What are Crypto debit/credit cards and are they worth using?
Cryptocurrencies offer benefits for both customers and businesses. Businesses, in general, are gaining from accepting cryptocurrency payments and as a result some have become more open to the idea. Here is what crypto debit/credit cards are—and are they worth using?
Customers and businesses face some challenges when it comes to paying and receiving payments for goods and services using digital assets.
Luckily, cryptocurrency credit and debit cards seem to be the solution both parties are looking for. With the advent of COVID-19, digital payments are rapidly becoming a better and more secure standard. Will these digital payments become “the new normal”?
What are crypto debit and credit cards
Essentially, these perform the same functions as regular credit or debit cards, but instead of just using fiat currency, you can use your crypto to pay for goods and services from vendors who accept them.
Additionally, some service providers offer the ability to instantly convert your crypto to fiat whenever you use the physical card for any transaction.
It is also quite easy to add funds to your account.
In general, people who own cryptocurrency can simply top up their cards through a payment processor or transfer their funds to specific wallets and link them to the credit or debit card of their choice.
Brief history of crypto cards
Before there were crypto cards available, people who wanted to use their digital assets to pay for goods and services had to convert them to fiat through third-party platforms.
This was very inconvenient for day-to-day transactions, which is why a few institutions came up with the idea of offering cryptocurrency credit/debit card services.
One of the first was Coinbase with its Shift card. It worked by deducting the value of purchases made with the card from your current Bitcoin balance.
However, you were limited to a maximum of $1,000 for daily spending and maximum ATM withdrawals are capped at $200.
Also, their transaction fees were rather high at the time, so many weren’t too keen on using it.
Why use these cards?
Cryptocurrency cards can solve many problems faced by standard debit or credit card users. Here are some of the benefits:
You can finally use your crypto without too much hassle
Many people who own digital assets have learned how to make money from cryptocurrency as part of their daily lives.
However, it has not always been easy to USE this crypto to pay for goods and services in the real world.
Now, with cryptocurrency cards, you can spend your savings WITHOUT having to pay expensive fees to convert them to fiat!
Low to no annual fees
Some banks charge high annual fees for their credit or debit card services, but for crypto cards the fee is usually waived if you spend a certain amount within the year.
No exchange fees (FX)
A problem with many bank-issued cards is that they charge foreign exchange (FX) fees, sometimes up to 3% of the transaction total.
Most crypto cards, on the other hand, don’t charge exchange fees for your transactions, making them the best option overall, but you’ll have to pay standard Visa and Mastercard fees.
Access different currencies with one card
Many cryptocurrency cards allow you to access both your fiat and your cryptoassets. This means you wouldn’t have to worry about switching cards when making payments.
Cash back rewards
Depending on the cryptocurrency card provider, you can earn additional coins by topping up or making a purchase with your card. Some rewards can amount to three percent or more of your total transaction!
Five Crypto Debit/Credit Cards You Can Use Right Now
There are many cryptocurrency credit and debit card services you can choose from, but here are some of the most popular:
Nexo is a unique crypto credit card that lets you make loans up to $2 million.
To take out a loan, simply create an account, go through the KYC procedure, deposit your crypto assets and withdraw the loan.
You can use their mobile app to order and manage your account balance and Nexo card.
– More than 45 million merchants worldwide accept the Nexo card.
– 2% cashback on all payments made with the Nexo card.
– Some tokens are not supported.
– If you make a mistake when filing, it may take a month or more to resolve the issue.
What makes it unique:
Nexo is one of the first crypto debit cards that lets you pay for goods and services in local currency. Nexo holds your existing cryptocurrency balance as collateral instead of converting it to fiat each time you make a purchase. Members can choose to pay interest in crypto or fiat.
TenX is one of the most popular cryptocurrency debit cards in the Asia-Pacific region.
They also offer free cryptocurrency exchange using their Cryptographically-Secure Off-Chain Multi-Asset Instant Transaction (COMIT) network.
Additionally, the TenX Visa card automatically converts your crypto to fiat the moment you make a purchase with it, meaning you won’t need to top up your account.
– Free spending and zero percent fees.
– All of your assets remain in cryptocurrency form until you complete a transaction that requires fiat payments.
– For cards issued in the APAC region, a fixed fee of 3.25 USD is charged for each cash withdrawal, while cards issued in the European Economic Area are charged 3 €.
– Currently, TenX only supports Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Litecoin.
What makes it unique:
Their app offers real-time tracking whenever the card is used.
If you find any suspicious transactions, their app also comes with the option that lets you lock or unlock your card.
CoinZoom is a regulated cryptocurrency exchange that supports crypto to fiat conversions and vice versa. It is also the first US-based cryptocurrency exchange to be fully licensed in all 50 states of the United States.
– Instantly convert your cryptocurrency to USD for every purchase.
– Depending on your card tier, cardholders can get up to 50% discount when trading if they hold the required number of Zoom Tokens in their wallet.
– The exchange is regulated, which may deter people from using the platform.
What makes it unique:
CoinZoom is the first US-based crypto exchange to comply with many existing regulatory laws.
Plutus is a European-based service provider and is the first company that allows you to manage your regular checking account and a non-custodial wallet in one app.
To acquire a Plutus card, simply download the app, go through the KYC identification process, and order your card through the app.
– Allow their users to create instant current accounts or European IBANs, but this will depend on your location.
– Supports deposits via Samsung and Google Play.
– Only supports ETH, Pluto Tokens, Euros and GBP.
– Not yet FCA licensed.
What makes it unique:
There are many different options to top up your account and you earn three percent in Pluto Tokens each time you do!
Originally called Token, the company rebranded itself to become Monolith.
The Monolith crypto card supports both USD and GBP. Additionally, the card allows you to spend Ethereum like fiat currency.
If you would like to order your Monolith board, simply download their app through the Google Play Store or Apple’s App Store and submit a request. However, you will need a passport, EU ID or driving license for verification purposes.
– Does not charge local fiat or crypto transactions at all.
– Support Google Play.
– Currently it does not support Bitcoin deposits.
– Fee of 1 to 2% per top-up.
What makes it unique:
Their physical map allows you to spend Ethereum-based assets anywhere in the world. Moreover, the cards are also readily available for customers residing in the European Economic Area.
All in all, cryptocurrency credit and debit cards are worth using. They offer exciting opportunities for businesses, cryptocurrency enthusiasts, and people who are skeptical about crypto in general.
Additionally, the fact that these cards are becoming more readily available to everyone is a sign that widespread cryptocurrency adoption will almost certainly become a reality.
The biggest advantage, of course, for cryptocurrency investors is that Crypto debit and credit cards allow them to start using their hard-earned coins in the real world.
By Marco Fisher
The Epoch Times Copyright © 2022 The views and opinions expressed are solely those of the authors. They are intended for general informational purposes only and should not be construed or construed as a recommendation or solicitation. The Epoch Times does not provide investment, tax, legal, financial planning, estate planning, or other personal finance advice. Epoch Times assumes no responsibility for the accuracy or timeliness of the information provided.