Revolut in Switzerland – Free Top Up with Swiss IBAN

Mr. The Poor Swiss | Updated: | Save
Revolut in Switzerland Top Up For Free with Revolut Swiss IBAN

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In the early days of Revolut, the biggest problem with this service was that they did not have a Swiss IBAN. Some good news just arrived for us!

Revolut now includes a Swiss IBAN when you want to top it up! It means you can now top up your Revolut account for free directly from your bank account. It is great since that was missing from the start on the Revolut account.

And probably even bigger news for Revolut: they got a European Specialised Bank License! It is a big deal for the company. Revolut is now officially a bank and will soon start offering new services. But for us, it will not change much in the short-term.

I have been using Revolut for about two years now, and I like it. During that time, I have saved a lot of money by using their free currency exchange services. I am curious to see how they are going to implement this banking license in the future.

In this post, we will see what these changes mean for other Revolut customers and me! If you do not know about Revolut, stay tuned!

Revolut

Revolut

Revolut offers a credit card without any fees for currency exchange.

Revolut is a kind of digital bank alternative. It is not yet a bank. But you can store money in any currency on your account. In theory, you could even use it to deposit your salary into it. But since they are not a bank, you have fewer guarantees on it.

The most significant advantage of the Revolut account is that you can convert currencies for free! This is only free for the first 1250 CHF converted per month. But this should be enough for most people.

Most credit cards will charge a hefty fee to convert currencies. For instance, my previous credit card charges me 1.5% to do a foreign currency transaction. It is the main reason why I started using Revolut.

I have already saved quite some money with Revolut, and all of it is for free! Now I only use Revolut for my expenses in foreign currencies. I have been using it for almost six months, and I am pleased about it!

To learn more about Revolut, read my full article about Revolut.

Revolut Swiss IBAN

If you want to transfer money to your Revolut account, there are several ways:

  1. Use a Debit Card (free)
  2. Use a Swiss Credit Card (free)
  3. Use another Credit Card (not free)
  4. Transfer to a bank account (free)

The most convenient method is to transfer money from your bank account to Revolut IBAN for most people. The main issue with Revolut before was that they did not have any Swiss IBAN. They had an IBAN from the UK on which you could pay with CHF. However, every time you transferred money, you needed to pay a small fee because Swiss banks do not provide free transfers to IBAN outside of Switzerland, even if it is in CHF.

In the beginning, I was using a TransferWise account to make the transfer for free. I was transferring money to my TransferWise account from my bank. And from there, I was transferring money to my Revolut account. It was working quite well and was free. However, that means I had an account I did not use and a card I only used for some transfers. Having fewer accounts would help me simplify my routines!

Now, Revolut just got a CHF IBAN from Credit Suisse! With this, we can transfer money directly into our Revolut account with a single bank transfer. And the transfers are entirely free! You can transfer as much money as you want without any fees! It is great news.

That means I do not need to use TransferWise anymore for now. It will significantly simplify my money management!

If you prefer, you can also directly use your main credit card to top up your Revolut credit card. It means you can also use credit for card Revolut. It is another great way to top up Revolut for free! But this will only work for credit cards issued in your own country. And only Revolut and Visa are currently supported by Revolut.

For instance, you can use your Cumulus MasterCard to top up Revolut for free.

Transfer Money for free to Revolut

To find the new Swiss IBAN, you can go into your Revolut application and click on the Add Money button. Then, choose Bank Transfer, and Revolut will give you all the information you need to make the bank transfer:

Revolut Swiss IBAN
Revolut Swiss IBAN

With all this information, you can initiate a bank transfer from your bank account to Revolut Swiss IBAN. Do not forget to include your reference number. Otherwise, Revolut will have no way of identifying you, and the money will be returned to you later on.

Once you have done your transfer, it will generally take one working day for the money to be available in your account. Most Swiss banks are pretty slow for that. If you have another bank, this may go faster.

Depending on your account, you may need to enter more information than just your reference number. For instance, you may need to enter your name and your country into the reference information.

Banking License

Until now, Revolut was not a bank but merely a digital banking alternative. These two have quite a few differences. For instance, Revolut could not offer you credit options, and your money at Revolut was not insured.

However, this will soon change! Indeed, in December 2018, Revolut got a Specialized Bank License from the European Central Bank. They used the Bank of Lithuania as a facilitator in the proceedings. They are not yet a full-range bank since they only got a Specialized Bank License. For instance, they cannot provide any investment services.

