Monese provides instantaneous on-demand UK current accounts and European IBAN accounts in 20 countries regardless of the customer’s citizenship. This revolutionizes banking for expats, digital nomads and new residents as ‘residency restrictions’ imposed by traditional high street banks are one of the single greatest barriers to accessing the banking system when they arrive in a new country.
What is interesting, is that Monese’s breakthrough technology can validate the identity of customers in real-time enabling customers to open an account in a matter of minutes, using a mobile app. Monese’s fully-featured UK banking account comes with cheap global payments and a contactless debit card. Monese was born after founder’s first-hand experience of the hassle involved with opening a bank account in a new country.
“When Monese founder Norris Koppel first moved to the UK from Estonia, he faced a frustrating experience that is all too common. With no UK credit history or utility bills proving his address, he was immediately denied a bank account. Without one, he found it near impossible to receive his salary or rent an apartment”.
From his experience, Monese was born – a banking service that was inclusive, instant and on-demand. Monese launched in September 2015 as the first 100% mobile current account in the UK. Today, people from all over Europe can open a UK current account in minutes, free from the hidden fees and restrictions that legacy banks impose.
Prior to the launch of its current account, it was reported that over 56,000 customers pre-registered for service and joined a waiting list to be granted access.
Monese initially provided all of its services free of charge, with the exception of international money transfer – but in 2016 it began charging a fixed fee of £4.95 per month for its current account product. It has since launched an additional plan that does not incur a fixed monthly fee.
To open and manage a Monese current account customers must install the company’s mobile app on their Android or iOS smartphone.
Monese provides a dedicated, free debit card that one can use around the world to pay for goods and services. The debit card offers international payments at Monese’s exchange rates, which is the same as the interbank base rate.
The card is accepted in over 200 countries by retailers that take Mastercard and is compatible with Apple Pay and Google Pay (only in the UK). There is no foreign transaction fee. What is more, the card delivery is free and takes less than 14 days.