ATM Fees Abroad: Asking the Monzo Community to decide pricing

I agree, I’m not sure why people withdrawing cash abroad are being described as “offenders” or why some people talk of punishment or abuse. Monzo gained some customers precisely because it was offering such great options for travelling abroad. It’s fair enough that they have to change but withdrawing cash and using a card in line with their terms should not be described as an offence.

In any case, for me option 2 would be the best. The reason I chose Monzo is because I travel a lot and realised my bank was making a fortune off my back. I use Monzo while in the UK as well though (it’s actually my main card) and will consider getting a current account with them. Happy to pay a fee for this if needed as I want them to be a sustainable business.

How about offering different options when current accounts are launched? I would be happy to pay a fee for a current account if I get benefits like free withdrawals abroad (or free withdrawals within a certain yearly limit).


I’m seeing a lot of posts saying most places take card - just wanted to point out that a lot of Monzo’s Millennial audience travel outside of Europe/US, where card is a lot harder to use. I just got back from Myanmar where barely anywhere takes card (I had to find a hipster coffee shop in Yangon to connect to turn on ATM because the wifi was down in my hotel), and I visited Laos with my Mum earlier this year where barely any of the ATMs worked, let alone have places that take card :frowning: I don’t mean to be rude or anything I just wanted to point that out :slight_smile:


Unfortunately it may be the end of the road with Monzo then. Such a shame, I have loved it and have maybe talked 10-20 into also getting one. Being able to use the card for free was one of the main selling points. I do use it daily in the UK but not sure it adds enough if I need to find another option when abroad.Those that say you can just use your card everywhere either haven’t been many places or certainly don’t go to many festivals abroad where cash is still very much relevant.

I’m not sure why in your examples you use the fees other banks use. Surely your rivals here are pre-paid cards from the likes of Travelex which allow fee-free withdrawls (almost certainly at a worse rate but still would have preferred that comparison).

Also, if you are aware of some power users abusing the system, why are you making the service significantly worse for everyone? Is it really less fair to charge those abusers more than to withdraw it for everyone?

After the positive story in the Guardian this week there were many naysayers in the comments section saying that as Monzo grew it would become more like the big banks we all came here to avoid. I argued the case for Monzo but it appears they knew best.


I am unable to access the poll, I can’t scroll back up to the very beginning and I did not get a chance to vote. Suggestions anyone?

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I was one that mentioned the rest of the world would need to catch up :slight_smile: I too travel outside of Europe a lot and see this issue… however sadly I take factoring in the extra % or need to withdraw cash into the overall cost of travelling to these places… would be epic if I didn’t have to…

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Same here. There are known problems with the site.

Thanks Steve, hopefully they will read the comments!

Monzo benefits from people using their card inside the UK for general transactions yes? This is what was great about monzo to start with - to be a new UK Bank with the benefit of being a UK monzo user as being able to use your card abroad and have 0% atm fees and card fees.
The reason that it is becoming unsustainable is from the monzo users who are using it solely as a TRAVEL CARD and not as a general bank card.

I think option 4 should be to reward SUSTAINABLE monzo users with 0% atm fees abroad by using their monzo card in the UK - this can be detected by monzo - perhaps after a certain amount of money is entering & leaving the monzo account each month will enable these users to be “monzo gold”(?) Users that benefit from 0% atm fees worldwide; and those who are just using it as a travel card will have to pay the fees for using their card abroad. This will encourage more people to use their monzo card sustainably in the UK, and if not they are aware of the fees they will need to pay abroad.
I don’t feel that it’s fair that I am being clumped in the same bracket as an occasional user when I am using my monzo card avidly as my bank account - making money for monzo instead of only using my monzo card when I go abroad!
Monzo was supposed to be a personal banking system that should benefit those who are using it properly; the vision that monzo had when they created monzo - and those people who are not using it “properly” (but just as a travel card) should not benefit from the same rewards as I do!

Option 4: same old 0% fees for atm abroad for the sustainable “monzo gold” (or monzo green?) Users that actively use their card in the UK; and then apply option 1 to those who are using it solely as a travel card.

Edit: perhaps monzo gold/green customers wouldn’t be from putting in a lot of money at a time but the frequency of input/ output?

At Santander student account (and most student accounts), I can benefit from the £1500 0% overdraft and 4 year 16-25 railcard so long as £1000 goes into that account each term (3 months) - perhaps monzo could model their ‘gold/green’ customers on that - say £200 must enter and be spent in the UK every month - could be averaged over 3 months so £600 every 3 months; or have limit slightly higher so it incentives people to use their card in the UK, increasing money for monzo and then that would make it more sustainable for monzo to absorb the costs for abroad atm withdrawals?

If monzo released a “sustainable atm withdrawal limit” (could be medium-large sums at once) then this would be an incentive to only withdraw larger amounts at once to reduce costs for frequent amounts of small withdrawals?


Pre-paid travel cards are rarely good from a value perspective, there are fees to load, to withdraw cash, to buy the card in the first place etc.

I joined Monzo to use abroad and although I do use it in the UK too, I have better options through cash back cards like Amex that give me 1.5% cash back.

