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Curve Card now available to the public as a debit card

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Curve Card, the Mastercard that allows you to merge all of your Mastercard and Visa cards into one product, launches to the general public today.

It had previously been available only to anyone who had self-employed income.  It had a generous cashback rewards scheme despite being free because it could charge higher fees to retailers.

The consumer version will be less generous, because Curve does not have any fee arbitrage to play with.  There will be a rewards scheme available soon, however, and I will let you know when it launches.

Put simply, every transaction you charge to Curve is recharged to a linked Visa or Mastercard.  Via the Curve app you can select which card is charged per transaction, allowing you to add your debit card and various Visa and Mastercard credit cards and then switch between them at will.

Financially there are two reasons to use Curve:

You can withdraw £200 of cash per month from an ATM and have it charged to your credit card as a purchase – this means it earns miles and points. 

Foreign currency transactions made on Curve are recharged to your linked Visa or Mastercard in Sterling with a 1% foreign exchange adjustment.  This makes it a better deal than using the underlying card which is likely to have a 3% FX fee.

There will, soon, be a rewards scheme of some sort

There are more practical features too, such as the ability to export your spending data for analysis and the ability (as I found out myself in November when I lost my wallet) to lock the card from your phone.  As Curve is contactless, it is also a way of making any non-contactless Visa or Mastercard you have into a contactless one.

The Curve website is here if you want to know more.  You need to download the Curve app for your phone and order a card from there if you want to try it out.

If you use a refer-a-friend code when you sign up – my code is OQB4J – you will receive 500 Curve Rewards points.  These are worth £5 off any purchase made with your Curve Card.

(Want to earn more miles and points from credit cards?  Click here to visit our dedicated airline and hotel travel credit cards page or use the ‘Credit Cards Update’ link in the menu bar at the top of the page.)

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Comments

  1. Does Curve now work with Apple Pay if it is now a master card and not a preloaded card- It did not before

    • It doesn’t work with android pay so I’d imagine it’s the same with Apple. The financial institution behind the card has to support the payment method. I think you can’t use Tesco bank cards either

  2. I think it should be pointed out that using this will revoke any S75 card protection so best used for coffees rather than expensive electrical goods, holidays, stuff you might ever want to claim for etc.

  3. Janet Thomas says:

    Does anyone know if the Curve app can be downloaded onto an i-pad instead of a phone?

    • Yes – I don’t have an iphone so use it on an ipad (from my work – I wouldn’t ever buy one but they let me keep the old one after replacing)

  4. I contacted Curve this morning as I had my original Curve account suspended last year as I could not provide evidence of a business although I answered all the questions truthfully at application and it was accepted. They have confirmed I am not on the very long wait list and that they will just reactivate my account when they issue the new card but it wont be till sometime in February.

  5. OT: £125 on offer for switching to a natwest current account including the basic select account with no minimum monthly payment. As far as I can see there is no need to transfer DD but £1500 needs to be paid in the first month. Available to both existing and new customers who switch. Details on their website.

  6. Can only see their Freedom rewards and Hilton cards when I look now.

  7. @Matt – Tesco debit or credit card, assuming they still do hotels.com vouchers.

  8. OT: I am thinking of opening the Lloyds Avios Credit Card. I can see one of the benefits is the no FX fees when abroad. What about when we are not abroad and we pay in a different currency such as booking a hotel in say Zurich in CHF instead of GBP. Apologies if it’s a silly question but I pay for a lot of stuff in USD etc so wanted to know. Thank you.

  9. Neil Donoghue says:

    Is there champagne in the QF business lounge? I know there is in Cathay but I’m due to fly next week and haven’t seen the new QF lounge. The champagne will be the decider…And the dumplings of course!

    • I think there is but only for F passengers or some odd restriction?

      • Neil Donoghue says:

        Thanks Rob! I’ll pop in for a quick gin and then head over to Cathay. Flying out to Helsinki for a quick tier point run to kick off 2018.

  10. OT: RFS booked in CE to Madrid at end of Feb, both inbound and outbound in the 789. I’m a bronze member… any chance of me blagging a sest in first? Do they open 72 hours before departure? Or is the cabin not used?

