So you’ve just downloaded Shyft. Now what?
06 September 2023Last Updated:08 August 2023
Woman looking at phone while travelling by train

Everyone – from your financial advisor to your aunt in Alberton – has been singing Shyft’s praises lately, so you downloaded the app and registered. Welcome! We’re glad you’re here. If you need a little tour before you get started, read on. Here’s how Shyft is going to change your money life.

First up, what is Shyft? 

Shyft is an app that allows you to:

  • Buy, sell and store forex (at the cheapest rates)
  • Buy top international shares and ETFs (with no commission fees or paperwork)
  • Travel with ease thanks to the cheapest forex rates and multicurrency cards
  • Shop without borders and expensive conversion fees using virtual cards that can be topped up with a variety of currencies
  • Invest in offshore bank accounts
  • Send and receive global payments
  • Send or receive forex from fellow Shyft users instantly and for free using Shyft-to-Shyft payments

In a nutshell, what Shyft does is take the admin, paperwork and queues out of your global money moves. It was created by Standard Bank, but you don’t even have to be a Standard Bank customer to use it. Sometimes a thing is so good, you just want to share it with the world.

The cheapest forex, at your fingertips

Shyft offers users the cheapest forex rates in the market. That means your rands go further when you buy USD, EUR, GBP and AUD through Shyft than they would using any other platform.

The cheapest rates aren’t all we’ve got going for us, though. It’s also incredibly easy and fast to buy forex using Shyft. Simply top up your ZAR wallet in the app with an EFT from your bank account, then convert those rands into USD, EUR, GBP or AUD. Conversions are instant, and you can immediately use your forex to top up a card, make an international payment, or send it to another Shyft user (more on that later). Plus you can convert your currency back into rands just as quickly and easily, whenever you need to.

Shyft knows you love to shop

Like most South Africans, you regularly add things to your cart on Takealot, Superbalist or Checkers Sixty60 – and let's not forget all those Uber Eats orders. Maybe you’ve also taken the customs hit and bought something from Amazon, Etsy or that KBeauty e-tailer with the good sunscreen.

Did you know that you could use a Shyft virtual rand or forex card for those transactions instead? Why would you do that? We can think of a few good reasons:

  • By using a Shyft virtual card, rather than your everyday bank debit or credit card, you’re not putting any information associated with your bank account online. Safe as houses. Even in the event of a hack, criminals can’t obtain your personal information if you use a prepaid virtual card to make your purchase.
  • If you ever are a victim of fraud online, you can instantly cancel that virtual card right from the Shyft app. No calling your bank; no ordering, paying for and waiting for your new credit card. 
  • You top up your Shyft virtual cards with a specific amount. They don’t act like credit cards and they’re not linked to your Shyft wallets. That means you can control how much is being spent on them at any time – handy if your teenage daughter is in the habit of adding ‘just one more top’ to her shopping cart. 
  • Being able to order from international stores is great and all, but if you’re using your local credit card, then forex conversion fees kind of kill the vibe. Instead, you can buy forex at the cheapest rates using Shyft, use it to top up a virtual card, then shop directly in a website’s currency. No more expensive conversions.
Travelling with Shyft

Remember when your parents would buy traveller’s cheques before an international trip? Or when you’d go to a bureau de change and get your forex in cash, then wear it in a “secret” traveller’s pouch around your neck, along with your passport? Gen Z would laugh at us right about now, but we’re still crying when we think of the fees we used to pay…

Luckily, it’s 2023, and you have Shyft. We’ve already talked about how fast and easy it is to buy forex at the cheapest rates through the app. But did you know that you can also store that forex indefinitely? That means you can keep an eye on the exchange rate, buy the dip, and safely keep your USD, EUR, GBP or AUD until your international trip. As well as virtual cards, Shyft also allows you to order up to five physical multicurrency or UnionPay cards, so you can tap, swipe and withdraw cash to your heart’s content abroad.

Become the investor your dad always wanted you to be

Considering that the JSE makes up only 1% of the global equities market, diversifying your portfolio with offshore investments is critical for any serious investor. Thanks to Shyft, you don’t need to go through an equities dealer or a fund manager (and all their added fees) to get your hands on shares in companies like Amazon (AMZN), Google (GOOGL) and Tesla (TSLA). You can buy them using your USD wallet in the app.

Shyft gives you direct access to the best-performing shares and ETFs on the NYSE, the largest stock exchange in the world. What about the time difference? No biggie. You can place your buy and sell orders even when the US markets are closed, and Shyft will make sure they’re processed just as soon as that bell rings on Wall Street.

The best part? You can buy and sell top international shares and ETFs on Shyft from as little as $2.49. Shyft merely charges a trading fee of 0.4% (the best rate on SA platforms) and a safe custody fee of 0.02% per annum. Why a safe custody fee? Your shares are in your name, but Shyft keeps them safe for you, so we charge this fee for all the beefy security measures we set up to protect your investment.

Shyft to Shyft

One of our favourite features is Shyft to Shyft, which allows you to send and receive free, instant transfers to and from other Shyft users – no matter who they bank with. And not just in ZAR, but in USD, EUR, GBP and AUD, too.

Splitting the bill in Barcelona? Your mate can pop you their share of the tapas with a quick, free EUR transfer straight into your wallet. Or you could send pounds to a family member visiting the UK so they can spoil themselves on their birthday. No more waiting several days for cross-border payments to clear.

Psst! There’s another whole world of international transfers that you can make through Shyft, too – from sending and receiving global payments to moving money into an offshore bank account with our strategic partners.  

The all-in-one global money app

Are you getting the idea? Shyft is more than just a forex app or just an investment platform. It’s a game changer for anyone who wants their money to be as mobile as they are.

Ready to get in on the action? Get Shyft. 
Download Shyft
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