Chase Cuts Foreign Exchange Fees From 2 More Travel Credit Cards - NerdWallet
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Chase Cuts Foreign Exchange Fees From 2 More Travel Credit Cards

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Effective February 15, Chase has waived foreign transaction fees on its Continental Airlines OnePass® Plus Card and United MileagePlus® Explorer Card.

This is, of course, very exciting to frequent international travelers who are used to paying up to 3% for foreign purchases and international transactions. Before we start praising Chase’s move too much, a number of other cards have beaten them to the punch in offering no foreign transaction fees.

While this change has yet to be reflected in the terms and conditions of these cards, Chase spokeswoman Laura Rossi announced in an email,

“The elimination of foreign transaction fees is ideal for cardmembers as it delivers direct savings. Travelers typically pay an additional 3 percent in foreign transaction fees on purchases made abroad using a credit card.”

The Continental Airlines OnePass® Plus Card offers some pretty sweet rewards for frequent travelers: lounge access, checked-bag fee waivers (a reward worth hundreds of dollars a year to frequent travelers), priority check-in and screening (never underestimate the thrill of cutting the security line) and protection against trip delays, medical emergencies and other adverse events.

The United MileagePlus® Explorer Card isn’t quite as giving with the travel perks, but offers a big sign-up bonus: Start with 30,000 bonus miles after you spend $1,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.

Other cards with no such fees

Chase also recently decided to offer no foreign transaction fees on its Hyatt Credit Card, Chase Priority Club Rewards Signature and British Airways Visa Signature® Card. The last two took effect, respectively, in June and November of 2010. Could this be a Chase trend toward no foreign exchange fees on travel cards?

Still, other options abound. Most credit unions offer no fee except the 1% that Visa charges them, and a couple have no transaction fee at all. Choosing the best travel rewards card depends heavily on your spending habits: are you a domestic or international traveler? Do you prefer miles, car rentals or hotel stays? How’s your credit score looking? Because travel rewards cards are often geared towards a specific set of benefits, it pays to shop around.

  • Dave

    I used my Chase/United card in Europe in April and was hit with foreign transaction fees.  I will be looking for a different card for my international travel.