Which is better Revolut or Paypal

Revolut Switzerland: Our experiences in everyday life and abroad

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We like to travel and often. Last year we were on three continents. As international travelers, we have a lot of experience with traditional credit cards and with Revolut Switzerland. Do you want to pay less and get more too? Read on and we'll tell you how.

Traveling abroad with Revolut Switzerland credit card: experience

Last year we went to the USA for a long time. On a weekend trip to Las Vegas, we withdrew and paid for money on the same day with both our traditional credit card and Revolut. Back home in Switzerland, we took a closer look at both statements. For 2,000 francs there was a whopping 50 francs difference in fees! Hey, that would be nice for dinner there. Just because we paid with the wrong card. Come on, really?

This is how the 50 francs difference in fees comes about

If you pay with your credit card abroad, your card provider earns twice. Firstly, there is a processing fee for the foreign assignment, because you don't pay in Swiss francs but in euros, dollars or another currency. That is at least 1.5% of the invoice amount. Second, the currency from francs has to be exchanged for the foreign currency, because you pay in foreign currency when you are abroad. When it comes to the exchange rate, each provider has some leeway in which rate they give you. With our free Mastercard from Cembra Moneybank Bank we paid 1.5% fees for foreign assignments. The foreign currency rate was worse than Revolut's, so that a total of 2.5% points difference came out. That made a difference of 50 francs to 2,000 francs.

Our tip: pay in local currency

When withdrawing money or paying abroad, the terminal often asks you whether you want to pay the amount in the local currency or in your home currency. Choose the local currency here, so experience has shown that you can get away cheaper.

The SRF Kassensturz also recently looked at the promise made by Revolut and other new providers such as Neon that they are significantly cheaper than traditional providers in terms of fees and surcharges, especially when deployed abroad. And comes to the conclusion that they keep this promise.

This is how Revolut works in Switzerland

Revolut is a global fintech and was founded in the UK in 2015. Revolut also offers a free prepaid credit card and app in Switzerland that gives you massive fee savings when you spend or transfer money on the go. In a few minutes you can open your app-based Revolut account on your mobile phone. On your Revolut account you can hold money in up to 31 different currencies and pay free of charge in over 150 countries with a contactless Mastercard. You can withdraw up to 240 francs (230 euros or the equivalent of £ 200 in other currencies) monthly free of charge at ATMs.
More than 1,500 employees now serve over 10 million customers who process more than $ 8 billion in payments per month. We have been using Revolut for payments at home and abroad since its introduction in Switzerland and have had good experiences so far.

Revolut is building a global bank and received a European banking license in December 2019, but it will take a few more months for Revolut to work to this standard. Until then, Revolut will be an “Electronic Money Institution” in the UK. Huh? This means that the money in your Revolut account is currently not protected by a statutory deposit guarantee, so it will be lost in the event of bankruptcy.

Our tip: keep credit small and work with the top-up function

Revolut has been operational for a number of years. But you never know: only keep your balance on the Revolut account as high as it corresponds to your usual expenses and use the automatic top-up function.

Our experience with Revolut in Switzerland and abroad

Where is Revolut accepted?

Mastercard is behind Revolut. Wherever you can pay with a Mastercard, this also works with Revolut.

How do I add money to my Revolut card and how fast does it work?

Revolut is a prepaid credit card. You can therefore only spend as much as you have previously transferred to your account. In order to top up money, you enter in the app once when you set up your account which credit card should be charged. In addition to Revolut, you need another (free) credit card, e.g. from Cembra Moneybank. After that, you can top up amounts at any time. The money is there within a few seconds and you can use it to pay immediately. Alternatively, you can top up via bank transfer. It will take a little longer until the money is there. So if control over your credit is important to you, then manual top-up with a deposited credit card is a good solution for you.

How does automatic recharge work on Revolut?

If convenience is more important than control, you can use the automatic top-up feature. For example, we have set a limit of CHF 500 on our Revolut account. Whenever this limit is not reached, our credit card is automatically debited with an amount specified by us and the Revolut account is topped up with it.

Is Revolut also worthwhile when shopping online abroad?

Yes, whenever you buy goods or services in another currency, you benefit from lower fees and the favorable foreign exchange rate compared to a traditional card when using Revolut. When you are all over a If you want to pay by card, there is basically nothing against paying with Revolut in Switzerland.

Better to pay with PayPal or Revolut?

Both. You pay the seller with PayPal and deposit your Revolut card as a card with PayPal. This is how you benefit from PayPal's buyer protection and the favorable conditions for international payments from Revolut.

Will Revolut work with Apple Pay?

Yes, you can add the Revolut card to your Apple Wallet as usual. You can then pay with your iPhone or Apple Watch.

Can I pay contactless with Revolut?

Yes, you can use your Revolut plastic card to make contactless payments at appropriately equipped terminals.

Our extra tip: cashback

If you top up your Revolut account with a credit card with cashback, you will also receive a sales bonus on your credit card. At Cembra Moneybank, for example, this equates to 33 Cumulus points (0.33%) for 1,000 francs.


Withdrawing money abroad can be expensive - with a little preparation this can be avoided. Because expensive fees for international payments with the credit card don't have to be - in a few minutes you can say goodbye to high costs. Our experience with Revolut in Switzerland and abroad shows that we save a lot of money with every purchase abroad compared to conventional credit cards. If you spend 2,500 francs a year in Europe, Great Britain or Switzerland, you will pay 25 times less with Revolut than with a traditional credit card from a large Swiss bank, according to the calculations of Kassensturz.

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