Cryptocurrency exchange, Coinbase now allows it users in nearly 40 countries to convert their cryptocurrencies into fiat and ‘instantly’ withdraw cash from their accounts. The new feature is available through integrating Visa and Mastercard platforms that enable near real-time payments, with the funds reaching the recipient’s account within 30 minutes.
Backed by two of the major card schemes, the service is available in the US, UK, and more across Europe.
Customers in the US are also allowed withdraw funds with their Mastercard. Leveraging Mastercard Send capability, US clients can instantly convert their cryptocurrencies into their preferred traditional currency, which can be spent everywhere Mastercard is accepted around the world.
Instant withdrawals are available for US customers at a 1.5% fee (minimum $0.55) while Coinbase users at UK and EU will pay a fee of up to 2%. Still, they can keep their standard withdrawal methods and switch to the new option whenever needed. In both cases, they can preview all associated arrival times and fees prior to withdrawing funds.
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Visa Direct makes it faster for cryptocurrency users to sell their digital assets and push those funds to their Visa credentials in real-time, with much of this work is happening through its FastTrack program.
The new features expand collaboration between the credit card giant and Coinbase after the latter has become the first crypto firm to obtain Visa’s principal membership status. This helps Coinbase, which is valued at an eye-watering $8 billion, to cut out middleman costs and intricacies when it issues branded debit cards that enable users spend their cryptocurrencies anywhere Visa is accepted.
“By enabling real-time card withdrawals through the Visa Direct capability, Coinbase is delivering a faster, simpler and more connected experience for its users — making it easier to convert crypto balances into fiat, which can be spent at the more than 60M merchant locations where Visa is accepted,” said Terry Angelos, SVP and global head of fintech at Visa.
“Leveraging Mastercard Send following the conversion of cryptocurrency into fiat currency, Coinbase will now be able to offer its customers the ability to securely and seamlessly withdraw and use their funds wherever Mastercard debit is accepted — giving them greater flexibility and convenience to manage their financial lives,” added Sherri Haymond, executive vice president, Digital Partnerships at Mastercard.