Revolut Vs Monzo – Which Is Best For You?

A full comparative review of Monzo and Revolut.

Updated: May 18, 2024
Matt Crabtree

Written By

Matt Crabtree

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Financial platforms are quickly gaining popularity as customers continue to realise that they do not have to get their bank account from major high street banks. 

Both Monzo and Revolut are leading the way in digital apps, offering both personal and business customers a range of financial products on their platforms.

In this article, we will compare the financial services offered by both Monzo accounts and Revolut accounts, exploring the benefits each provider can deliver to you.

What Is Monzo?

Monzo is a banking brand that was authorised in 2017 by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). It is known as a challenger bank due to its penetration into the market to challenge the traditional high street banks.

As a digital bank, Monzo is used and maintained through the account holder’s mobile phone. They do not offer account holders bricks-and-mortar bank premises, yet have amassed millions of customers across the globe.

How Does Monzo Work?

Monzo works like any other bank, except there is no physical bank for account holders to visit. Customers can still enjoy a range of features when using Monzo, using a physical debit or credit card or uploading your virtual Monzo cards to your Apple Pay digital wallet.

To use your Monzo account, you will first need to apply with Monzo online. You will then need to download the Monzo app and register your Monzo card, uploading your account details to your mobile phone.

You will use the Monzo app to manage your Monzo account, transferring money to and from other bank accounts, making and receiving payments, and monitoring your cash flow.

What Are the Features of Monzo?

Here are the main features of Monzo as a challenger bank in digital banking:

Personal and Joint Accounts

You can apply for both personal accounts and joint accounts with Monzo, obtaining separate physical cards and virtual cards for each account you own. To open a joint Monzo account, both account holders must have separate Monzo personal accounts first.

You can set up direct debits and standing orders through the Monzo app, easily transfer money between accounts and withdraw cash with your debit card.

Business Accounts

As a business owner, you can open a business current account with Monzo and operate your business finances with speed. Once again, functions such as direct debits can be set up for your business and you can manage your cash flow in real time.

Overdrafts

Your Monzo account may be eligible for an overdraft, with the overdraft limit dependent on your own credit file and circumstances. A variable rate of between 19% and 39% is typical.

Monzo Pots

A unique feature of Monzo is the use of Monzo Pots. Inside of your app, you can transfer amounts of money into Pots, like separate savings accounts. This helps you to separate the money in your account easily so you can budget your spending effectively or save a portion of your income.

Monzo Forum

Monzo truly absorbs the feedback provided to them by customers, with an active Monzo online forum jam-packed with vital information. 

Monzo Flex

Monzo offer a variety of credit card options, such as the Monzo Flex card. Offers such as 6 months interest-free credit are available from Monzo, with many other options depending on your circumstances.

Monzo Loans

You could apply for a loan through your Monzo account up to a value of £25,000.

International Purchases

Use your Monzo account abroad in any location that accepts Mastercard. You will not be charged any fees and there are no hidden exchange rate fees.

Spending Notifcations

As soon as you spend money on a purchase or make a payment with your Monzo account, you will receive instant notification of the transaction. The notification will also inform you of the total amount of money spent from your account that day.

Cash Withdrawals

You can withdraw up to a set amount each month without paying a fee. After your agreed limit, you will be charged a fee of 3% of the transaction value to withdraw cash.

Shared Payments

Split bills between friends or family members so you can pay your exact share.

Who Can Get a Monzo Account?

UK residents can get a Monzo account. In addition, you must be aged 16 or over for your Monzo application to be successful. 

How Can I Apply for a Monzo Account?

Here is how you can apply for a Monzo account:

1. Email and Mobile Phone Number

You can apply for a personal Monzo account in just 15 minutes by entering and verifying your email address. You will also need to enter your mobile phone number and show valid identification such as a passport or a driving license via a digital photo.

2. Monzo app

Download the Monzo app and create your own account. You will need to enter your details, such as your home address and your employment details.

3. Verification

Your identity will need to be verified through a selfie video uploaded to your account which will be compared with a photo of your identification document, such as your passport or driving license. 

4. Account

Once verified, choose the account options that suit you and your circumstances.

5. Card Activation

Your Monzo card will be sent out in the post. Once you have received the card, you must follow the enclosed steps to activate your account.

Are Different Monzo Personal Accounts Available?

