ATM Fees Abroad: Landing in January

(Beatrice Borbon) #1

A few weeks later than planned, on Thursday 4th January 2018 we’ll introduce a 3% charge on cash withdrawals made from ATMs abroad, after a free 30-day allowance of £200.

We had originally planned to put the fees in place next Monday, December 18th, but we’ve decided to push this back a few weeks (rather than rush it through just before Christmas).

We hope this is welcome news for those of you heading abroad for the holidays :christmas_tree:

You can read the original posts explaining our reasons for introducing a fee, and announcing the results of the community vote on pricing.

International ATM Fees: An Update
Foreign ATM charges with Monzo current account
(Benjamin Doherty) #2

Sweet, I am going abroad of Nye so this is welcome news. I am staying in France for a further couple of weeks. Obviously I’ll use monzo for any pos payments.

But for cash withdrawals after £200 anyone recommend the best solution? Starling?


I am truly disappointed at the decision to impose a 3% charge on ATM withdrawals abroad. I consider a 3% levy on such transactions to be excessive. I’m not at all sure that this reflects the views of the majority of card holders despite the vote by community members.

I agree with the views of a number of members who have stated that Monzo should apply whatever they are charged in relation to costs not only in relation to ATM withdrawals but also debit card transfer charges.
If Monzo is to be truly different from the High Street bank the charges imposed on members should be a true reflection of cost - not profiteering!

I am also disappointed at the decision to withdraw prepaid cards - one of my primary reasons for joining Monzo was the availability of a prepaid card to take with me on foreign trips which I could load with however much cash I considered would be required - in other words not exposing my bank account to fraud! This was an important and guiding principle for me and I believe the withdrawal of such a facility to be a retrograde step. Had I realised that the implication of upgrading the account was the withdrawal of the prepaid card I would have chosen not to upgrade.

I can of course use the CA card in the same way which I may yet chose to do and leave my current account where it is.

(Leon) #4

So you applied for and took up the offer of the current account only for you to moan that it’s not the prepaid account that you upgraded from. Uh huh.

Remember Monzo as a bank have to make a profit and that’s one of the ways they choose to do it. Does your normal bank give you a fee free allowance when abroad? That’s the Monzo difference.

I personally would prefer they charge fees for usage abroad then charge it for overdrafts but again it’s how they make their money.


They did not say they did not want to charge fees, they said they felt the 3% fee was excessive, that is a different thing.

(Leon) #6

I personally meaning me, I, myself.


Yes, but by saying you prefer it implies they didn’t.

(Leon) #8

No as if you read the full sentence instead of cherry picking you would (hopefully) come to a different understanding.

(Gareth) #9

Just to clear things up:

“We aren’t introducing charges to help us turn a profit.”

(David) #10

This is great news as I’m going away from Christmas until mid-jan. But if I withdraw £200 cash abroad before 4th Jan, will I get another new £200 allowance on 4th?


Yes. But before January 4th there are no restrictions.


You should make an option of say between £5-10 a month to have unlimited overseas withdrawals a month or a reasonable limit of say £3000. 3% is a lot after £200. Barclays is 2.75% HSBC is 2.75%.

I would and sure plenty of other people would be more than happy to pay £5 if you could get 3k or £10 p/m if I could use it unlimited. If people don’t want to pay then you just get the normal £200 3% after. So nobody is forced to do it if they don’t want to. Just as an option as we would like to still use Monzo and not swap something like Starling. As someone who lives in Singapore fees are a killer.

I hope Monzo look into allowing something like this. For example, Nationwide offer a flex plus account you pay £10 p./m for unlimited withdrawals abroad, free holiday insurance, car insurance and device insurance. Not that monzo need to offer insurances, just an option if people want to pay for unlimited usage to help Monzo recoup the fees.


Barclays and HSBC may charge a lower % but their exchange rate may be less favourable (weighted)


They use the VISA interbank rate which is no different if not slightly better than the mastercard interbank rate

You can compare for yourself and see…


They do not use an interbank rate. HSBC use the standard Mastercard or Visa rate so no less favourable than Monzo (“By selecting to pay in the local currency HSBC will do conversion using the relevant payment scheme exchange rate applied on the day the conversion is made.”) and unless you have a premium account they also charge a cash fee (“Cash Fee 2% (Minimum £1.75, maximum £5.00)”).

Barclays also do not use the interbank rates but the card scheme rates (Visa for most UK cards, Mastercard for some foreign cards and some corporate) and say “if you’re…using a cash machine other than a Barclays cash machine or a cash machine at a Global Alliance member bank, you’ll also be charged a £1.50 Non-Sterling Cash Fee”. They do specifically note that the exchange rate is not as per date of transaction but a few days later when transaction finalised. Barclays (on non premier accounts) also limit withdrawals abroad to £300 (“You can take out up to £300 a day”).

Sources: and websites 16/12/2017 and barclays personal customer tariffs pdf file


Monzo’s offering a purely on-line/app service which effectively doesn’t require them to carry the high overhead costs of traditional banking services - they don’t have premises or staffing costs that traditional high street banks have. They should effectively be able to offer much more competitive rates for the service provided but the levy of a 3% charge on ATM services which is only costing them 1% in Europe and 2% in other areas doesn’t seem to offer an advantage over the traditional banking sector.

I still think that Monzo would benefit from having both a CA service and a prepaid card service. Pots don’t offer the advantages of the prepaid card for taking money abroad.


All card payments abroad will remain free of charge ?
£200 cash a month is more than enough…

(MikeF) #18

Nobody says they won’t have a prepaid card service one day but it won’t be this one for all the reasons discussed over the last year on the forum here.

While it’s great to have an opinion on what people ought to do, that needs to be moderated with an understanding of what they’re trying to achieve and how they’re going to pay for it.

This prepaid card scheme was only ever there to test the banking systems against. A job that is complete so the prepaid cards can now disappear. From your earlier post, you seemed to suggest that disappearance of the Prepaid was one of the results of your upgrading to a CA. I can assure you that it wasn’t and the prepaid card scheme would have disappeared even if no one had taken the upgrade path.


As I understand it card use other than ATM use remains free of charge. Even in UK it is not possible without greater expense to remain cash free. In Germany it was impossible to survive 5 days without 400 Euros and that was just for incidentals.

(Tony Hoyle) #20

In the UK it’s actually pretty easy to remain cash free. About the only places that still need cash are small sandwich shops. People might not actually want to presently, but it is possible (and once ATMs are no longer free as seems likely to happen, a lot of people will so so).