Merchants may charge you additional fees by applying:
1. Surcharge fees
2. Currency exchange fees
1. What is a merchant surcharge?
Merchants may charge you an additional fee if you choose to pay by card. This fee is defined by the merchant.
For example, if you pay £10 (British Pounds) at a store, the merchant may apply a £0.5 surcharge, so you'll be charged a total of £10.5.
2. Why was my card payment charged in a different currency and why was I charged extra for this?
Two currency exchanges may happen:
- On the merchant's side
- On Revolut's side
When you are shopping abroad or are making a purchase from a foreign website, the merchant may provide you with the option of being charged in your “home currency” rather than in the country where the merchant is based (“local currency”). If you accept the currency exchange, the merchant will apply its own exchange rate and charge you extra. This is referred to as dynamic currency conversion (“DCC”).
To avoid unfavourable exchange rates applied by the merchant, it is recommended that you choose to be charged in the local currency, and refuse the currency exchange performed by the merchant. Choose British Pounds (GBP) in the UK or on a British website, US Dollars (USD) in the US or on an American website, etc.
For example, you try to pay £10 (British Pounds) at a British store. On the payment screen, the merchant suggests you convert this amount to US Dollars.
- If you accept the conversion, the merchant may apply an unfavourable exchange rate and charge you extra, for example USD $15.
- If you don’t accept the conversion, the merchant will charge you £10.
Bear in mind that merchant surcharge fees may apply in addition to any currency exchange charges imposed by the merchant. Using the previous example, if the merchant charges a £0.5 surcharge fee, you'll be charged £10.5 without currency exchange being performed by the merchant, or USD $16 if the merchant converts this £10.5 in USD using an unfavourable exchange rate.
The merchant tells us how much to charge your account.
If you don't have enough funds in your account in the currency you chose for the card payment, Revolut will perform a currency exchange. Please bear in mind that if this happens, we may charge you a currency exchange fee if you’ve exceeded the monthly exchange limit on your Revolut plan. This fee would appear in the Fees section of your transaction details screen on your Revolut app.
- No conversion: you try to pay £10 (British Pounds) at a British store. On the payment screen, the merchant suggests you convert this amount to US Dollars. You refuse the currency exchange. The merchant asks Revolut to charge you £10. If you have sufficient British Pounds in your Revolut account, Revolut does not have to exchange the amount. You only get charged £10.
- Double conversion: you try to pay £10 (British Pounds) at a British store. The merchant suggests you convert this amount to US Dollars. You accept the conversion (which you shouldn’t do). The merchant converts this amount using an unfavourable exchange rate and asks Revolut to charge you USD $15. If you don’t have enough US Dollars in your Revolut account, but you have enough British Pounds, Revolut will have to exchange this USD $15 to British Pounds, and charge you £11 after conversion. You end up paying more than expected because of the unfavourable merchant exchange rate.
Overall, our recommendation is to choose to make card payments in the local currency, and refuse currency conversions performed by the merchant. Revolut will exchange the amount only if you have insufficient funds, and in that case, will often use a more favourable exchange rate. Learn more about the exchange rate used by Revolut in 'What foreign exchange rate will I get?' FAQ article.
Please bear in mind that the surcharge and exchange rate applied by the merchants are estimates we compute based on the information we receive from them.