There are different Monzo personal accounts that you could choose to open:

1. Monzo Basic

Features:

  • Monthly cost: Free
  • Minimum age: 16 years old
  • Maximum cash withdrawal with no fee: £200

The Monzo Basic account is a UK current account that requires no monthly cost. You must be aged at least 16 years old to open a Monzo Basic account and all popular Monzo features are available.

You can enjoy making purchases abroad with no fee whatsoever, whilst up to £200 cash per month can be withdrawn from your account without paying a fee. A transaction fee of 3% of the transaction value is applicable after this amount, however.

You can split your money into Pots and monitor spending habits with spending categories. Instant notifications of each purchase will be sent straight to your mobile phone so you can keep track of your money.

The Monzo Basic account offers FSCS protection and can be used with an Apple Pay or Google Pay digital wallet.

2. Monzo Plus

Features:

  • Monthly cost: £5
  • Minimum subscription: 3 months
  • Minimum age: 18 years old
  • Maximum cash withdrawal with no fee: £400

The Monzo Plus account is a UK current account that will cost you £5 per month, with a minimum subscription of 3 months required. You must be at least 18 years old to open a Monzo Plus account, however.

Enjoy spending your money abroad without having to pay a fee, splitting your money into Pots for easy budgeting. You can manage your cash with spending categories and receive instant notifications of your spending.

You can withdraw up to £400 cash per month with your holographic Monzo Plus card, with a 3% transaction fee applicable after this amount.

In addition, incorporate your other bank accounts into Monzo, and enjoy one free monthly cash deposit into your Monzo Plus account, depositing cash at UK Paypoints.

A further benefit is 4.6% interest earned on your personal instant access pot, up to a value of £100,000. You will also be subject to exclusive offers as a Monzo Plus account holder.

Your Monzo Plus account enjoys FSCS protection and can be incorporated into your Apple Pay or Google Pay digital wallet.

3. Monzo Premium

Features:

  • Monthly cost: £15
  • Minimum subscription: 6 months
  • Age range: 18 – 69 years old
  • Maximum cash withdrawal with no fee: £600

The Monzo Premium account is a UK current account that will cost you £15 per month for a minimum subscription of 6 months. You must be aged between 18 years old and 69 years old to obtain a Monzo Premium account.

When using your Monzo Premium account, you will be sent a metal card, an exclusive feature of the Premium range. You can withdraw up to £600 per month from your account without being charged a transaction fee, with a 3% transaction fee applicable after this amount.

Once again, you can make purchases abroad without paying a fee and you will be sent instant spending notifications each time a transaction is made. Monitor your budgets effectively with Monzo’s Pots feature, separating your money for ease of use.

You will earn 4.6% interest on up to £100,000 deposited in your Personal Instant Access pot, and you can place five cash deposits at UK PayPoints.

The Monzo Premium account enjoys FSCS protection and can be added to your Google Pay or Apple Pay digital wallet.

4. Monzo 16 – 17 Account

Features:

  • Monthly cost: Free
  • Age range: 16 – 17 years old
  • No overdraft facilities

The Monzo 16 – 17 account is a UK current account specially tailored to account holders aged 16 – 17 years old. Account holders can enjoy the many features of the standard Monzo accounts and FSCS protection yet with age-related restrictions.

No overdraft facilities are available with this account, although you can make contactless payments uploaded to your Apple Pay or Google Pay digital wallet and receive spending notifications.

You can spend money abroad without being charged any fees and can split bills with friends.

5. Monzo Business Account

Features:

  • Lite monthly cost: Free
  • Pro monthly cost: £5

The Monzo Business account is available in a Lite option which is free to use, or a Pro option which costs £5 per month. Both accounts include FSCS protection.

The Business Lite account provides all the standard benefits of a personal Monzo account such as instant transaction notifications and no fees charged when you make purchases abroad.

However, you will receive a business debit card as well as mobile and web access, allowing Stripe card payments.

The Business Pro account costs £5 per month and features all the standard benefits of the Lite account. However, you can also use integrated accounting with 6 months free Xero web-based accounting software. You can utilise Tax Pots for easy tax savings and enjoy the invoicing facility.

Both the Business Lite and the Business Pro accounts ensure FSCS protection.

What Are the Disadvantages of a Monzo Account?

