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Citibank Debit Card is Great.

pauly7

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Dec 8, 2004
Messages
4,612
Citi are a PITA when you have to interact with them.
In your experience? Again had no issue with them, have been one of my bankers for years and years. But that's my personal experience :)
 

stm1sydney

Member
Joined
Mar 31, 2018
Messages
306
To need to deposit $1K per month and to do 5 transactions per month is just a PITA in my case, where I'm just after a low cost overseas ATM card
Yes, that is the issue for me also. Note that the ING requirements have to be fulfilled in the month BEFORE the month of travel. So if you find you have to travel at short notice later in the same month, you cannot just go and do the transactions then use your ING card fee-free. You will be hit full-whack for any international usage.

On the other hand, the Citi product will not rebate you for the overseas ATM/bank fee (if charged). And I have been to a few countries where you have no option but to suck it up. But this is less of a disadvantage than the ING disadvantage, for me.
 

theblank

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Aug 3, 2014
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But if I am all wrong, then just exactly how many times have you used your MasterCard or Visa card and found that you got a better rate than the Xe.com rate at any time during the day of your purchase?
I have never checked because there is no point in doing so. there is no way for you to know the exact time of day to check XE.com or any other exchange rate website.

If you dont trust your banks converted amount, go to the Visa or MC website and check the rate.
 

theblank

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That just doesn't match. plenty of bank products that do not charge a fee on overseas ATM use but do include a BIG margin on the exchange rate. (for example Mastercard/Visa issued by any of the big 4 banks can be as much as 5 cents worse that the mid market rate)
They all charge 3% on top of the Visa/MC's rate.

That's how buying and selling works, there is a spread in the cost. That's how organisations don't lose money on currency exchange. (or they how they make money to pay for their operations).
The banks are not buying and selling anything. Visa/MC do the conversions at a set rate they announce the day before. Visa/MC pass on the AUD amount to the Australian banks.

That the banks here in Australia add 3% for international transactions is just a massive fee gouge by the banks. They are not incurring any costs, nor engaging in exchange rate risk.
 

Vic

Active Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2017
Messages
594
They all charge 3% on top of the Visa/MC's rate.


The banks are not buying and selling anything. Visa/MC do the conversions at a set rate they announce the day before. Visa/MC pass on the AUD amount to the Australian banks.

That the banks here in Australia add 3% for international transactions is just a massive fee gouge by the banks. They are not incurring any costs, nor engaging in exchange rate risk.
My various ATM cards clearly state fee free. There is no additional 3% fee.
But the exchange rate is at least 3% worst than Citibank plus.

If you check the big four banks, they do provide a currency exchange service.
 

travelislife

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Feb 9, 2011
Messages
2,155
My various ATM cards clearly state fee free. There is no additional 3% fee.
But the exchange rate is at least 3% worst than Citibank plus.

If you check the big four banks, they do provide a currency exchange service.
Which ATM cards are you referring to that clearly state international transaction fee free?
 

Vic

Active Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2017
Messages
594
Here's what you get...

  • All the trimmings of a NAB Visa Debit card

  • No foreign currency fee on international purchases
 
Last edited by a moderator:

woodborer

Active Member
Joined
Nov 17, 2013
Messages
775
Here's what you get...

  • All the trimmings of a NAB Visa Debit card

  • No foreign currency fee on international purchases
The say they use the Visa rate to do the conversion. It is easy enough to verify, and if they are charging an extra 3% then you have a case against them.
 
Last edited by a moderator:

Vic

Active Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2017
Messages
594
The say they use the Visa rate to do the conversion. It is easy enough to verify, and if they are charging an extra 3% then you have a case against them.
Look it is simply not my experience that "fee free" cards give good exchange rates. I can waste my time running a case, or I can just use a card that I know gives good exchange rates.
None of that changes the point of this thread about checking the acheived exchange rate against the published mid market rate.
 

stm1sydney

Member
Joined
Mar 31, 2018
Messages
306
Here's what you get...