Revolut plans to start offering bank account to smaller countries such as Lithuania and then move on to broader European markets such as France and Germany. It is going to be a while before they move to Switzerland.  They are also trying to get a banking license in Russia.

Nevertheless, this is excellent news and will soon benefit the users of Revolut. The most significant advantage will be that soon, money deposited on a Revolut account will be insured up to 100’000 EUR. The European Deposit Insurance Scheme (EDIS) guarantees this amount for each European bank account.

Another advantage, but less appealing, in my opinion, is that they can offer you personal loans. You can also go negative in your bank account. It was not possible before. I do not think it is an excellent thing since you should not go negative anyway. But it remains to be seen how much interest they will bill on these loans.

For now, nothing changed. Just because Revolut got a banking license does not alter their Revolut accounts. It means that for now, the money in your Revolut is not insured yet! It is important for the safety of your money. I personally never keep more than 1000 CHF on my Revolut account.

They are going to start with this new license in Lithuania for now. But then, they plan to extend in the other European countries. We probably will not see any change in Switzerland for a few years. But eventually, it will come!

Overall, I believe this is excellent news for Revolut and its customers.

Conclusion

Revolut

Revolut offers a credit card without any fees for currency exchange.

All this is great for both Revolut and its customers in Switzerland. With this new Swiss IBAN, Swiss people can transfer money to Revolut for free.

For Swiss investors, that means that it will not be necessary to use TransferWise as an intermediary to transfer money for free to our Revolut account. It will simplify my money management routines. And it will also simplify my net worth routine since this means one less account. I am always interested in simplifications!

This news makes Revolut more interesting for users in Switzerland.

If you need more than 1250 CHF per month, you may want to consider alternatives. TransferWise is an excellent alternative to Revolut for large amounts.

Now, if you want something simpler and local, you can also look at Neon Bank.  They also offer purchases in foreign currencies for free. And they are a local Swiss bank. So you should not have to go to any trouble with them.

What do you think about this news? Do you already use Revolut? Did you try the new Swiss IBAN?

Mr. The Poor Swiss is the author behind thepoorswiss.com. In 2017, he realized that he was falling into the trap of lifestyle inflation. He decided to cut on his expenses and increase his income. This blog is relating his story and findings. In 2019, he is saving more than 50% of his income. He made it a goal to reach Financial Independence. You can send Mr. The Poor Swiss a message here.

77 thoughts on “Revolut in Switzerland – Free Top Up with Swiss IBAN”

  1. Hello there,

    I’ve seen on some of the comments others have similar problem. My boss was trying to transfer the salary to my swiss revolut account with no success. Everything was written correctly, the beneficient, IBAN and refference info exactly like it should be and every time the money goes back to them. I’ve contacted the consultants on revolut support chat and they couldn’t help me. I have no idea what’s the problem. They’ve tried like 5 times now already and I have no other choice but to open a ,,normal” bank account. Any thoughts on that? Thank you!

    1. Hi Marlena,

      To be honest, I would not trust Revolut with a salary. Since the IBAN is not in your name, it’s not optimal.
      But aside from this side, it should technically work, so I have no idea what’s going on.

  2. Hello,

    So I’ve been reading a few of your posts trying to figure out how to manage my move back to Switzerland. I have an address in Switzerland and a post finance account but my main issue is I have to get a credit card to rent a car when I arrive at the airport. Revolut seems like a good option but wondering if it works to hire a car? Otherwise according to your other blog post you said migros cumulus was a good card but I can’t get it unless I am in Switzerland already which is annoying. Post finance MasterCard seems to be the best option as they will deliver it for me to my internship home so that I have it for my arrival but that may mean that once I’m there I cancel it and get the migros one. I’m wondering if you have a suggestion for me or if there are international credit cards I can apply for that I don’t need to close when I move countries

    1. Hi Christine,

      In most cases, it does not work to rent a car, unfortunately.
      In your case, it seems like a good deal to get the PostFinance card for a year and then use that to get settled. You can then cancel it once you are in Switzerland and start optimizing. I am afraid I do not have a better solution.

  3. Hello,
    Can you explain how to transfer money from PostFinance to Revolut with IBAN. Can’t find where to put reference number!!
    Thanks you very much

  4. Hi there Mr.-Poor-Swiss-Rich-in-Knowledge,

    I have gone through a few of your entries and I still don’t know what would be best. To sum up, I lived in Switzerland three times and on two occasions my basic bank account was frozen upon departure.

    I would like to transfer under 10k CHF from a frozen account and to keep it, ideally in CHF.

