Bidvest Bank and MasterCard has launched the Multi-Currency World Currency Card, MasterCard’s first prepaid travel card that allows cardholders to load up to 17 currencies on the same card at any time.

The Multi-Currency World Currency Card can be loaded both before departure, and while travelling, with any one or all of the 17 available currencies including: the US Dollar, UK Pound, Euro, Australian Dollar, Thai Baht, Canadian Dollar, Argentine Peso, Brazilian Real, Indian Rupee, Chinese Yuan, Israeli Shekel, United Arab Emirates Dirham, Mauritian Rupee, Saudi Riyal, Japanese Yen, Swiss Franc, and New Zealand Dollar.

The cardholder can then use the card globally to pay for goods and services at millions of merchant locations or withdraw cash from ATMs wherever the MasterCard Acceptance Mark is displayed.

“Three main priorities for cardholders when travelling are safety, the convenience of being able to use a payment card worldwide and not spending a fortune on unplanned fees. The Multi-Currency World Currency Card provides peace of mind for all of these,” says Alan King, MD of MasterCard Prepaid Management Services.

Travellers can lock-in the exchange rate on the local currency of their destination ahead of time, and decide exactly how much they want to spend in a particular foreign currency, without having to think about conversion rates. The card is smart and intelligently matches the relevant currency loaded onto the card with that of the country they are in. For example, if both Pounds Sterling and Euros are loaded onto the card at the same time and the cardholder is in London, the card will automatically default to the Pound wallet in order to avoid additional foreign exchange fees.

The card comes with chip and PIN protection, providing a more secure way to pay for goods and services on their travels.  If the card is lost or stolen, a free card replacement will be sent to the cardholder abroad in 24-48 hours, and emergency cash can be arranged.  The cardholder has the additional peace of mind as the card is not linked to their primary bank account or credit card.

“Cardholders can make instant transfers between the various currencies on the card, for example if a specific currency is depleted.  We have also made topping-up of funds an easy process, giving our clients the ability to reload any currency on their card,” says Japie van Niekerk, MD of Bidvest Bank.

Cardholders can check balances, transaction history and transfer between currencies either via the World Currency Card mobile app – available from the iOS and Android app stores – or online via the online portal. Alternatively currency can be preloaded or topped up via the Bidvest Bank online forex ordering portal, or at one of the bank’s branches.