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  .  Published  · By KarlVonBahnhof

Crypto cards for non-EU residents


Image: For non-EU residents, the latest regulation storm seems to be a sh1tshorm.

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As you probably know, most cryptocurrency debit card providers stopped by 15th October 2017 servicing customers who reside outside of the European Territories. These are basically the European Economic Area and a few additional places. People who live outside of these areas get either refunded, or their accounts simply get suspended – that includes EU citizens who don’t permanently reside in the EU.

The Damage Report

Which cryptocurrency VISA card issuers stopped servicing non-EU residents by 15th October 2017?

Company Business Location Old Card Issuer Changes Refund
Cryptopay UK mychoicecorporate.com (WaveCrest Holdings Ltd) “Unfortunately, our card issuer has stopped maintaining cards for our non-EU users.” Free card replacement in EUR for affected customers with promo code PLASTIC-REISSUE. (USD and GBP cards N/A)
Bitwala Germany WaveCrest Holdings Ltd “According to new EU regulation, prepaid cards are only available for EU residents.” ?
Wirex UK mychoicecorporate.com (WaveCrest Holdings Ltd) Stopped servicing non-EU customers. No refund, free replacement card for non-EU people is in the works.
Shakepay Canada mychoicecorporate.com (WaveCrest Holdings Ltd) Stopped servicing non-EU residents. No new cards will be issued for non-EU customers. Request a refund
Xapo USA mychoicecorporate.com (WaveCrest Holdings Ltd) Stopped servicing non-EU residents. No refund but orders were suspended soon enough.

So you see the problem. We have a f**k load of cryptocurrency debit card providers with differently crafted wow much shiny landing pages but they all rely on the same card issuer. Such clever, muh diversification.

The good news is if you find a prepaid card provider that uses a different issuer you should be at least temporarily able to go around the regulation that has hit us on October 15th.

Bad news is that while the above regulation was related to VISA cards only, MasterCard introduced something similar recently. A representative from worldcore.eu, a Czech company that provides MasterCard cryptocurrency debit cards, said: “Based on recently released conditions by MasterCard, we can only issue cards for SEPA region countries and their residents.”

In the case of Cryptopay in particular, the new issuer is PSI Pay Ltd. from the UK which is a MasterCard issuer. PSI Pay Ltd. is authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) under the Electronic Money Regulations 2011 (FCA register number 900011) for the issuing of electronic money throughout Europe, however it doesn’t imply anything for non-EU residents although Cryptopay uses PSI Pay to serve precisely those customers who reside outside of Europe. – If you do a bit of research you will eventually come across this: http://www.psi-payscam.com/fullstory/ – PSI Pay Ltd. is apparently closely related to a company that stole their customer’s funds and whose bank accounts and domains were seized. Author of the one-page linked above claims to be owed $100,000.

And, before you flee to the next safe haven, you will find very recent and very heated scam accusations regarding worldcore.eu too, though. Additionally – for those who want to be looking for red flags – both Cryptopay (partnering with PSI Pay) and Worldcore started ICOs recently.

So, a word of caution: Localbitcoins doesn’t sound so risky after all, does it?

Which cryptocurrency debit cards might work for non-EU residents?

Not many, and these are untested:


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