The main disadvantage of using a Monzo account is that Monzo do not offer a physical banking premises that you can visit, like you can with traditional high street banks. This means that you cannot deposit cash and cheques whenever you want to.

A further disadvantage of using a Monzo account is that you cannot withdraw cash from an ATM without paying a fee past your £200 limit.

In addition, whilst there is a free account that you can use, other Monzo accounts require a monthly fee and a minimum subscription duration.

Monzo Pros and Cons

For a succinct look at the pros and cons of Monzo, look no further than this section:

Pros

✔️ Digital banking — Use the Monzo app to easily transfer money, make payments and manage your finances.

✔️ Fee free spending abroad — You will be charged no fees whatsoever when making purchases abroad.

✔️ Pots — Make budgeting simple when splitting your cash across Pots on the Monzo app.

✔️ Instant notifications — Receive instant notifications each time you make a transaction.

Cons

❌️ Cash withdrawals — You can only withdraw a set amount of cash from your account each month without being charged a fee.

❌️ Monthly fees — Some Monzo accounts charge a fee each month.

❌️ Minimum subscription — Some Monzo accounts require that you subscribe to a piad account for several months.

❌️ No physical premises — Monzo is a digital bank and there is no physical branch for you to visit and make an in-person bank transfer.

What Is Revolut?

Founded in 2015, Revolut is a finance platform that operates through the Revolut app. Being used by 35 million personal account holders worldwide, Revolut certainly does overshadow Monzo in numbers.

Revolut does not offer account holders a physical premise as they are not a bank but a financial platform. They do offer excellent customer service, however, contactable through the app or via a phone call.

In addition to standard financial services, Revolut also allows access to cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin and XRP.

How Does Revolut Work?

Revolut works in the same way as a digital bank with account holders accessing their account through the Revolut app. You can move money into and out of your Revolut account, make payments and access cash withdrawals with your Revolut card.

To open an account with Revolut, download the Revolut app. You will need to register your phone number and create a passcode of 4 digits and then follow the instructions. Once you have received a text message containing a six-digit code, enter the code and then insert your personal information.

The final stage of the process is to verify your identity, using a valid identification document such as a passport or a driving licence.

What Are the Features of Revolut?

Here are the main features of a Revolut account:

Personal and Joint Accounts

Revolut offers both personal accounts and joint accounts across a variety of plans. Use the Revolut app to set up direct debits and standing orders and simply make payments and money transfers.

Business Accounts

Revolut business accounts are tailored for your business, including the Pro for Freelance account. Track and manage your cash flow so you can make the best business decisions.

Trade Stocks

Access stocks across the globe and trade with tailored amounts. Enjoy a commission-free allowance each month and make key decisions with Revolut’s learning resources.

Cryptocurrencies

Capitalise on cryptocurrencies, storing crypto offline inside of cold wallets and finding out the trades to make.

Commodities

Decide whether you want to invest in palladium, platinum, gold or silver, gaining the most reliable information from Revolut.

Splitting Bills

When you are out with friends, split the bill so you pay the exact amount using your Revolut app.

Direct Debits and Standing Orders

You can set up both direct debits and standing orders from your Revolut account in the same way as with a traditional bank account.

International Payments

Make purchases abroad with no fee charged up to a value of £1,000, whilst cash withdrawals abroad are fee-free up to a value of £200 each month.

Who Can Get a Revolut Account?

To open a Revolut account, you must be aged at least 18 years old and you must have a valid identification document. However, Revolut does offer under 18 accounts.

How Can I Apply for a Revolut Account?

To apply for a Revolut account, download the Revolut app. The app is available at the App Store as well as at Google Play. Open the app and then enter your phone number, creating your own 4 digit passcode.

You will receive a text message with a PIN that should be entered into the app for verification purposes. Enter your personal details and then verify your identity using identification such as a passport or driving licence.

Are There Different Revolut Accounts Available?

There are several types of Revolut account you could apply for:

1. Joint Accounts

Plans:

  • Standard: Free
  • Plus: £2.99 per month
  • Premium: £6.99 per month
  • Metal: £12.99 per month
  • Ultra: £45 per month

A Revolut joint account offers two people a combined digital account, allowing you to share bills and make plans together.

The Revolut joint account is not officially a UK registered bank account, however, and you will not receive FSCS protection. You can set up direct debits and standing orders, although Revolut do not offer overdrafts or personal loans.

