Crypto cash back? This London firm is making it happen

Fintech startup Revolut rolls out card that can reward you in bitcoin

John Egan
Personal Finance Writer
Writes trendy stories about credit cards.

Crypto cash back? This London startup is making it happen

Cryptocurrencies like bitcoin have had an uneasy relationship with credit cards. 

Big-name credit card issuers in the U.S., Canada and the U.K. such as Bank of America, Chase and Citigroup have barred cryptocurrency purchases by cardholders.

But now, cryptocurrency and bank cards are being married as part of a new concept in Europe.

A London-based fintech startup called Revolut has rolled out a debit card – one made of black reinforced steel, no less – with cash-back rewards that can come in the form of traditional currencies, such as euros or U.S. dollars, as well as bitcoin and four other cryptocurrencies.

Purchases made outside Europe on the Revolut Metal card will earn 1 percent cash back, according to a report by TheNextWeb, while purchases made within Europe gain only one-tenth of that amount.

Revolut Metal does come at a cost. The contactless card charges an annual fee of £120 ($140) or a monthly fee of £12.99 ($15). However, the card’s perks include concierge services, free travel insurance, disposable virtual cards and even cryptocurrency trading.

See related: Bitcoin credit cards? Mastercard patent suggests it's possible  

Based on those numbers, if you use the card outside Europe, you could score cash-back rewards above and beyond the fees. But if you use the card within Europe, the fees likely will exceed any cash-back rewards.

“We see Revolut Metal as an essential lifestyle product for people of all ages and incomes, ranging from digital nomads to everyday working professionals,” a Revolut representative told TheNextWeb.

For now, Revolut Metal is available only in Europe, where the initial batch of 10,000 cards went to Revolut’s “premium” customers. Revolut does plan to enter the U.S. market later this year, but it’s unclear whether the crypto-reward feature would be available in the States.

 

 


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Updated: 11-16-2018