🇳🇱 Monzo in The Netherlands [Discussion]

A place to discuss using Monzo in The Netherlands.

Please do update The Netherlands wiki with any learnings!

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Not additional info, but I’d like to know if anyone has been to Amsterdam recently- I’m flying there next week and the wiki’s “it’s rather hit and miss” note concerns me a little! Do you have to enable Magstripe to get cash out at ATMs? I’ll probably get cash out at the airport just in case I get caught out elsewhere with one that doesn’t support it.

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Hi, I haven’t been turned down by a major ATM using Monzo. The trouble is that a lot of shops (Albert heijn, etos etc) only take maestro cards. Just ask when you walk in and they will know. Lidl and aldi both take ‘credit’ cards and as above 95% ATMS are fine.

Also, Amsterdam is a tourist hell hole… rotterdam is where it’s at!

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I’m mostly visiting to meet with a penpal, but I’ll be staying with someone I met in Croatia and became friends (long story). I’ll be there for 5 days so I think I can definitely do a day trip! Doesn’t seem all that far but I should probably get the train.

Any recommendations of nice things to do/places to eat in Rotterdam?

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I visited Amsterdam last month and had no issues taking cash out of ATM’s (I was there 5 days and took cash out twice). Also all of the main areas and shops accepted the card as well as contactless. I found it was only the smaller independent stores that didnt accept credit and hence why I had to take out cash a couple of times.


That’s reassuring, thanks for the info!

And some shops won’t even take Maestro — they only take cards on a local payment network (can’t remember the name). I was in one cafe that only took those cards, not even cash. Cut short the ‘argument’ I was having with my friend about who should treat who. :grin:

There are some great parts of Amsterdam away from tourist areas, but that’s where you’re most likely not going to be able to use a MasterCard, so need to take :euro:.


In Feb 2017 Transferwise advised in their blog that some “small shops may charge a fee of anywhere from 2-6%” if you use bank cards.

And while German supermarket chains like Aldi and Lidl may accept credit cards they also claimed that the local Dutch supermarkets do not accept them at all.

Declined at Schipol airport train ticket machines (contactless & pin)

Thanks for letting us know. Was an error message displayed on the machine or in the app?

It was displayed on the machine - tried contactless first - error - then chip/pin - error - had to use my alternative bank card to get tickets (fine with contactless)

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Thanks, it sounds like the ticket machine was offline then. In which case, the issue will be fixed when the current accounts launch.

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I tried using Monzo at the Schiphol train ticket machines but they charge you an additional fee and it didn’t go through for me either. I wrote in the wiki about this. Decided to just get cash out and pay at the counter, since they only seem to take Maestro, the rest are marked as credit cards even though they are debit. I’ve used monzo at other stations/metro and it worked fine


One of the biggest danger areas at the moment for being ripped off by Dynamic Currency Conversion is in the Netherlands.

Dutch consumer organisation Consumentenbond urges visitors to take extra care. “Let me warn those that are being offered to pay by card and the shop owner says: ‘Would you like me to give you the exchange rate of what it will be in pounds’ - don’t do it”, says Sandra de Jong, who speaks for the group.


Hopefully useful to someone.

I’ve used Monzo successfully at the Amsterdam Arena (which is cashless). The card worked great at the beer stall and also with the ‘Major Tom’ guys who wander the crowd pouring drinks (water, beer, etc) and only take cards.


Hi, I will be moving to the Netherlands next week and I’m planning to use my monzo card until I open a dutch bank account.
Am I correct in thinking I can top up my monzo card while I’m abroad without any non-sterling or international transfer fees?

Also, I am getting some student loans and grants paid into my UK account while I’m abroad but it costs £4 to transfer them to a dutch account + non-sterling fee.
If I transfer the money from my UK account to my monzo account while I’m abroad, then from there to my dutch account will I avoid this transfer fee and just have the £ -> € conversion once?

Thanks for your help!

Okay, let me try to answer with all variations! :smiley:

  • Topping up from UK legacy bank to Monzo prepaid will be free. That can be done directly in the app using legacy bank’s debit card, or by sending bank transfer from legacy UK bank to Monzo account and quoting 9-digit user code. This is done online, so you just need internet connection, doesn’t matter where you are.

  • Topping up from UK legacy bank to Monzo Current Account will be free. Top ups from legacy UK bank via bank transfer works right now, but top-ups by card are not supported yet.

  • Using Monzo prepaid or debit card (from Current Account) in Netherlands will be:
    ** free for purchases in shops/restaurants/etc (and Monzo rate)
    ** free for now to withdraw from ATM (with Monzo rate), but some ATM fees are planned. Please see @alexs’ summary here.

  • You can’t send money from Prepaid Monzo card to any other bank, UK or Dutch. You can only spend it.

  • You’ll be able to send money from debit card (current account) to Dutch bank eventually, but it’s not available now. We don’t know any details or fees for now. In the future, Monzo Current Account might be integrated with Transferwise at some point in the future, then it would be using Transferwise’s rate. Fees are quite low, so Transferwise should be cheaper than sending money from UK Legacy bank to Dutch account.

It seems like only problem left to solve is expensive international transfers from legacy UK bank to Dutch bank, as this is something that Monzo Prepaid won’t support it, and Monzo Current Account doesn’t support it yet.

Key word: Transferwise! :smiley:

You can’t use Monzo prepaid card for send money via Transferwise, and there’s no option for bank transfer from Prepaid Monzo, so that avenue is out. BUT!

You can use your legacy’s bank debit card, or Monzo debit card (current account) to use Transferwise like normal human being :wink: . Monzo integration will allow you to do this faster/nicer, but nothing is stopping you from using Transferwise as proxy service, you could transfer from UK legacy bank or debit Monzo (current account) to Dutch account even right now. You’d need to register on Transferwise, verify with photo id, and just send the money. :tada:

There are few other options to Transferwise, like Azimo, but it would probably make sense to go with Transferwise, as most likely that’s what Monzo will support in the future.

If I missed anything, please let me know! :smiley:


That’s really helpful, thank you!! I am going to sign up for transferwise now. I probably should of heard of it before :relaxed: Cheers!

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Transferwise is also regularly mentioned on Dutch bank “bunq” community for/by users topping up their Dutch account from UK or other countries

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Good luck, Louise :smiley: And yeah, if you are looking for Dutch bank, bunq was discussed many times on Monzo community with positive reviews. Also, N26 also works in Netherlands.

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