Travel Tip_ Avoid Foreign Transaction Fees On Your Canadian Credit Card

Travel Tip: Avoid Foreign Transaction Fees On Your Canadian Credit Card

Last updated on July 18, 2018 Views: 28383 Comments: 357
In this article

Many Canadians are in for a nasty surprise after a trip abroad. The bad news is most Canadian credit card companies add a 2.5%-3% foreign transaction fee to each purchase that cardholders make outside the country. The good news is that a select few credit cards in Canada, like the Home Trust Preferred Visa, Rogers Platinum Mastercard, Rogers World Elite Mastercard and Scotiabank Passport Visa Infinite make up for or waive the fee so that you’re not charged at all.

Unlike the United States, where credit card issuers are increasingly abandoning foreign transaction fees altogether, FX fees usually represent too large a part of Canadian credit card companies’ income streams for them to walk away from. The fact is, Canadians travel out of Canada a lot more often than Americans travel out of the United States, so it’s easier for an American issuer to give up on FX fees than for a Canadian issuer. For a quick comparison: 30% of Americans have a passport, compared to 70% of Canadians.

Why You Want a No Foreign Transaction Fee Credit Card

So what’s the big deal about a credit card that subsidizes foreign transaction fees? Well, the savings can be huge for some Canadian customers, especially:

  1. Snowbirds who winter in the south
  2. People who shop across the border regularly or shop online
  3. Those who use their credit card to make business purchases from U.S. vendors.

Think about it. If you use your credit card while wintering in the United States, you could easily rack up $10,000 – $20,000 in credit card charges. That’s $250 to $500 in foreign exchange fees going to the credit card companies. Not to mention it also wipes away the 1-2% in rewards you thought you were earning.

Aside from that, using a credit card that subsidizes or waives your foreign transaction fee is actually cheaper than exchanging currencies at the bank, or at a boutique foreign exchange bureau – which routinely cost anywhere from 1%-3% to exchange your money. Debit and out-of-country ATM cash withdrawals are no better, each typically charging a foreign exchange fee of 2.5% or more.

Best No Foreign Transaction Fees Credit Cards in Canada 2018

Credit CardSpecial Card FeatureAnnual FeesCard ReviewApply for Card
Home Trust Preferred Visa0% transaction fees$0Read MoreApply Now
Rogers Platinum Mastercard0.5% cash back on foreign transactions$0
Read MoreApply Now
Rogers World Elite Mastercard1.5% cash back on foreign transactions$0Read MoreApply Now
Scotiabank Passport Visa Infinite0% transaction fees
Premium rewards
$139
Read MoreApply Now

Home Trust Preferred Visa

Home Trust Secured Visa Low-Rate credit cardOne card that offers relief from foreign transaction fees is the Home Trust Preferred Visa Card. Aside from waiving the 0% foreign transaction fee option, this credit card also gives Canadians 1% cash back on all purchases, without any limits on how much cash back you can earn or where you can earn it, as well as travel perks like roadside assistance, auto insurance, and liability insurance.

Rogers Platinum Mastercard

Rogers™ Platinum Mastercard®Another excellent option is The Rogers Platinum Mastercard which now gives you 3% cashback rewards on all purchases in a foreign currency and 1.25% cashback rewards on all other purchases – one of the richest flat cashback rewards rates for a no annual fee card in Canada.

Rogers Mastercard’s foreign transaction subsidy is structured differently than the Home Trust Preferred Visa Card’s fee waiver,  but still offers significant value. Rogers offers 3% cashback rewards on purchases in a foreign currency, but charges 2.5% in foreign transaction fees – the net cashback rewards rate is thus 3% – 2.5% FX fee = 0.5% in net cashback rewards.

Rogers World Elite Mastercard

Rogers World Elite MastercardCredit cards can help travellers avoid foreign transaction fees by matching any fees with an equal amount of cash back, or more. The latter is true with the impressive Rogers World Elite Mastercard, which is like the Platinum Plus card but accompanied by better perks and superior cash back rates. In exchange, applicants must meet a higher annual income and credit requirement (though the card still has no annual fee). With the World Elite card, cardholders will receive 4.00% cash back for their purchases in a foreign currency, and 1.75% cash back for any purchases made in Canadian dollars.  Furthermore, spending on Rogers-related goods and services earns an accelerated 2.00% cashback rate.

The World Elite beats the Platinum Mastercard by 1.00%, netting 1.50% cash back on foreign purchases (after the fee) instead of 0.50%. Cardholders will also get a comprehensive insurance package that includes collision damage coverage for rental vehicles, and trip interruption, trip cancellation, and emergency travel medical insurance. This is an excellent deal for no annual fee, but applicants need to show $80,000 in annual income or $150,000 in household income.

Click here to learn more on the Rogers World Elite MasterCard

Scotiabank Passport Visa Infinite

Scotia Passport Visa InfiniteFinally, the best of the bunch is the Scotiabank Passport Visa Infinite card. Though accompanied by an annual fee of $139, it not only waives foreign transaction fees, but also offers greater rewards potential, better perks and stronger protections as well. You’ll pay 0.00% fees for purchasing online or abroad in a foreign currency and will earn 2 Scotia Rewards points for each $1 spent on groceries, dining out, or entertainment. One point per $1 spent is earned elsewhere.

Additionally, travellers who frequently face layovers will appreciate the card’s 6 free VIP airport lounge passes given each year. They’ll also like the travel protections that accompany the card, including travel medical, trip interruption and cancellation, and rental car damage coverage as well. Furthermore, an introductory bonus of 25,000 Scotia Rewards points for spending $1,000 in the first three months puts the card another step ahead of competitors.

Comparison of Canadian Credit Card Foreign Transactions Fees

Credit CardForeign Transaction Fee OfferNotable BenefitsAnnual FeeApply for Card
Home Trust Preferred Visa0% fee1% cash back$0Apply Now
Rogers®Platinum Mastercard®2.5% fee
3% cash back$0
Apply Now
Scotiabank Passport Visa Infinite0% fee
2 pts / $1 on selected categories
1 pt / $1 on the rest
$139
Apply Now
Tangerine Money-Back Credit Card2.5% fee2% cash back on 2-3 purchase categories$0Apply Now
Scotiabank Gold American Express Card2.5% fee15,000 bonus pts$99Apply Now
BMO World Elite MasterCard2.5% fee35,000 bonus pts$150Apply Now

By the way, for those who think they’re avoiding foreign transaction fees by having a U.S. Dollar credit card, unless you earn American dollars, you’re not avoiding anything. Ultimately, you’ll have to pay your U.S. Dollar credit card bill in U.S. dollars, and you’ll have to convert your Canadian dollars to U.S. dollars at the bank to do so. At that point the bank will charge you its 1%-3% foreign exchange surcharge. Hopefully more Canadian credit card issuers that don’t have a large share of their spend in foreign purchases, or an established foreign exchange business, will step up to the plate and waive their foreign transaction fees. Perhaps some of the more niche issuers like President’s Choice, Walmart, or Canadian Tire can shake things up a little bit the way Rogers, Home Trust and Scotia have. But as of right now though, Rogers, Home Trust and Scotia are three of the only games in town, and they’re offering Canadians a SUPERLATIVE opportunity. Just not enough of us know about it.

Article comments

357 comments
8675309 says:

In may td rasied their visa debit from 2.5 to 3.5 & interac debit from 0.025 to 0.035

The GreedyRates Team says:

Hey 8675309,

Thanks for the information. TD has indeed raised its foreign transaction fee from 2.50% to 3.50% as of May 2018, but this doesn’t directly impact the information in the above article. However, it may be relevant for those who travel abroad without a proper foreign transaction fee card at all, because they know to avoid using their TD (or MBNA) cards in favor of one that only charges the standard 2.50% (which is just about every other bank).

We may add a small bit to the article advising caution to TD cardholders abroad. For those who need more information about it, follow the link below. Thanks!

https://www.tdcanadatrust.com/document/PDF/accounts/513796-20171030.pdf

GreedyRates

Bee says:

Sorry for reviving this article. I am curious to know your opinion now that HSBC does not require you to have a Premier chequing account for the HSBC World Elite Mastercard. I was comparing it to Scotiabank’s Visa Infinite. Both do not have FX fees.

I am curious to know your opinion about redeeming the points for flights specifically? which one would be more beneficial in regards to accumulating points and lounge access? I am enticed by HSBC’s free unlimited wifi by Boingo but also Scotiabank’s 6 free lounge access?

anyway, your opionion is highly valued and I look forward to reading it.

thank you for all your hard work!

I have a grandfathered Capitalone World Elite Mastercard so I am not too concerned with the insurances and coverage of those two cards.

The GreedyRates Team says:

Greetings Bee!

Unfortunately, we haven’t done a thorough review of HSBC’s World Elite card, but hope that one day we’ll be able to get a closer look. Without delving into the card’s specifics, we can’t determine the individual value of an HSBC Premier Reward point, for example, while we do know that one Scotia Reward point is worth approximately $0.01.

