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Credit Card Applications » News » Other » Credit Cards Abroad

Credit Cards Abroad

March 26, 2007 | Updated on March 26, 2007
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The content is accurate at the time of publication and is subject to change.

What can discourage you from applying for credit card?

One of the key points you pay attention to when applying for a credit card is its rates, fees and other charges. And the more enticing are credit card’s terms, the more willing you are to complete a credit card application and send it in.

With so many attractive online credit card applications for best reward credit cards (gasoline credit cards, hotel credit cards or airline miles cards) and credit cards with cash back, you most often find it irresistible to apply for credit card to make your money work for you and multiply your wealth.

To attract more customers, credit card companies and banks are ready to afford satisfying all your requirements. Remember, the client is always right. Thus, the best credit card applications anticipate your possible request for lower rates or additional programs, so, you as a responsible credit card holder with good or excellent credit history can always count on something better.

But there’s one thing true to Visa and MasterCard credit card offers that can discourage you from getting a credit card. And it’s not even a sudden rise in credit card’s charges of which so many credit consumers are afraid but it is an innovation most likely to stay forever. And most likely it will affect frequent travelers abroad.

What we are speaking here about is the foreign transaction fee for credit card purchases made abroad. Well, yes it is a vexing measure but an indispensable one and it shouldn’t disappoint you as, protecting you bank’s money, it protects yours.

It may be difficult for you to understand how a foreign transaction fee guarantees safety of your credit card issuer’s money and you only see the result of such a policy which, naturally, annoys and angers you.

We are here to make it clear for you why you get charged this foreign transaction fee each time you go abroad and mean to carry out whatever money operation there. On realizing the aim and effectiveness of the measure, you’ll most probably treat it more loyally and won’t be stopped by it in making credit decision – apply or not apply…

Well, as things are, credit card companies experience higher costs on any types of transactions carried out beyond US birders. And in order to compensate for them, your card issuer introduced foreign exchange fees to protect them from possible losses.

So, the part of the essential risk of credit card charges made abroad is becoming more significant and menacing… Put yourself in the place of your credit card company and you will fear such things as incorrect conversion of currency, merchant charge backs and extended fraud. And they would most naturally force you to think of some device to prevent your money from unreasonable flow.

And that’s what your creditors do – guard their and, consequently, your money. How much is the fee and is it exposed to changes? For today, the foreign exchange fee equals to a flat 3% based on the total transaction cost including VAT and foreign sales taxes and is not likely to be raised or abolished.

Are going abroad and upset about this unexpected rise of expenditure connected with your credit card’s new charge? There are some options for you to consider but be careful as they can also carry some restrictions and traps. One of the options is to carry checks with you, which are convenient only in terms of usage, another is to use a prepaid debit card which acts like a real credit card but does bear definite restrictions and you should learn about them before you start out.

Currently, there’s only one bank allowing you to use your credit card without being charged a foreign exchange fee when abroad. If your credit card was issued by Capital One, you are certainly superior over other credit card holders and thus you can make the most benefit and joy out of you travels abroad.

