My experience with Crypto.Com

My experience with Crypto.Com

My experience

I first used (CDC) back in April of 2020 buying $500 worth of BTC. I didn’t really know much about CDC but at that time was very aggressive on marketing and they were doing a lot of promotions during the surge of Covid. They offered double the rewards for gift cards, zero fees while buying crypto with a credit card, high interest rates with staking, and they were doing a lot of marketing with the exchange/syndicates.

Gift cards

At that time, the first real product that I remember being excited for was the gift cards. I remember buying eBay gift cards and getting 5% cash back in CRO and up to 20% cash back with restaurants. We bought a LOT of pizza gift cards. I figured, if we were going to buy $100 worth of pizza (over a couple months), it would be well worth it to get a free $20 in crypto. Even for our anniversary dinner, we went out and ate with our gift card and basically saved 20% extra for using the gift card. For Christmas, when applicable like for see’s candy, we also bought our presents using CDC gift cards. The process is smooth; to buy a card you spend CRO. I don’t track the spread anymore but when I was following it in the past I found that there was a little bit of a spread (like 2%-3%) if you buy CRO immediately and buy a gift card. Losing 2%-3% isn’t too bad when you are instantly gaining 10%-20% but for the 5% cash back, I find myself a bit more hesitant now because there are better options. When you buy the gift card, it generally comes pretty instantaneous. There have been times I have waited awkwardly at the cash register waiting for the gift card to arrive but for the most part as soon as you click buy, the card comes right away.

Debit Card

I first bought myself the Ruby card back in the MCO days and about a month later, I acquired enough MCO to upgrade to the Jade card. Shortly after that, CDC announced the destruction of MCO and the MCO to CRO swap. For me personally, most of the MCO that I had bought was more valuable from the swap, however there was a small portion that I actually took a loss from the swap. The card itself works by topping off the card by selling your crypto. Some people will buy a stable coin token off of an exchange and use that to top off the card. Once you have fiat (USD or whatever currency of your nation) on your card, it acts like a normal debit card. I have received some complements while using it out and about. It is a thick, heavy card that feels luxurious. One person even recognized it as a crypto card. When you make purchases with your card, you get the rewards instantly paid in CRO. For the jade tier, I get 3% cash back on most of my purchases (legal, gas, utilities and some other transactions are excluded) and I get up to $12.99 cash back each month for Netflix and Spotify. I also get one free airport lounge access, however I have never actually taken advantage of that. Overall, I use this card as my fallback card if I don’t have better incentives from my other cards. The last thing to note is that you do earn interest on the amount of CRO you have staked for the card which is paid out weekly. This is always a welcoming Sunday bonus. 

CDC Pay: Transferring to other people

If you transfer CRO to a friend, the transaction is free and CDC actually pays you a small refund back. I think it is like 10% back for a limit of $50/month or something like that. I have only taken advantage of this once but it worked pretty seamlessly. When I went out to dinner with my brother-in-law, I ended up sending him my portion which worked out kind of cool by getting a 10% refund and obviously he was happy having the extra CRO.

Staking/Other features

I have not had the opportunity to use the exchange and participate in their promotions so I won’t write on that. There is the syndicate and supercharger are like different staking options with different staking structures. As far as staking on the CDC app, staking is pretty easy. Depending on your tier of the card and if you have the baseline CRO staked, you may earn extra APR on your staking positions. There are three types of staking positions on the APP. You can stake in Flexible (no time limit), a monthly stake and a 3 month stake (or 6 month stake on the exchange). Staking is essentially putting your money locked away for a period of time in order to receive the benefits. It is always nice to have your portfolio grow in both fiat value AND tokens. I have had zero issues with staking on the platform (although I currently only stake CRO now).

