When Revolut first launched there were no fees at all. Then, they slowly started to add fair use caps. Currently, the first £500 (or currency equivalent) ATM withdrawals are free, then further withdrawals are charged at 2%. Well they’ve just announced this is to change. For existing customers from 5th February 2017 the first £200 (or currency equivalent) ATM withdrawals are free and then further withdrawals are charged at 2%. This new fair use cap will be in force immediately for new customers.
I’m not overly surprised about the ATM fees. When the card is used at to purchase items online or at a shop Revolut will get a very small % of the total amount as their fee. However, normally for ATM withdrawals Revolut have to pay a fee. Initially they were subsidising the ATM withdrawals with the POS transaction but this wasn’t sustainable. This will have no real impact on me when I am travelling in countries like the UK and US where I always use card for close to every purchase. However for countries like Vietnam, Thailand and Ethiopia where cards are not accepted in many places this could end up with me paying the fee. Let’s be honest though the 2% fee isn’t huge and works out a lot cheaper than using my BOI debit card.
People were abusing the Revolut system by uploading via credit card and then immediately withdrawing at an ATM to avoid the cash advance fees charged by their bank. Revolut had to implement a fair use policy to combat this. However, I’d much prefer an annual limit. I only use an ATM with Revolut when travelling so the ATM withdrawals will be all compacted to a 2-3 week period of my holiday. I could reach the £200 threshold in a month but would never go near the £2,400 annual threshold. Hopefully this isn’t a sign of what is to come with more fees and fair use caps being implemented by Revolut.