Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Great PayPal Alternative, Revolution Money Exchange Reviewed

revolution money exchangeA few months ago we covered a story on the new online payment site Revolution Money Exchange (R.M.E.), that is trying to create competition for PayPal and Google Checkout. After three months of use I can say the site seems to be headed in the right direction. Not just with verifying users through their SSN (more on that later) but also with added security and lower fees.

The peer to peer money exchange site launched nearly four months ago. At the time, chairman Ted Leonsis said, "We want to become for social networks what PayPal is for eBay."

Revolution Money Exchange has been aggressively courting new members with a $25 sign-up bonus which was a great incentive for us to try them out.

Signing Up:

Obviously signing up is the first step in the process, as with any other site you begin with your first and last name and then create a username and password. At this time you must also create a security question, this is important as you will later need to use this question to be able to log into your account.

In the second step you simply input your address, this must be your home address. This information will be used in the verification process. In the third step you will need to enter your correct date of birth and SSN this too is part of the verification process. You will also need to create a unique PIN number, again this will be needed later in order to access your account for transferring funds.

Collect Your $25 Sign-up Bonus:
Update - they no longer offer the $25 sign-up bonus

As previously stated in order to promote Revolution Money Exchange and generate traffic they have been giving away a $25 free sign-up bonus. The $25 bonus will be credited as a pending transaction to your Money Exchange account within twenty-four hours of your account approval. To accept the $25 bonus and have it transferred into your Money Exchange account for immediate use, you must login into your account and accept the $25 bonus within 30 days from the date we notify you of the availability of this bonus at the e-mail address you provided during your account registration.

Once you login and accept the funds they are yours to do with as you wish. In my case I had my funds almost immediately. I attached my bank account, I use and recommend using a secondary account with limited funds for both R.M.E. and PayPal, and withdrew the funds the next day. As with PayPal it usually takes a couple days for the funds to be available from your bank.


First and foremost I have to say Revolution Money Exchange's security is far greater than anything PayPal or Google Checkout has. Unlike either of the two whereas you only use a login ID and password to gain full access to an account, Revolution Money Exchange requires users to input a security question at login and a specialized PIN number for transferring funds. This double blind type security makes it very difficult for any wrong doers to cheat you out of your money.

I will say I found it a little tedious to begin with as there are a few extra steps involved but when looking at it from a security stand point and thinking of the numbers of people that have been phished over the years I can see how it could be beneficial.

While a phisher might be able to get my login id and password they'd have to go the extra mile in order to actually get my security question and there is almost no way at all that they could get my pin number.

Verifying Users:

The one area people question me about the most is the need to add your SSN. I'll admit at first I was skeptical, that's why I did the leg work and checked the company out before I signed up. I'll be the first to admit the only reason I originally signed up was for the $25 bonus. But I wasn't going into it blindfolded, I've seen too many scams over the years for that. So I did the research, the information I found is covered in my original blog post. From all my ongoing research I have yet to find anything that points to any negative activity, fraud or scams. As best as I can tell everything is on the up and up.

Flip MinoWhen you sign up for your MoneyExchange account they create and account for you at First Bank & Trust in Brookings, SD (Member FDIC). They in turn ask for your Social Security Number, which is then used to confirm your identity against other information you provide. This helps keep identity thieves from using your personal information to open a MoneyExchange account in your name. It also makes it harder for potential scammers to open accounts!

I'm still on the fence about this aspect of R.M.E. While I can see its a good way to keep out scammers, faking SSNs is something that is a lot harder to do than just being verified at PayPal, I feel it makes more people less likely to sign-up, therefore making it a bit harder to find people that use the service. From my point of view this creates a big catch-22.


Sending and receiving funds on Money Exchange is free (as it is on PayPal for funds between two PayPal members) as well as transferring money to your bank account. A transaction fee applies for check withdrawals, check stop payments, paper statements, ACH returns, and overdrafts. See Schedule of Fees and Accountholder Agreement for more information.

My Conclusion:

As I've said I've used Revolution Money Exchange for a few months now, all in all the only two issues I have are not actually with the company itself nor are they with the site. Both seem to live up to my expectations. Transactions are handled smoothly and efficiently and the site never seems to have any downtime.

The first issue I faced was with eBay. According to eBay's Accepted Payments Policy you technically can not use R.M.E. for transactions. There is some ongoing debate about this however I've been told that sources at eBay have said they will not back R.M.E. as a payment option. Now obviously if both the buyer and seller agree to use R.M.E. then there is little that can be done, however should disputes over none payment arise you might be in a little trouble.

Flip MinoThe second issue is actually the lack of people that take R.M.E. Now this might simply be a case of me not doing as much trading as I have in the past therefore not finding them to be as prevalent. It could also be that the people are unaware of R.M.E. or they could be turned off by the SSN issue. However this is something that given time should remedy itself.

The same goes with Revolution Money Exchange and retailers or e-tailers, I haven't seen many that actually accept them as a form of payment. Not yet anyways! The RevolutionCard was recently part of a promotion (see link) however that's a different part of the company.

All in all I can say this, I've never once had an issue with pay-pal. I have heard tons of horror stories but never once has anything bad happen on my end. So that said why change to R.M.E? Well I'm not to happy with the fee structure at Pay-Pal. I'm also not happy that eBay force feeds me those fees. While I've only used R.M.E. for a few months, granted that's typically longer than most people that right reviews, I won't go so far as to say they are the perfect answer however it is nice to have an alternative

1 comment:

  1. I haven't had a problem with RME yet. You can use RME with the Abundant Living System providing the inviter accepts RME. I love RME despite the 2500 monthly limit. It's not a bad thing to actually have a limit in place, as I have heard horror stories from those who had been fxxked from using paypal and how some people had thousands of dollars stolen from paypal via false complaints from buyers on sites like ebay and such.


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