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Which debit card is best overseas?

Jacques Vert

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I use the Citibank Plus for cash withdrawals at an ATM and on past trips for most spending. It's a Visa debit card so you are using your own money, of course. It's been (and still is) an excellent card however, it does not earn points!

For non-ATM, that is paying hotels, car hire, restaurants, etc., I used the Coles Rewards Platinum Mastercard on my last trip (yes a credit card); similar exchange rates to the CitiPlus card, no foreign transaction fees on purchases, and earns FlyBuys which can be converted to Velocity, which can be converted to KrisFlyer.

However, '...any Cash Advance in foreign currency, or a Cash Advance made outside of Australia, will continue to incur an International Transaction fee of 2.50% of the transaction value when converted to Australian dollars, plus any other fees applicable to an International Cash Advance from the date of the transaction'.

So it's CitiPlus for cash; Coles MC for everything else. Works for me.
 
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cwd

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Another good option is the HSBC Everyday Global Account. No fees for normal use, and you can store 10 different currencies in there which will be used if you have enough of a currency in there for a given transaction/withdrawal. That said, unless you have a way to transfer into it in different currencies (ie. from another HSBC account), that's probably not that useful given you won't get a particularly great rate doing a fx conversion. I don't believe they accept cash deposits into it.

EDIT: They do allow cash deposits, in HKD and USD, but charge 1.25% (minimum $20) cash handling fee. Still, using it like the ING/Citibank cards it's still a decent product.
 
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cwd

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Decided to check the rates HSBC offer for currency conversion and compare to the Visa daily rate.

HSBC:

1568899051713.png

Visa:
1568899116590.png

Funnily enough, the 2nd one should be the rate you'll get if you don't have any USD in your account when doing a USD transaction with this account.

Just to be clear, this shows that if you convert 10k AUD with HSBC, you receive USD6663.54. If you do a purchase/withdrawal of that amount on the Visa network, with no added bank fee, it will only take AUD9784.96 out of your account.

Also, using Transferwise for the conversion would cost you AUD9844.37.
 

AustraliaPoochie

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There is now a system between banks in Aust, called Osko.
Immediate transfers now, you do it from one bank, the funds will appear in the other bank/yours or someone elses.
I still use BSB and account number, don't trust using that mobile phone or other things to do transfers.
ING has been good to me, on my trips to NZ.
Card has worked over there with tap and go too.
You can even take foreign cash out of foreign cash ATMs in Aust, and they will refund the fee, so long as you deposit $1000 a month from another bank account, and make 5 tap and go payments each month, or the previous month to your trip anyway.
Bankwest needs you to deposit $2000 for them to let you earn QFF points, on your savings and transactions.
You even earn points on foreign ATMs!!!
Believe the fee is $6 a month for this Bankwest Mastercard debit card, if you don't deposit $2000 or more a month.
At least on all these debit cards, no interest will be/is charged, and using own money.
 

AustraliaPoochie

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We seem to scrape through many/most countries with no cash at all , but we have to be constructive getting into pay loos…
Good 'ol 28degrees does the deed for us… but it's a credit card so I am o/t and out…..
**O/T**, except, maybe you haven't been through Japan yet.
They say Japan is still a cash as in cash notes used country.
Maybe they will accept cards more so, after the RWC/Olympics.
With all this HK based troubles not seeming to go away, maybe I might go via SIN to NRT/HND, or go via MEL/SYD to NRT/HND.
 

jeza

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CitiPlus/ING combo worked well for me on my recent trip, better to spread the risk a bit.

Just remember to say no to offers at the ATM to do Direct Currency Conversion (DCC) into your own currency, leave it to in my case ING or Citi.
 
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ozbeachbabe

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The ING conditions are simple if they are you primary bank i.e. where your salary is deposited but a total pain if you main bank is someone else.
I don't think it has to be your salary they just want a min $1,000.00 per month however I wonder if you can just do that the month prior to travel and that would be enough to qualify for the refund on atm fees which overseas. Rinse and repeat the next time you go overseas.

You can even just transfer money out to another bank, then immediately transfer it back in. Also, self-serve checkouts at supermarkets are a great way to break a purchase up into a number of smaller transactions of an amount of your choosing....

