Banco Original: A Great Option For Those Starting On Virtual Banks

June 1, 2020
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Banco Original is one of the options that’s making its own name in the virtual bank industry of Brasil. It offers 4 kinds of Mastercard debit and credit cards, the Internacional, Gold, Platinum and Black, with different benefits. One thing it has against it is that it limits its users to only 4 free withdrawals, 2 TEDs and 2 Monthly supply of credit statements per month. Every time you use one of those services beyond your allowance, you’ll be charged a certain fee.

With all that said, we believe that Banco Original is not the most sophisticated or savvy option when talking about virtual banks, but this makes it a great option for those looking to dip their toes into the market of virtual banks without compromising a lot on their part. So, are you ready to become a Banco Original user?

Tired of being subject to bureaucracy and fees that are specially made for you to have a hard time understanding them? Say goodbye to regular banking options then since virtual banks are here to make finance easy and make you understand a lot more about your money. We’ll be talking about Banco Original, one of the most well-known options to get ahold of your finances as of today in Brasil. Ready to have finances finally made easy to you?

Banco Original, What Is It?

Banco Original is a fully digital banking institution that lets users perform all sorts of transactions right from their smartphone. This company was one of the first digital banks that emerged in Brasil wit the innovative idea of being a 100% online service.

This institution was created when former Banco JBS merged with Banco Matone. It started as a bank for agribusiness and corporate accounts but in 2013 it started to transform into what is known today as Banco Original.

More than that, Banco Original is one of the most popular virtual banks used in Brasil in the last years. This isn’t only because the service is innovative, because there are a lot of other virtual banking options, so let’s see what differentiates Banco Original from other institutions.

Here’s a list of all of the things that Banco Original Offers:

  • Current Account
  • Credit and Debit Cards
  • Loans
  • Cashback Rewards
  • Portability
  • Investments
  • Insurance

We won’t necessarily go into all of those topics, only the most important ones for this review.

Debit And Credit Cards

One of the main features that make virtual banks really shine is their ability to offer the same benefits as a regular bank institution. Banco Original offers both Debit and Credit Mastercard cards for all of its customers, all you have to do is create your bank account and ask for it right from your phone.

It’s also important to note that with Banco Original you can pay right from the app using the QR code feature. If you decide to opt for a credit card, you’ll get both a physical and virtual version of it in your app. Lastly, all credit and debit cards come with the option to use Samsung pay wherever you can and you can also deposit cheques or boletos by taking a picture and uploading it to the app.

Here’s the list of all the Credit and Debit cards options you can get with a Banco Original Account:

  • Original Internacional credit or debit card
  • Original Gold credit card
  • Original Platinum credit card
  • Original Black credit card

Here’s what each one of those offers:

Original Mastercard Internacional Debit Or Credit Card

The Original Internacional cards are the most basic debit and credit cards you can get with your Banco Original account. These come with these specific benefits:

  • Free Annuity
  • Original Cashback
  • Multiple Cards (both Debit and Credit cards)
  • Accepted on an International level
  • Being able to withdraw cash across the entire Banco24Horas network
  • In-app spend and control management tools.
  • Surprise Mastercard Benefit

Overall the Original Internacional Card is one of the best options if you’re looking to dip your toes into what really is virtual banking as a whole. With no annuities, you can get most of the experience without having to spend a lot on other luxurious rewards that you may not need.

Original Internacional Debit Credit Mastercard Card
The Internacional Card boasts a recognizable green design.

Original Mastercard Gold

The Original Gold card is the card that follows up the Original Internacional card in terms of a more premium product. Here’s what comes with it:

  • Annuity of R$14,50 per month in your first year, but this card also comes with the Original Experience program, which makes the first four installments of your annuity be completely free. This means that you will end up paying R$116,00 for this card during the first year.
  • Same benefits as the Original Internacional

Additional Mastercard Gold Benefits

  • Surprise Mastercard
  • Price Protection Insurance
  • Purchase Protection Insurance
  • Extended Warranty
Original Gold Debit Credit Mastercard Card
The Original Gold works for customers who are willing to embrace the virtual banks and are ready to start spending a little bit more on them.

Original Mastercard Platinum

  • Annuity of R$21,00 per month in your first year. This card also comes with the Original Experience Program, which means that you will end up paying R$168,00 for this card during the first year.
  • All the other benefits that come with the Original Gold

Additional Mastercard Platinum Benefits

  • Surprise Mastercard
  • Mastercard Platinum Concierge
  • Travel Agency
  • Travel Medical Emergency Insurance
  • Schengen Charter
  • Auto Insurance
  • Stopper Exemption
Virtual Bank Platinum Debit Credit Mastercard Card
The Original Platinum works for customers who want to be bigger spenders in the Virtual Bank world.

Original Mastercard Black

  • Annuity of R$40,50 per month during your first year. It also comes with the Original Experience program, so you’ll only pay R$324 during the first year.
  • It brings all the benefits that come with the Original Platinum card

Additional Mastercard Black Benefits

  • Surprise Mastercard
  • Purchase Protection Insurance
  • Extended Warranty
  • Mastercard Black Concierge
  • Travel Agency
  • Travel Medical Emergency Insurance
  • Schengen Charter
  • Auto Insurance
  • Stopper Exemption
  • Luggage Loss
  • Trip Cancellation
  • Airport lounge access by Guarulhos and LoungeKey
  • Boingo Wi-Fi
  • DUFRY RED Program
  • Protection against ATM Robbery
Virtual Bank Original Black Debit Credit Mastercard Card
The Original Black Card is simply the best card that Banco Original offers.

Overall, the Original Black Card is the most premium product you can get out of Banco Original. It’s meant for the biggest spenders in Brasil and offers some of the best offers even if the annuity is a little bit expensive.

Interest on credit cards is all the same for every credit card. Holders will have to pay 2% of the total amount in their accounts plus 1% extra per month and the IOF taxes. Also, if you’re interested in buying certain products with installments, Banco Original charges an interest rate of 8,64% per month on average.

You can apply for any card you like from the Banco Original app. For this, they will inquire about certain data like your average monthly income, credit score and account balance

Speaking of which, let’s talk a bit more about annuities:

Annuity Plans, Fees And The Original Relationship

If you hadn’t noticed, when describing each card, we mentioned that each one has a certain annuity for the first year, but things change after that. In reality, that first annuity is actually half of the price of the real annuity of each card. If you keep your card for a second year you will have to pay each installment to its full price. The full annuities are:

  • R$29,00 per month for the Original Gold
  • R$42,00 per month for the Original Platinum
  • R$81,00 per month for the Original Black

Original Relationship

The Original Relationship program consists of giving you a 50% or 100% discount on your monthly annuities if you meet certain requirements. These requirements depend on the amount of money you’re spending on a monthly basis, the requirements also change depending on the card you’re using. Here’s a table explaining all requirements and ways to offer discounts:

50% Discount100% DiscountAlternative 100% Discount
Original GoldMonthly spending between R$1.000,00 and R$1.499,00Monthly spending of R$1.500,00+Investing up to R$25.000,00
Original PlatinumMonthly spending between R$1.500,00 and R$4.999,00Monthly spending of R$5.000,00+Investing up to R$100.000,00
Original BlackMonthly spending between R$5.000,00 and R$9.999,00Monthly spending of R$10.000,00Investing up to R$300.000,00

Most of these requirements are pretty demanding, especially the ones that come with the Platinum and Black Cards. A good starting point to get better cashback rewards is the Original Gold, which lets you earn more than the Internacional card without asking for a bigger budget.

Let’s move into the final important section of these cards before we jump to another topic, Original Cashback:

Original Cashback

Having a cashback program is something pretty novel in itself, so if you’re new to virtual banks, that’s another important benefit! The Original Cashback program works in a fairly easy to understand way, but the points you gain vary depending on which card you’re using for your purchases. One thing that doesn’t change is the total value of the points in this cashback program. According to Banco Original, 1 point will always be worth 1 Real. Now let’s get into how you can earn points with the different cards.

Before we go into the specifics of each card it’s worth mentioning that all debit cards have a 0,15% cashback earn rate. So if you’re looking into using the Original Cashback program, always use your credit cards to pay for purchases.

Cashback rate on the Original Internacional Credit Card

As this is the most basic card that Banco Original offers, it also has the most basic cashback rewards. With the Original Internacional Credit card, you’ll be able to accumulate 0,15% of all the purchases you make. Although, if your monthly expenses surpass 1.500,00 R$, your Credit card cashback rate will increase to 0,30%.

Cashback rate on the Original Gold Credit Card

Going up a notch in the Banco Original premium cards we find the Original Gold credit card. This card normally offers a 0,25% cashback earning, but if your monthly expenses surpass that of 1.500,00 R$, you’ll enjoy a 0,50% instead.