Still, we’re capable of Googling, so we’d be happy to do a shallower card comparison for you now. Both cards offer the ability to earn points with relatively flexible redemption models–travel, merchandise, etc.–though the HSBC card offers its highest earnings rate on travel purchases, while Scotia cardholders will earn more on grocery stores, dining, and entertainment. Both have exemption from foreign fees, and both have travel insurance. What sounds better to you: entrance to Mastercard lounges and free Boingo Wi-Fi, or a slightly less expensive annual fee and 6 free annual passes to a wider range of airport lounges?

We’re willing to bet that the Scotiabank card offers more broadly useful perks, and recommend that card over the HSBC. It’s up to you, however. We’ll let you know if we’re able to get an HSBC review up, in which case we’ll dig a little deeper than the surface. Thanks anyway for your question!

GreedyRates Staff

Derrick says:

One issue with the Scotia passport visa is that it has this petty and annoying fine print about the lounge access benefit. It is only applicable to the primary card holder. If your significant other (with the supplementary card) happens to be flying without you, they’re out of luck. It’s the stereotypical giving of benefits with annoying limitations.

The GreedyRates Team says:

Hey Derrick,

Good of you to leave your comment with us. It’s true that many of the most valuable travel perks are only available to the primary cardholder, and the VIP airport passes are no exception. The fine print you’ve cited confirms this: “Priority Pass™ membership is for the Primary Cardmember on the Scotiabank Passport Visa Infinite account.” and then,” the first 6 lounge visits for the primary Cardmember per 12-month cycle from date of enrollment are complimentary.”

This can be frustrating for couples who sometimes travel separately, but more for the supplementary cardholder who can’t access most of the card’s best perks. One option is to get your significant her own card with herself as the primary cardholder, and another is to save your VIP lounge passes for when you’re travelling together. The fine print can be fickle, as we like to say, and it’s important to read it all before applying. This one’s on us, though, and we’ll make sure to incorporate this condition into our future reviews.

Thanks!
The GreedyRates Team

AC says:

Though this isn’t a credit card, I use my Goldmoney prepaid card (Mastercard) to pay for goods & services in USD with no FX fee. Goldmoney is a Toronto based fintech company that allows its clients to buy physical gold and store it in the vaults operated by Brinks (Toronto) or Royal Canadian Mint (Ottawa).

When I travel to the US or buy goods on the Amazon US site, I sell my gold to load the prepaid card which takes seconds so the fund becomes available immediately. I’ve used the card to withdraw cash from ATM machines in the US as well.

Though you won’t be able to build a credit history with Goldmoney, I find it’s useful to protect my purchasing power with physical gold for long-term as Bank of Canada devalues our currency every month by increasing money supply thereby causing inflation.

The GreedyRates Team says:

Hey AC!

Awesome comment—we’re glad that you’ve found another useful travel hack for avoiding those pesky foreign transaction fees. We’re aware of Goldmoney from Mastercard, but haven’t prioritized it for review. Part of this is because we have yet to establish a transparent relationship with them (for the sake of our readers), and another part is that we’ve got a better prepaid card review already on the way.

Keep an eye out for our upcoming article on the CIBC Air Canada AC Conversion Prepaid card, which covers the impressive features of this foreign-fee-avoiding wonder. CIBC allows cardholders to hold up to 10 different global currencies on the card at once, and prepay across these currencies up to $20,000. As you might see with your Goldmoney card, preloading foreign currency also gives you the benefit of locking in more favorable exchange rates, and then taking advantage of them later.

While we’re not sure about the efficacy of using gold as a funds storage option, it does sound interesting, and whatever card helps you the most is something we fully support. Enjoy!

Thanks,
GreedyRates Staff

dangerine says:

Doesn’t Visa or MasterCard charge a 1% foreign transaction fee regardless of the credit card issuer? So technically, the numbers are as follows:

Home Trust: 0% (issuer) + 1% (visa/master) – 1% (cashback) = 0% fx
Rogers Platinum: 2.5% (issuer) + 1% (visa/master) – 3% (cashback) = 0.5% fx
Scotia Passport Infinite: 0% (issuer) + 1% (visa/master) – 1-2% (cashback) = 0% fx (but $139 annual fee)

B says:

Hi,
Thank you four the excellent information you provide (and so much more clearly than these vendors themselves :)!
Regarding the Scotia Passport Visa Infinite, does the above mean that only groceries, gas and entertainment earn rewards points? Bill payments would earn nothing?

The GreedyRates Team says:

Hey B!

Nice to hear from you–and thanks for the kind shoutout! If you’re interested in the Scotiabank Passport Visa Infinite card, then you’ll be happy to know that you won’t earn rewards exclusively on groceries, dining, and entertainment. However, you should note that gas is not included in the highest-earning purchase categories, though it will earn Scotia points at the lower rate.

You only receive 2 Scotia points per $1 spent on groceries, dining, and entertainment, but you’ll also earn 1 Scotia point per $1 spent on everything else. This is much more than gas, obviously, and will likely also include bill payments (though if it’s a huge factor in your decision, call the bank). Alongside the luxurious travel perks like VIP airport lounge access with six free passes, and great insurance benefits, there are many reasons to love this new card from Scotia.

Hope that helps!

GreedyRates Team

KPeter1 says:

Let’s face it. Since Canadians were stripped of the Amazon Rewards card, they were left with no options with regard to no foreign conversion fee credit card.

1) Rogers that offers Rogers Platinum Mastercard: Their cash back rewards go only towards Rogers services. Although Rogers is a reputable company, as far as their credit card, benefits for non-Rogers subscribers: 0.
2) Home Trust that offers “Preferred Visa”: An amateurish company with 0 Foreign conversion fee, 0 customer service and 0 efficiency.
3) Brim Financial, another amateurish and mismanaged company that is bound to fold. 0 foreign conversion fee, 0 customer service and 0 efficiency.
3. Scotiabank Passport Visa Infinite has an annual fee of $139. Although it’s a very reputable bank with excellent and proven customer service, but $139…. No thanks.

What’s left for Canadians? Nothing. Since the disappearance of the Amazon Rewards Visa card, we’re left high and dry with no alternatives. Amazon Rewards Visa card was absolutely the best, second to none. Sorry, we just have to wait. Maybe Amazon.ca will offer again to Canadians a no foreign conversion fee no annual feel credit card?

The GreedyRates Team says:

Hey KPeter1,

We definitely understand where you’re coming from. The Chase Amazon card was an excellent value, and its exact variety of perks is still unmatched in the current Canadian marketplace. However, we do have a couple comments that might help you discover a new opportunity in what is available to Canada.

The Rogers Platinum and World Elite cards are Mastercards, and are therefore easily integrated into Mastercard’s Pay with Rewards program. This allows you to sync your Rogers account with Mastercard’s smartphone application, and see a list of your recent purchases. You can redeem cash back instantly on eligible purchases through this app.

https://www.rogersbank.com/en/redeem

Additionally, the Scotiabank Passport Visa does have a higher annual fee, but this is because relevant cardholders will actually use its amazing travel perks. Six VIP passes to airport lounges is more than a $200 value given annually, which negates the fee and then some. Add in the insurance and also the 0.00% foreign fees and it’s easy to see why travellers are paying $139 per year. In your first year, the 25,000-Reward Point bonus is a great opportunity as well, and if you don’t like it, then you can cancel it.

If we can’t change your mind, then we’re afraid you might have to wait for Chase to change theirs. However, we don’t know of any plans to return to Canada at this time.

Thanks,
GreedyRates Staff

AmazonGoneMike says:

The Rogers cards DO allow a cashback reward in the form of a statement credit once per year. You have to call once per year to initiate this. This was verified by Greedyrates after I had called a Rogers rep who didn’t read their own fine print. It would be nice if you could just let them know when you signed up for the card that you wanted the once a year cashback but I guess Rogers services are the main focus.

jpiroz says:

In April I applied for the Rogers Platinum card because I was impressed with their 4% cash back offer. Days after receiving it, I was notified that the cash back reward would be reduced to 3%. I wanted to offset the
forex surcharge, and the original 4% was attractive (a 1-1/2% bonus – now it is o only 1/2%. ) I accumulated a lot of cash back points/dollars during the first 2 months (to pay off travel plans), and when I wanted to redeem my points, I was told that I can only use them for Rogers’ products or wait until next January to apply to my statement balance!!!!! There is conflicting information on their website and also from their customer service operators. Because I complained bitterly, they are agreeing to apply my cash back dollars to my outstanding balance. I can see that I will have to do this every time as I travel a great deal and want to avoid the forex surcharge. This is not a good card and I don’t think that their World Elite one will be an
improvement if one cannot easily use the reward points to pay off one’s balance.

The GreedyRates Team says:

Hey jpiroz,

We’re glad you were able to get the Rogers Platinum card, but it’s unfortunate that Rogers changed their benefits on the card so soon after you received it. The 4.00% cash back on foreign purchases has moved to their Rogers World Elite card, along with higher cash back on Canadian dollar purchases at 1.75%. The Rogers Platinum card is now the lower-tier version, but you’ll probably be able to upgrade if you call Rogers and inquire. Regardless, you’re correct that redeeming cash back flexibly with Rogers is difficult, though we’re curious if you’ve tried the Pay With Rewards application from Mastercard.

