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How Revolut won over one in three bank users in Ireland

Revolut has become so popular in Ireland that, like Google, it is used as a verb.

a bridge over a body of water

Bridge in Ireland/Pixabay

Revolut now boasts 1.7 million customers in the Republic of Ireland, around a third of its 5m population, and is so widely used it has acquired its own verb.

The fintech, which has 18 million customers globally, has proved particularly popular in the Republic, where it now has 100 staff and officially opened as a bank this year.

Like Google, it has its own verb, with its younger customers heard saying “I’ll Revolut you” when transferring funds.

Its popularity was also lifted during Covid, as many switched to digital banking and contactless payments.

But some observers believe it has some work to do to fill the gap being left by Ulster Bank and KBC which are exiting the Irish banking market.

Here AltiFi charts its timeline in Ireland.


2015- Revolut launches in Ireland

2019- Revolut says it now has more than 500,000 customers

2019- Revolut hires Ulster Bank’s chief administrative officer Joe Heneghan to lead its Irish operations

2020- Revolut confirms it’s planning to shift responsibility for its European payments from London to Dublin as a result of Brexit.

2020- Revolut hits 1 million customers in Ireland

2021- Revolut was awarded a full banking license by the European Central Bank and Revolut says it intends to use this to offer services in Ireland rather than the one approved by the Irish regulator.

2022- Revolut officially starts operating as a bank in the Republic with the launch of protected deposit accounts of up to £100,000 for Irish customers

What next? -Revolut plans to soon roll our credit cards and Irish IBANS.

Revolut can boast some other impressive numbers in Ireland including the fact that half of its users are over 35 while the gender split between its customers is half-half, Revolut says.

Around a hundred thousand young people have also signed up for Revolut Junior, aimed at children between 7 and 17.

But some have highlighted some failings in Ireland, including customer service.

Daragh Cassidy, head of communications at the consumer financial help service, told AltFi that Revolut had forced traditional banks to up their games in Ireland.

He said: “It has revolutionised what it is possible to do with your money on your phone. It has also forced the other banks in Ireland to really up their game – or at least try to, as they’re still miles behind Revolut when it comes to their online offering.  

He added: “Revolut has a great offering but as an online-only bank it probably isn’t ready to completely fill the void left by KBC and Ulster Bank just yet.

"Revolut charges quite heavily for cash use once monthly limits have been reached. And with no branch presence, you can’t lodge cash or cheques. It doesn’t offer overdrafts or mortgages – for now at least – and its customer service is somewhat lacking. 

“And as you’ll be given a Lithuanian Iban - some employers and utility providers may not accept your account details even though it’s illegal to do so. Revolut has become an increasingly viable alternative to a traditional bank account over the past few years. But for some people, they won’t feel comfortable having Revolut as their sole bank account provider just yet."    

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