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A foreign transaction fee is what the credit card processing network charges every time you make a purchase in another country. Usually this fee is 2-3% of your purchase. However, many cards are no longer charging this fee – particularly travel credit cards. If you're a frequent overseas traveler (or even if you hop over the border to Canada or Mexico on a regular basis) you'll definitely want to make sure you have a card with no foreign transaction fees. Another thing to look for in a travel card is that it has an EMV chip. This means you insert or tap the card rather than swiping the magnetic strip. Europe, Asia, and Canada all adopted this system before the United States did, so many people in the US are not used to this system and don't have chip cards yet. Be sure your travel card has a chip! If you have a shopping credit card, we should warn you that they may not be used abroad. But some cards like REI MasterCard can as they are maintained by international network.