re after, Revolut has all you need to get started. They say you can get a bank account set up in less than one minute. With no arduous paperwork to sift through, the process is much less daunting than signing up with a traditional bank.

The entire signup process can be done via the app. You simply need to verify your phone number. Once your details have been filled in, you'll be invited to make a deposit from an existing account, which essentially acts as an initial security check.

You will then be requested to send proof of ID by way of an uploaded image of your passport or driver’s license. You will typically receive confirmation of your identity by text within just a few minutes. 

Once setup is complete, you can select your preferred subscription plan, order your cards, and begin spending.

Are You Ready to Start Using Revolut?

Now that we're at the end of our Revolut review, there’s no denying that Revolut offers customers something truly unique. It's clearly much more than a platform for transferring money abroad. In fact, its services are so varied and fine-tuned that it could serve as someone's sole account if they wished.

It’s a fantastic option for younger individuals who are still learning the ropes of saving money. Its vast range of control features provides a safe introductory experience. Moreover, it provides some of the most competitive exchange rates on the market, making it an ideal choice if you do lots of cross-currency transfers.

Are you considering opening a Revolut account? Or, do you think you'll opt for one of Revolut's competitors, like Transferwise? Either way, tell us all about it in the comments box below. We can't wait to hear from you!

Revolut
Rating: 4.0 - Review by

Rosie Greaves

Rosie Greaves is a professional content strategist who specializes in all things digital marketing, B2B, and lifestyle. In addition to e-commerce platforms, you can find her published on Reader's Digest, G2, and Judicious Inc. Check out her website Blog with Rosie for more information.