I travel at least once a month on work (Hong Kong, Australia, USA, Germany and Ireland recently) and have never needed cash - my work MasterCard is always accepted. Monzo is used for any personal spend while travelling. On two holidays, I have withdrawn cash and only £200 in HKD and £100 in USD to use for bus fares, small shops and markets.

Previously I used my Halifax Clarity abroad and I still do when the transaction is large (over £200) as the guarantees in a credit card are better than prepaid debit.

What Monzo does offer is clarity in transactions. I’ve twice had my card skimmed abroad and being able to see what’s going through is the correct value instantly is a huge bonus. The downside is the handling of USA restaurants - I’m expecting a big refund soon given the double charging process that’s hidden elsewhere.

For me, a £200 free allowance is ideal. I don’t see Monzo as a foreign exchange service for cash but as a banking service. My wife also has Monzo and uses it regularly in the UK so when it comes to holidays, £400 cash in a month is more than enough. For work travel, I don’t think I’d use an ATM as I don’t like having foreign currency left over.

As others have commented, some countries are far more cash based and won’t accept Monzo. Perhaps a higher limit could be offered in these areas for those of us who also use the card in the UK (and thus generate income for you)?

I’d also like to see a credit card offered for larger transactions in the future.

P.s this thread is very hard to see and took 10 tries reloading. The actual poll isn’t visible to me either. Reading from iPhone


:slight_smile: I’m happy to pay a bit more - I’m so lucky to even be able to travel, totally recognise that - but I think just for ‘mental ease’, I’d rather pay the flat fee up-front (e.g. £10/pcm I’m travelling) than stress about calculating percentages, if that makes sense? But totally agree with you - hopefully card will take off everywhere! As much as I say it’s harder to use outside USA/Europe, in Indonesia virtually everywhere was chip and pin and where I could use the card in Myanmar, it was chip and pin as an option :slight_smile:

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£1000 is €1082.80 vs €1112.66 or -£29.86 difference for Travelex (Based on the website today)
With a fee of £10 - £24 vs £30, still want to use Travelex?

If my maths is wrong, please correct it

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Yes. I just had an email from Monzo but the email links to a page saying unable to access.

It is also disappointing if Monzo’s only course of action on ATM fees is to refer us to the same tired poll we had in the recent thread on ATM fees and not consider some option for free ATM withdrawals across Europe and not just the UK.

No poll on ‘X number of withdrawals free per month’ just the ‘outside UK we will charge you’…doesn’t show much thought on the part of Monzo. It is almost they have made their decision and going thru the farce of a consultation just to rubber stamp it.


Nah, fees would put me off

I think it is a bet that most people won’t be out of the country 12 months a year and thus will never use the entire yearly amount!

Here’s an idea, if it’s users that are just using the card abroad and not in the UK that are the biggest cost, then set up a flexible limit that allows you to take more out abroad when you spend more in the UK. For example everyone starts at a limit of £200 worth of withdrawals and as they use the card in the UK that limit goes up, then as you use the card abroad the limit comes down again to £200. Those that only use the card abroad will have a limit of £200 and people that use the card in the UK will earn an increased limit that they’ll have to re-earn after each trip abroad. If you use over your limit you’re charged at the percentage rates.


As Monzo begins introducing savings and current accounts, I’d opt for a system that rewards the most active users. For example, if I have Monzo current account, savings account, credit card (hopefully in time!) and any other services you’re considering introducing, then the free monthly allowance should vary depending on your use.

For anything above that, why don’t you just pass through the ATM costs? It would be great to have more insight into who charges what - because you can encourage users to choose the cheapest ATM provider. Even if you could have some tool to check this before you withdraw would be great. We all know that those shady cash points in convenience stores are the more expensive! For example, if I make a withdrawal at a Bank of America and it costs you 2%, whereas a Citi Bank costs 1.5%, I’ll go back to Citi.

Alternatively, a membership option with a monthly fee and other benefits is a good idea. As a fallback, charging 1% for ATM withdrawals in Europe and 2% for the Rest of the World seems like the fairest option above a free allowance.

As with some comments above, notifications of “overuse” and “limits” are important.

Just make sure you research and position Monzo competitively. Nationwide are one provider that offer free cash withdrawals worldwide with a current account and a credit card that offers free foreign purchases with no limits. One of the key to Monzo’s success has been because it’s considered a great travel card - but why would I use Monzo if I can get the benefits elsewhere? I can forego the Monzo app and all of its features if I’m saving a small amount of money.

Also consider looking at Revolut and Curve. Revolut has a Premium Membership and Curve allows you to pass through charges to a current account.

I’m one of the Monzo users who uses it heavily abroad, but is guilty of not using it in the UK. The main reason for this is because it’s not a current account - yet - and I’m not a fan of having to top up every time - especially where other pre-paid cards like Curve make this process a lot easier.

I can’t wait to go “all in” on Monzo with my banking. You’re just not there yet. If you time this wrong, I’d be inclined to use my Monzo less rather than more.


A version of this would be, 3% and then active users (transactions and/or cash flow per month) get -0.5% loyalty after 12months down to 1%

'Thanks for being a continued member of the monzo community, we’ve lowered your foreign atm fee" type message :slight_smile:

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That is a fair point, though a monthly allowance heavily favours those that are regularly taking money out abroad and therefore causing the issue we all now face.

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I’m just gonna paste what I said on Twitter: