I’ve been following Ternio and their crypto debit card, BlockCard, for a while and after seeing the success they had in their recent fundraising on Republic decided to try out the card for myself. The premise of the company is to give crypto and blockchain real world utility. The account itself is free to set up, but to get a card you do have to pass an eKYC and deposit a minimum of $10 (which I learned covers the cost of the card). Passing the credentials check was simple. I was set up pretty quickly after submitting an online application, which required me to enter my drivers license and social security numbers to confirm my identity. No document uploads were required which I’ve discovered is pretty common with many crypto exchanges, so that was easy enough. I did have one question during this process so I opened up a Customer Support ticket through my online dashboard, and I was pleasantly surprised to hear back from a member of their team right away.
Rather than having to wait for a physical card to arrive in the mail to start spending I was issued a virtual card immediately which functions just like a traditional debit card. To test it out the first thing I did was connect it into my Google Pay on my phone and sure enough - it worked! I wanted to test it at a store and decided to go out and get a coffee; I was able to make the purchase easily with my phone and my account balance reflected the purchase immediately. Later, I tested the virtual card by making an online shopping purchase which worked just as easily as with any of my other cards.
The BlockCard feature that I was most excited about is their rewards program, which is set up to give you as much as 6.38% crypto back, provided that you stake a certain amount of their token, TERN. It takes staking 145k TERN to earn 6.38% back (although their staking tier starts at 30K TERN for 1% back). Your staked funds are kept separate from your account, although you can withdraw them again easily at any time. After making my online purchase for $19.49 I could see that my account had been credited for $1.24 in TERN.
More recently I noticed they have added a bank account feature that I was able to sign up for. Since I already had a card - all I had to do was click Activate Account and sure enough I was issued an account and routing number! It will let me hold my fiat (in this case, USD) in an FDIC insured account that is connected to my BlockCard. I can keep an eye on the market and decide when it makes the most sense for me to add funds my BlockCard. Another perk is being able to easily transfer money to friends and family, since they don’t charge for transfers.
So far the card has delivered on all its promises: quick setup, easy to use, integrates with traditional banking, with a handful of new features on the horizon (like buying crypto directly from my Blockcard dashboard). I’m looking forward to getting my card in the mail and taking it out for a spin, and I’m very excited to upgrade to a metal card when it becomes available.
You can register for a BlockCard account and start spending crypto instantly here: https://getblockcard.com/register