🇪🇸 Monzo in Spain [Discussion]

Used the Monzo Card for first time here, at reception for taxes and at a cashpoint - no problems at all, found cash point asking to do exchange which I read about on another members post. Cautionary tale and this is with my BOI Post Office not Monzo but could have well been. Found this in Salou too, merchants clicking through all the warnings on exchange and passing you machine! Name and shame Moe’s Bar&Grill in Es Cana near hippy market! Even with a poor sterling-Euro this cost me £2 on a £60 transaction. Contacted Dublin on this before and got a shrug like response when happened before, got a response in our eyes you agreed to decline mastercard rate. Watch out for rogue agents, annoyingly the rate in Euro showed on machine too when I saw it too, so must have been done when machine handed back.

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We’re heading to Torrevieja on Tuesday, was debating whether to withdraw cash and convert to euros or to just use Monzo card. Decision made thank you :slight_smile:

use the monzo card we did for 19 days and no problems at all just remember to always pay in euros and if using an ATM refuse the onscreen conversion as then you getbtje best rates …enjoy :+1:


I use my monzo card for withdraw and pay abroad.
Check mastercard currency before you go to an ATM and check in several ATMs the currency that apply to you before you accept the transaction.

Santander, Bankia, Caja Rural, Telebanco 4B, … apply me a poor exchange and a fee for withdraw.

Caixabank and an independent ATM apply me a Mastercard currency.

Never accept the exchange that any ATM or shop apply to you. Some of them apply you directly the exchange to get extra money.

I was in Spain recently, and both of the ATMs I used tried to charge me for withdrawing cash. I notice from the previous conversations that Caixa and Telebanco appear to be free. I’ll try them next time I go.

It would be useful if there was a list of the free ones, so if anyone in charge is reading this…?

Do any other contributors know of free Spanish ATMs?

Lots of Spanish payment terminals seem to be set to ask for currency choice AFTER the PIN is entered (weirdly on contactless it seems to ask for the PIN every time, but you never put the card in the machine).
If you’re handed the machine make sure you don’t hand it back until it has given you the choice or it’s clear the transaction has completed. Had a couple of incidents on fixed terminals where they ‘accidentally’ pressed the wrong button after asking me my preference. Allegedly (according to some on the MSE forums) this is because they get a cut of the rip off exchange rates and fees.
Officially this is against the card issuer Ts+Cs, but it’s impossible to prove they pressed it against your wishes!

Used my Monzo card for the first time in Ibiza last weekend, making 2 withdrawals from an ATM at a Bank (CaixaBank).

Did try in one of the free standing ATM booths dotted around, but the exchange rate offered was terrible, and I cancelled the transaction before heading back to the bank. I don’t think the rate I go at the Caixabank was the full Mastercard rate, but it was better than the random ATMs (1.05 vs 1.01).

Was impressed that the App notified me of the transaction, and location immediately after use, too. Very good to keep a check on your spending.

Our next trip away is to New York in February, and we intend to top the card up and use it there, too.

You can use it in the interim :wink:

You will also have to pay for ATM withdraws above £200 after December, and in the New Year the prepaid programme will be closing and moving everyone over to Current Accounts - that should happen in November.


And he will be able to use the Current Account in the same manner as the pre-paid :slight_smile:


To confirm what others have said Caixa Bank doesn’t charge for cash withdrawls and allows you to choose to have Mastercard do the rate conversion. Sabadel and BBVA both wanted to charge me about €1.80 for a withdrawal.

So far my one attempt to use AndroidPay in Spain (H&M in Barcelona) was unsuccessful.

This may be because they wanted a PIN to support the contactless payment. Since the virtual card / token which AndroidPay uses doesn’t have a PIN I suspect that it won’t be possible to use AndroidPay anywhere the card processor requires a PIN to support contactless payments.

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Interesting what you say here @Cinematt about PINs being required for contactless. My two contactless transactions in Spain have both required a PIN. I suspect that this will mean that it won’t be possible to use AndroidPay in Spain since the virtual card / token used by AndroidPay doesn’t have a PIN.

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you want to decline them getting Mastercard do the conversion to GBP thru DCC and have the charge in EUR be converted by Monzo at Mastercard rate as that avoids a weighted exchange rate and/or conversion fee

@anon44204028 the other option is to have Caixa do the conversion which you don’t want. The banks can certainly improve the way they describe the options but using the option I described worked and ensured Monzo did the conversion.

The key thing whichever bank you use is to read the screen very carefully and not to automatically enter Yes when faced with a choice. :grinning:

There should be NO conversion by either Caixa OR Mastercard at the ATM. Monzo should be getting a EUR amount not an amount converted into GBP.

I’m talking total nonsense here. Just worked out that the problem I had using AndroidPay was down to Card Clash! A contactless card next to my phone. Duh!

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No issues with AndroidPay in Spain providing you don’t have a contactless card next to your phone as I did and get Card Clash! :grimacing:

I am in Madrid and trying to withdraw some money from Banks ATM last night

In all of them after introducing Monzo card shows different options:

Which one to choose??

Withdraw from credit account (clearly id not a credit card…but money has been “credited” into the account…mmm
Withdraw from checking account (check?? sounds like is a current account…however still no account number so…

I decide to choose last one

  1. 1st attempt Go to SANTANDER ATM and 2 options:
    Paying in GBP or paying in EUR
    ATM charges 2.5% plus 5 EUR lol
  2. 2nd attempt Go to BANKINTER a local spanish bank
    Transacion rejected :anguished:

Which bank to choose to be FREE of charge when in SPAIN?
Which CHOICE: money being deducted in GBP or in EUR?
Is Monzo really an option after all chit chat and bla bla bla on media saying is the best alternative to banks? :thinking:

I did same in BANKINTER BANK with Revolut card and they give me the money at official exchance rate…while Monzo did not give me the money using same ATM when both are same kind of cards :kissing_smiling_eyes:

Take EUR choice not GBP

worth reading an excellent post from @Avishai might throw some light on your questions :slight_smile:


:monzo: is actually a bank :tada: :tada: