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No foreign fee credit cards


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22 hours ago, Water_Baby_ said:

I use an American Express when we're outside of Canada and pay no foreign exchange fees. 

Which Amex card?  Most of the Amex cards we know of, charge foreign exchange fees.  If paying USD, it's 2.5%.  If other countries, they charge 2.5% to convert to USD, then another 2.5% converting to Cad.

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5 minutes ago, Middleager said:

Which Amex card?  Most of the Amex cards we know of, charge foreign exchange fees.  If paying USD, it's 2.5%.  If other countries, they charge 2.5% to convert to USD, then another 2.5% converting to Cad.

The Scotiabank Gold American Express® Card charges no foreign exchange fees.

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1 minute ago, Fouremco said:

The Scotiabank Gold American Express® Card charges no foreign exchange fees.

Ok, that's a special one, of Scotiabank/Amex partnership.  You apply for that card through Scotiabank, not Amex.  Amex doesn't list that as a card you can apply through them, or show that card in Amex websites.

 

I don't know of Amex Amex card with no FX fee.

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2 minutes ago, Middleager said:

Ok, that's a special one, of Scotiabank/Amex partnership.  You apply for that card through Scotiabank, not Amex.  Amex doesn't list that as a card you can apply through them, or show that card in Amex websites.

 

I don't know of Amex Amex card with no FX fee.

LOL. I agree, there are no "Amex Amex" cards without FX fees. While I like my Amex Cobalt card, it stays in my wallet when travelling outside of Canada.

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On 4/19/2024 at 11:49 AM, Middleager said:

Which Amex card?  Most of the Amex cards we know of, charge foreign exchange fees.  If paying USD, it's 2.5%.  If other countries, they charge 2.5% to convert to USD, then another 2.5% converting to Cad.

I have a Cobalt card. Haven't been charged FX fees - ever. 

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On 4/19/2024 at 12:06 PM, Fouremco said:

LOL. I agree, there are no "Amex Amex" cards without FX fees. While I like my Amex Cobalt card, it stays in my wallet when travelling outside of Canada.

 

I've never been charged an FX fee with that card. Very weird. I don't use it in the US (I have an American AMEX that I use there) but no charges in the UK or Europe. How odd ... 

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5 minutes ago, Water_Baby_ said:

I have a Cobalt card. Haven't been charged FX fees - ever. 

You better check again.  Every other Cobalt cards, including my wife's and my supplementary card, got charged the extra 2.5% if spending in USD, or if in other currencies it'll be 2.5% extra to USD then another 2.5% to Cad.
Check the rates you got charged, vs the mid market rate.

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44 minutes ago, Middleager said:

You better check again.  Every other Cobalt cards, including my wife's and my supplementary card, got charged the extra 2.5% if spending in USD, or if in other currencies it'll be 2.5% extra to USD then another 2.5% to Cad.
Check the rates you got charged, vs the mid market rate.

They don’t show the fee as a separate item on a bill. It is built into the exchange rate they give you. If you have ever had to correct a charge immediately, you can tell. If there is no fee, there is almost no difference between the charges. If there is a fee of 2.5% say, the reversal will be about 5% less than the original charge. 
 

I can’t believe that AMEX goes through a conversion to US$ and then to CAD$. I have never had that with Visa ans Mastercard. 

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1 hour ago, Water_Baby_ said:

 

I've never been charged an FX fee with that card. Very weird. I don't use it in the US (I have an American AMEX that I use there) but no charges in the UK or Europe. How odd ... 

There are innumerable websites that discuss the features of the many Canadian credit cards, and all say the same thing: AMEX Cobalt charges a foreign exchange fee. More importantly, your cardholder agree says the same thing. The difference between this card and the majority of other cards charging an FX fee is that AMEX hides the fee by incorporating it in the conversion rate instead of listing it as a separate item.

 

20 minutes ago, gnome12 said:

I can’t believe that AMEX goes through a conversion to US$ and then to CAD$. I have never had that with Visa ans Mastercard. 

Rogers used to do that with their Mastercards, but changed to direct conversion to CAD a few years ago. Hopefully AMEX will follow suit in due course.

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37 minutes ago, gnome12 said:

They don’t show the fee as a separate item on a bill. It is built into the exchange rate they give you. If you have ever had to correct a charge immediately, you can tell. If there is no fee, there is almost no difference between the charges. If there is a fee of 2.5% say, the reversal will be about 5% less than the original charge. 
 

I can’t believe that AMEX goes through a conversion to US$ and then to CAD$. I have never had that with Visa ans Mastercard. 

That's why I suggester water_baby to check again, because s/he apparently didn't know of the charge.

 

And yes Amex is awful, to charge more if it's different foreign currency than USD.  And again that's hidden into the rate they use.

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On 4/22/2024 at 2:49 PM, gnome12 said:

I can’t believe that AMEX goes through a conversion to US$ and then to CAD$. I have never had that with Visa ans Mastercard. 

 

Does AMEX do this every time? I don't have an AMEX, I have the Passport, it has no FX fees, but I also have them charge in the local currency regardless so we get the rate from the bank, instead of the rate from the teller to the US, and than our Bank from the US to Canada. 

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38 minutes ago, cmaleblanc said:

Does AMEX do this every time?

From the Canadian AMEX website:

 

If the charge is not in U.S. dollars, the conversion will be made through U.S. dollars, by converting the charge amount into U.S. dollars and then by converting the U.S. dollar amount into Canadian dollars. If the charge is in U.S. dollars, it will be converted directly into Canadian dollars.

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 4/25/2024 at 3:15 PM, Fouremco said:

If the charge is not in U.S. dollars, the conversion will be made through U.S. dollars, by converting the charge amount into U.S. dollars and then by converting the U.S. dollar amount into Canadian dollars. If the charge is in U.S. dollars, it will be converted directly into Canadian dollars.

 

Yikes. I wasn't aware of that. Canceled my Amex card a month ago for other reasons, and now even more glad I did.   

 

Are there any other Canadian credit cards that convert foreign currencies (eg GBP) through USD first and then to CDN? 

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4 hours ago, lots-of-km2 said:

 

Are there any other Canadian credit cards that convert foreign currencies (eg GBP) through USD first and then to CDN? 

I'm not aware of any other Canadian credit card currently following this practise.

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On 4/22/2024 at 10:29 AM, Middleager said:

You better check again.  Every other Cobalt cards, including my wife's and my supplementary card, got charged the extra 2.5% if spending in USD, or if in other currencies it'll be 2.5% extra to USD then another 2.5% to Cad.
Check the rates you got charged, vs the mid market rate.

 

I checked and read all of the fine print. They must be charging the fee in the conversion. Guess I am gullible enough to believe that they would make the fees apparent.

 

Just came back from a trip to the US and only used my USA issued Amex to avoid the charge.

 

Thanks. 

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I've found the Rewards Canada site useful in comparing credit cards, not just for travel but also for point earning/cash back/annual fees/etc.

 

If you're using a credit card, get the most out of it that you can!

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  • 2 weeks later...
1 hour ago, Fouremco said:

An interesting article for those who are considering a card with no forex fees but are otherwise happy with their existing credit cards. I have both the EQ and Wealthsimple cards and use them exclusively now for foreign purchases.

 

https://secure.campaigner.com/csb/Public/show/e7a4-2thp4q--16zvoi-7qf1pdm6  

I have the EQ card, and intend to use it wherever I can on my upcoming trip. My backup is my Home Trust Visa, as I don't want to deal with another account.

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