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Travel Card

Melbourne, Australia
Level Contributor
8 posts
3 reviews
Travel Card

Hi guys,currently living in Australia at the moment.Planning a 6 month trip of South America.Can anyone give me any good advice on the best travel cards to use,really don’t want to be slugged with fees any time i use an ATM.Any help or tips would be great.Cheers

4 replies to this topic
Sydney, Australia
Destination Expert
for Train Travel
Level Contributor
98,690 posts
17 reviews
1. Re: Travel Card

All the preloaded travel cards sold in Australia are very bad value. They have a poor exchange rate, so that it costs around 6% to load money onto them. That is why Qantas and the big banks push them so much.

To get cash overseas, open a Citibank Plus bank account, which comes with a Mastercard debit card that has no overseas ATM withdrawal fees and an excellent exchange rate. For larger purchases, get a 28 Degrees Mastercard which has no fees for overseas purchases (in person or over the Internet) and again an excellent exchange rate. ING now offers debit and credit cards that can be used with no foreign transaction fees, but with monthly minimum transaction requirements. All these cards have no account fees.

Lockhart, Texas
Destination Expert
for Austin
Level Contributor
2,510 posts
17 reviews
2. Re: Travel Card

Correct. It is always possible to find an offering of cards with no transaction fees and no foreign exchange fee. With those two things taken care of, you should also limit your uses of ATM's to those operated by major banks. And when using a credit card and being asked is you want it charged in the local currency or your home currency, always opt for the local currency. That way it will be converted by your bank and not by the local processor whose rate you will not know. Your bank will use the official rate of exchange. Oh, and never withdraw cash with a credit card used as a credit card. It then becomes a "cash advance" which often invokes immediate interest and is prioritized for repayment differently from regular purchases.

To be prudent, I carry two of each type of card. I have not had a problem of a card going through for some time now, so for Europe, it's just an old habit that dies hard. I don't know about South America.

And while you're at it, most banks and card now offer a secure app with alert features. When traveling, I set it to tell me of every charge, a sort of early warning.

Melbourne, Australia
Level Contributor
8 posts
3 reviews
3. Re: Travel Card

Cheers for the info.Great help 👍

Melbourne, Australia
Level Contributor
8 posts
3 reviews
4. Re: Travel Card

Cheers for the info.Great help 👍

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