Wise Launches Traveler- and Immigrant-Friendly Debit Card

Chanelle Bessette
By Chanelle Bessette 
Edited by Carolyn Kimball

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Wise (formerly TransferWise) an international money transfer service, announced this week the launch of a new Mastercard debit card alongside its foreign currency account that will make it cheaper and faster for customers to spend, send and receive money overseas. Travelers can spend on the card in any of more than 40 currencies and Wise will automatically convert the charge at the best rate from the customer’s account.

Dubbing it a “borderless account” that’s “like an international Venmo,” Wise aims to make it easier and less expensive for people to convert money quickly between currencies, especially when traveling or living abroad.

Card benefits include no foreign transaction fees, no annual or monthly fees, free ATM withdrawals up to $250 every 30 days, the ability to freeze and unfreeze your card, an app, and, for U.S. customers, Apple Pay, Google Pay and Samsung Pay capabilities.

In addition to catering to travelers, the service is meant to ease financial complications for those who have moved away from their home countries, according to the company. The Wise website includes an area dedicated to the stories of immigrants to the U.S. and other countries, including narratives from company co-founders Kristo Kaarmann and Taavet Hinrikus and “Queer Eye” star Tan France.

The account converts money based on the mid-market exchange rate (the rate you’d see on sites like Google or Yahoo Finance) and charges a relatively small fee to do so. Wise also offers money transfer services to more than 70 countries.

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