Review of YouTrip Mastercard, charges 0.3% for FX conversion

Hands on the YouTrip MasterCard
OCWorkbench 14 Aug 2018

Last week, we posted an article about YouTrip, a Mastercard by EZ-Link, YouTrip and Mastercard. It serves as a multi currency wallet for you to convert and use the local currency for payment overseas.

We applied and received the card today.

This is how the package looks like :

A plastic card which is a Mastercard Debit with 16 digits which you can use it for online purchases or withdrawal overseas (with S$5 charge). The Mastercard can be used for local public transport using the ABT system, it is disabled by default and can be enabled at http://abt.transitlink.com.sg

The card needs to be active before it can be used. To activate the card, just follow the instructions in the YouTrip app by entering the Y- series 10 digit numbers. The app will require you to supply a 4 number pin which is the ATM withdrawal pin. An email will be sent and the card will be activated after clicking through the link in the email.

Once that is done, you can top up S$20 (minimum) using the app. If you are the first 1000 new subscribers, you get a S$20 bonus.

The card can only be top up using the app by supplying another VISA or Mastercard number. Overseas withdrawal is allowed with ATMs bearing the Maestro , Cirrus Logo. It does not allow local withdrawals at the all local bank’s ATM.

In terms of exchange rate, we check out the following rates, 1 USD buys you 1.369 SGD. Current, spot rate is around 1.3732, that is around 42 pips which around 0.3%.

1 AUD = 0.9946 SGD (Spot rate is 0.9973 SGD)
1 EUR = 1.562 SGD (Spot rate is 1.567)

The currencies that can be exchanged are SGD, USD, EUR, GBP, JPY, HKD, AUD, NZD, CHF and SEK. Cross rates are also available e.g. USD/HKD is 7.826 (1 USD exchanges 7.826 HKD). Spot rate is 1 USD exchanges 7.85 HKD.

  • All spot rates used are based on Bloomberg exchange rates on 14 Aug 2018 at 0830GMT.

I topped up S$20 from my UOB debit card and immediately the S$20 bonus is issued and credited into the wallet giving me a balance of S$40. can now spend the S$20 at any outlets that supports MasterCard contactless payment.

You can even refer and earn S$10.

Everything went through quite smoothly. The only concern is that if you face issues overseas, there is no technical support to call. Support is done through email and facebook. Although they are available on Facebook, the customer support is not 24 x 7.

The exchange rate is very competitive. The spread from spot is around 0.2 ~ 0.3%. This is definitely way better than exchanging it at banks. Banks probably will charge you more than 0.5% to 1% even if it is a 5 digit figure. The system does have limitations as some currencies are not available for conversion. In that case, the charges should be similar to normal Mastercard rates at the point of time.

DBS also has a multicurrency account that pairs with VISA. It is more expensive to own as the multicurrency account needs to be maintained with a balance of S$3000 per month, if not a S$7.50 fee will be charged. YouTrip do not have fall below charge and only charges you if the account remains dormant. (see their website for charges). Although Singtel’s DASH is not a multicurrency wallet, it deserves a mention because it allows you to Top Up and Withdraw funds from the wallet whereas whatever is top up into YouTrip, you can only spend it by topping up MRT card or use it to purchase merchandise online or offline.

In conclusion, it is a good to see more of such disruptive technologies available. It definitely helps frequent travellers by bringing down the FX transaction costs. You can now save and enjoy more than before.

 

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