Cash machines have conquered the world. There are even a couple of lonely ATMs in Antarctica. And, with the near-universal acceptance of payment processors like MasterCard, the travel money card has sounded a decisive death knell for travelers cheques.
Travel money cards provide a similar degree of security as credit or debit cards. If they’re lost or stolen, you can cancel them. It sounds straightforward, but the catch is that you need to do this before the thief uses your card.
And, if your travel money card were to be cloned, you’d be none the wiser – that is, until you next use your card and find that your balance has dropped to zero.
Travel money cards can hold money in your destination’s currency, which means that you don’t have to pay foreign exchange fees at ATMs. But this saving is offset by high withdrawal fees, and you may even need to pay commission when you top up the card with your chosen currency.
Channel your funds safely from the secure cloud account, through the app, and out of your Soldo card into over 31 million MasterCard outlets worldwide. Order a card for everyone in your family – provided they’re at least eight years old. Your kids will enjoy the grown-up glimpse of financial freedom (and you’ll be controlling their budget from the respectful distance of your smartphone).
Load Soldo from your UK debit card or bank account with euros, dollars or pounds, and your money is held securely in a cloud account. When you want to spend or withdraw it, simply transfer your chosen sum to your Soldo MasterCard and it’s there in an instant.
If your Soldo card is lost or stolen, you don’t need to fiddle about looking for phone numbers (or a phone). Just open the app and lock the card with a simple tap. What’s more, if someone clones your Soldo card and hits the shops, you’ll know immediately, thanks to live spending notifications on the app.
Let’s say you find yourself rummaging through your suitcase because you can’t find your card but you’re not sure yet if it’s lost or stolen. Instead of resorting to canceling it to be on the safe side, you can just lock it in the app. Five minutes later (hopefully), when you realise the baby’s been using it as a teething device, simply unlock your card and it’s ready to use again.
Most credit card providers charge almost £12 for a £200 cash withdrawal overseas. Debit cards are not far behind, at around £9.50. This hefty fee is made up of a 2.75% – 2.99% hidden exchange fee, as well as an ATM fee that could either be a flat fee of around £1.50, or a rate of between 1.5% and 2%.
Travel money cards also charge an ATM fee, usually around €2 or $2.50 (depending on the currency) – and you may also pay foreign exchange commission when you top up your card.
Soldo puts an end to hidden fees once and for all. International cost withdrawals cost a simple £1, and we’ll never charge you commission on foreign exchange.
Whether you’re using a travel money card, a debit card, or Soldo, some ATMs might levy their own fee. It’s best to check the machine in question just to be sure.
Travel money cards look the same whether they’re full or empty. Like a credit card, a travel money card can feel like a purely theoretical concept – the money is there, but not there. And anyway, you’re on holiday, so why not just go ahead and indulge yourself – see how far the card takes you?
You’d be in good company: two thirds of Britons recently admitted to overspending on holiday, coming home to the financial equivalent of a hangover, fit to match the comedown when you find yourself back at your office desk and it’s raining outside.
With Soldo, you can check your balance in real-time, and track your spending with notifications and crystal clear stats. Open the app, sign in with touch ID or a secure PIN and, whether you’re in Tuscany or Tibet, your money’s securely under your thumb. You can even set budget limits to keep you within your planned holiday spend.
Let’s say you’re in Paris and gridlocked in an argument between your grumpy teenager who wants to check out the grands magasins, and her insistent tween brother who insists on being taken to Disneyland. Because: “it’s not fair, she always gets her way!”
Wearied from endless adjudication, you need a secure way to set your teenager free on the Boulevard Haussmann while you buckle up with junior on Space Mountain. Enter Soldo. Children from 8 years and up can have a Soldo MasterCard with their name on it.
All you do is load your teenager’s Soldo wallet with a reasonable sum of money (and set notifications if you want to monitor her), and set her on her way. She can use Soldo to top up her Passe Navigo, hop on the métro to Galeries Lafayette, and enjoy financial autonomy within the safe limits you define. If she has a smartphone, she can track her own spending on the Soldo app.
While you’re at it, you can give your tween a Soldo card too. Full of chagrin, you can watch him proudly buy a pair of Mickey Mouse ears, knowing that, come next summer, he’ll be making a completely different set of demands.
If withdrawal fees and foreign exchange commissions don’t faze you, Soldo remains a good option for a secure back-up should your regular debit or credit card go astray.
Load your Soldo wallet before traveling and carry your Soldo card in a separate bag (or leave it in your hotel room). You won’t be high and dry for long. Once you’ve called your debit or credit card cancellation helplines, just pick up Soldo and carry on camping.
Whether you’re traveling solo or en famille, Soldo is the new answer to the travel money card.