The Rogers Mastercards both work with this smartphone app, which you can explore in the link below. You can connect your account to it and then flexibly redeem cash back on the individual eligible purchases that show up there, whenever you like. If this isn’t interesting to you, then we’re happy to suggest some other alternatives. The Scotiabank Passport Visa Infinite card is one of the newest on the market, and offers total exemption from foreign transaction fees, plus 25,000 Scotia Rewards points to begin. You will earn Rewards for your purchases and also get 6 free passes to VIP airport lounges every year, along with a solid variety of insurance benefits.

If you don’t want to pay Scotia’s $129 annual fee, then the World Elite from Rogers is probably your best bet. Best of luck!

https://www.rogersbank.com/en/redeem

GreedyRates Team

KSuter says:

I also lost my Amazon/Chase card, and applied in February for a Home Trust card. By June I have not received it. I have called several times and each time was told I would receive it in about two weeks. I was advised today, on June 5 that there would be at least another 4 weeks wait.
Based on the information in this message thread, I tried to cancel my application, but they said they had no idea how they could do that, and i should just not reply to anything they sent.
Sounds like a really Mickey Mouse organization.

The GreedyRates Team says:

Hi KSuter,

We always appreciate readers coming to inform us about their issues with banks and card issuers, and base our recommendations off this input frequently. Believe it or not, you’re among several people who have reported the same inconvenient truths about Home Trust to us, and we now direct our readers to other cards accordingly. It’s very unfortunate that Canadians lost access to Chase Bank’s excellent array of credit cards, but due to reasons you now understand, Home Trust isn’t necessarily the best place to get a replacement. It may take some months before their customer service team is freed up for more prompt responses. Not being able to cancel your application right now is frustrating, but ultimately harmless. When the card arrives in a month, test it out for a little while to see if you like it, and if not then cancel it.

We’re big fans of the new Rogers World Elite Mastercard, which grants 4.00% cash back on foreign transactions, netting you 1.50% after the fee. You’ll also get a plethora of World Elite-quality travel benefits and 1.75% cash back on purchases in Canadian dollars. Scotiabank also saw an opportunity to fill the gap left by Chase, and recently released their Passport Infinite Visa card, which negates foreign transaction fees entirely. It also has an impressive travel insurance suite, and gives you 6 annual passes to VIP airport lounges across the globe.

Ian says:

Shouldn’t you update this sentence? “For this reason we typically recommend the Rogers card over the Home Trust to those who travel outside of Canada frequently.”
Now that it is only 0.5% since reducing to 3% on Forex purchases, Home Trust wins out with their 1% cashback.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Ian. We’ve updated the text now that the Rogers card has reduced its benefits slightly. The Home Trust card, in terms of pure cash back, is a small step above Rogers. However, it does fall behind in some ways, which need to be considered before you choose between them. For example, the Home Trust card limits cardholders to 10 transactions per day, and also assigns you a PIN code that you won’t be able to change. While these issues don’t impact some customers, for others it could be inconvenient. Also, their applications have recently been taking quite a long time to get approved.

Regardless, there’s a new card available from Scotiabank that should also be looked at. The Passport Visa Infinite is $139 per year, but for this price tag you’ll pay zero foreign transaction fees, earn Scotia rewards points, and get some upper-tier travel benefits. The most impressive is the 6 annual VIP airport lounge passes and Priority Pass membership, and this is complemented by valuable travel insurance, including travel medical protection and much more.

GreedyRates Staff

Indy says:

See my comments below. You have been warned.

MartinShema says:

Hi All im newbie here. Good post! Thx! Love your stories!

Sameer says:

Hi there,
Can you recommend credit card (with/without fees), which provides annual lounge access & has no foreign transaction fees?
Thanks
Sameer

GreedyRates says:

Hey Samseer, thanks for the very specific question! It’s great when readers approach us with exacting criteria, and actually helps us narrow down the best options for you. Your question comes at an opportune moment for us–until recently, we could’ve only recommended the Home Trust Visa and Rogers Platinum Mastercard to those who want to escape foreign transaction fees. However, neither of these excellent cards offers airport lounge access.

Now, there’s a new card on the market that provides both, and will probably take the number one spot in the ‘No Foreign Transaction Fees’ category. It’s the Scotiabank Passport Visa Infinite card. With this credit card, you’ll earn 2 points per $1 spent on grocery, dining, and entertainment expenses, and then 1 point on everything else. You’ll also be exempt from foreign transaction fees, and get a Priority Pass membership to worldwide airport lounges as well. The pass allows you to get into the lounge at a significant discount compared to non-member walk-ins, but the card also offers 6 free passes per year, so you mostly likely will never have to pay. You can learn more details about the card by reading our in-depth Scotiabank Passport Visa Infinite card review.

Thanks for reading.

GreedyRates Staff

Geoff says:

Just received email from Rogers inviting me to upgrade my card to the new Rogers Visa Infinite card. It reinstates all the benefits I had with the old card, but under the Infinite banner. Presumably with this card, they can charge the merchants higher fees.

Geoff says:

New Rogers Card

lavender says:

Home Trust Visa!
I was waiting 2 and have months to get my card and was approved with great credit score and family income $100K for $1000 limit between I and my husband which is ridicules. They seem to be very old fashion company that operates as though as in 1960’s. To activate a card I had to call from my home phone which I don’t have even though they have my cell number on file at the time of application. To activate my card I had to connect with customer service i was waiting 30 min.
After all this hassle, I closed my account and are not interested in dealing with them!

Eric says:

1960’s indeed. After 2 months of waiting I got an additional request to send them ORIGINAL phone/hydro/whatever bill – no scans and no copies allowed. Looks like grandmas and grandpas didn’t really get into 2010s yet. I won’t be going ahead with this bank- too much hassle.

Indy says:

I’ve done some research and still can’t determine which card would be best for the following situation. I will be in Greece for two weeks at the end of May. Total costs during that time will exceed $20,000 CAD. With some cards offering stronger rewards during first few months and/or on initial charges up to a certain value, what would be the best combination of cash rewards/offset foreign exchange fees/high limit/no annual fee. Please keep in mind that I could use this new car for this trip only and then cancel it, if possible. I already have a cashback rewards card for use here. I have perfect credit and high annual income, so there is no limit to type of card based on that.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Indy, thanks for your great comment. We’re excited that you’re travelling soon to Greece, and understand you want to offset much of the $20,000 you’re planning to spend. Cash back is a great way to do this, but most cards with an accelerated initial bonus only offer it until $250 in cash back has accrued. They also don’t reduce foreign transaction fees, meaning that you’ll likely save more money with a card that simply negates these fees entirely.

The Home Trust Preferred card is best for that: it erases foreign transaction fees and accrues cash back on all purchases at 1.00%. This means that you stand to net $200 from your $20,000 planned expenditure. However, Home Trust isn’t the most reliable when it comes to responding to customer applications and inquiries, and is currently under a lot of strain to satisfy customer demand. Because you’re flying in just a couple months, you’d be better off with the Rogers Platinum Mastercard. This one gives you 3.00% cash back on all purchases made in a foreign currency, so that $20,000 translates to $600 in cash back. However, note that the card does charge the standard foreign transaction fee of 2.50%. This means that after the fees, your net cash back is $100. Let us know if you need any further assistance. You can compare both cards directly by reading both our Home Trust Preferred card review and Rogers Platinum Mastercard review. Good luck and happy travels!

GreedyRates Staff

Indy says:

I actually got my card within about 2 weeks of applying. That’s the good news. The bad news is that this card is for infants. The first year maximum limit is $4000. One year later, you can apply to have that increased to $8000. Seriously! I got this card specifically to use while travelling. I was planning on using it in Greece later this month, when I get married there. $4000 might cover our first day.
My future spouse and I earn well above average income, have no debt and virtually perfect credit ratings, so that is not the issue here. They simply have a ridiculous limit rule and won’t break it – even if you offer to pay $20,000 on the card in advance, as they will only allow up to 90% of that juvenile limit.

My fault for not reading the fine print, but who would think such a thing would even exist in 2018. It’s so sad, I’ve chosen to see it as funny.

Andrew Gerrits says:

Can you explain why you recommend the Rogers card over the Home Trust??
Rogers 3% cash back – 2.5% FX fee = 0.5% net
Home Trust 1% cash back – 0% FX fee = 1% net

Am I missing something?

GreedyRates says:

Hi Andrew, thanks for your awesome question. You’re correct that in terms of net cash back for foreign transactions, the Home Trust card is better by 0.50%. However, it suffers from a few downsides that make the Rogers card better overall. Rogers has a greater domestic cash back rate, at 1.25% versus 1.00%. The Home Trust card is also limited to ten transactions per day, which takes it out of the race for some cardholders. Finally, though we don’t like to harp on this point, Home Trust is currently experiencing some temporary down time with customer service. Many applicants have waited weeks without a response, and so Rogers has stepped up to fill the gap.

GreedyRates Staff

Lisa says:

What is your impression of the new Scotiabank Passport Visa Infinite card?

GreedyRates says:

Hi Lisa, thanks for requesting an opinion about the card you’ve got your eyes on! We’ve done a thorough review of the Scotia Passport Visa Infinite card and will unveil our official review article very soon. We recommend you wait until we’ve posted it before making your decision, and will be sure to let you know exactly when it’s published. Thanks for being a loyal reader!

GreedyRates Staff

GreedyRates says:

Hi Lisa. We’ve published our review of the Scotiabank Passport Visa Infinite card if you’re still interested.

GreedyRates Staff

kl says:

now that the foreign transaction cashback is 3% with the rogers card, which nets 0.5% cashback, the home trust card should be recommended over the rogers/fido card..correct?

GreedyRates says:

Hi KL, we appreciate your curiosity about the difference between these two cards, now that the Rogers card is changing. The Rogers card used to out-earn the Home Trust card in every scenario, as it would net 1.50% on foreign transactions, but now that it’s been reduced to 0.50%, Home Trust has a slight advantage in this regard. With 0.00% foreign transaction fees and 1.00% unlimited cash back, the Home Trust card earns 0.50% more cash back than Rogers when abroad. However, it earns 0.25% less when purchasing in Canadian dollars, as Rogers’ domestic rate is 1.25%.

However, there are other considerations as well. For instance, the Home Trust card imposes a limit of 10 transactions per day for cardholders, and isn’t available to residents of Quebec. Additionally, now that Amazon has cancelled their line of cards that once eliminated foreign transaction fees, Home Trust has been extremely slow to respond to the barrage of new applications. We think you’re better off with the Rogers card, and encourage you to apply there instead. You can read more about the Rogers card via our complete Rogers Platinum Mastercard review.

Best of luck!

GreedyRates Staff

AmazonGoneMike says:

Hey, wait a minute, Rogers USED to be 1.75% on all purchases and 4% on foreign. It’s now 1.25% and 3%. Also, the Fido card USED to be 1.5% on all purchases and 4% on foreign. It’s now 1.25% and 3% as well. Both are now no fee cards.

Conlee Haustein says:

I just went on Rogers Bank website to look up the details on their mastercard and found out that they DO charge a annual fee. Greedyrates, please correct your information.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Conlee! Thanks for the comment. The Rogers Platinum Mastercard did charge an annual fee of $29, but customers could avoid paying it by setting up their recurring bills as automatic payments. A new development is that Rogers is now removing the annual fee completely, without any conditions. Thanks again.

GreedyRates Staff

Rob says:

Just a caveat for HomeTrust. There is a 4-6+ week process to get a card. They have been swamped since Chase has withdrawn from the Canadian market and don’t have the resources to keep up with demand. I’ve been waiting for over 4 weeks now and would like to book excursions at a local merchant in Athens but can’t….unless I want to pay the conversion fees!!

Mightyreds says:

Yep this is true! I also submitted around 3-4 weeks ago hoping to get it in time to replace my Marriot. Heading to Europe today and did not arrive in time. At least i will get my last use of the Marriot Chase card for part of the trip anyway. Get it EARLY!!!

John Gaites says:

Don’t these “no foreign transaction fee cards” simply make their money on your purchase transaction by choosing a wider currency conversion spread. They make – you pay more – money by giving you a bad (aggressive) conversion rate. Banks aren’t in the business of giving stuff away for free. Skeptical.

GreedyRates says:

Hey John, thanks for your question and for your healthy skepticism! All credit cards typically use the foreign currency conversion rate dictated by the issuer in question, such as Visa or Mastercard. For the Home Trust Preferred Visa in particular, the card uses Visa’s regular currency conversion rate, which you can find in the fine print, and they don’t charge foreign transaction fees at all.

The Rogers Platinum Mastercard *does* charge a foreign transaction fee, but it offsets it (and then some) by giving extra cash back for purchases made in a foreign currency. The Rogers card uses the standard currency conversion rate set by Mastercard, and doesn’t charge more or less of a conversion rate than any other Mastercard.

You can learn more about those cards by reading our full Home Trust Preferred Visa review and our full Rogers Platinum Mastercard review.

Thanks for reading!

GreedyRates Staff

Keith Richmond says:

Teh FIDO mastercards should also be on this list. Same foreign currency benefit as Rogers.

Brian J says:

If you get the Rogers card, and set it up to pay your Rogers bill, you do get the 1.75% cashback for those payments, correct? Or do you just get the fee waived?

GreedyRates says:

Hey Brian, thanks for the great question. In the fine print on Rogers’ page, it’s written that the annual fee exemption cannot be combined with other Rogers promotions, which likely includes the 1.75% cash back for domestic spending. You’ll just get the annual fee eliminated from your bill, with no extra cash back. On all other domestic purchases you will earn this bonus, however, which is the important part. The cash back you’d earn on a $29 annual fee is negligible, and shouldn’t enter your consideration of whether to get the card or not. Best of luck.

GreedyRates Staff

Brian J says:

Sorry to be picky, but just to confirm: for the 60ish dollars a month I pay Rogers for my cell phone, I will get 1.75% cashback if paid through the Rogers mastercard. With the the possible minor exception of $29 per year of that amount. Otherwise I should keep pumping my rogers bill through a different card to get points.

Steve s says:

The home trust caps your transactions at 10/day, which is simply nonsensical and horrible. I have this car as a replacement for amazon card and it is not even close to comparable. NO downloading all individual transactions to an accounting software and no changing your PIN. Unfortunately, it is the only decent option to replace the amazon card.

Roger Horner says:

Why is the Brim MasterCard not included in your list of Canadian 0% Foreign Transaction Fee cards?

Shauna says:

Interesting I have been sleuthing as we were Marriott Visa holders. Received an offer to switch to SPG for 25, 000 points, which did not really seem that lucrative and it does nothing for us in terms of FOREX. Thanks for posting .

Braeden says:

Hi there, I was just on the Rogers Bank website and I saw they have a Fido MasterCard. You still get 4% cashback on foreign purchases but there is no annual fee even after the first year. Unlike the rogers platinum which you get charged $29 after the first year. So the Fido Mastercard looks like the the better pick. What do you think?

GreedyRates says:

Hey Braeden, thanks for the interesting comment! For what it’s worth, we agree with you, and believe that for many people the benefits of the Fido Mastercard outweigh those of its close cousin, the Rogers Platinum.

One thing to keep in mind, however, is that domestic spending only earns cash back at 1.50%, whereas the Rogers card pulls 1.75%. This means you can calculate which is more useful to you based on your annual domestic spending. According to our calculations, you’ll need to spend at least $12,000 per year with the card, for that extra 0.25% to eclipse the free annual fee. Also remember that you can get rid of the Rogers annual fee, you just have to register your other monthly services bills from Rogers as recurring payments. Good luck and thanks for sharing!

GreedyRates Staff

RobS says:

Unfortunately Rogers Bank dropped the 4% cash back to 3% from May 2018…..

Anita says:

For the Hometrust preferred Visa how many authorized users are you allowed? I read somewhere that it allows up to 4 authorized users but can’t seem to find where I read this. When you apply online it only allows you to add one but can you call and add more later? The chase Amazon card allowed unlimited users.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Anita, thanks for coming to GreedyRates. We’ve searched high and low, but can’t find any evidence that Home Trust places a limit on how many authorized users one can have. While there might be only one spot to list a second authorized user during the initial application, Home Trust makes it easy to add more authorized users via a form on their website.

While we can’t exactly say that the Chase Amazon card you mentioned compares to the Home Trust card, except for the foreign transaction savings they they share, we can confidently say that in terms of authorized users there is no difference.

GreedyRates Staff

Eric Olson says:

Dear Greedy Rates, it seems that the Rogers cash back is not actual cash but what Rogers calls “cash back rewards” which can only be spent to buy Rogers owned services and products.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Eric! Thanks for the comment. We’re not aware of any cash back cards that actually send cash, or a cheque in the mail. Instead, the ability to use your accrued cash back against your monthly statement is as good as cash, or better. You can buy anything with a cash back card and then use the rewards to pay it off later for free, which even cash can’t do. To our knowledge this is how all cash back card issuers operate, universally. We’re sorry you were disappointed, but consider what you would have used your cash for: groceries, hobbies, entertainment? Charge these to your card instead, and pay them off with your points. It’s much easier! Have a great day.

GreedyRates Staff

Gabe Lawrence says:

Mbna smart cash visa will actually send a cheque, but I considered it a plus when they let me put it towards a statement credit.

Amazon Gone Mike says:

As long as you can apply points against your statement or Rogers services it really is the same thing as a cheque. It’s only annoying if you have to use up points against something that you wouldn’t normally purchase otherwise.

Chris says:

I am wondering if I am missing something, and hoping someone can help. I have a ScotiaBank Infinite Momentum VISA, with a first-$25000 spend 5% cash back on all purchases. If the foreign exchange is 2.5%, am I still effectively earning 2.5% cashback (5% purchases – 2.5% fx), or is there some finer point to the math that I am not factoring in?

