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Overseas Spending Cards

Typically a credit card will charge around 3% ‘foreign currency fees’ on money that you access abroad- so for every £100 pounds you access they will charge you £3

This is NOT GOOD if you’re a frequent traveller regularly using your credit card

However there are credit cards online that will let you access your money for free abroad along with some other incentives too!


Need to know

  • When you pay for an item abroad your credit card will charge you exchange rates to convert your money into the local currency. These will be set by Mastercard or Visa and should reflect the normal market price
  • The best credit cards online for overseas spending have 0% foreign currency fees, this means that whilst you will have to pay the exchange rate, you don’t have to pay an extra fee for using your credit card abroad

Overseas Spending Cards

Credit cards that will let you access your money for free abroad along with some other incentives too!

Watch out! Four rules for all credit cards

  • Don’t use your credit card to withdraw cash unless you have to. Your credit card is VERY likely to have a high interest rate on any cash that you take out which you will start getting charged from the moment you withdraw it. There is also likely to be a withdrawal fee (we’ve only found a couple with no fees at all). These rates won’t be affected by another deal you might have
  • Look out for annual fees. The fees tend to be charged so you can access higher rates of cashback, airmiles or similar. If you’re not getting a superb deal that makes up for the fee then the cards are not worth applying for
  • Be careful! A lot of 0% or low interest credit cards will automatically set your direct debit amount very low each month so that at the end of the interest free period you end up with a large outstanding balance
  • If you don’t make the minimum monthly repayment then you may lose your deal

The inside track

  • Dynamic Currency Conversion (DCC) is offered by some ATMs and retailers abroad. This means they will convert your money into the foreign currency instead of your credit card company doing it. The advice of VISA is to avoid this, unless you know what rates they will be using
  • Use your credit card to pay deposits abroad, like renting a car or checking in at a hotel. You will not be out of pocket as they should refund the deposit before your next bill 

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