If you never have or never will travel to a foreign country, you can ignore this post.
If, on the other hand, you plan to, you’ll want to be sure that you’ve done the appropriate research and have one of the best 0% foreign currency exchange fee credit cards.
In case you didn’t know, when you use your credit card overseas, the credit card company will charge anywhere between 0 – 3% to exchange your charge into US dollars.
These fees add up quickly if you do much spending overseas.
However, there has been a positive trend with credit card companies dropping the foreign currency exchange fee on cards.
Best 0% Foreign Currency Exchange Fee Credit Cards
Of course, when you’re traveling overseas, acceptance is also a big factor. In general, you’ll find that Visa and MasterCard have the most locations overseas where the card is accepted. American Express and Discover brand cards will be the most difficult to use overseas.
Banks do pull their exchange rates from different sources and generally charge the highest exchange rate in the 24 hour period around when you use the card. Personally, I haven’t been able to track the exchange rate differences between MasterCard, Visa, and American Express, but I think the Exchange fee is a greater factor than the exchange rate that banks use.
I’m also going to exclude cards that have crazy high annual fees. Paying $450 for the American Express Platinum just for a no foreign currency exchange benefit would be ludicrous (but the $450 fee may be worth it for other reasons – post pending). The Chase Continental Presidential Plus is another 0% foreign currency fee card, but it has an annual fee of $395.
If you don’t plan to use a credit card here is information on the best way to exchange foreign currency.
All Capital One cards have 0% foreign currency exchange fees. My personal favorite Cap1 card is the Venture Rewards. The card offers 2% back on all purchases. Since it is a Visa Signature card, it is accepted in many different destinations. Last year, it had a 100,000 mile sign up bonus for the card. Right now the best you’ll find is 10,000.
Chase has been moving in the right direction by removing the foreign currency fee on several of their cards:
- Chase Sapphire Preferred - which is also currently on my list for having one of the best sign up bonuses of 40,000 points.
- Priority Club Select
- British Airways
- Ink Bold
- Citi ThankYou Premier
- The only other Citi cards with no foreign currency exchange have big annual fees.
All cards have no foreign currency exchange fees, but Discover also has the least number of places overseas where it is accepted.
In this post, I’ve highlighted some of the best 0% foreign currency exchange cards for larges companies. If you are interested in some less well known cards, you might do well to review this post on best USA no foreign currency exchange credit cards.
Of the cards listed above, I have the Capital One Venture Rewards, Chase Sapphire Preferred, and Citi ThankYou Premier. Later in the year, when we’ll be doing several overseas trips we plan to use the The Chase Sapphire Preferred for dining out and hotels (2 points per dollar) and the Capital One Venture Rewards for other purchases.