Disclaimer: This editorial content is not provided or commissioned by the credit card issuer(s). Opinions expressed here are the author's alone, not those of the credit card issuer(s), and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuer(s). Reasonable efforts are made to present accurate information, however all information is presented without warranty. Consult a card's issuing bank for the terms & conditions.
All rates and fees, and other terms and conditions of the products mentioned in this article/post are actual as of the last update date but are subject to change. See the current products' Terms & Conditions on the issuing banks' websites.
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  • Larry
    With the Virgin / Barclaycard signature offer, there seems to be some consumer deception or maybe even outright fraud goin on.   I decided to jump on this offer..  read all the info on it..  was approved for their platinum card, paid the fee, then was only awarded 10,000 points instead of the advertised 20,000.   When i inquired about the less than advertised bonus points, Barclaycard claims only Signiture Visa cardmembers get the 20,000..  as a platinum cardholder, you don't qualify for that level of bonus, so you get 10k instead.   Well, in their current ongoing promotions, it states plain as day that....    Applicants approved for the Visa Signature or Platinum Card with $49 annual fee will receive 20,000 Bonus Points awarded to your Virgin America Rewards Account at the close of the first billing statement in which you make your first purchase or balance transfer (that is not returned or rescinded) and have paid the Annual Fee on the account (and such fee is not rescinded). They don't mention anything about a separate program for platinum cardholders..  However, trying to get someone to resolve this issue with either Virgin or Barclaycard seems to be rather impossible.. Seems to me they're simply drawing people in with the fraudulent offer, then simply saying, oh, we're sorry you don't qualify..  but thanks for signing up for our garbage credit card with insane fees..   
  • CreditLandCom
    Thank you for sharing your experience with us. We have reviewed this offer and you are correct, nowhere it is mentioned that 20,000 Bonus can become a 10,000 Bonus all of a sudden... We will mention this in our review of this card so others can make an informed decision. Another way to get Virgin miles is to get an American Express charge card: The Business Gold Rewards Card® now offers 50,000 Miles, though you do have to spend $5,000 in the first three months of card membership to get it. It also has $0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $175. Premier Rewards Gold Card now offers 25,000 Miles, though you do have to spend $2,000 during your first three months of Card membership. It also has annual fee of $0 for the first year, then $175. While we do not know If any of these offers make sense to you, we are at least sure that you will get advertised bonus in full if you decide to get them... Conversion rates for Virgin America are: 100 Elevate Points = 200 Membership Rewards® Points All the best.
  • Deborah Ellsworth
     would very much like to start a new credit history  by making payments on time I would tohave a credit card that is NOT PREPAYID! I don't need a card with a high limit just something to start a new credit history. Thank You Deborah Ellsworth
  • Deborah Ellsworth
    I would very much like to start a new credit line to get back on track. I DO NOT WANT A PREPAID CARD!! This new credit card if I am approved does not have to hace a high limit just something for me to start over again and prove myself ThankYou. D Ellsworth
  • Miss Edna
    there is a huge problem with the RFIP chip: it is easily compromised. There are already 'readers' in the form of what looks like a cellphone in a case, that scans all the info in the chip by merely walking near a person -- this 'reader' penetrates leather, cloth, spandex, etc. The only thing it will NOT penetrate is METAL. Perhaps one has seen commercials touting metal credit card cases. Here is my hint for a free fix: cut a piece of aluminum foil or use the foil that is used to keep foods fresh, like coffee. Cut it so that when folded once, it forms a sleeve for your credit card. place the credit card in the sleeve, then place the sleeve in your wallet.
  • Robin Parks
    I am looking to apply for the AARP Visa signature card from Chase that offers $100 after spend $500 in first 3 months, no annual fee and 0% interest first year; I don't want to mail in offer because of having to write in Social security #. Can you direct me to the proper on-line site?
  • CreditLandCom
    The Chase bank cards are not currently available at, but you can consider applying for the Citi® Dividend Platinum Select® Visa® Card - $100 Cash Back. The cards has similar terms and cash back program.
  • Becky
    This is Becky Now what do I do just waqit for acard to come to me?
  • CreditLandCom
    Once you have applied, you should receive a letter within 10 business days letting you know if you were approved and when your card will arrive. If you did not receive any letter or notification from the issuer, you should contact them directly. Also, you should contact the issuer if you’ve been waiting for your credit card longer than 30 days. Since we are not a bank and don’t issue credit cards, we cannot give you any information about your application or credit card.
  • SavingStar
    Thank you for posting about SavingStar. Just to clarify one sentence in your article, we have over 5 million members (not 500). Thanks, Josh
  • CreditLandCom
    Sorry for the misprint. We’ve corrected the sentence. Thank you for noticing that.
  • Eric
  • John Stifler
    I think almost all people that familiar with internet, will hardly fall to these scams, but for now, I think people that use computer but don't familiar with internet things, and they has a phone line at their home, they should be warned more than internet users. I think senior people usually got scammed by these kind of "tech support" scams. Found so many reports about them since years ago at complain board sites like We as younger, and know more about this stuff, should help and share information to they who needed it, especially older people.
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