Starling Bank is introducing virtual cards for Personal Current Account customers and updated its Spending Insights. These new features add to the bank’s money management tools, designed to help people track their spending and provide greater visibility of their budgets.
A virtual card works just like a normal debit card for payments, but it’s linked to a Saving Space in the Starling app, instead of the main account balance. Like physical cards, virtual cards have a unique card number, expiry date and CVV.
Starling customers can have up to five virtual cards at any one time and can choose a different colour for each one, free of charge. To help customers with visual impairments differentiate the cards, each colour also has a unique shape, such as a circle or triangle, in the top-right corner of the card.
Virtual cards are being rolled out to customers from today.
Each virtual card is assigned to a dedicated Space in the Starling app that can be personalised to give customers more control over their budget. Payments can be made directly from a Space, such as a daily bus fare from a ‘travel’ Space or food from a ‘groceries’ Space, rather than coming out from the customer’s primary account. When the budget is used up, the virtual card will decline instead of dipping into the customer’s main balance. Spaces can be topped up any time through one-off, weekly or monthly transfers.
Customers can use their virtual card for all sorts of payments, depending on how they want to organise their personal finances. In addition to Starling’s Bills Manager feature which is used to pay for Direct Debits and standing orders from a particular Space, virtual cards can make it easier to manage subscriptions straight from a Space.
By setting up a ‘Subscriptions’ Space and virtual card, customers will be able to see all their payments for streaming platforms, magazines, apps and organisations in one place. This can make it easier to review or cancel.
Helen Bierton, Chief Banking Officer at Starling Bank said: “Our customers asked for virtual cards and we’ve delivered. Virtual cards allow people to completely compartmentalise their personal finances for better control of their spending, making it easier to stick to budgets.”
To set up a virtual card:
- Head to Spaces in the app, and either create a new Space or choose an existing one.
- Tap ‘Manage Space’, and then ‘Create a virtual card’.
- Follow the on-screen instructions to set up a virtual card.
Starling Bank intends to roll out virtual cards to Business Current Account customers in 2023.
Supercharged Spending Insights
Starling’s popular Spending Insights tool has been redesigned to give customers even more clarity over their finances. Customers can now analyse their spending from specific Spaces, gain extra insights from custom date ranges, and benefit from interactive graphs to understand their spending patterns inside out.
This is the second update to Starling’s Spending Insights this year, after 36 new spending categories were added in June.
“We’re constantly thinking of how we can help our customers manage their money better. We’ve been busy building these new features, as well as our new Budget Planner, to help us continue this mission” Helen said.