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Supercard announces full launch in the Summer – how does it compare with Curve?

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Supercard, the Travelex-backed foreign currency payment card, has emailed its beta users – a large % of whom were recruited via Head for Points – to say that the scheme is finally going to open up to the public.

(EDIT:  Curve has changed a lot since this article was published.  Please do not rely on the information here.  Instead, please click here to read our detailed 2020 Curve review, which includes a link for a free £10 credit when you sign up.)

I was expecting some sort of announcement from Supercard after the Curve launch.  I am a little surprised by the timing though.

All existing Supercards will stop working on 6th June.  Beta testers and other people who have an expressed an interest will be invited to reapply for a new card later in the Summer – no date given.


I covered Supercard a lot last year.  I have been very quiet about it since, as the beta was not accepting new users, so it is worth a recap of the product.

Like Curve, Supercard is a plastic credit-type card which does not have a credit limit of its own.  Instead, any transaction you make with the Supercard is recharged to a different Visa or Mastercard you own.  There is an app to manage your linked cards and transactions.

This sounds very similar to the Curve card which I wrote about last month and which is due to ship to the first 10,000 users later in March.

The two products are different in some key ways:

Curve has a one-off £35 fee for the basic version, offset by a £10 credit on your first transaction if you are referred by an existing cardholder, whilst Supercard is free.  Curve will have a loyalty programme for users but there are no details yet.

Curve can recharge any Mastercard transaction to an American Express, Visa or Mastercard.  Supercard can only recharge to a Visa or MasterCard.  This means that Curve is the only option if you want to bulk up your Amex spend at non-Amex retailers.

Curve has a 1% fee when used outside the UK.   Supercard has no foreign exchange fee.

Curve can be used in the UK.  It can even be used to withdraw cash from UK ATMs and recharge the withdrawal as a purchase to your American Express card.  Supercard is not meant to be used in the UK.  During the beta process people have been doing it – and Supercard has not, I believe, been imposing the threatened 50p per transaction fine – but I would expect this rule to be applied more firmly when the full roll-out takes place.

The lines are now clearly drawn:

Supercard will be the preferred option for people who want no card fee and want to avoid all foreign exchange fees when spending abroad

Curve will be the preferred option for people who are concerned about reward points (the 1% is likely to be worth paying in return for the rewards offered on a linked Amex card), who need to build up spend on their Amex card to hit a bonus or spend target or who do a lot of UK spending at merchants who do not take American Express.

Of course, as there is likely to be a five month gap between Curve shipping (late March) and Supercard shipping (probably August, after your Summer holiday), you need to factor that in as well.

You can find full details on Curve – and my £10 referral code – in this HfP article from last month.  You can more information on Supercard in this article.

If you want to pre-register interest for Supercard, you can do so here.

Want to earn more points from credit cards? – December 2023 update

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You qualify for the bonus on these cards even if you have a British Airways American Express card:

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You can see our full directory of all UK cards which earn airline or hotel points here. Here are the best of the other deals currently available.

SPECIAL OFFER: Until 9th January 2024, you will receive 30,000 Membership Rewards points (convertible to 30,000 Avios) with American Express Preferred Rewards Gold. You receive 25,000 points if you spend £3,000 in three months and a further 5,000 points if you hold the card for 15 months. You can apply here.

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Earning miles and points from small business cards

If you are a sole trader or run a small company, you may also want to check out these offers:

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Comments (115)

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

  • Tim says:

    My Curve referral code is: pK4vZ is anyone wants £10 off

  • ADS says:

    I’m delighted that Supercard requires users to reapply – as it means that my card will die, without having to phone up their call centre! The list of reasons that I won’t be using Supercard are:

    1) They failure to pick up fraud (when same fraud on another card was prevented)
    2) Their fraud department only works weekdays
    3) You have to phone up and claim any refunds on the card – and when finally transferred, the Fx rate had moved against me
    4) Their Fx rate is approx 1% worse than Halifax Clarity / Lloyds Avios
    5) The card was repeated rejected in shops / ATMs
    6) The description of transactions on statement (of linked card) is useless – have to refer to app
    7) Transaction showed as processed on app – but had *not* actually gone through linked card (hotel pre-authorisation in particular)
    8) The lack of standard credit card protection on purchases (not that I think I’ve ever used it)

    I will be going back to my Lloyds Avios cards for foreign purchases, and my Halifax Clarity card for foreign cash.

  • harry says:

    tbh I’m extremely glad I never bothered with Supercard.

    For the same reasons, Curve can wait.

    You early adopters/ first movers etc can with my enormous blessings enjoy any glitches in your favour such as (potentially) the cash withdrawals on Curve – but whilst I might be a sad old frat I never believe something is too good to be true – as eg Curve surely won’t be.

  • sam wardill says:

    Just got a reply on a declined tx as follows:
    “This is with reference to your query regarding the decline of the below mentioned transactions:
    19/01/2016 11:30 GBP -112.31 ATM KB,PLAZA,BN
    19/01/2016 11:29 GBP -97.66 ATM KB,PLAZA,BN
    Please be informed that this is a common error where the terminal has been registered as chip capable, but in fact is not. So, it appears that the merchant has set their payment terminal up incorrectly. As a result, the transaction cannot follow the necessary authentication and so payment declined.”

    I used my Nationwide debit card to withdraw cash straight after. Does a normal debit card not require chip capable atm whereas Supercard does? Or, alternatively, are Supercard talking complete rubbish? I’m tempted to think the latter because I’m sure I successfully used the same ATM before with Supercard.

    • ADS says:

      i wouldn’t be surprised if Supercard are talking rubbish … they have contradicted themselves when i’ve communicated with them …

  • Rodger McPeppery says:

    “Maximum card usage in one year – £20,000”
    Having to set-up a new card in June will at least over come this issue!

  • Graham Walsh says:

    Yet again Supercard failed me today in Amsterdam, got a cab to my destination and he did it twice and it was declined. Used another card and it worked fine. I even informed my Visa issuer that it is linked to say that I’m travelling, but hey ho. It worked later in the evening to buy some food, but a few minutes later it failed. Tried a 2nd time and it worked. It’s not ready for prime time.

    • Alan says:

      Out if interest, which card issuer are you linked to? Mine is on my old bmi Mastercard (therefore via MBNA) and it has been flawless recently – multiple purchases and ATM withdrawals in Poland and the UK all without issue over the past fortnight. I had lots of issues with them when I first signed up but thankfully it’s been well-behaved recently! Am looking forward to the NFC capability on Curve though, along with being able to charge to Amex. Just hope they get a move on with their Android app…

  • Michael says:

    I’ve been holding out to get my Curve card…. Any ideas on when Curve will announce details of their Rewards scheme?
    I’ve no need for a Tumi wallet, so am slightly reluctant to throw away £40 extra for no good reason, although there might be a very good reason to – depending on the scheme.
    Seems VERY odd they haven’t released details prior to the launch!

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