How reliable/accurate is the currency conversion on Curve?

I was in France past 2 days and some places annoying have problems accepting foreign card as payment so I went to draw money out for 100 Euros.

I looked at the transaction and noticed the rate was higher than I would of expected but if I calculated it going back the amount I paid vs the amount it should have been using the rate advertised I would say it is wildly out relative to the amount I withdrew!

If I calculate the cost of 100euros @ 1.18 it works out at £84.75
Even at a rate of 1.17 it comes to £85.47. I would expect a few pence difference but this is nearly £2 more I paid

Question is how reliable is this? Is it really 0% commission?

@martinto8 Hi Martin ! I don’t understand why you don’t use your curve card for the payment … Maybe your Santander visa was not accepted directly by the merchant, ok, but this is just the underlying card ! why not use the Curve ? Pat.
Plus… Why did you not change the currency of your Santander card from GBP to EUR ?
I’m French and i use all my foreign card in this scheme and all is going well…Pat.

Hi Patrick. I am a UK resident and went to Paris for a short break. One particular bakery I used my curve and it persistently declined (I proceeded to try using my Amex, Monzo and Relovut and they all failed as well)

I am using Curve for everything but my point is when withdrawing euros via curve there is a huge discrepancy the amount I paid for the euros in gbp against the rate advertised

@martinto8 . Ok. but when withdrawing cash with your Curve card, i.e at HSBC ATM, did you have on the screen of the ATM the message with the choice to accept currency conversion, or direct withdraw for the amount in Euros ? when i withdraw cash with my Curve card, each time i decline the currency conversion and i chose the other option, that means " give me 100euros and only 100euros ". And i never have the currency conversion nor any rate…
plus====> when you are in France, did you change the currency of the underlying UK card for EUROS? just do it simply inside Curve App on your smartphone, and your santander(example) visa will be a euro card. and in that case, no currency problem ! you know? Pat

:thinking: Isn’t the whole idea of Curve, to let them do the currency exchange?
When I change the currency of a non-euro underlying card to euro and pay with Curve in a euro country, I will get the conversion rate of the underlying card. And that is exactly what in most of the cases you do not want. You want Curve to do the conversion, since in most of the cases their rate is better than the one the underlying card is offering.


Patrick, my underlying card is in GBP and I dont recall there being an option for DCC it just asked my how much euros to withdraw. The conversion was done by Curve and not DCC because if it was the transaction would of been picked up as GBP and not in Euros

It does not make sense to change my underlying card from GBP to EURO because if I did it Curve would pass the transaction as EUR to my underlying card and Santander would do my rate conversion at a horrific rate

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Exactly that! The only time where I would change my underlying card to another currency is when I perhaps want Monzo to do the conversion (which I dont since Curve introduced 0% fee) and revolut if I had some of the currency available on the card to use

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ok guys !! i apologize for my bad understanding in that case !
you’re right, but in fact i don’t understand why it’s running for me with my foreign underlying card… i’ll take another look to my bank statement listings…:slight_smile:.
Well, my point of vue doesn’t help you very well… Pat.

I agree - doesn’t seem to be giving you the rate it says it is and transaction not at the weekend so no exchange rate loading. I take it you’ve not done lots of other ATM withdrawals this month that’s maxed out your free allowance?

Definitely worth dropping support a message to query, I’d be interested in hearing the outcome too.

The exchange rate displayed in the app is often wrong (as on my screenshot). The real interbank rate at the time of your withdrawal was around 1.16, which is exactly the amount you received.

I’m nowhere near my max allowance but when you get discrepancies on the rate conversion it does raise some questions around accuracy of the value you are getting. Bit like going to a fuel station paying £1.20 per litre only to find you are actually paying £1.30 per litre :confused:

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Hello there, I do live in France and I encounter this problem with the declined on your uk cards. In France, most of our debit card do not require a authorisation for small and contactless transaction, in contrairy with the uk cards does need an autorisation for all transaction, curve included, and I think the merchand PDQ was not connected online to get that autorisation. So, I will say that your cards got nothing to do with the issue not being able to pay that purchase! Hope make sense!!

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If the issue is that the terminal was offline, that could certainly be the issue but it would have nothing to do with authorizations. The cards themselves don’t have any authorization limits from their origin countries.

Curve doesn’t allow offline use as is the case with most fintechs

“Curve doesn’t allow offline use as is the case with most fintechs”…
It’s so strange, because of my experience during a last flight from Paris to Heathrow , i purchased some sweets during the flight , with my Curve card , and accepted.
I though that inside the cabin during a flight, the network isn’t connected, that mean’s all transactions are processed off-line…isn’t it ? However that was a success…Pat.

I think at least some airplanes have online enabled terminals. Curve always needs to request authorization from the underlying card

Irrespective I tried my amex, monzo, santander and barclaycard and all of them were declined. It appeared that it was trying to reach out for authorisation because the decline was not immediate

In any case it wasn’t that much of any issue as it was a bakery i would never set foot in as the croissants were dismal! My biggest beef with Curve is the it appears I am paying more for 100 euros in gbp vs the conversion rate it displayed

As I mentioned in a post a bit back, the conversion rate displayed is erroneous, the actual interbank rate at the moment of transaction was used.

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