GreedyRates says:

Hey Chris, thanks for reading GreedyRates! We can definitely clear this matter up for you. You see, the 2.50% foreign transaction fee is only applied to purchases made outside of Canada, with a currency other than CAD. If you currently live abroad or make your purchases exclusively from the US, for example, then your math is correct. The net effect on your statement would be to halve each cash back benefit granted as a result of your expense under the promotion. If you’re planning on using the card for a large single purchase, to get the higher cash back rate in bulk, then if it’s in a foreign currency you’re only netting a total of 2.50%. We hope that helps your considerations a bit. Thanks!

GreedyRates Staff

RobS says:

It’s not 5% on ALL purchases. It’s 5% on the first $3000 in the first 3 months of owning the card. Thereafter, it’s 4% on gas and groceries, 2% at drug stores and recurring bill payments, and only 1% on the rest…. So for online shopping for instance, it’s a measly 1% cash back with 2.5% charged on foreign exchange purchases……

Carl says:

Regarding Rogers Platinum Master Card, I believe the rebate can only be used for Rogers services such as Cable TV, Cell Phone, etc.
Please confirm this.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Carl, thanks for your question. There is a lot of confusion lately about the true flexibility of Rogers’ cash back program, but we’re confident that cardholders’ monthly Platinum Mastercard bills are still covered by the admittedly broad label, “Rogers monthly bills” in the card’s fine print. If you’d like to be certain we suggest checking with Rogers by calling and talking with a customer service representative or manager.

GreedyRates Staff

Amazon Gone Mike says:

If I had any Rogers bill payment I would definitely get their card. The fee is waived if you pay for a Rogers service with the card. This seems reasonable. It doesn’t really matter then if it’s cash back or a reduction in the Rogers service fee as it’s still “money saved”. Apparently there is fine print that does allow a once a year statement credit for non-Rogers users.
For non-Rogers customers, I would go for the Fido card as it’s 1.5% as opposed to the 1.75% for the Rogers card but you get the same 4% on foreign currency purchases which still nets 1.5% after the 2.5% forex fee.

Robin says:

I’m incredibly annoyed/angry about my Amazon.ca card being terminated. So long, Amazon.ca shopping benefits and, especially: no foreign transaction fee. (Damned Chase!)

“Tax me/Gouge me: I’m Canadian.”

GreedyRates says:

Hey Robin, thanks for your comment. We’re also pretty frustrated with Chase, as their Amazon and Marriott cards were some of the most popular cards in Canada. Now that they’re being discontinued, it’s tough to get the same kind of package benefits, but still possible to find shelter from foreign transaction fees. The Rogers Platinum Mastercard and the Home Trust Preferred Visa each combat these fees in their own way–the Rogers by awarding cash back in an amount greater than the 2.50% fee (4.00% cash back, then 1.75% domestically), and the Home Trust by simply negating them. You can learn more by reading either our Rogers Platinum Mastercard review or our Home Trust Preferred Card review. Or you can just apply directly for the Rogers card here or the Home Trust card here.

As far as shopping rewards, we think you’d appreciate the Amex Cobalt card, which is very flexible for those with a big entertainment budget. Hotel rewards with equivalent value can be found in the Starwood Preferred Guest card, which is another of our most popular. Best of luck.

You can also check out our article with a comprehensive list of credit card alternatives for those Canadians that had the Amazon or Marriott cards.

GreedyRates Staff

Chris B. says:

In 2015 for $1.7B The Bank of Nova Scotia (Scotia Bank) acquired J.P. Morgan Chase’s Canadian Credit Card portfolio in the same way Citibank sold its Canadian Credit Card division to CIBC couple of years back (I used to have their Citi MC credit card and loved it a lot, it was automatically replace with CIBC VISA CC).
Therefore for those who blame Chase for discontinuing their no-FX Visa Amazon CCs, take it to Scotia Bank, an iconic CANADIAN financial institution, for not replacing this particular no-FX CC with a new no-FX Scotia Bank CC.
Also why American financial institutions are not too much in love with Canada!
Chase offers no-FX Visa Amazon CC to its American customers.
https://creditcards.chase.com/cash-back-credit-cards/amazon-rewards?list=1,2,4&CELL=TKV&IP3H=FH24R8&S81H=FH24R8&C4F1=Y71UH0
I’m a Canadian Citizen driving every year throughout USA (for the past 20+ years), have used no-FX Chase Visa Amazon CC and simply loved it, unfortunately early Jan 2018 have received the formal letter with March 15, 2018 as last day for this particular credit card, immediately have applied for Home Trust Visa Preferred CC with no-FX fee and received it in mail maybe a week ago and will use it anytime down in the States for pretty much anything and especially gas.
Happy Travelling everybody!

Sonia says:

I’m reading the terms for HomeTrust. Does below mean that if I don’t use the card for a year, even if I have $0 balance, I’ll be charged for keeping the card??

Account Maintenance: for an inactive Credit Card Account with a credit balance that has not changed for 360 consecutive days, a fee of the lesser of $10.00 or the full credit balance will be charged on that date.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Sonia, thanks for your question. Your interpretation of the rules are correct. Many cards add this provision into the fine print, so it’s not all that uncommon. For Home Trust, the maximum of $10 you’ll pay is worth the money the card can save when you take it abroad, but it’s easily countered simply by using it once to buy a pack of gum or something similarly insignificant. It might not feel great to be pigeonholed into buying something you don’t want, even if it costs $0.50, but it’s a necessary evil if you want to save big bucks on your next vacation overseas.

GreedyRates Staff

Oscar says:

Hi, please note that the above answer is incorrect. You will only pay a fee if you’ve overpaid your acct. IE: Your credit limit is $2000, but you’ve paid $2010 against it. That means there’s a $10 over payment or credit. Therefore, if you don’t use it for 360 days, they will debit that $10.

Account Maintenance: for an inactive Credit Card Account with a credit balance that has not changed for 360 consecutive days, a fee of the lesser of $10.00 or the full credit balance will be charged on that date.

mark sigel says:

home trust is very good but it is not available for persons living in quebec

Michael says:

Hi Mark, thanks for leaving your comment! Unfortunately, you and the other readers who have made this observation are all correct. The Home Trust card is not available to Quebec residents, though a comparable card is the Rogers Platinum Mastercard. Most want the Home Trust card in order to avoid foreign transaction fees, which the Rogers card addresses in its own way. Each 2.50% foreign transaction fee charged by the Rogers is made up for, and then some, with 4.00%, cash back on purchases made in a foreign currency, netting you 1.50% on top. Check it out and let us know what you think!

Lynx says:

The Amazon credit card expiring puts me in a very unfortunate situation. I’m not admissible for Home Trust (I live in Quebec) and Rogers requires me to apply in person. Problem is, I’m out of the country for a few months, and I need a new card ASAP. Is there any other cards available in Quebec that doesn’t charge foreign fees? This is very important for me.
P.S. : Thank you for your website, your work is fairly impressive!

GreedyRates says:

Hi Lynx, we appreciate that you’ve come to us in such a tight spot. We’ll try to help, but it seems like you’re short on time and options. The only cards that combat foreign transaction fees that we recommend are the Home Trust Visa and the Rogers Platinum Mastercard, so it looks like because of your residence in Quebec that the Rogers card is your only alternative. Good luck!

GreedyRates Staff

JB says:

Unfortunately, this article is out of date.
All the Chase cards (Rogers, Amazon and Marriott) are shut down or will shut down in the next 2 months.
The new Rogers credit card (now through Rogers Bank) does not offer to waive FX fees any more.
Within a month or so, we’re really hoping Marriott will come out with a new partnership up here in Canada that may knock off our travellers’ socks.

Michael says:

Hi JB,

We’re aware that Chase Canada is quietly phasing out its operations in the coming year – we’ve even published an article about it – so it doesn’t surprise us that you received a warning from Chase. However, for avoiding foreign transaction fees the Rogers Platinum Mastercard and the Home Trust Preferred Visa are still excellent choices. The latter card exempts cardholders from these fees entirely, and as we’ve published before, though the Rogers card does not waive the fee per se, it does circumvent it in its own way. The Rogers card credits your account 4.00% cash back for each purchase you make in a foreign currency, covering the 2.50% foreign transaction fee by an additional 1.50%. This is why many prefer it to cards that simply do away with the fees instead.

In other news, we’re also waiting with bated breath for Marriott’s next credit card deal, but we haven’t heard anything about it yet. Be certain that you’ll find out about it here first!

GreedyRates Staff

jazzie says:

It is worth applying for the Rogers Platinum Mastercard knowing that I would have to pay the annual fee of $29 after the first year? I have zero Rogers, Fido, chatr services. I’m thinking this may only be good for me if I use it for a year then cancel.

