Coinbase launches cryptocurrency Visa debit card in UK

Just two months after Shift withdrew its debit card services from Coinbase, Coinbase has launched its own branded card for UK customers, according to a press release.

Coinbase is a digital currency exchange valued at more than $8bn in October of last year. Headquartered in San Francisco, California, they broker exchanges of Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum, Ethereum Classic, and Litecoin with fiat currencies in approximately 32 countries, and bitcoin transactions and storage in 190 countries worldwide.

The Coinbase card allows users to liquidate the crypto in their accounts for GBP instantly, allowing them to pay at millions of stores or to withdraw cash.

The Visa debit card is issued by PaySafe and can be managed using the Coinbase Card app. This links to users’ accounts and allows them to pay in any crypto asset on their balance.

However, there are some fees attached, unlike with normal domestic Visa transactions. Issuing the card costs £4.95 and will charge 2.49% on each purchase (1.49% crypto conversion fee + 1% transaction fee). There is also a spending cap of £10,000 per day. There is no maintenance fee, but reversing a transaction will cost £20.

“Making crypto easier to use and spend is central to our mission to create a more open financial system,” said UK CEO at Coinbase, Zeeshan Feroz.

A spokesperson clarified that crypto, equivalent to the amount spent, is liquidated immediately into fiat ensuring the correct value is captured at the time of the transaction.

Funds are debited immediately from the customer’s account.

Hugh Kingdon, Visa’s UK and Ireland head of fintech, said: “We value the opportunity to collaborate with fintech partners such as Coinbase to develop cutting-edge payments solutions for businesses and consumers.”

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