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How does a Curve card work?

By Charlotte Golzari15 Oct 2020

So what exactly is Curve? Curve is your wallet in one card, connecting your debit and credit cards into one* so it’s the only card you need to carry, and the only pin you need to remember. You control your cards through the Curve app, where you can also see what you’re spending across all your accounts.

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We should let you know straight-up... Curve is not a bank. We think banks are doing a great job. But we can make them better. What we can do is give you great exchange rates, rewards and insights across all your accounts, without having to move banks. We know digital wallets aren’t exactly revolutionary. But a digital wallet that can store all your loyalty cards, save you loads on foreign exchange fees, earn you cashback when you shop, and enable you to switch payments between cards? That’s interesting. And it’s only the beginning. Once you’ve loaded your cards onto your Curve wallet, simply tap the card you want to pay with in the app and use your physical Curve card to pay. Or, add Curve to your phone’s digital wallet and go totally card-free. 

*Mastercard and Visa branded credit and debit cards

What cards can I add to Curve?

The short answer – a LOT! You can add Mastercard and Visa credit and debit cards, as well as all your loyalty cards. In fact, you can add any card with a barcode or QR code, so things like Library cards, local membership cards and even boarding passes can be stored in Curve.

Sadly, you can’t add American Express and Maestro cards, but we’re working hard behind the scenes to make this happen. 

Covid-friendly payments

Now couldn’t be a better time for totally contact-free payments. Curve supports Apple Pay, Google Pay, Samsung Pay and Huawei, even if they’re not supported by your bank yet.  For example, if you’re with Permanent TSB in Ireland, you can’t add that card to Google Pay yet. But you can add it Curve, enabling it to work with Google Pay. How’s that for a life hack? You can even pay with any card on your smart watch, as Curve supports Apple watches, FitBit, Garmin and Sony Wena. 

Is Curve a debit card?

Yep. It’s a Mastercard debit card, and you can use it like you would any other debit card, anywhere Mastercard is accepted, worldwide. It doesn’t hold on to funds like a traditional bank card, and there’s no need to top-up your card every time you need to make a purchase. Add cards to Curve and use the app to choose which one you’d like to spend with. And because Curve is a debit card, you can use it to pay a credit card bill with another credit card using Curve Fronted. It’s simple – just head to the app and turn on ‘Curve Fronted’ and we’ll take care of the rest. This carries a 1.5% fee for Curve Blue customers, and is free for Curve Metal users.

Does Curve do a credit check?

Curve doesn’t do a hard credit check but instead runs a ‘Know Your Customer’ check which will be seen on your credit history. It won’t affect your credit score. We do this not only because it complies with regulations, but it also helps prevent anything dodgy like money laundering and fraud. Curve also collaborates with other companies to develop all the new and exciting products we work on. We might share your information with companies like credit reference agencies, but these are soft credit checks and won’t impact your credit score.

How does Cashback work?

Curve Cashback lets you earn money when you spend money. You get to choose from 100s of retailers like ASOS, Amazon, Apple, Uber and more. Once selected, you’ll earn 1% cashback every time you shop with your chosen cashback retailers.

 Let’s break it down:

  •  Curve Blue: Get 1% cashback at 3 retailers, for a 90 day introductory period

  •  Curve Black: Get 1% cashback at 3 retailers, for as long as your subscription lasts 

  •  Curve Metal:Get 1% cashback at 6 retailers, for as long as your subscription lasts

Spend at your selected retailers and your cashback will go straight into a Curve Cash card on the app, which you can spend right away! Too easy.

Hot tip: To make the most of cashback, we recommend choosing the retailers where you spend the most money, rather than where you shop most frequently. For example, you might go to McDonald’s once a week and spend a tenner, but if you’re planning on buying a new Apple Mac, you’ll earn more cashback in that one transaction than a year’s worth of McDonald’s. We know which Big Mac we’d prefer. 

What’s the Curve app?

The app is where it all starts. Download it, use it to order your physical card, and add all the cards you can to your virtual wallet. You can easily load your cards to Curve by using the camera to scan your card (or fill in the details manually). The final step is activating your card. Then you’re good to start spending! You can choose the card you want to pay with by swiping through your digital wallet in the app and tapping the card you need. 

Here are some other great things you can do in the app: 

  • Go totally card-free by hooking up your Curve card to Apple Pay, Google Pay or Samsung Pay

  • Have your own virtual Curve Card 

  • Set up cashback

  • See what you spend

  • Go Back in Time

  • Send money

  • Lock your card 

How does Go Back in Time work?

Paid on the wrong card by mistake? Happens to the best of us. Just head to the Curve app, choose the payment you want to change and Go Back in Time

You can switch payments up to 90 days after you’ve made any purchase under £1,000. It’s free, and done entirely in-app.

Not only that, but you can move past payments from debit cards to credit cards and spread the cost of any payment to improve your immediate cash flow.

Here’s a quick step-by-step:

  1. In the app, tap the transaction you’d like to change 

  2. Choose ‘Go Back in Time’

  3. Swipe through your Curve wallet

  4. Select the new card you want to pay with

  5. Let the time machine work its magic 

Can I trust Curve?

At Curve, we work hard to protect the safety, privacy and financial security of all of our customers. We have a large team working to ensure our systems are safe and secure for all.We built Curve with your security in mind. We don’t store your card numbers in our app or on your device. And as an FCA-regulated financial institution based in the UK, we make sure we’re careful about everything we do. We have to comply with strict anti-money-laundering (AML), data protection (GDPR), and payment industry (PCI-DSS) regulations, and have regular third-party audits to make sure we’re protecting you properly.

Is Curve Metal worth it?

Curve Metal is our most premium card, and it’s packed with benefits that definitely make it worth it for the right person. Take cashback. With Curve Metal, you can earn twice as much cashback as Curve Blue or Curve Black users as you get to choose 6 cashback retailers rather than 3. When you’re travelling, you’ll get our super-competitive foreign exchange rate with NO limits. That’s on top of free ATM withdrawals up to £600/month. Speaking of holidays, you get worldwide travel insurance so you never have to do that boring research-and-compare game ever again. Renting a car? Curve Metal includes Car collision waiver insurance. And just to make sure your trip gets off to a VIP start, you get discounted Loungekey access  to luxury airport lounges worldwide. We almost forgot – your phone is insured with Curve Metal, too. So we think it's a pretty amazing deal. Of course, we’re biased though! See here for an in-depth comparison and make your own mind up. 

 

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Curve OS Ltd, registered in England and Wales, #09523903

Copyright - 2020 © Curve OS Limited. 

The Curve Card, the Samsung Pay Card and the E-money related to these cards is issued  by Curve OS Limited (company No. 09523903) authorised in the UK by the Financial Conduct Authority to issue electronic money (firm reference number 900926). Mastercard® is a registered trademark of Mastercard International Incorporated. The Curve Card and Samsung Pay Card are issued pursuant to license by Mastercard International Inc. 

Cards shown are all representative. There is no arrangement between Curve and any of the banks, card issuers or networks and all queries should be directed to us. Because Curve can’t guarantee that their network is always available, it is advised that you carry at least one backup card or make sure that multiple cards are available in your Apple Pay, Google Pay or Samsung Pay account.