In a recent interview Tom says that the prepay cards will be wound down when the switch-over to the current account happens. Will Monzo no longer have any facility for prepay cards at all after that point?
Hi Duncan - that’s correct. We will indeed be phasing out the prepaid scheme completely. The current accounts are built on a different system - and one that we’ve built completely ourselves from the ground up, whereas the current prepaid scheme operates with partners. The current accounts are designed to replace the prepaid scheme, and not operate simultaneously.
Personally I welcome the current account - it will be much more useful. But do you think that there are still uses for prepaid cards, backed by the new system?
Monzo will be most useful when there’s money regularly coming in and out from Direct Debits and Salaries. For example, if we know how much your energy bill is, we can gauge it against all the data that we have and let you know if we think your energy company is ripping you off and help you switch to another provider!
However - nobody can force you to set up Direct Debits on your Monzo current account, and having your salary paid in isn’t a requisite either. So essentially, if you were to only move money over from another current account that you have, and use the Monzo card for your day-to-day spending (as an example) - you’d be utilising it in the same way as a prepaid card anyway. But with the benefit of FSCS protection etc
So whilst it won’t be a prepaid card, you could still use it like one.
“let you know if we think your energy company is ripping you off and help you switch to another provider!”
Now if you could tell us this info and then switch the providers for us that would be amazing!
Very interesting, I didn’t know about this aspect. I might be slightly moving off topic now, but is Monzo going to compare my bills historically or compare me to averages from other Monzo users in order to produce this notification?
What if my house is just much bigger than other people’s or has either much better or worse insulation? Or I like my thermostat at 27 for 24 hours a day rather than 21 for 8 hours a day? Or if I’m on a larger direct debit due to miscalculation or intent, but still have a tariff lower than others.
Energy bills don’t strike me as the best example here unless Monzo knows your exact tariff details.
Comparison of energy bills isn’t a difficult challenge - many websites do this already, but typically they involve inputting a lot of data. The point being, we could easily simplify that process and that indeed is what we want to do - be able to use the data to be a marketplace for suitable products and partnerships.
Are you saying that comparison sites will be able to use Monzo’s data to “pre-fill” some of their fields, or that Monzo will try and do the comparison based on the data you have?
I expressed my doubts about this approach at the end of last year here:
I think there’s multiple approaches we could take and we’ll be exploring the feasibility of all of them after we launch the currents. Totally agree that for many instances, we wouldn’t have enough data - we could certainly ask you for more data if that were the case. Or as you say, we could give you the option of utilising some of your data to help a partner site give a recommendation.
We certainly don’t plan on offering you useless suggestions. Ultimately the aim is to provide simplicity and transparency to anything related to your finances, including partnerships. The exact ways and methods that we use to develop these are things that are ongoing discussions.
Isn’t that other data vital?
What use is knowing that my British Gas direct debit is £100 but the average person is paying Npower £90 if you don’t know what my actual tariff details are, including things like penalties for leaving early, whether I use economy 7, if I’m eligible for social tariffss etc.
As well as habits. Like how often I use gas to cook. Sure from payments if someone is buying loads of takeaways you could assume they aren’t cooking often, but that’s an individual’s spending, the rest of the household might be different.
I think you could definitely say “hey, you’re spending more than others with similar spending habits it might be worth looking into switching”. But without much more data it seems a stretch to be able to recommend a better deal.
Just coming back to the original point @duncang we won’t halt the pre paid card scheme completely as soon as we launch current accounts. We’ll phase out the pre paid service over a number of months.[quote=“simonb, post:2, topic:7842”]
The current accounts are built on a different system - and one that we’ve built completely ourselves from the ground up,
This comes with lots of benefits; we can explore cool new features like virtual card numbers, have more fine grain control over security and can take steps to resolve acceptance issues which affected our pre paid cards.
An idea of this would be when your DD for electricity comes out Monzo may ask for your current tariff and consumption to be able to check if you can save money in the future. Similar to the details that the various comparison websites out there ask for.
A post was merged into an existing topic: Current account debit card exchange rates
I dunno how the priorities will be set for the Android app team (team of one? ) but personally I’d prefer the basic banking stuff before the partner deals… Am really missing the targets feature.
There’s currently 3 developers in the Android team.
You can check what’s due to be developed next (there’s quite a few features before partnerships are due), on the roadmap.
Just to point out - although some developement work will be needed to enable users to access the partnerships functionality, most of the work will involve setting up the partnerships in the first place & that won’t take up the Android team’s time. There is someone in a dedicated Head of Partnerships role who will deal with that.
That’s a relief .
I would love to have a marketplace inside the app for suggestions and partners like this. If a service you pay for looks to Monzo like a bad deal, check out the alternatives in the app, and hopefully even get special rates. If Monzo could leverage easy switching to encourage users to sign up, the services could provide a partner deal in return. I’m sure I’d be more likely to switch if I dint have to phone up a helpline and sign paper documents and have all that other legacy hassle.
All it actually comes down to is the KWh that you use, and what you pay - the latter of course Monzo knows without your input.
You mention exit fees - well, sure, but that’s a short-term impact; ultimately the feedback Monzo could give would be “you’ll spend £X less per month with Y”. We can figure out for ourselves whether to bother switching before the end of the current contract.
You also mention habits and how often you use gas - this doesn’t provide more information than your electricity usage in KWh.
The calculation to be done would be a simple function of average usage, average spend, and suppliers’ standing & unit charges.
Actually it does matter. Monzo will know how much a user pays (different to what the user is being charged), but this gives no information about the standing charges, which are an important part of the cost.
When paying by direct debit, its quite often the case the that the amount you pay per month doesn’t accurately reflect your usage. The whole reason comparison sites ask for your tariff and usage details (and specifically say that kwh are better than £) is that all of this information is required for an accurate comparison.