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The summer holidays are approaching. To help you on your travels, here are some reasons Starling is perfect for going away with friends, managing a holiday home overseas or simply having peace of mind as you travel to and from work.

Personalised padlock: Card control

No matter how long or short the journey, something I love about Starling is that I don’t have to worry so much about the consequences of losing my card. Provided I still have my phone, I can lock all card transactions from the app and keep my digital wallet unlocked so that I can use Apple Pay until my card turns up again. Or if it really is lost, or has been stolen, I can order a new card and it will arrive within three to five days.

An iPhone displaying the home screen, Pulse and Spending Insights, accompanied by a teal Starling card.

If you lose your phone, contact Starling customer service using the number on the back of your card or through the chat section of our website. We’ll temporarily disable your app until you have your phone back or have a new one.

Borderless banking: Send money abroad and fee-free spending abroad

Whenever I went travelling with a debit card from a high street bank, I would constantly worry about how much I was being charged in fees or what the exchange rate was. Not anymore. With Starling, there are no fees for using your card abroad or withdrawing cash and you’ll receive a notification of how much you’ve spent in the local currency and what that equates to in pounds. It’s always best to pay in local currency so that you benefit from Mastercard’s globally accepted exchange rate through Starling. It’s also worth noting that there is sometimes a cost for using certain ATMs for withdrawing cash - this charge comes from the ATM operators not from Starling.

It’s also easy to make International Payments. We charge the current exchange rate and a charge of 0.4%. So if you need to transfer money to family living abroad, pay for work being done at an overseas property or settle a bill for an activity you did on holiday, a personal or business account with Starling could be your solution. It only takes a few minutes to apply for one.

Once you’ve got a personal account, you can also register your interest for euro accounts, currently being rolled out.

Three screens showing how Spending Insights look in the iOS app.

A personal account: Photographs for accounts and Goals

All four types of Starling accounts - personal, business, joint and euro - are managed from the app. You can add your own images as profile pictures for each account. My favourite collection that I’ve seen so far is one cat for personal, two for joint and a cat wearing a beret for euro.

You can also add photographs for your Goals to help you visualise what you’re saving for. Whether it’s travelling to a wedding or saving up for a festival, Starling can help you get there by letting you set money aside from your everyday balance. You can’t spend what’s in your Goal unless you move it back to the main account, keeping it out of sight and out of mind to make saving easier.

Two screens showing standing orders in the iOS app.

No more awkward restaurant bills: Settle Up requests and Nearby Payments

There’s nothing better than realising you all bank with Starling when the bill arrives. It makes life so much easier. Provided the bill isn’t too big, one of you can pick up the cheque and then split the bill by sending a Settle Up request for the amount you’re owed. You could also send money via Nearby Payments while you’re at the table. These features should help to get everything settled then and there so that you don’t have to send a series of texts a few days later with your bank details reminding them to pay you back.

When four friends of mine went to Croatia, they all used Starling to keep track of what they’d spent on each other throughout the week and then used Settle Up requests at the end to cover any outstanding payments. Even if you don't all bank with Starling, the person with the Starling account can send a Settle Up link to the others, no account numbers or sort codes needed.

One screen showing Round Ups in the iOS app.

To find out more about the app, have a look at the first part of this series on organising your finances and the second part on managing your money better.

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