Revolut offers money management features and you can spend up to £1,000 abroad without a transaction fee being charged. You can also withdraw up to £200 cash each month without being charged a fee.

You cannot deposit cash or cheques with Revolut, limiting your ability to add money to your account. However, your Revolut account does allow you to trade in cryptocurrencies as well as trading stocks and commodities.

2. Revolut <18 Account

Plans:

  • Standard: Free
  • Plus: £2.99 per month
  • Premium: £6.99 per month
  • Metal: £12.99 per month
  • Ultra: £45 per month

The Revolut <18 account is for young people aged between 6 years old and 17 years old. The account holder will also receive a card and be able to use the Revolut app. 

If the account holder is aged 13 or above, they can set-up their own account providing they have parental permission. However, you must set-up the account for children aged 12 years old and younger.

The Revolut <18 account is not officially a UK registered bank account, however, and you will not receive FSCS protection.

3. Revolut Pro for Freelance Account

Plans:

  • Standard: Free
  • Plus: £2.99 per month
  • Premium: £6.99 per month
  • Metal: £12.99 per month
  • Ultra: £45 per month

The Revolut Pro for Freelance account is perfect for small businesses, allowing you to create payment links and QR codes for customer payments. You can also link a card reader to your account and you can create and send invoices.

The Revolut Pro for Freelance account is not officially a UK registered bank account, however, and you will not receive FSCS protection.

4. Revolut Business Account

Plans:

  • Free: £0 per month
  • Grow: £19 per month
  • Scale: £79 per month
  • Enterprise: Custom price per month

The Revolut Business account can be tailored for any business with four different plans to choose from.

The Free plan provides no fee-free international or local transfers and offers crypto exchange fees at 1.99%. Your account can be used for spending across 150 currencies. Payments can be accepted by QR codes and payment links and can be connected to a card reader.

The Grow plan costs £19 per month and will offer you 5 fee-free international transfers and 100 fee-free local transfers. You will also receive one metal card for your account, in addition to plastic and virtual cards.

The Scale plan will cost you £79 per month and provides 25 fee-free international transfers and 1,000 fee-free local transfers. Two metal cards will be provided for the Scale account.

A custom plan is available for Enterprise businesses, tailored for your business and offered with a unique pricing plan.

What Are the Disadvantages of a Revolut Account?

Whilst a Revolut account can provide some good financial platform features, Revolut does not offer a UK registered bank account with FSCS protection. This is the Financial Services Compensation Scheme that protects your money. 

Unlike Monzo, which offers unlimited fee-free international purchases, Revolut only offers fee-free purchases abroad up to a value of £1,000. Furthermore, the monthly costs of the paid-for Revolut accounts are much more expensive than Monzo.

In addition, as Revolut is a financial platform service, there is no physical branch for you to visit and deposit cash or cheques.

Revolut Pros and Cons

Take a look at this section for a clear overview of the pros and cons of Revolut:

Pros

✔️ Digital features — You can use the Revolut app to transfer money, make payments and manage your finances.

✔️ Trading stocks — Gain the knowledge and skills you need to trade stocks.

✔️ Crypto — You can also deposit and trade cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin.

✔️ Split the bill — Share the costs of a bill with friends or family.

Cons

❌️ Purchase abroad — You can only spend up to £1,000 abroad on international money transfers before you must pay a fee.

❌️ No physical premises — Revolut is a digital platform and there is no physical branch for you to visit.

❌️ Cash withdrawals — You can only withdraw a set amount of cash from your account each month without being charged a fee.

❌️ Monthly fees — Revolut monthly fees are very expensive in contrast to Monzo.

Revolut Vs Monzo: The Verdict

Revolut and Monzo are both modern financial platforms but which service is better for you? Monzo offers a user-friendly bank account that is fully controlled using the Monzo app.

Whether you want a personal or a business account Monzo will provide you with a UK current account that is protected by the FSCS.

However, Revolut is a good service to use if you want to trade stocks, commodities or cryptocurrencies. Revolut will help trade, providing excellent resources so you can make the best decision.

Related Guides:

FAQs

Which digital platform is best for cryptocurrencies, Monzo or Revolut?

Can I use Monzo as my main bank account?

Can I get an overdraft with a Revolut account?

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