Cashback rate on the Original Platinum Credit Card

Here is where things start to rack up. This card normally offers 0,50% of cashback earnings, but if your monthly expenses surpass that of R$5.000,00, you’ll get a 1% earning instead. It doubles all cashback earning rates from the Gold card

Cashback rate on the Original Black Credit Card

On the other hand, the Original Black credit card offers the biggest cashback earnings of any other Original cards. Normally, this card offers a 0,75% cashback earning, but if you surpass a monthly expense of R$10.000,00 your earnings will double up to 1,50%.

Now let’s move away from cards and onto another important topic, fees and transfer limits.

The Banco Original Virtual Current Account

When signing up with Banco Original via their app, you’ll get access to a current account, the only type of account they offer. The only way to get an account with Banco Original is to download the app on your smartphone (Android or IOS) and then fill the application. This application will only require you to fill some data like your full name, your phone number, your email and your CPF. Once that’s done you’ll only have to send either a photo or a video of yourself showing your CPF just to show that you’re a real person.

Banco Original Fees And Transfer Limits

Virtual banks also have the chance to shine when it comes to offering better transfer services than regular physical banks. Banco Original manages to offer relatively cheap fees for transfers, but we gotta admit, it’s pretty limited when compared to other options in the market, especially when Nubank gives unlimited transfers by default.

Here’s the number of transfers and services permitted per month and their respective fees:

Cash WithdrawalsTEDs (Electronic Available Transfers)Supplies of Monthly Statements
Times you can do it for Free422
Fees once you’ve exceeded your limitR$1,90 per additional withdrawalR$0,70 Between the same bank and R$8,90 between other banksR$1,92 per additional statement

As you can see, Banco Original’s number of free transfers, withdrawals and supplies of monthly statements are really, really limited. Although, if you really wanted you could always ask for the Unlimited Original pack, which goes for R$12,90 and unlocks unlimited TED transfers, withdrawals and monthly statements. The price for this service is really low, but the fact that the number of transfers is so limited already makes the experience a little sour when you pay for it.

This leads us into the possible drawbacks of Banco Original:

Banco Original Drawbacks: Not The Least Expensive Bank Out There

Whenever talking about Banco Original’s not so good points, some things really pop up to view without looking too hard. Here are the most important ones we could find:

Very Limited Number Of Transfers And Withdrawals

We’ve already mentioned it, but it’s worth doing it again when we’re talking about the bank’s downsides. Having only 4 withdrawals and 2 free transfers per month is just way too low. This bank is obviously leading you to buy the Unlimited Original pack, but some of these benefits should come with some of the more expensive cards.

Cards Are Way Too Expensive For What They Offer

The only plan we’d really recommend to the average virtual bank customer here is the  Original Internacional card. Beyond that, it’s not profitable to have a Gold card if you’re not spending at least R$1.500,00 per month, which might be too much for most. And even then, Platinum and Black cards aren’t profitable if you’re not spending at least R$5.000,00 or R$10.000,00 per month, which is ludicrous.

If you really want those Mastercard bonuses you can go ahead and ask for one of those cards, but if you don’t have that acquisitive power, they’re really not worth your time and money.

Alternatives To Banco Original

Some quick alternatives that come to mind when seeing Banco Original’s drawbacks are Neon and Nubank. Neon offers a quick and easy to use credit card that comes with no annuity whatsoever, which is pretty cool. Nubank on the other side offers the NuConta, which by default comes with unlimited transfers and deposits.

Virtual Bank Banco Reais Fees
If you’re looking to get away from expensive fees you don’t understand, Virtual Banks are always a good option.

Now that you’ve heard both the good and the bad, you may have made up your mind about using Banco Original or not. Here’s our summary:

Banco Original: An Entry-Level Virtual Bank

Banco Original is not one of the most sophisticated options in terms of virtual banks you can get at the moment. But one of its benefits is that it works as an entry-level virtual bank for people who don’t know a lot about the medium. So if you’re looking to dip your toes into the waters of virtual banks, you don’t need any previous experience or knowledge to use the tools that Banco Original offers.

If you do end up signing up we recommend applying for the Original Internacional because of the free annuity that comes with it. If you see that you’re doing pretty good with your finances and you want to climb a little higher, the Original Gold is also a well-balanced option. We also recommend getting the Unlimited original package, since you won’t be paying a lot in annuities for your cards. So, what are you waiting for?