Many of the major Dash debit card providers around the world have discontinued service to customers outside of Europe.

A number of the prominent Dash debit card services use WaveCrest as the issuers of their cards. Unfortunately, WaveCrest no longer supports customers outside of Europe, meaning that many Dash users in North America and elsewhere are stuck without an easy card solution for the time being. The most recent of these to announce, Wirex notified customers of the recent change via email:

“Our support team are receiving a lot of questions about the new contactless cards we announced recently and the use of existing non-contactless cards issued by WaveCrest.

Unfortunately the industry rumors are true: On the 15th October 2017 WaveCrest must discontinue their cards outside of the 44 countries listed on the FAQ page here.”

ShakePay was also affected by the change in policy, and was one of the first providers to announce the change.

Dash cards pivot to shift issuers

Several providers are working to switch issuers in order to maintain service to their non-European customers. Wirex announced that they are switching issuers and should have new cards ready to be shipped soon:

“The good news for all Wirex customers outside of those 44 countries is that we have new Contactless Cards in development with an alternative card provider, and they are almost ready.

We are committed to replacing old WaveCrest cards with our new Contactless Cards as cheaply as we possibly can.”

Meanwhile, the much-delayed Dashpay card by Charlie Shrem is still not available, but Shrem has recently indicated that it may be very soon:

TenX was also affected, and is working on an alternate provider, which should delay card shipments for affected users until later this year:

“You may have missed it, but we announced some time ago that we are onboarding alternative card issuers who can issue cards outside of Europe. It will take us some time to integrate our systems with theirs, and to print new cards issued by these alternative issuers. We’re currently targeting a November 2017 launch for these new cards, so look out for more information regarding this in the coming weeks.”

To circumvent similar issues in the future, TenX has initiated attempts to acquire a banking license:

“If you don’t already know, TenX does not (yet) have a banking license. (Incidentally, we’ve already begun work on acquiring one, but that’s a story for another time…)”

The permanent solution is to not rely on fiat conversion services

While debit cards of this kind are a useful solution to bridge the gap between the digital cash world and the traditional financial system, ultimately they remain anchored to the limitations of that system. In order to get around similar problems permanently, the best solution is to pay with, and accept, Dash directly. With a critical mass of consumers and businesses operating without converting Dash to other currencies, more users and services will be able to operate without a third-party intermediary, and will avoid the associated vulnerabilities.