    • roberto says:

      I did one of these in November and was on the 777 but they released the WT+ seats to the economy pax three days out and due to low load did not open the first section as far as I could see. YMMV of course but keep checking.

      You’re bronze so will be able to book your initial seat 7 days out of course.

    • It will be closed unless business is full.

  11. (Slightly OT although BA Amex related): Interesting datapoint for the HFP community – when booking a BA flight today, I had a page (just before the final payment page) offering me to sign up for the BA Amex, with the following message:

    “Receive a £50 statement credit and 1,000 bonus Avios points when you get a new BA Amex credit card:
    – Receive a £50 statement credit on the BA Amex credit card when you spend £100 in the first three months of membership
    – Get 1,000 bonus Avios when you spend £500 on the card in the first three months of membership
    – Earn 1 Avios for virtually every £1 you spend on everyday p[urchases

    Perhaps a sign of things to come?

    • They’ve been doing this for months. Used to be a very bad deal for the PP, this is OKish for the free card compared to signing up directly.

    • Just done a dummy booking and it comes up. Only issue is you would lose out on a possible 18k referral ..however the cash would offset that a lot

  12. Marcelo says:

    Completely agree. I have an Aqua and very happy with it. Have used already in 3 different countries and the card has never been denied. The low limit and not being contactless is quite annoying though (the latter one Curve can solve).

  13. OT: Sorry if I already posted this but didn’t seem to have gone through first time. Can anyone confirm that after gold to PLAT upgrade any payment made on the Gold card immediately counts towards the platinum bonus spend? And then can you immediately refer someone else for a gold card and receive the 18K referral? We have to book an Airbnb this week and I’d like to make use of the spending opportunity regarding the bonus target etc.

  14. done any comparisons on AMEX fx rates v Curve MasterCard? Curve charge 1% but Amex rates around 1.5% worse CHFGBP it seems they go CHFUSD then USDGBP paying a small spread each time so the Lloyds Avios Amex points come at a cost – it’s not a fee free conversion after all. Worth more investigation I think when comparing cards

    • Jonathan says:

      MSE did a visa MasterCard comparison, you may find Amex in there for completeness.

      MasterCard is the most competitive but obviously the rates jump around a little.

      With regards to the triangulation of FX through USD it’s pretty standard in capital markets. There are some pairs which quote directly (and I think CHFGBP happens to be one) but thats not the reason for the implicit cost you’re seeing. Bid mid spread on GBPUSD and USDCHF is under 5bps (0.05%) for each.

    • TGLoyalty says:

      Also the card providers set the rate the day before and its the rate at the point when the transaction posts not when it is actually made so some of the spread could be fx fluctuation.

      Does Curve use the mastercard rate or its own ‘live’ spot rate? I seem to remember it differed at different times throughout the day which is different to how the card providers do it but could be wrong.

    • oddly the fx rate has changed by 1.5% between pending and confirmed transaction status. so I retract my comment. its odd because the fx rate has not moved much over the last 48 hours. Perhaps when reserving the credit line a built in margin is added, and then the actual transaction is struck a little later. Happy with my rate now

  15. Is it possible to use Curve as the payment card attached to an Uber account?

  16. Mark Priest says:

    Re-instated my account two days ago (was cancelled) and today received a new card.

    Although it’s a pre-paid business. NOT a debit which I specifically asked for.

  17. Mark Priest says:

    I have and they’re sending me another card 🙂

  18. Hi. Quick question regarding the curve card, I had one years ago and stopped using it when they stopped allowing the link to Amex.
    I’ve reactivated the app and hopefully ill get a new card. I’ve got an upcoming trip to the middle eats and am hoping to take advantage of the lower fx rates.
    Would it better to use this for foreign cash withdrawals – with a UK debit card linked. Also when using abroad, shall I ask to be charged in £ or in the foreign currency? Thanks,
    Mo.

    • Ask to be charged in the foreign currency, otherwise you get ripped off on the rate.

      It is best to link Curve to a Visa or MasterCard credit card as long as it earns point – it will still work with ATM withdrawals up to £200 per month. You can then switch it over to a debit in the Curve app.

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