Agreed that if you can satisfy the ING criteria, it's the better option than the Citibank card, as you don't need to worry about whether the ATM is going to charge you a fee.
I believe there's an AFFer who goes to the self service checkout at a supermarket does a multi transaction for payment.....five times with the same ING card. :p
 
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kpc

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I recently switched from Citibank to Ing Orange for OS ATM cash withdrawals.....because my Citibank card did not work a couple of times due to inactivity and the fact that more and more ATMs esp. at airports overseas charge an ATM fee. Ing reimburses that fee if you TF $1000 or more and make 5 transactions or more on the Ing card the month before. A few days ago the ATM charged me $6.36 to withdraw PLN 800 in cash from the ATM at Krk airport....this $6.36 fee was reimbursed by Ing.
 

RooFlyer

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@pottsy : Citibank or ING debit cards have been the tried and proven way for AFFers for years. No fees on overseas ATM withdrawals (some exceptions, esp. in South America and if the ATM isn't a bank one - eg in a hotel lobby), and the FX rate is as close to spot as practicable.
 

NoName

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Use Citibank Plus. Absolutely no complaints.

Why is this topic in the Qantas sub-forum though??
 
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Max Samuels

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Citibank has worked for me for years. All over the 1st world.
And the FX rate they apply when making ATM withdrawals is the spot rate - every time I use it I see what FX rate they used and quickly look up the currency exchanges (a variety) and Citibank is always the same.... unlike CBA or other terrible OZ banks that use an FX rate that can be as much as 5% off!!! Plus the ATM fee. Plus the "service" fee
 

exceladdict

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I believe there's an AFFer who goes to the self service checkout at a supermarket does a multi transaction for payment.....five times with the same ING card. :p
There's an easier way to beem money between debit cards and you don't have to spend anything or leave the comfort of your house. ;)
 

marki

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Well just recently received a bright green debit platinum card from transferwise. Works anywhere like a local currency card. You transfer money onto it. And choose any of the selected currencies with minimal cost of using Transferwise. Cash is there instantaneously ...I could not believe how quick it was to transfer from bank account to Bank account overseas. Instant wow.

Anyway it beats 28 degrees and citibank has no predefined rules you must follow. However no points.
 
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SeaWolf

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I used Citibank for quite a while and found that the card itself was very reliable and that any Citibank branded ATM anywhere in the world would not charge me a fee. However, I had a number of small but irritating customer service issues and always found their online/mobile banking to be very clunky and difficult.

So I switched over to the ING product and haven't looked back. It does require you to jump through a few hoops (five debit card transactions and a $1000 deposit) in the month prior to travel but I can do all that using online banking and Beem-It in just a couple of minutes from my phone. Being able to use just any ATM and not worry about the fee is great and more than makes up for the minor hassle, especially in places like Thailand where the ATM fees can be astonishing (~AUD$10.37 when I was there in July!).

So in most countries I'd draw a bit of cash (depending on how cash-centric the country is) and just put everything I can on the credit card (ANZ Rewards Travel Adventures which has no foreign currency fees) and just draw out more cash as I go, if I need it.

I also carry my Bankwest Qantas Debit Mastercard, just in case I have acceptance issues with the other cards which are both Visa. It'll hit me 2.95% in foreign currency fees, but as it's just an emergency fallback I figure that's acceptable. I've never had to use it anyway.

I have also been considering getting a Macquarie transaction account. There's no fees for it, no overseas withdrawal fees, no foreign currency and it's a Mastercard debit. It also doesn't require any hoops, but it doesn't rebate those ATM fees when you're overseas. I hear that their customer service and online/mobile banking is a lot better than Citibank though.
 

AustraliaPoochie

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Which currencies and do they charge a margin? Could be a good way to stock up before travel
BankSA has 4 foreign currencies.
St George might have foreign cash ATMs.
USD for sure I saw was available.
Buying foreign cash with debit card might be an EFTPOS transaction with ING but haven't tried that yet.
ANZ foreign cash ATMs might have more currencies, none in Adelaide anymore.
As for spread I don't know in depth.
I go to NZ most often.
 

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