Monzo 101: What's the exchange rate on Monzo?

This week we’ll be sharing a series of posts that answer basic questions about Monzo. We know loads of you are already experts, but these are for newbies or for you to share with friends who are new/don’t yet use Monzo!

We’ll be sharing a post that explains exchange rates in more detail soon, what they mean, how they work and how different kinds compare.


It would be great to get a version of the Mastercard Currency Conversion Calculator directly in the app. So it gives you a rough idea of the exchange rate as a constant feed item whilst on holiday? :slight_smile:


I created a post a while back asking for the same thing.

Think this is a great idea and would come in useful for every monzo user at some point i reckon


The issue, of course, is the exchange rate fluctuates and the final transaction value takes a few days to be confirmed. Whatever feature is added would have to stress “this is the current rate, not necessarily exactly what you’ll pay, so use as a guide only”.

That being said, I’d use this feature all the time as a quick yen to pound lookup when I’m buying plastic highschool girls from Japan :laughing:

EDIT: Some examples of what I mean to avoid confusion lol:

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You can also ask Siri if you’re not using Google

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I believe Siri uses the interbank exchange rate, which is a little different to the Mastercard exchange rate.

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Thank God you clarified that :rofl:


But remember, we’ll use the exchange rate at the time the transaction settles (usually a few days after you make it), rather than the one you see at the time you actually make the transaction.

Is this standard procedure? Just curious as I’d never thought to account for this before.

Yeah, and it’s annoying too. You never know what exchange rate you’re going to be buying at. :sleepy:

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Yes, absolutely. Revolut is a bit of an exception in that regard, as they use the rate at the time that the transaction was presented. They are taking quite a risk with this, which is why they charge extra if you transact in “illiquid” currencies (note: their definition of illiquid differs from mine and has at times included major currencies) and on weekends in order to protect themselves from some of the risk.

If you want certainty about the rate, then you need to use a service like Transferwise or Revolut where you can convert currencies in advance.


This would be nice purely because the user experience of using the Mastercard conversion site on mobile is absymal. Custom dropdowns bleh.


Yeah, Monzo could get completely around this by incorporating this into the app

If you not using Siri just ask Google on any device :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:


Not the MC rate, though

I’ve been bitten by this a couple of times. Most recently when paying off a holiday. Ended up being a £15 difference which was annoying.

I’d like to see Monzo do something similar to Revolut in that regard, because as much as it’s good to use the MasterCard rate, it’s terrible user experience not knowing the final cost until the transaction settles.


And I’d hate it, if they did. They can’t absorb the risk fully, so the only way to do that would be some markup, which is the way Revolut are doing it…




I would like to see this in the app also.

Having been to South Africa twice this year already, I just base my transactions off 17 ZAR to the £1 but this is a rough estimation. I am fine with the end result being slightly off but it would be good to know I can look it up. For example the ZAR exchange rate changed 7% while I was in SA last time and I had no idea what that meant for me when I was spending.

I think as an idea when you get the welcome to SA notification in monzo if you could click that and see the exchange rate at the exact moment you click it and then be able to go back and click it again and see it current price at that moment that would be really good. Might not be so helpful for people in the UK paying in foreign exchange but would be good for me when traveling

I agree this would be so useful! If Monzo was able to feed data from Mastercard to inform you of ‘current’ exchange rate that would be amazing!

The Mastercard exchange rate website is far too clunky from a mobile device

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I see N26 are saying they’ll continue without markups even if the UK leaves the fee cap. Will Monzo be the same?