I’m leaving in a few days in Croatia (Europe). I can not convert my Euros to Kuna (local currency). If I pay in euros with the revolute card, will it work?
Watch out for DCC as well, I got caught out by this one, insist on payment in kuna.
Croatia is one place where my TransferWise debit card comes in handy, since you will have a significantly better rate at weekends.
It also gives you DCC protection, since you can hold a balance in just HRK and it won’t be able to convert to anything else to make the payment.
I don’t think it would protect you from DCC. If the POS terminal tries to charge you in GBP for example, Transferwise will also convert HRK funds, no? You would end up with a double conversion. HRK --> GBP (DCC) and then GBP --> HRK (on Transferwise’s platform).
No, I’ve never been hit with DCC on the TransferWise card but maybe that’s because I tend to zero out the other balances beforehand, leaving only HRK/whatever in sufficient quantity to debit from.
Actually I noticed that whenever I used my Revolut card there would be the option of conversion (as you’d expect) and so the threat of DCC, yet I never saw this with the TW Debit card. I used it in ATMs and never got the DCC options displayed that you see for non-HRK cards. The same was when I used it in POS transactions. With other cards they always ask you but with the TW card this never happened and when I looked at the terminal I did not see anything to indicate FX conversion options, just an HRK amount displayed.
So maybe the TW card is DCC proof, like Amex (but without paying 3%).
I don’t think that what you’re seeing with the TW card is related to holding funds only in a single currency. I used the TW card, loaded with EUR in the US. Conversion happens there, similar to Revolut, on the fly at the time of payment.
The critical part may be that the TW card is not recognized by the POS terminal as a UK issued card. This might simply be because the BIN data isn’t up to date. For a while, BIN databases would show Spain for TW cards. But many of them now show UK. Some of the recent Revolut cards show up as Italian and French. So it would be interesting to see how those cards behave in terms of DCC.
But what’s interesting is that I didn’t see the DCC options at all, which I’d still expect even if the BIN data is inaccurate (set to wrong country). I tested it on a friendly ATM (non-Euronet) in Zagreb airport. First, I withdrew some money with the card - had to decline conversion. When I inserted the TW card I never even got the decline/accept conversion screen - it just presented itself as if it was a domestic HRK card.
I haven’t had the card very long so I’ll have to see how it goes in other places.
Still, I can’t see how this is related to holding a single currency on a card. There is no communication between an account and an ATM / POS terminal like this. The POS terminal simply can’t know the currency of the account. In principle, the BIN codes encode the issuance country and also the card currency – if the issuer decides to do that –, but that code snippet for the card currency can’t change based on what funds you’re holding in your TW account in real time.
It’s difficult to find out what happened in retrospect because there are so many variables. But I can imagine that the ATM simply didn’t have any data about the relatively new TW card back then and could not guess the currency of it. So it didn’t offer DCC.
Well even it was just a quirk that may ultimately get ironed out I’ll take my small wins where I can find them!
Update: tried using the TW card in Polish ATM just now. Also no conversion options appear!?
I would also need to retry without a PLN balance but some EUR/GBP to see what happens but I would lose money doing that as I’ve already paid for the GBP to PLN conversion.