Number26 is an interesting start-up in the area of FinTech (financial technology) – the Berlin-based company aims to provide borderless banking and has recently launched a mobile-first banking service for Irish consumers.
Accounts, which are linked to a provided MasterCard and don’t incur account fees (as a result of MasterCard’s already present cut on each transaction), can be opened in as little as eight minutes via video identification. It also features fast money transfers via text or email, no foreign usage fees and free withdrawals at MasterCard ATMs around the world (regular ATMs might have a charge as usual). You can also disable online transactions via the app, or receive push notifications for transactions.
At present, topping up still requires a bank transfer which could take a few days. In Germany, however, consumers can withdraw or deposit funds in grocery stores around the country, a feature expected to be brought to Ireland in the near future.