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Old 08-20-2017, 08:57 PM   #21
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We have a Pentagon CU credit card that does not charge foreign currency transaction fees.
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Old 08-21-2017, 12:08 AM   #22
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All US issued VISA credit and debit cards use the same foreign exchange rate. You can look it up for any given posting date at https://usa.visa.com/support/consume...lculator.html/. You must enter your issuer stated Foreign Transaction Fee (FTF) on that page.

Note that for credit cards, the rate applies for the post date, not the transaction date. For debit card, it applies for the immediately on the transaction date - there is no "post" date.

VISA charges issuing banks/CUs 1% for this foreign exchange service. Many issuing banks/CUs add an additional % fee on top of that, so the VISA exchange rate page has a place you have to enter the FTF stated by your bank - typically 0% to 3%. The FTF stated by your bank includes this 1% fee from VISA. So a 0% FTF fee is actually rebating you the 1% they they are charged by VISA.

American Express has their own exchange rate.

Same with MasterCard.

My point is - you don't have to look for a US issuing bank/CU with a better exchange rate , that is simply determined by whether it's a VISA, MasterCard, or American Express card. So focus on finding a 0% FTF card that is regularly accepted where you wish to travel.

And if you want to know the difference in exchange rates between VISA, MasterCard, and American Express - well they each have their own method. Flyertalk has endless threads where the minutiae are debated. IMO not worth bother over.
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Old 08-21-2017, 10:06 AM   #23
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Yes I think that this is a good point that some may miss. Just because a card 'does not charge [a] foreign currency transaction fee' or a foreign ATM fee does not mean that it is the best deal. More money is made on the FOREX rate that is generally very favorable to the credit card company and/or bank.
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Old 08-21-2017, 10:44 AM   #24
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Capital One travel credit card, Barclay credit cards normally do not charge foreign transaction fees. Also some are no annual fees.
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Old 08-21-2017, 12:08 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by audreyh1 View Post
My point is - you don't have to look for a US issuing bank/CU with a better exchange rate , that is simply determined by whether it's a VISA, MasterCard, or American Express card. So focus on finding a 0% FTF card that is regularly accepted where you wish to travel.
I don't know if it's just me but while I'm able to easily find the Forex fee in the terms of my credit cards, it always seems to be an adventure when trying to look up the fees on my debit card for foreign atm usage.
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Old 08-21-2017, 12:39 PM   #26
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I don't know if it's just me but while I'm able to easily find the Forex fee in the terms of my credit cards, it always seems to be an adventure when trying to look up the fees on my debit card for foreign atm usage.
I use a Schwab debit card for overseas ATMs and I've always found it to be so close to the published rate on XE.com that the difference is negligible.
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Old 08-23-2017, 10:24 AM   #27
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XE.com is also our comparator. You need to look at the day the transaction hit.

Within the day the rates can change but we have only seen variances in the third and fourth decimal point. My understanding is that there are several 'settlement' times during the day. Not a banker so I do not really know.

When we switched,we knew our Visa card added a 2.5 percent fee on foreign transactions. We also found that our card was out by about 3-3.5 from the XE.com rate (2.5 or admin plus another point because they are greedy).

Same for ATM, but worse. Our bank was adding 2.5 percent to the XE.com rate. Our bank was charging $5 for the ATM transaction and giving us a terrible exchange rate. In some cases we were also paying at the foreign ATM end as well. It adds up so we smartened up and flew right.
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