What you can do to avoid foreign transaction fees | finder.com
What you can do to avoid foreign transaction fees

What you can do to avoid foreign transaction fees

Finding a credit card that doesn’t charge a foreign transaction fee is a money saver when it comes to traveling.

It may take some time and patience to research and find a credit card that fits your needs and also waives foreign transaction fees, but it’s worth it do so. This allows you make purchases anywhere internationally without suffering any extra charges.

These credit cards that have no foreign transaction fee will ultimately save you enough money on your next trip to buy a round of drinks, pay for dinner or just squirrel away.

Tips to avoid foreign transaction fees with your credit card

  • Read the fine print. It is your responsibility to read the fine print before taking your card overseas. Look into the terms and conditions to get a firm grasp on the different fees the card may charge. Foreign transaction and currency conversion fees are fairly common, so frequent travelers should look for a card that waives these fees.
  • Pay in cash. The most ideal way to avoid the foreign transaction fee is to use cash. If you’ll be bringing a large amount or sending cash overseas, only bring what you need. It’s smart to hide some in a safe or your suitcase once when you reach your destination. This will ensure that even if you lose some cash, you’ll have back up.
  • Consider using travelers checks. Travelers checks allow you to spend without the fear of incurring multiple foreign transactions fees — although you may have a hard time finding acceptably in some destinations. Travelers checks are a secure travel money product that protect against theft and loss and can easily be replaced usually in 24 hours.
  • Use a card with no foreign transaction fee. Some credit cards like the Barclaycard Arrival Plus World Elite Mastercard and the Simmons Bank Visa Platinum have no foreign transaction fee – plus complimentary travel perks. There are even some banks that offer debit cards that waive the foreign transaction fee like TD Bank, Charles Schwab and Discover. It’s important to note that debit cards and different from credit cards, and debit cards will save you on interest since it your own hard earned money, not a line of credit.

Compare no foreign transaction fee credit cards

Rates last updated April 25th, 2018
Name Product Product Description Foreign Currency Conversion Fee (MC) Foreign Currency Conversion Fee (VISA) Foreign Currency Conversion Fee (AMEX) Overseas ATM Withdrawal Fee
Barclaycard Arrival Plus® World Elite Mastercard®
Enjoy 40000
bonus miles after you spend on purchases in the first 90 days — that's enough to redeem for a $400 travel statement credit toward an eligible travel purchase.
0% of transaction value
United MileagePlus® Club card
Enjoy United Club membership, Premier Access® travel services, free checked bags, plus earn miles on every purchase.
0% of transaction value
Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card
Earn 50000 bonus miles once after spending $3,000 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening.
0% of transaction value
Chase Sapphire Reserve
Earn 50000 BONUS POINTS after spending $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening* — that's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.
0% of transaction value
Chase Sapphire Preferred® credit card
Earn 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants.
0% of transaction value
Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Business Credit Card
Earn 2x points on Southwest® purchases and points on all other purchases. Plus 6,000 anniversary bonus points.
0% of transaction value
Alaska Airlines Visa Signature® Card
Buy one ticket, get one for just the taxes and fees with Alaska’s Famous Companion Fare™ offer.
0% of transaction value
BankAmericard Travel Rewards® Credit Card
Ditch the restrictions of typical airline rewards cards. Any airline, any hotel, anytime. No blackout dates.
0% of transaction value
Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card
Earn bonus miles and 5,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $1,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months.
0% of transaction value

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Kyle Morgan

Kyle Morgan is a writer and editor for finder.com who has worked for the USA Today network and Relix magazine, among other publications. He can be found writing about everything from the latest car loan stats to tips on saving money when traveling overseas. He lives in Asbury Park, where he loves exploring new places and sipping on hoppy beer. Oh, and he doesn't discriminate against buffalo wings — grilled or fried are just fine.

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