Michael says:

Hey Jazzie! We’ve had a lot of very happy readers sign up for the Rogers Platinum Mastercard and come back saying how much they loved it, so you can’t go wrong. To address your question about the $29 annual fee, this is one of the lowest among similar cards, and easily justified given the savings one can obtain via the cash back bonuses. Even if you never travel abroad, 1.75% cash back means you only have to spend about $1,660 dollars in a year to cover it. This is a miniscule amount for most people, so do a quick study of your last year’s expenses and see how much cash you would have made with the Rogers card. Also keep in mind for your calculations that transactions in a foreign currency net 1.50%. You can learn more by reading our full Rogers Platinum Mastercard review or you can apply for the card directly here.

GreedyRates Staff

James says:

We signed up for the Rogers Platinum Mastercard as my wife and I live close to the US border and therefore shop in USD a fair bit. But after using my new card a couple of times I got this email from Rogers;

“Dear Customer,
Now that you’ve made your first purchase with your RogersTM Platinum Mastercard® you’ve earned $29.34 cash back rewards. Well done! Now you’ll earn 1.75% cash back rewards on every purchase made in Canadian dollars and 4% in cash back rewards on every purchase made in a foreign currency with no caps or limitations.
Once you’ve earned just $20 in cash back rewards you can redeem towards anything Rogers including: Rogers, FidoTM and chatr monthly bills, purchases in Rogers and Fido branded stores,purchases at THE SHOPPING CHANNELTM; subscriptions to TextureTM; Toronto Blue JaysTM tickets, merchandise at Jays ShopTM online or in store, and at Rogers CentreTM concessions.”

So it looks like you have to spend your cashback “rewards” on Rogers affiliated merchandise. I thought we’d be getting cashback in the form of an annual credit to spend as we wish, like our other CIBC Platinum VISA. As a result, I think we’ll cancel this card and go with the Home Trust VISA – hopefully they give REAL cashback.

GreedyRates says:

Hi James, thanks for your request for clarification, we can definitely help you. There’s often confusion between cash back and real cash, but they’re essentially the same thing. Where it says, “…you can redeem towards anything Rogers including: Rogers, FidoTM and chatr monthly bills…” this means your monthly credit card bill. You can use your credit card to buy anything that cash might otherwise get you, giving it the same fungibility and power as paper currency. This is how cash back works universally, and we believe you’ll be hard-pressed to find a card that allows you to redeem cash back as a cash advance. In fact, this is explicitly stated in the Home Trust Visa‘s fine print.

GreedyRates Staff

Fred says:

The Home Trust card looked good until I realized that it’s available for Quebecers.

But they still want to sell us mortages though!

A mari usque ad mare…yeah, right!

Michael says:

Hi Fred, thanks for coming to GreedyRates. We can confirm for you that the Home Trust card isn’t available for residents of Quebec, unfortunately. However, if you’re excited at the prospect of saving on foreign transaction fees, there’s another offer out there that *is* available to Quebecers. The Rogers Platinum MasterCard doesn’t exempt you from the fee per se–instead, it rewards you 4.00% cash back for all purchases made with foreign currency. This means you’ll actually earn 1.50% when purchasing abroad, and then 1.75% on your domestic expenses. You can learn more by reading our full Rogers Platinum Mastercard review or by directly applying for the card here.

GreedyRates Staff

Karen says:

I’m not happy about the Amazon Chase card closing.

The Rogers no fee is for the first year. Then it’s 29.00.

Frank says:

It looks like the Marriot Rewards Visa is closing as well. From the Chase Canada Online Login webpage:

Chase will be closing the Marriott Rewards® Visa® Card program as of March 15, 2018.

You will be receiving a letter with additional information. If you have any questions about your credit card account closure please call 1-866-705-6755. You will still be able to access and redeem any points earned through your Marriott Rewards Program account.

Michael says:

You can check out our article on the situation here:
https://www.greedyrates.ca/blog/chase-sounds-final-death-knell-amazon-marriott-cards/

GreedyRates Staff

Mike says:

I just got a letter today from Chase Bank. The Amazon Visa accounts will be closed on Marck 15th, 2018.
Last month I applied for the Home Trust Visa and will be using that for online and travel.
Thanks to Greedyrates and commenters for all the great information.

Mike R says:

Also appears that the Chase Marriot Visa card is ending on that same date. Too bad as it was a good card. Need to look for another card with no foreign transactions fees.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Mike, thanks for your comment. We’ve had a lot of readers with the Marriott and Amazon cards receive letters from Chase in the last month or so announcing their intent to close up shop, and are just as disappointed as yourself. While Amazon bonuses are surely a great retail perk, and Marriott had solid hotel deals, the best part of either of the cards was an exemption from foreign transaction fees.

Unfortunately, there aren’t any cards that can combine the benefits of the cards being discontinued, but there are two we have in mind that will save you from paying these pesky fees. The first is the Rogers Platinum Mastercard, which does incur 2.50% fees on foreign transactions, but then turns around and credits your account a whopping 4.00% cash back on foreign purchases to cover it (and then some). It’ll also grant you 1.75% cash back on CAD purchases. You can learn more about the card by reading our Rogers Platinum Mastercard review, or you can apply for it directly via this link.

The other is the Home Trust Preferred Visa, a handy companion that provides a reasonable 1.00% cash back and does away with foreign fees entirely. You can learn more via our Home Trust Preferred Visa review, or you can apply for the card here.

If you’re really missing the Marriott Card, the Starwood Preferred Guest Amex comes very highly recommended, and if you use it in conjunction with one of the cards listed above, you’ve essentially obtained the perks that the Marriott card brought to the table, and a little more. You can learn more by reading our Starwood Preferred Guest Card review, or you can apply for the card here. Good luck!

Karen says:

I’ve decided to apply to them also. How long did you have to wait for approval? If only they had left the Amazon/Chase alone until the end of March. I had it all set for our return from the US mid March.

Mike says:

Karen:
I had to wait about 3 weeks. Two cons are that you can’t change the PIN unless you change the card and I don’t think the tap works.
Have you looked into the FIDO card on the Rogers site. It’s a no fee with 1.5% cashback and 4% on US transactions which essentially covers the 2.5% FT fee and still returns 1.5%.

Stephanie says:

Hi Mike and Karen,

I also applied for the Home Trust Visa as I am currently using the Amazon Chase Visa for travel. I read on another blog that you need to be a homeowner and not a renter to get accepted. Mike and Karen do you own or rent? I’m also applying for the Rogers card.

My Dad has the Marriott Chase Visa, also with 0% forex and his letter from Marriott said they are going to figure something out so maybe they will join another bank and offer the same benefits.

Michael says:

Hi Stephanie, thanks for coming to GreedyRates to clear up your questions about the Home Trust card. Either this card or the Rogers Mastercard will serve you very well. To address your question about the Home Trust card being restricted to homeowners exclusively, we couldn’t find any information confirming this. We think you may have accidentally read about the Home Trust Equityline card on the blog you mention, which has some special benefits for homeowners only.

You say that you and your dad both have Chase cards, so be sure to have new ones in hand before much longer. If Chase is to be believed, they will discontinue them and stop the grandfathered cards from working in 2018 as well. For your needs, the Rogers card is great but something tells us your dad would want some extra rewards. Point him towards the Starwood Preferred Guest card, as it’s similar to the Marriott card he’s replacing. To avoid fees while travelling, he can either get his own Home Trust or Rogers card or be an authorized user on your account. Good luck to you both!

Amy H says:

I just got the same letter today. This saddens me, as I earn the Amazon points for ordering online. I also enjoy saving the 2.5% for US purchases, which we do often, and saved us a significant amount when we had to pay for our 8 day Disney Trip. I have just applied for the Home Trust Visa and am hoping we can get a similar level of credit, so we can pay for future trips and save the 2.5%.

Claude says:

Home Trust Visa card is not available for Quebec resident !

Michael says:

Hi Claude. Thanks for your comment – you’re correct! Quebec residents will have to find another solution to fight those pesky foreign transaction fees, but thankfully the Rogers Platinum Mastercard is available for this purpose. Just note that instead of simply cancelling these fees outright, Rogers gives you 4.00% cash back for each foreign purchase you make, netting you 1.50% cash back after factoring out the foreign transaction fee. Enjoy!

Gary says:

How long to get a response from them

SD says:

Looks like the Rogers Master Card no longer offers 0% foreign transaction fees. It is now 2.5% on all foreign purchases. Wondering now, based on this information, what would be the best credit card for use overseas for foreign transactions. Thanks!

GreedyRates says:

Hi SD, thanks for coming to GreedyRates. Rogers changed their fee schema all the way back in October of 2016, and part of these changes were the elimination of the 0.00% foreign transaction fee. However, it remains one of only two Canadian cards we know of that avoid these fees, even though technically they’re still being paid by Rogers cardholders. Instead of exempting you from these fees, Rogers will add 4.00% of the total amount of your purchase (made in foreign currency) over the 2.50% that they take for the foreign trans. fee, leaving you with a 1.50% cash back surplus when all is said and done. You can learn more about the card by reading our Rogers Platinum Mastercard review, or you can apply for the card directly via this link.

The other option is the Home Trust Preferred Visa, which doesn’t charge a foreign trans. fee at all. You can learn more about its other features by reading our full Home Trust Preferred Visa review, or you can apply for the card here.