Future of CRO

With the mainnet launches (very soon), CDC is looking to capitalize on the DeFi marketplace. Basically, it will be an option to bring DeFi closer to consumers which will help expand their platform. I think this project has huge potential but I haven’t actually looked as closely into the features of the mainnet. One main hurdle for like Uniswap, is that metamask is really the go to option for using DeFi. A lot of people don’t like Metamask because a browser extension might seem sketchy to a lot of crypto enthusiasts. I addressed this concern a little bit in my other post about wallets. But, with using CDC, if you can use your DeFi wallet to buy on the mainnet then that should bring another layer into the DeFi marketplace. Of course, there are a lot of people that don’t like phone wallets either but overall I think there are a lot of users in CDC and this should be a decent marketplace. If CDC is successful and enough developers/investors enter into the platform, then this will be huge for CRO because people will inevitably use CRO pairings with other tokens. Also, CDC app would be a nice bridge to bring other coins/tokens into the DeFi project. 

What is my opinion on CDC?

Overall, I am satisfied with CRO. I like my card but I don’t love it. The jade card is definitely quite a premium for the perks and I often find myself hesitant to sell my crypto in order to top off my card. I also don’t like the exceptions for the card. The other big negative to me is trying to acquire tokens to top off my card without losing a lot of money to spreads/transfer fees. If I lose 3% on spreads to top off my card in order to gain 3% cash back then what is the point? The card feels more to me as an offramp for your tokens rather than a way to maximize your purchasing power which is unfortunate. I have heard if you have USAA then you can transfer money pretty easily into CDC, so maybe I should actually give that a try in the near future. I will still continue to buy gift cards and top off my card and enjoy my free Netflix and Spotify but as of now I wouldn’t go out of my way to recommend CDC. If you are looking for a crypto debit card with a stable purchasing power, then this is the way to go. For people I have recommend in the platform in the past (first time crypto users), they have found the platform a bit complex which might make it a bit difficult for CDC to reach mass adoption. Also a lot of banks don’t tend to like CDC and in the USA will charge an international processing fee when you go to use your debit/credit card to purchase on the app. Overall though, I do use CDC. I do have a small stash stored within CDC. It’s a solid project but it does have room to improve. The main thing to watch for is the CDC DeFi because that could potentially bring huge yields.

Final thoughts

CDC went through a few rough patches. They received a lot of backlash from the community back last summer/fall when they killed off MCO. Businesses have to change and adapt some times but the way it all happened was a bit chaotic. The sore part for me with the MCO swap was that the initial investors from the ICO who held over the years lost a LOT of money by forcing the swap. After the swap, CRO tanked from one bad announcement after another which definitely didn’t help the token over the past half year. If you are looking long term, then a lot of these changes could be better but overall the way they communicate with the community could have definitely been improved. Recently, CDC has burned some tokens and has changed their CRO staking requirements for the card by doing it off of fiat values rather than # of tokens which I do believe will help make the cards less complicated in the long term. Overall, CDC has some promising potential and I think they’ll be here for the long term. Overall, despites my complaints and reservations, I think CDC is a pretty safe bet and I think I trust them overall. Kris (the CEO) has really taken the time to surround himself with a good team and has invested heavily into regulations, security, and development. I hope for great things with CDC in the future.

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2 thoughts on “My experience with Crypto.Com

    • Author gravatar

      Nice write-up 😊 I agree with your comments that CDC is a safe bet, with their developments, focus on security, etc. I am looking forward to their mainnet and all the applications that will be built on top of it, also the whitelisting of their cards, etc.

      I’m not sure what you mean about the spread when topping up the card. In the UK, I top it up directly from my bank or debit card and this doesn’t cost me anything.

      I’ve written an article on how to get the most out of the cards, including pairing it with Curve Card. Curve isn’t out in the USA yet, but it should be soon; you can sign up to their waiting list.

      • Author gravatar

        Well the article is biased/written from a USA perspective for sure. In the USA, transferring fiat from your bank is pretty hard for the most part. Very few banks will transfer money into your CDC account so I am less familiar with that to be honest… but I would prefer that. Topping off your card with crypto involves basically selling your crypto at the point of topping off so it’s not an ideal situation. Especially when you got to buy crypto from a different exchange and then transfer it into your CDC wallet and then top off your card with said crypto.

        Curve card is good from what I’ve read but honestly for this review… I think it’s nice but I am most interested in curve pairing with ternio’s block card which is my first blog post. That pairing would be mega savings. Unfortunately, curve has no expected date in the USA and blockcard has had some problems launching in EU since they had the same provider as the original CDC which… has had some problems lol… In due time though that will be a mega combo

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