Revolut & Wise: Best Cards To Save Money Travelling Overseas

Discover how Revolut & Wise can save you money on your overseas travels. Compare features, fees, and benefits to choose the best card for your needs.
Revolut & Wise Revolut & Wise

Imagine walking through Rome’s cobblestone streets with a gelato in your hand, only to realize you’re out of cash. The worry hits you as you think about the high fees your bank charges for spending money abroad. We’ve all felt this way, but there’s a way to handle your money better while traveling.

Revolut and Wise are changing the game with their digital banking solutions. They make managing money abroad easier and cheaper. These cards are perfect for travelers, offering flexibility and savings not found with traditional banks.

Revolut started in 2015 and has grown fast, with over 40 million users by 2023. It supports over 200 countries and has 28 in-app currencies. This makes it a great choice for those who love to travel.


Wise, previously known as TransferWise, has been around since 2011 and has over 16 million customers. It can hold balances in more than 50 currencies and is used in over 200 countries. Wise is a strong competitor to Revolut in the international finance world.

Both Revolut and Wise aim to make managing money abroad easier. They offer great exchange rates and low fees, saving you money on your trips. Whether you’re a seasoned traveler or going abroad for the first time, these services can help you spend smarter and save more.

Understanding International Travel Money Management

Managing your money while traveling abroad is key to a worry-free trip. Many travelers struggle with spending money overseas because of their regular bank accounts. These accounts often have high fees and bad exchange rates. This can cause unexpected costs and financial stress during your journey.

The Need for Financial Flexibility

When you’re exploring new places, having flexible money options is essential. You need to easily get to your money and spend in local currencies without spending too much. Traditional banks don’t meet these needs well, making it tough to manage your money while traveling.

Traditional Bank Account Limitations

Using regular bank accounts for spending money abroad can be expensive. Foreign transaction fees, ATM withdrawal charges, and poor exchange rates take a bite out of your travel budget. These limits can limit how much you can spend and ruin your travel experience.

Digital Banking Solutions

Digital banking offers a new way to handle your travel money. With features like accounts in multiple currencies and good exchange rates, they fix the problems of spending money abroad. Digital banks have easy-to-use apps for managing your account anywhere. They also have cards made for international use, making handling your money abroad easier.

By using digital banking, travellers can have more financial freedom and peace of mind. These new solutions make managing your travel money smarter and more efficient in our connected world.

Introducing Revolut: A Digital Banking Solution for Travelers

Revolut is changing the game in fintech. This UK company offers a digital banking experience made for travellers. It has over 15.5 million users worldwide, making it a top choice for those who love to explore.

The Revolut app is your financial partner when you’re abroad. It lets you handle money in 36 currencies, ideal for spending internationally. You can use your Revolut card anywhere Mastercard and Visa are accepted, which is almost everywhere.

Revolut’s travel card has features that traditional banks don’t offer:

  • Fee-free international transfers up to a set monthly limit
  • Competitive exchange rates
  • Budgeting tools and spending analytics
  • Virtual cards for secure online shopping

Revolut has a free Standard plan, but there are premium options too. These include travel insurance and airport lounge access, great for those who fly often.

Revolut is regulated by the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority. This means your money is secure, but it’s not as protected as with traditional banks.

Revolut’s easy-to-use interface and travel features are changing how we handle money abroad. It’s no surprise this fintech leader has a strong 4.3 out of 5 rating on Trustpilot from over 118,000 users.

How Revolut Works for International Spending

Revolut makes spending money abroad easy with its app and card. It supports many currencies, great for travellers.

Currency Conversion in the Revolut App

The Revolut app lets you switch between 36 currencies. It’s great for planning your travel budget. But, remember, there’s a 1% fee for weekend conversions. And, for amounts over £1,000, there’s a 1% fee too.

Using the Revolut Card Abroad

The Revolut card is accepted where Visa and Mastercard are. You can use it in stores, restaurants, and online. If asked, pick ‘without conversion’ to get Revolut’s rate. But, merchants might add extra charges for card payments.

ATM Withdrawals in Foreign Countries

Revolut lets you withdraw cash at ATMs around the world. In the USA, if you withdraw more than £200 or make over 5 transactions, there’s a 2% fee. Check your plan’s details before you travel.

