Curve joins fintech rush for premium credit cards

By Roger Baird on 5th February 2019

Challenger Banks

The smart credit service launches a stainless steel card this week.

Curve joins fintech rush for premium credit cards

Smart credit service Curve has launched a premium paid-for card, which is fast becoming a must-have feature among fintech firms.

The London-based start up, which lets shoppers hold all their credit and debit cards on a single card, this week launched Curve Metal, a contactless stainless steel card.  

It comes with a range of benefits such as travel insurance, unlimited fee-free spending abroad and one per cent cashback from high end retailers, such as Harrods, Selfridges and Amazon for £14.99 a month.

Diego Rivas, lead product at Curve, which has around 300,000 customers, said: “We expect to open Curve Metal to the world, starting with the UK and slowly expanding to other European countries. Curve Metal reflects our commitment to provide our customers with unparalleled rewards to complement their lifestyles.”

However, the run-up to the launch of Curve’s high-end card was disrupted last week when US charge card giant American Express pulled out of the service at the eleventh hour.

Also, last week Berlin-based bank N26 launched its Black membership plan in the UK, a subscription-based current account, providing free unlimited foreign currency purchases and withdrawals worldwide for £4.90 a month. The firm, founded in 2013, operates in 24 European markets and has more than tripled in size over the last 12 months to more than 2.3 million customers.

However, both of these fintech firms trail London-based digital bank Revolut, with 3.7 million users across 28 European markets since it was launched four years ago, which launched its premium steel card last August.

Its Revolut Premium service offers a range of benefits that includes a concierge service that can book restaurants or concert tickets and instant access to five cryptocurrencies for up to £12.99 a month.

Premium credit cards offer excellent value for cardholders who can take advantage of their benefits, but can be costly to maintain if not used to their potential, say most personal finance experts. They add if the balance on these cards is not paid off each month, the value of any rewards earned may be lost.

 

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