GreedyRates Staff

Jas says:

Hi GreedyRates,

I have a stupid question. I have a Tangerine Mastercard that will charge me 2.5% FT fee while I am in the US for four days starting this weekend. I decided to take out $500 us dollars just in case, and it seems like I will have to pay $686.00 Cdn for the US dollars. Does it make more sense to take out less US money and just use my Mastercard? I just don’t know which way is better…or “cheaper” at this point. I know neither are a good option. I wish I had known about this Rogers credit card sooner. 🙁 Thanks for any advice you can provide. 🙂
p.s. Great article!!

GreedyRates says:

Hey Jas, thanks for your question.

We’re excited that you’re taking a trip this weekend – have fun! In the meantime, there’s not much you can do as far as obtaining shelter from the 2.5% foreign transaction fees. Today’s spot exchange rate for USD to CAD would have you paying only CAD$632 for USD$500, so for the cash withdrawal your bank is adding an extra CAD$50 on top.

Spending USD$500 with a 2.5% foreign exchange fee, and even with extra fees that you might incur for using a foreign ATM (an unfortunate reality) you’ll likely be charged much less than CAD$50. We say continue to use your Mastercard abroad.

Have a good time!

GreedyRates Staff

Circle says:

Just find out today that HSBC Premier World Elite Mastercard has no foreign currency conversion charge.

Circle says:

it’s stated on hsbc.ca website.

MartinEden says:

Yeah, but there is a little problem here:

HSBC Premier eligibility requires you to have an active Premier chequing account and maintain a $100,000 balance in combined personal deposits and investments with HSBC Bank Canada and its subsidiaries. Please refer to the Personal Service Charges / Statement of Disclosure for fees which may apply.

Rhonda says:

Hi Greedy Rates,

So if im going oversees for 2 weeks, it looks like Rogers Platinum is the best way to go, is that correct?

GreedyRates says:

Hey Rhonda, thanks for coming to Greedyrates. If you’re going overseas, the Rogers Platinum Mastercard is one of the best to take with you. No matter which currency you use on your trip, as long as it’s not CAD, you’ll get the 4% cash back on every purchase. This helps to defray travel costs significantly, and represents one of the best travel benefits around. We’d surely recommend it!

GreedyRates Staff

Diana says:

Hey guys,

It should be noted, there is an Amazon credit card that isn’t mentioned anywhere on this website.
It offers Cash back AND no foreign transaction fees.

I’d like to see that card in comparison to all the other ones on this site.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Diana, thanks for your observation! We understand your frustration, the Chase Amazon card was a great option while it lasted, but unfortunately it’s not available to Canadians any longer. This is why we don’t have it listed on the site, but we did at one point. Until the company begins accepting new applications, it will have to stay this way. Other than that, the Rogers Platinum and Home Trust Preferred cards are the only cards we can recommend that exempt you from foreign transaction fees. None have benefits similar to the Amazon card, however, they are still great cards. Keep checking back in the meantime and ask us if you need help elsewhere. Thanks!

GreedyRates Staff

Val Marie says:

I just got a notice that my Amazon Visa is no longer supported by Chase as of March 2018… and I can no longer use it after March; so I am looking for a new credit card for US purchases especially on line.

Michael says:

Hey Val, thanks for tuning in to GreedyRates. We’ve heard from many of our readers recently about Chase dropping support for its previously issued cards, so your comment isn’t surprising. We’ve published an article about the cancellation. Given that one of the most lauded benefits of the Amazon card was its exemption from foreign transaction fees, a good card to replace it with usually tends to be either the Rogers Platinum Mastercard or the Home Trust Preferred card. The former doesn’t exempt you from these fees but simply credits you 4% cash back for purchases you make in a foreign currency, which more than covers the 2.5% foreign transaction fee. The latter reduces the fees to 0.00%. For more information you can read our full Rogers Platinum Mastercard review or apply directly for the card here. Or if you’re more interested in the Home Trust card you can read our full Home Trust Preferred Card review or apply directly for that card here.

GreedyRates Staff

Teegee says:

Just got a letter from Chase today, looks like they’re closing down all of the Amazon.ca Visa accounts on March 15 of this year. So it looks like it will be gone for good.

Michael says:

You can check out our article on the situation here:
https://www.greedyrates.ca/blog/chase-sounds-final-death-knell-amazon-marriott-cards/

GreedyRates Staff

RANDI says:

I JUST READ ROGERS MASTERCARD AGREEMENT AND IT SAYS: All transactions made in a foreign currency are converted to Canadian dollars at the rate established by Mastercard International in effect on the date that we post the transaction to your Account (which may not be the same date as the date of the transaction) plus an amount equal to 2.5% of the transaction amount after it has been converted to Canadian dollars.

SO THEY CHARGE YOU THE SAME 2.5% THAT ALL CARDS CHARGE YOU BUT THEY GIVE YOU BACK 1.5% IN CASH CREDITS? I’M READING THIS CORRECTLY? THEY ARE CHARGING YOU A CURRENCY FEE LIKE THE OTHER CREDIT CARDS….I BELIEVE.

GreedyRates says:

Hello Randi!

Thanks for you question on how the foreign currency transaction fee works. The Rogers Mastercard has a unique method for making foreign purchases cheaper, and it operates exactly as you’ve already guessed. The card does charge you 2.5% for each purchase made in a foreign currency, but then adds 4% back on top (as cash). This effectively nulls the charge, plus 1.5% – giving cardholders an incentive to buy from abroad. It’s better than exempting customers from the 2.5%! Many Canadians love it for buying in the US and in Europe, and we hope you will too.

We hope that helps,

GreedyRates Staff

Debbie says:

I also just read there is a $29 annual fee…however the table above says “0”???

GreedyRates says:

Hey Debbie, thanks for your observation. For the Rogers Platinum MasterCard, the annual fee is indeed $29 with a unique exception. This amount is rebated by Rogers the first year and for every year thereafter the same deal applies if one has set up automatic pre-authorized payments. We feel justified in calling it $0 because so many of our customers avoid the annual fee for the entirety of their cardownership at Rogers, but technically you’re still correct. Thank you for the input!

GreedyRates Staff

Fred says:

Can you confirm / comment on this?

Home Trust preferred Visa
No foreign transaction fees
No annual fee
1% cash back with no limits

GreedyRates says:

Hi Fred, thanks for coming to us for confirmation.

Unfortunately, the Home Trust Preferred VISA does not include an exemption from foreign transaction fees. It does, however, have the other perks and benefits you’ve described.

If you’re looking for a card without the foreign transaction fees or an annual fee, check out the Rogers Mastercard. In most ways, it vastly improves upon the Home Trust card but may be more difficult to get approval for. If you need further guidance, please return with more comments here. We’ll be waiting!

GeedyRates Staff

Christine says:

When I looked at Home Trust Preferred Visa’s Cost of Borrowing disclosure it states a foreign currency conversion cost of 0%. “Purchases or Cash Advances in a foreign currency will be converted into Canadian dollars at the exchange rate set by Visa International in effect on the day the transaction is posted to the Account, plus a 0% currency conversion charge.”

Is this incorrect then?

Thank you for any further clarification.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Christine. Good eyes – the fine print does indeed say that it costs 0% to make purchases or cash advances in a foreign currency (though Visa will use the spot rate for exchange). You were definitely right on this one! Here are the exact words:

Purchases or Cash Advances in a foreign currency will be converted into Canadian dollars at the exchange rate set by Visa International in effect on the day the transaction is posted to the Account, plus a 0% currency conversion charge.

We hope that helps,

GreedyRates Staff

J Smith says:

Hi, if you also kindly share what Christine and Ivan had found about Home Trust disclosure statement on “0% Foreign Currency Conversion”, then aside from your “past” review picking Home Trust Secured Visa No Annual Fee for those with “Bad Credit”, would any of you (still) find a caveat(s) in their disclosure, hold reservation or still have any reason(s) to pass on this Home Trust Preferred, Equityline or any of their credit cards for that matter (e.g., due to considering this year’s news of this embattled company’s solvency issue caused by bank run from recent controversial disclosure filing allegation by the OSC and short sellers, though that OSC dispute reportedly resolved and might “currently” be “propped up” by Berkshire Hathaway’s legendary Warren Buffet investments). In other words, will you be updating your helpful consumer awareness articles at some point in the future (when you are less busy to focus on it) or perhaps it is still accurate to accept “The bad news is, only two credit card issuers in Canada subsidize the fee, Chase Canada & Rogers Mastercard” pending your further review of HT itself and its practices. Thanks.

GreedyRates says:

Hi J,

Thanks for your thorough dissection of the issue at hand. We always appreciate smart cardholders who can tell us something new!

This matter is another story, however, as we’re aware of the discrepancies and are updating to the Home Trust Preferred card. This will soon reflect on the site. In the meantime, we remain available to those who need quick assistance with their credit card inquiries, and are always working to keep ahead of this quickly-changing industry. Thanks again!