Revolut is a great tool for travelers. It offers easy currency conversion, wide acceptance, and ATM access. Just watch out for fees and limits in your plan.

Revolut’s Fee Structure and Exchange Rates

Revolut has a great fee structure for travellers. The fees and exchange rates change based on the day and your account type.

Weekday vs. Weekend Exchange Fees

On weekdays, Revolut doesn’t charge for most currency exchanges. But, on weekends and public holidays in Australia, a 1% fee is added to all conversions. This fee helps protect against currency changes when markets are closed.

ATM Withdrawal Limits and Charges

Revolut has different ATM withdrawal limits for each account type. Standard accounts let you withdraw up to $400 for free each month. Premium accounts raise this to $800, and Metal accounts to $1,200. After these limits, a 2% fee kicks in for all withdrawals.

Foreign Currency Spending Limits

Revolut also has spending limits for foreign currency transactions. Standard accounts have a $1,000 monthly limit for free spending. Premium accounts get a $10,000 limit, and Metal accounts offer unlimited spending with a 0.5% fee after a certain point.

It’s important to know about Revolut’s fees, exchange rates, ATM charges, and spending limits to save money while traveling. By picking the right account and understanding these limits, you can cut costs and enjoy Revolut’s services abroad.

Revolut Premium and Metal Plans: Travel Perks and Benefits

Revolut offers two top-tier plans for those who travel often: Premium and Metal. These plans are filled with features to make your trips abroad smoother and cheaper.

Revolut Premium costs $9.99 a month and comes with many travel perks. It includes travel insurance for medical emergencies and trip cancellations. You also get discounts on airport lounge access, great for long waits.

Revolut Metal is for the ultimate travel experience, at $16.99 a month. It gives you all the Premium benefits and more:

  • Unlimited fee-free currency exchange
  • Up to 1% cashback on card spending in 29 currencies
  • $1,200 monthly fee-free ATM withdrawals abroad
  • Exclusive metal card made of reinforced steel

Both plans offer great travel insurance. This covers medical costs abroad, delayed flights, and lost luggage. Metal plan members also get car hire excess coverage and winter sports insurance.

For those who travel a lot, these plans can save you a lot of money. The free currency exchange and ATM withdrawals can pay for the monthly cost. Plus, the travel insurance and lounge access make traveling abroad easier and less stressful.

Wise (formerly TransferWise): An Alternative for International Spending

Wise offers a great way to spend money abroad with its multi-currency account. It’s perfect for travellers and businesses that work across borders. It makes handling money in different countries easy.

The Wise Multi-Currency Account Features

With a Wise multi-currency account, you can hold and exchange over 50 currencies. This means you can manage your money easily in many countries without needing multiple bank accounts. You also get a debit card linked to your account for easy access to your money anywhere.

Wise multi-currency account

Wise Card Usage in Over 150 Countries

The Wise debit card is accepted in over 150 countries, making it great for travellers. You can buy things and take out cash in the local currency. This helps you avoid the high fees that come with using regular bank cards abroad.

Mid-Market Exchange Rates and Transparent Fees

Wise is known for using mid-market exchange rates for currency conversions. This means you get the best value for your money when you spend abroad. They are also upfront about their fees, with costs starting at just 0.41% of the transfer amount.

Wise handles a huge $11 billion every month, all safely and securely. For eligible customers, there’s a 4.85% APY on USD balances if you choose to get interest. Plus, most transfers are done in under 20 seconds, showing how fast and reliable Wise is.

Comparing Revolut & Wise: Key Features for Travelers

Choosing between Revolut and Wise for your next trip can be hard. Both offer great currency support and travel services. But, they have some differences.

Currency Support and Global Reach

Revolut supports 36 currencies for in-app conversion. Wise supports 40. Revolut works where Mastercard and Visa are accepted worldwide. Wise’s card is usable in over 150 countries. This makes both options great for travellers.

Exchange Rates and Fee Structures

Revolut uses its own exchange rate with free weekday conversions. On weekends, they charge 1% for Standard customers and 1.5% for Premium and Metal users. Wise always uses the mid-market rate with a small, clear fee. Their fees range from 0.4% to 2% for international transfers.