    My question is, if I transfer it to Wise, will it go from CHF to a currency with an IBAN provided by WISE (EUR, GBP or USD, for example) and then have to pay again to convert it into CHF?

    If I use a Revolut Standard account (or a different one?) and don’t live in Switzerland, can I send it in CHF and receive it in CHF without doing crazy conversions or paying for a weird fee(s)? If I don’t get a Swiss Iban because I don’t live in Switzerland, how do they receive CHF then?

    Danke,

    1. Hi erika,

      I am not entirely sure but I believe that you can receive CHF on your Wise account. And then you can keep CHF here.
      On Revolut, you can receive it, but if you are not in Switzerland, you may have to pay some fees but it should not be too bad.
      In your case, I would definitely try Wise over Revolut (too much money for Revolut). Looking at this article (https://wise.com/us/borderless/chf-account), you can get CHF in your Wise account as an U.S. person).

  5. Hello,
    Does someone know how to tranfer money from a PostFinance account to Revolut? Where the reference number goes? I coudn’t do it. Thanks!

    1. Hello,

      I tried twice to top up my Revolut account by transfering money from post finance, each time I got an email that the attempt was refused and money will come back to the sender…
      I put this Reference number in each avaiable cell and nothing…

  6. Hi,
    Before I was a Neue Argauer Bank customer which offered free international wire transfers…so there was no issue to transfer from CH to my CHF Revolut account in CHF. This account has an Iban in Lithuania since my Revolut account dates back to their early days when I was still living outside Switzerland. Now Credit Suisse absorved NAB so I inherited the lovely 5chf fee for such top ups. Last time i checked, a revolut customer with CH base address loses all included insurances, but do they get a swiss iban to their CHF revolut account?

      1. Thanks!
        I’ve tried now to open a second Revolut account as a CH based customer. Waiting for the account validation…

  7. I‘ m trying to transfer money from my Migros bank e banking to Revolut.. it just asks me the reference number which I don’t have and also asks me for the address which I think is westferry in London?
    I appreciate some good advice
    Thanks

    1. Hi,

      When you go into your Revolut account, they should provide you with all the information you need to wire money. The beneficiary information and address will be there, it’s in London.
      From migros bank, you should not have a reference number, but a message to destination this is where you should put the reference that Revolut provided you. You should do a bank transfer, not a bill payment from Migros bank application.

  8. Hello,

    Thanks for all of the information you have on your website. I am moving to Switzerland in a few months, and have followed your website to help with the planning.

    I think I now have a plan to avoid all (most) of the fees associated with Swiss banks, wire transfers etc.

    However, I believe the options Revolut has changes with ‘where’ your local account is. Do you think it is better to wait until I get to Switzerland before opening the account, or can I do it in my home country and then change address when I arrive? I mainly just need a Swiss IBAN account so I can move money from my local Swiss bank (when I get there), to Revolut and then use Revolut to wire money back home.

    Just trying to make everything go as smooth as possible.

    Thanks

    1. Hi Nathan,

      Thanks for the kind words.

      I think you should wait until you have an address in Switzerland to open the Revolut account. If you do not have a Swiss Revolut account, you will not have a CH IBAN and therefore you will not be able to do free transfers from bank to bank.
      I have heard (not sure) that you cannot change the account domicile easily within Revolut. That would make it harder to switch your address in Revolut later on.

      I hope this helps :)

  9. Dear Poor Swiss,

    I am new to Revolut and only have a standard set of instruments for a swiss user – Virtual card, local iban and Swift code for the foreign transfers.
    So far my virtual card has not been accepted anywhere (I tried four different online services abroad). Ordering a physical card is actually not for free, at least in my app.
    Could you please advise how did you manage to get a working credit card form Revolut for free? Was it a long time ago?

    1. Hi Anna,

      Sorry to hear that!
      I did not use it a lot, maybe four or five times in total. But I never had any issues of that sort. The last time I used it was in January.
      Did you get a message in your application telling you why it was refused?

      Thanks for stopping by!

  10. I have a question re receiving money from a third party as a source of income. Does Revolut produce an end-of-the-year statement that one can use for the tax return?

    1. Hi Nona,

      That’s a good question. It does not provide a direct end-of-year statement for tax, no. But you can generate a PDF or Excel statement for each of your accounts and this will contain all your transactions. But this will not differentiate between third parties and your top-ups I would think.
      I am not sure this will be enough for you but this is all it can do.

      Thanks for stopping by!

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