An in-depth comparison of the two most expensive subscriptions from Monzo and Revolut.
The firm is not the first fintech brand to release a paid-for banking service that comes with a fancy metal card. Revolut launched its first subscription service all the way back in March 2017 and then subsequently launched Revolut Metal in August 2018. Revolut’s latest numbers encouragingly show that it is starting to help its bottom line.
The road to subscription services has not been a smooth one for Monzo, however, the digital bank previously shuttered its ill-fated original attempt at Monzo Plus just five months after launching the product in September 2019.
In its first month, Monzo Plus garnered 50,000 subscribers, nearly all of whom would have been tied into their contracts for the minimum three months, unless they fancied paying the cancellation fee.
The fintech’s subscriptions are also incredibly popular, generating £39.5m in revenue for the digital banking service in 2019 alone.
That being said, it’s still impressive that Monzo attracted 50,000 subscribers in Monzo Plus’ first month alone and I guess we’ll just have to wait and see how many are drawn to the digital bank’s newest offering.
The first point of comparison is price.
Monzo Premium costs £15 per month, or £180 per year, with a minimum contract of six months—pretty long when it comes to banking subscriptions.
Take a look at the table below to see what you can get for your money with both subscriptions:
As you can see, the two plans are similar.
Both Monzo and Revolut offer attractive interest rates for their top-paying customers, 1.5 per cent AER (or 1.49 per cent Gross) for Monzo Premium, but only on deposits up to £2,000, which includes any money held in savings pots.
Also, Revolut, which doesn’t let customers deposit cash unlike Monzo, lets you withdraw up to £800 for free when abroad, compared to Monzo’s £600... however, Monzo customers can make five free cash deposits, a leap up from the one free deposit offered with Monzo Plus.
Personally, I’ve always found these kinds of discounts pointless, they’ve often restricted to new customers only, and are the same deals you could find with a bit of Googling... but each to their own.
An important difference here is that Revolut doesn’t make its customers pay for its account aggregation services, all Revolut customers can see their other bank accounts in the Revolut app, whereas Monzo’s users have to, at the very least, subscribe to Monzo Plus to access open banking.
A spokesperson for Monzo has confirmed that it has integrations with all banks that currently support the Open Banking Standard and has plans to add more to its list of supported institutions soon.
Similarly, a Revolut spokesperson confirmed that while it currently integrates accounts from 16 other banks, there are nine more banks soon to be added to that list.
Now, because so much of Monzo’s new subscription is based around insurance, we decided it was best to break down both insurance offerings to paint a clearer picture.
If we weren’t in the middle of a pandemic where international travel has been nearly completely halted, I’d say it’d be a great time to launch a travel insurance package, but unfortunately, that’s not the case.
Despite including coronavirus coverage, Monzo’s insurance does have some Covid-caveats. For instance, while emergency medical coverage is included, if you choose to travel despite knowing that someone you are staying with has coronavirus you won’t be covered by Monzo’s policy.
Interestingly, Revolut also offers travel insurance to its non-fee-paying customers.
According to Monzo, it’s Premium customers could save £76 per year on average on insurance alone... but will anyone be planning any big trips in 2021?
When asked if Revolut could provide an insight on how much its customers could save, a spokesperson told AltFi that because of the large numbers of variations between plans and add-ons, it’s too hard to work out.
And finally, when both packages are aimed at regular travellers it begs the question—are they really worth it when international travel is so restricted at the moment?