Additional Travel Services

Both Revolut and Wise offer multi-currency accounts for international use. Revolut has tiered plans with more travel perks as you pay more. These include free ATM withdrawals up to certain limits and travel insurance in paid plans. Wise has a simple fee structure with no subscriptions. They allow free withdrawals up to £200 monthly from international ATMs.

  • Revolut: Tiered plans, travel insurance, free ATM withdrawals
  • Wise: Simple fee structure, free ATM withdrawals up to £200/month

Your choice between Revolut and Wise depends on your travel needs and spending. Think about where you’re going, how often you travel, and your budget before deciding.

Pros and Cons of Using Revolut for Travel

Revolut advantages and disadvantages for travel money management

Revolut is great for managing money while traveling. You can make payments without extra fees up to certain limits. It supports over 30 currencies, making it easy to use in more than 200 countries.

Revolut also offers competitive exchange rates. The standard account lets you convert up to £1,000 monthly without extra fees. This can save you a lot of money compared to traditional bank cards, which can charge up to 5% for foreign transactions.

However, there are some downsides to using Revolut. If you go over the currency exchange limits or exchange money on weekends, you’ll face a 1% fee. Also, ATM withdrawals have a monthly limit of £200, and going over that will cost you 2%.

  • Free weekday currency exchanges (up to limits)
  • Accepted in 200+ countries
  • Supports 30+ currencies
  • Weekend exchange fees
  • ATM withdrawal limits

Revolut has many features for managing money while traveling. But, it has a tiered plan system. The basic plan is free, but premium features cost between £6.99 and £12.99 a month. Travelers should think about their needs to see if Revolut is the best choice for their spending abroad.

Advantages and Limitations of Wise for International Spending

Wise is a top choice for sending money across borders. It handles about £9 billion in transfers every year. It lets users manage money in 50 different currencies, great for travellers and businesses.

Wise stands out with its clear fee policy. It always uses the real exchange rate for all transfers. This means users get fair rates without surprise charges. You can send up to £5 million in GBP with Wise, making it useful for both personal and business use.

For those who travel often, Wise offers a debit card. It’s easy to use in over 50 countries. You can withdraw cash up to £200 for free, with a small fee after that.

But, Wise isn’t perfect. It has a one-time setup fee of $31 for some currencies. This might be a drawback for those needing many currency accounts. Also, it doesn’t offer some premium features like travel insurance or lounge access that other services do.

  • Supports 50 currencies
  • Uses mid-market exchange rates
  • Allows large transfers up to £5 million
  • Charges a one-time fee for some currency accounts
  • Lacks certain premium travel features

Wise is a great choice for sending money abroad because of its clear fees and wide currency support. But, it’s important to think about your specific needs and travel plans before choosing.

Choosing the Right Card: Factors to Consider

Choosing the best travel card is important. It should match your spending habits and what you want from your travel experience.

Travel Frequency and Destinations

Think about how often you travel and where you go. Wise supports 40 currencies and works in 160 countries. Revolut also covers 70 currencies in 160 countries. If you visit many places, Revolut might be better for you.

Spending Habits and Currency Needs

Look at how you spend money when traveling. Wise uses real exchange rates with fees starting at 0.43%. Revolut doesn’t charge fees for weekday conversions up to a certain limit, then it’s 0.5%. If you travel a lot, Revolut could save you money.

Budget and Premium Features

Think about your budget and what premium features you want. Wise has no ongoing fees but you pay 14 NZD to get a card. Revolut has different plans, some with no fees, others up to 19.99 NZD a month. Their paid plans offer travel insurance and lounge access.

  • Wise: No monthly fees, clear fee structure
  • Revolut: Tiered plans with varying benefits

Your choice should balance costs with the features you want. Carefully think about your needs to pick the best card for your travel style and budget.


When looking at managing money abroad, Revolut and Wise are top choices. They beat traditional banks with smart features for spending overseas. Revolut is great for those who travel a lot, offering free weekday exchange rates and even cryptocurrency trading.

Wise is known for its simple approach. It gives you mid-market rates and clear fees for many currencies. This makes it perfect for travellers who like things straightforward and predictable. The best card for you depends on what you need and how you travel.

Both Revolut and Wise are great for travellers who want to manage their money well. They offer strong points in currency support, exchange rates, and extra services. Picking one means you’re choosing a way to spend money abroad that’s smart and cost-effective. The right choice depends on how you travel, how much you spend, and if you want extra features.

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