Those who own cryptocurrencies would know that it is a cumbersome process to get crypto converted to fiat currency or finding a reliable way of spending it. However, the process could soon turn a lot easier since the digital currency exchange platform Coinbase has announced its crypto debit card in the UK called Coinbase Card. While there are some other similar services that are more established like Wirex and Revolut thatRevolut that, it remains to be seen how the new Coinbase debit card fares. Here’s what you need to know about the new Coinbase Card service.
What is Coinbase Card?
As mentioned above, the Coinbase Card is a debit card that enables direct spend of cryptocurrency. As the new debit card for cryptocurrencies is Visa-powered, it will enable the company’s users to pay for their needs directly utilising their crypto balances. Additionally, it will be valid in both offline and online stores. One will be able to select from the crypto they want to spend like bitcoin, ethereum, litecoin, among others that are supported by the platform.
How does it work?
When someone will use their Coinbase Card at any venue, be it online or offline, the crypto currency being used is instantly converted to fiat currency. This fiat currency is used to complete a transaction. The new crypto debit card is supplemented with the Coinbase Card app, which enables users to select the crypto wallets that will be used while transacting. This means that one will have the flexibility to use unique cryptocurrency for different types of transactions. The app is also said to deliver transaction summaries, receipts, spending categories, and more data instantly.
“This is the first debit card to link directly with a major cryptocurrency exchange in the UK and EU, allowing users to spend their crypto balances direct from their Coinbase account,” says Coinbase UK CEO, Zeeshan Feroz. The crypto debit card service is currently available only in the UK but the company aims to expand it to other European countries in upcoming months.
Some additional details
Users who want to get a physical Coinbase Card will need to pay € 5.74 for getting it issued. However, as a launch offer, the company is waiving off the issuance fees for the first 1,000 people that join the waitlist. One will need to download the accompanying Coinbase Card app and link their Coinbase account. The app is available for download on both Android and iOS.
Once linked, the crypto balance held in a user’s Coinbase account will be immediately available to use through the virtual card, and their contactless Coinbase Card will be sent via post. Monthly free limit of withdrawing domestic cash stands at €232 but one should note that there is a sharp crypto liquidation fees of 2.49% of the transaction.
So, should you be applying for a Coinbase Card?
While the prospect of being able to spend crypto almost anywhere in the world using an option as easy as a debit card does seem enticing, one should take heed of certain things before taking the plunge. The first thing to consider is the volatility of cryptocurrencies. Those who trade crypto know how difficult it is to predict when its value will rise or fall. This could make things somewhat difficult for a person who is transacting via crypto since they might need to exchange more crypto when its value falls.
Apart from the volatile nature of crypto, there is the crypto liquidation fees of 2.49% of transaction. So, the Coinbase Card might be helpful for one if the pros of the service outweigh the cons.
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