  • All the trimmings of a NAB Visa Debit card

  • No foreign currency fee on international purchases
Note that this debit card charges $5 plus 3% for each foreign ATM withdrawal. (And I only use my Citi debit card for ATM withdrawals, not purchases. I use 28 Degrees CC for purchases.)
 

playbargain

Junior Member
Joined
Aug 8, 2010
Messages
42
Qantas
Silver
Virgin
Platinum
This is a great card for travelling, no issues with it whatsoever. Reasonable forex rates too.
 

exceladdict

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Mar 26, 2014
Messages
2,260
Qantas
Bronze
Virgin
Gold
Flights
My Map
The biggest drawback for the Citibank card, for me personally, is the ability to find fee-free ATMs. While it's nice having an exchange rate nice and close to the market rate (notwithstanding the earlier discussion of what that actually means); if you get slugged an $8 atm fee, as I recently have been, it can make a big dent in those percentages.

This is why I also carry the ING card; auto-transfers cover the deposit requirement and the 5 monthly transactions aren't an issue for me (it's not my primary account).

FWIW I did a small recent comparison between cards and the published rates of the day and believe the citibank card had lower hidden margins. So it's a two-prong strategy to avoid fees.

Of course an appropriate credit card is also required for hotel deposits!
 

woodborer

Active Member
Joined
Nov 17, 2013
Messages
775
Note that this debit card charges $5 plus 3% for each foreign ATM withdrawal. (And I only use my Citi debit card for ATM withdrawals, not purchases. I use 28 Degrees CC for purchases.)
Ahh, I see now. It only says that purchases are fee free, not ATM withdrawals.
So, in actual fact it doesn't state ATMs are free of transaction fees, so Vic's list is back to a list of none.
 

theblank

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Aug 3, 2014
Messages
1,216
My various ATM cards clearly state fee free. There is no additional 3% fee.
But the exchange rate is at least 3% worst than Citibank plus.
No Australian bank applies an "exchange rate" to Visa/MC transactions. The foreign currency conversions are done by Visa/MC.

All but a handfull of bank products add an approximate 3% fee to their definition of overseas transactions. Australian banking regulations require this fee to be itemised/detailed seperately in the transaction statements.

You are either charged this fee or not, There is no loadiing up of the original transaction.

If you check the big four banks, they do provide a currency exchange service.
Indeed any bank does, but thats got nothing to do with Visa/Mastercard transactions at all.
 

Happy Dude

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Joined
Oct 13, 2006
Messages
1,138
I've just transferred AUD $1,000 to HKD using the Citi Global Currency and the rate was 5.26+, ie

1576411822663.png

XE.com has this rate:

1576411895583.png

According to the ING website (noting the fee for purchases):

1576411764115.png

And Visa website has this rate:

1576412056905.png

I cannot find a distinction in costs for ATM and international purchases on the Citi website, so I'll be using the ING Orange to withdraw cash (appears to have better rate than Citi and ATM easier to find and no fees) and the Citi to make purchases if needed.
 

travelislife

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Joined
Feb 9, 2011
Messages
2,155
The transfer you have done is completely irrelevant for the rates on the Citibank Plus Debit card when you withdraw funds from an ATM (or make purchases). You are only ever putting AUD in your account. For the Citi card you check the MasterCard rates. You don’t need to find a Citi ATM. There are no Citi fees for using any ATM.
 

Happy Dude

Established Member
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Joined
Oct 13, 2006
Messages
1,138
The transfer you have done is completely irrelevant for the rates on the Citibank Plus Debit card when you withdraw funds from an ATM (or make purchases). You are only ever putting AUD in your account. For the Citi card you check the MasterCard rates. You don’t need to find a Citi ATM. There are no Citi fees for using any ATM.
Then there is a 'spread' applied to the Citi global currency account which makes it the most useless product of all time.

So it would simply be a comparison between the rates of Visa and MC. And today MC would win:

1576451289577.png

I'll be taking both cards nonetheless and avoiding using ING for purchases and hoping that Citi is as widely accepted as the ING appears to be.
 

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