Curve card ‘pauses’ Amex functionality

Let’s keep Curve discussion here, please, to stop other threads getting clogged up.

I will do an analysis on this tomorrow.  My gut feeling in the short term is that – assuming you can easily spend £1,000 on Curve in the next three months (and £600 of that can be free ATM withdrawals linked to a MasterCard or Visa, earning points) – you might as well do that.

You will get the £35 credit, which if you have the basic card means you are in the same financial position as taking a refund, and you still have the Curve card for overseas use (if you don’t have a 0% card) and ATM use and for places where it is treated as a debit card.

And, of course, if you take a refund you would need to pay £35 again later if / when Amex functionality returns. If you have the premium version, the maths is different and you may find the full refund better than a £50 credit.

It is always fun and games working with start-ups ….!

Curve prepaid MasterCard

The email:

I’m Shachar, the CEO of Curve. Today we’ve got some disappointing news. American Express have asked us to pause their functionality with Curve – which means you will not be able to use your Curve card with your Amex for the time being. This begins at midday on May 31st UK time – you’ll shortly receive another email with practical details of what will happen when we pause the American Express functionality – your Curve will continue to work with MasterCard and Visa.

American Express want to ensure there is a seamless customer support process for their Members when using their Card with Curve. We’re continuing discussions with their management, and hope that American Express decide to come back to Curve soon.

We’re continuing to build something big at Curve. The first ever platform to connect you to your everything money – transforming the way you handle your finances, bringing value and saving you time and money. We’re already connecting up all your bank cards, tracking your expenses in real time and saving you money with zero FX fees when you travel. This is just the beginning – we’re working hard on future features such as the ability to move charges between funding cards after you’ve paid, bespoke loyalty rewards and cash-backs, peer-to peer payments and much more.

As a big thank you for being one of Curve’s early adopters we are giving Blue card members £35 and Black card members £50 worth of Curve Points if you spend a total of £1000 over the next three months. You’ll be able to spend your Curve Points at any merchant that accepts MasterCard using your Curve. Please see our FAQs for further details.

We hope you choose to stay with us to continue the exciting journey we’ve begun together. Please write to me directly at – I’m happy to answer any questions you might have.

I’ll keep you updated.


Shachar Bialick

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  1. Ingvar says:

    I’ve only had the card for a month, but have already gotten more than £35 of value out of it.

    I still use my Amex wherever it is accepted, and Curve elsewhere. If we all do this, it just a lot more money goes through the Amex card than would otherwise be the case, and that we have the full Amex customer service available for issues with Amex-accepting merchants.

    We should all write to Amex and tell them this.

  2. I’ve just encountered another issue that I haven’t seen mentioned on here: I put through two GBP payments to a UK retailer recently – one about £1900 and the other about £1600 (3 days apart). They have appeared on my Amex statement in USD to Wirecard, with the associated 2.99% Non-Sterling Transaction fee!! I’m not even sure if the exchange rate converts back correctly, I’ll have to check my notes when I get home. They showed as USD in the app, with the correct GCP figure though. Anyone else?

    As I can’t phone Curve to challenge, I’ll try Amex first, but I’m guessing that they’ll refer me back to Curve. Ho-hum…

    • I had that problem too. It’s because some identifiers are the same as in the US.

      To rectify, download the latest version of the app, select the card, click the “info” icon and then edit. You will then be able to change the funding currency.

      If you contact support they say they will refund you the excess costs (likely quite a bit as you’re hit both ways), though might take a while (I’m still waiting – same happened to me).

      • It’s another Curve own-goal (ie problem, their own fault, don’t blame somebody else’s software, they should have run a proper beta first).

        They should be able to pick up the country of residence of the cardholder. If Keith is a UK Curve cardholder, transaction/ buying in GBP @ a UK retailer, then it should have all been very obvious. Funding currency GBP. Item bought GBP. No non-sterling transaction fee. No exchange rate issues.

        Further irritating Amex when customer services are asked to help?


        • Jonny is correct in that the problem is that the card is “issued in the US”, hence it was processed in USD and converted back into GBP (not GCP as in my previous post!). What’s really odd/surprising is that this is my wife’s BAPP card (the letter B stands for…!) My BAPP card is not producing the same behaviour.

          To give them their due, Curve answered emails (albeit very slowly) and confirmed the problem, and have said that they will refund the losses. I haven’t provided the info for this yet as I’ve only just returned from my trip.

          They also directed me to how to change the card currency as Jonny said, although this is now irrelevant, as the card has been deleted. I’m not sure that I could have done this anyway, as the app is pretty unresponsive on an iPod, which I used as it’s the only iOS device I have access to. The only requirement for the app was iOS 8.4 or later, and I met that. They are now saying that the app is “not optimised for the iPod”. Lack of an Android version is another issue for me.

  3. Indigo says:

    Why are/were the Amex transactions so problematic though?

    Has anyone experienced the double transaction issues on MC or Visa linked cards?

  4. Being an expert in this field I can think of many many reasons why Amex or indeed any Issuer would not want to play with Curve. Apple went to great lengths to ensure issuer and scheme branding was maintained and the rails laid down by the schemes can be used by banks to launch their own HCE based mobile payment apps. Who knows one day even Apple may cave in.

  5. Gerard says:

    I can’t seem to access the Curve website. I get an error message saying the site can’t be reached. Is this just me and my computer or are other people having issues?

  6. I’ve made a petition for amex to accept curve again, I Spoke to their CEO, who said this could potentially help the case, if we all get behind this, it might show AMEX what a mistake their making..
    Sign and share the petition guys;

  7. A real shame AMEX left Curve, although after following Curve since new year they have had pretty poor reviews and nothing has gone as they seemed to have planned. AMEX was surely their biggest selling point, I can’t see any logical reason to use the card otherwise??

  8. Chris C says:

    Just got back from holiday and immediately requested a cancellation/refund. Without Amex, the curve card is utterly redundant, the 1% FX fee means I may as well go for a clarity card and just stick to my normal debit/amex combo (same number of cards). The £35 in “Curve Points” isn’t necessarily a statement credit either so definitely going to wait until/if curve get Amex support back. If not, hard to see a future for them