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How does Curve’s new cashback offer stack up?

The personal finance market is changing. New players are emerging and looking to shake up the way things are done. And one particular fintech, Curve, is looking to do just that with its new cashback offer.

Curve is an e-wallet app which allows you to use your debit and credit cards through one Curve Mastercard. Its newly launched cashback offer allows users to earn 1% instant cashback at selected retailers, on top of any reward they may already be earning from their existing cards. On the surface this looks like an attractive deal, but if you dig a bit deeper how does it really stack up?

The Curve Cash Programme

The Curve Cash programme has largely been designed to attract new customers to the app’s premium services, with the benefits weighted towards the fee-paying card options. The 1% cashback yield is attached to spending at participating retailers which include the likes of Amazon, Netflix, Sainsbury’s and Apple. You can select between three and six retailers depending on what card package you have:

  • Curve Blue (free) You can select up to three retailers and receive cashback for the first 90 days.
  • Curve Black (£9.99 a month) You can select up to three retailers and receive cashback for an unlimited period.
  • Curve Metal (£14.99 a month) You can select up to six retailers and receive cashback for an unlimited period.

One of the key selling points of the programme is that the 1% cashback you are earning is on top of whatever you may be receiving from your selected credit card. Say for example you use your Curve card and select your Tesco Clubcard to make the purchase. Then you will receive 1% cashback plus earn Clubcard points. Basically you are earning yourself double rewards.

Is it worth it?

With any card that has a fee attached to it, you need to ask yourself if the cost outweighs the benefits. The Curve Blue option, which is free, could be a good way to just earn yourself a little something extra on your spending for a 90-day period.

However, once you consider the annual cost of £120 for the Black card and £180 for the Metal card, is it really worth it for what you receive in cashback? These cards have more to their packages than just the cashback offer (namely travel perks, customer protection, zero-fee currency exchange), but if it is specifically the cashback offer that is attracting you, you should probably consider how much you would actually be earning versus how much you would have to pay.

One other key point to mention is that Curve no longer has an arrangement with American Express, meaning you can not add your American Express cards to the e-wallet app. This is significant in terms of the cashback offer, as American Express cards are often the most generous available.

How does it stack up?

A great way to see how this compares to what else is out there is to visit the cashback credit card comparison page at MyWalletHero. That page shows a listing of the top cashback cards as judged by the MyWalletHero team.

Cashback rewards levels change from time to time, but as I write this, it’s possible to get ongoing cashback of up to 1% with no annual fee (on a card that gives 5% cashback over the first three months). Other options — likewise with no annual fees attached — range from 0.25% ongoing cashback to 0.5%.

You could potentially use these cards (the non-Amex cards at least) in conjunction with the Curve offer, or you could save yourself a monthly fee and just use the cards as is.

Verdict

If you are looking for a good cashback offer, then there are several options available where you can earn yourself cashback without having to pay any fee. The Curve proposition is interesting in that it gives cardholders the potential to earn double rewards, and the free Curve Blue card could be a good way to give yourself a little financial bump with the first 90 days offer.

But for the paid options of Curve Black and Curve Metal, it’s hard to picture the cashback offer offsetting the cost of the card. If you are interested in Curve for what it provides in terms of having one card cover all, being able to use it in shops where credit cards aren’t accepted and the additional travel and protection offers as part of its package, then the cashback offer is a nice sweetener. But in mind, the cashback offer isn’t reason enough to buy into the all-in-one e-wallet app.

Interested in cashback cards? Check out our top picks for credit cards with a cashback offer

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