Tips for using your WeSwap card abroad

At WeSwap, we want to make sure that you can enjoy your holiday stress-free. To do so we have a few card tips and tricks to help you out along the way.

If you have already activated your card, got your PIN and loaded your account, you can skip the first part of this article and go straight to tips when using your card.

Be sure your card is activated

The card only works when it is activated. You can choose to:

  • Activate it online via the app or the website
  • Activate it over the phone by calling 02030536610 (in the UK) or +44(0)20 34740747 (from outside the UK)


Make sure you have your PIN

To use your prepaid card, you will need to know your PIN number – if you have a contactless card, your first transaction still needs to be done via chip and pin. To retrieve your pin either:

  • Go to the WeSwap app: select the ‘my card’ tab and click on ‘get pin’
  • Log onto the website and select ‘pin retrieval’ from the drop-down list
  • Phone 020 3053 6610 or +44(0)20 3474 0747 (from outside the UK)

We’re only humans… Mistakes happen! If you enter your PIN incorrectly more than 3 times during a transaction, your PIN will be blocked. Be sure that if the merchant response is ‘incorrect pin’ you check your PIN (by using the app or calling the phone number above). To unblock your PIN, you will need to find an ATM with the unblock PIN functionality or wait 24 hours and make sure your first transaction is withdrawing cash from an ATM.

Please note that while the PIN is blocked you can still use your card as swipe and sign (for instance in the USA) or online, contactless will not work.


Be sure to load your account

It is always best to check your balance on your account before you start travelling. If there is not enough money on your account in the currency you want to pay with, your payment is going to be declined. To load your account, you can:

  • Use your regular debit card and load your account via the app or web dashboard
  • Load by Apple Pay via the app
  • Make a bank transfer and load your account using the details provided on the load page via the app or web dashboard – this will take 24 hours (if registered in the UK) to be loaded onto your account.

If you are spending outside of our 18 wallet currencies you’re ready to go. If you’re spending in our 18 wallet currencies swap your funds over to get the best rates.


Swap for the best rates

Once you have loaded your account, you are ready to create a swap. This step is key if you want to get one of the 18 currencies that WeSwap offers and get the best exchange rates available.


WeSwap App and Phone in Hand


1. Don’t get charged in the wrong currency

Make sure you always choose to pay in the local currency of the country you are visiting.

Merchants can use a mechanism called Dynamic Currency Conversion (DCC) which means you’ll get charged a commission decided by the merchant and you will be given their exchange rate instead of the one you swapped your funds over at.

WeSwap has no control over the merchant terminal so make sure you always choose to pay in the local currency of the country you are visiting and you should avoid this.


2. Do use your card for contactless transactions

If your WeSwap card has a contactless symbol on the top left you can use it for contactless payments – yay!

Remember you can use contactless for small transactions, a larger transaction will require chip and pin. If you try to pay using contactless and the transaction is declined, try to pay via chip and pin – this will reset the contactless feature and you’ll be able to continue using it.

3. Don’t use your WeSwap card for deposits

When you need a card to put a deposit or pre-authorisation on we’d advise not using the WeSwap card. As WeSwap is a prepaid card it can take up to 30 days for your pre-authorisation to be returned. This means for car rental deposits, hotel pre- authorisations and petrol stations, we would advise using your WeSwap card to settle the final bill but avoid using it to pay for deposits.

4. Do still use ATMs that ask for a six digit pin

On your travels, you may come across an ATM or two that asks for a 6 digit pin number. Whilst this is rare it can happen. Don’t be afraid though, simply enter your normal pin and add two zeros on the end and you’ll be able to access your funds as normal. Remember to still decline any conversation rate offered and select to pay in local currency.

5. Don’t use your card online – yet!

As a prepaid travel card, we wanted to nail using your card to make purchases and withdraw. When it comes to using your card online, we’re not quite there yet. Whilst some websites may accept our card, the WeSwap card isn’t yet 3D secure so a merchant can choose to decline the purchase. Sometimes the funds will still be taken and can take up to 14 days to be reversed. It’s best to avoid online transaction for now, don’t worry we’re working really hard on making our card 3D secure though so stay tuned!

6. Do use your card worldwide

The WeSwap card works all over the world – yay! All you need to do is keep your funds in the GBP wallet and spend when at your destination. The swap will take place as and when you spend and you’ll get the Mastercard rate for your transaction. Pretty good right? Make sure to always select to pay in the local currency and if you’re offered an exchange rate always decline.

7. Do select credit when withdrawing

Despite WeSwap being a prepaid card and NOT a credit card, if given the option when withdrawing, always select ‘credit’. The WeSwap card is best read when you select ‘credit’ as are most other prepaid cards.

8. Do remember your withdrawals limits

When withdrawing in one of the 18 wallet currencies you can withdraw a maximum of £500 or equivalent every 24 hours. When withdrawing in any currency outside of our 18 wallet currencies you can withdraw £400 or equivalent every 7 days. Remember you still have 10 transactions per day in addition to this – that’s breakfast, lunch, dinner, two snacks, three activities and two shopping sprees.

9. Do withdraw £200 or more

Withdrawing £200 or more means you’ll avoid our charges. Under £200 you will be charged a small fee of £1.50 or equivalent. So our tip to save those extra pennies is withdraw a larger amount.

10. Do use ATMs in the US – but not too regularly

ATMs in the US charge. We’d love to say we have a magic fix but annoyingly we don’t. The best thing to do is tactically withdraw. Withdraw larger amounts to not be charged by us and also make sure you’re withdrawing less regularly so you avoid the ATM charges too. The US are very card friendly so you may be able to get around not withdrawing altogether, or order some travel cash before you go.

11. Do watch the rates

With our fancy new rate tracker, you can make sure you’re getting the best possible rate when swapping or spending. If you’re swapping your funds get an idea of the market patterns to avoid disappointment.

12. Do pay your friends back

We now have a send money to friends feature which means you can send money directly to friends using WeSwap just as quickly as you can load or swap. Select ‘send’, the amount and your friend and that’s it, the bill is sorted!

WeSwap and the WeSwap logo are trademarks of MK Fintech Limited trading as The WeSwap card is issued by Monavate Limited, pursuant to license by Mastercard International. Mastercard is a registered trademark of Mastercard International Incorporated. Monavate Limited is authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority under the Electronic Money Regulations 2011 for the issuing of electronic money and the provision of payment services (FCA Register reference 901097). For further information, please visit
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