GreedyRates Staff

Jayson says:

According to Home Trust preferred visa disclosure statement there are no foreign conversion fee. The benefit isn’t advertised but is listed. What am I missing?

GreedyRates says:

Hey Jayson, thanks for stopping by GreedyRates.

Though it may not be advertised in all places, Home Trust cardholders will pay 0% in transaction fees when making purchases in a foreign currency. The spot exchange rate still applies, but the fine print doesn’t lie: no extra fees here. You’re not missing anything, but you may have been confused by our lack of coverage. We will integrate it into our articles to avoid misunderstandings in the future. Enjoy your 0% transaction fees!

GreedyRates Staff

Ivan says:

Actually, it has 0% foreign exchange fee. Oddly enough, this awesome feature IS NOT stated on their website!

However, you can find it in cardholder agreement.

Marina says:

I just did a application for the home trust preferred visa and it states 0% for foreign currency fees in the terms of the credit card which you can view before making a application. Card looks great to me.

J Smith says:

Hi Fred, have confirmed from analysis with the visa exchange rate calculator that the transactions are indeed free of foreign transaction fees as per their “0% Foreign Currency Conversion written” on Home Trust Preferred Visa application Disclosure Statement, which include currency exchange fee-free on cash advances and returns that Rogers always charges their 2.5% fee. In fact, Home Trust has had the zero foreign transaction fee on their Home Trust Equityline Visa for their mortgage customers way before this Preferred one (just ask their VP Miki Asano) so as an fyi summary – this Home Trust Preferred Visa may be suitable for those who “qualify” for a straight 1% without limit cash back credit card without annual fee plus as per their brochures with free basic roadside assistance (up to 4 calls), primary car rental CDW insurance and purchase security insurance among other benefits that are completely missing from both Amazon and Rogers (though the latter two have 2% for Amazon.ca purchases and up to 1.75% cash back respectively). Also, unlike Amazon credit card online tool that is in flux, transactions show up being processed virtually instantaneously as among other features of the Home Trust’s ezcardinfo online tool. This alternative lender, however, has to work on getting some phone app/pay wave feature and currently, if you are looking for that, need more cash back payout options other than annually and/or want huge cash back >1% then do look elsewhere. Hope that helps.

Michelle says:

Why is TD claiming that their TD U.S. Dollar Visa* Card saves you the foreign currency exchange fee on their website? Isn’t that deception? I’m so frustrated. I have almost no income and Im trying to build credit. Almost all my purchases online are from the US and Europe because Canadian retailers more often then not refuse to stock quality plus size clothing. I have a learning disability, one of the deficits math related which makes anything but very basic computation confusing. Looks like you need a lot of financial literacy to work around the financial institution credit gouging. I think because of my income the best I can do is stick with the only card my bank offers that has no annual fee. UGH

GreedyRates says:

Hi Michelle!

Thanks for your questions, and don’t worry! We will help you to understand why TD says this and what it means for your purchases abroad. The TD U.S. Dollar VISA card is great for Canadians like yourself who buy online from American retailers. When buying an item that is sold in the United States, no retailer wants to handle Canadian dollars, and so the issuing bank charges their customer (you) a 2.50% fee for converting to the retailer’s currency.

TD is correct when they say that a U.S. store will not charge you this transaction fee when purchasing from Canada, because the account and card are loaded with USD, not CAD. Therefore, your go-to store will see that you’re paying with USD and not assign any extra fees.

However, this means that if you’re buying from Europe that you will be charged this fee, because over there they use Euros, Pounds, and other foreign currencies. It’s also important to note that the TD U.S. Dollar card has an annual fee of $39, so you must be ordering in USD frequently to make it worth your while. Hope that helps! Feel free to get back to us for further clarification if necessary.

GreedyRates Staff

Harry says:

I believe in many countries charges are first converted to US$ and then reconverted to Canadian$. Is there double charge? In that case US$ card can save some cost. I am not sure about Europe.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Harry, thanks for your question. Some other readers have heard similar claims that in some foreign countries they convert twice (first to USD and then to CAD). This is yet unfounded and even if it is true, they would not likely charge you twice for the conversion. If you have a source, please post it in the comments! Either way, a USD card is a great companion to have while abroad and at home, as many online retailers ship products to Canada and charge in USD. Thanks for reading.

GreedyRates Staff

mlander says:

Hi, I’ve been checking these recommendations in July 2017.

At present, the Marriott offer appears to be the same, though I only read far enough to confirm it’s $120/yr after the first year.

The Rogers offer has changed however: That card is only “no-fee” if you pre-authorize payments for a Rogers,k Chatr, or Fido account on the credit card, otherwise there is an annual fee of $29.

Most of the details described for the Rogers Platinum Mastercard now apply to Rogers Bank’s other offering, the Fido Mastercard. The Fido card has no fee, but has a lower cash-back rate for domestic purchases: 1.5% vs 1.75%. There are several downsides coming from a Scotiabank card, but if you want to avoid the 2.5% foreign exchange fee (if only by putting it against your cashback) then it seems there’s no other no-fee option.

Ivan says:

What Scotiabank card are you talking about?

mlander says:

The Scotiabank card I was referring is the former Sears Mastercard (through Chase), now converted to the Scotiabank Momentum Mastercard – which had no foreign exchange fee, no annual fee, and 1% cashback. It retained the same terms for a while but they added the usual 2.5% FX fee earlier this year, though if you were one of the lucky customers they “forgot” about, that doesn’t start until the end of August.

diane says:

I have the chase marriott and the fee after first year is offset by a free nite at a marriott hotel up to cat 5 which is usually at least $100.00. You have up to 6 months to use hotel credit. I have had it for 3 years and since we do a lot of travelling find it great

mlander says:

That’s good to know, thanks.

Miss M says:

I use my chase amazon.ca visa for shopping online (mostly at amazon) and it also has 0% foreign transaction fees. The Chase website is pretty ugly, though!

Ivan says:

You are lucky 🙂
“The new applications for the Amazon.ca credit card are no longer accepted as of April 3rd, 2017. Existing Amazon.ca customers will still be serviced and will be able to receive new cards.”

Karine says:

But this card is not available anymore :O(

Magnolia says:

Me too I use the Chase Amazon card for online shopping. I was lucky that I got it when I did.

Veronica says:

Hello! I think you should consider adding the Desjardins Visa U.S. card. The purchases are billed in USD so there is no conversion fees on U.S. dollar transactions. Annual fees 30 USD.

GreedyRates says:

Hey Veronia!

Thanks for your advice and for being a loyal reader of GreedyRates!

We always appreciate when people give us suggestions for our site, and in this case we are happy to agree with you. The Desjardins Visa U.S. card is indeed an impressive contender for the travel category, and accordingly it has a place among the finalists on our Best Travel Credit Cards page. We are still looking into its placement on other pages, and are considering some new additions as well.

As always, our review team is working hard to determine a final list. Thanks again for reading and sharing your comments with us! Have a great day.

GreedyRates Staff

catherine says:

I have used a CIBC US dollar Visa card for many years. I pay $US 35 annually. The reason I am still ahead by paying the bill in US cash is that I buy the cash when the exchange rate is good, at my bank where I have a preferred rate. (Every longterm customer should insist on this). I buy $1000 or more each time, which also helps the rate. If I didn’t have US cash on hand when my US bill arrived, I’d be subject to current exchange rate, and in that case it wouldn’t be much of an advantage.
I also use the card often for shopping, for instance on line at Amazon.com, either to save 50% on the same products on Amazon.ca or for products not available in Canada. If sellers will not send to Canada, I have used a US address depot to receive my purchases just over the border in New York State.
My main card is the TD Infinite Visa affiliated with Aeroplan. Will you be publishing an analysis of what Aeroplan devotees should be doing, ramping up to 2020?

GreedyRates says:

Hey Catherine!

We’re so sorry that we took a long time to respond to you, and we’re very grateful that you took the time to write to us. It sounds like you have it all figured out! While bank exchange rates vary, it is smart to withdraw cash in bulk for the month when the rate is at its lowest. This is a unique workaround, and we may even incorporate this advice into our newer articles (great job!). The CIBC card is also great for shopping, as you mentioned.

Concerning what to do with your TD Infinite Aeroplan Visa, we think that for the time being, you’re safe to continue using it, but you may want to research similar cards (on GreedyRates of course!) for when the official breakup of Aeroplan and Air Canada happens in 2020. For more information on this, check out our article here: https://www.greedyrates.ca/blog/how-air-canada-aeroplan-breakup-affects-aeroplan-members/

Thanks again for reading,

GreedyRates Staff

Ivan says:

Is this the only U.S. card that have no conversion fees on U.S. dollar transactions? What about RBC U.S. card or CIBC?

GreedyRates says:

Hi Ivan,

As Veronica mentioned, the Desjardins card is another relatively good card if you want to be exempt from foreign transactions (for US dollar purchases only). However, if you like, we also recommend exploring the Rogers Mastercard mentioned above, and the Marriott Rewards card in the chart at the bottom of the article. The latter card, while not mentioned much on this page, provides excellent hotel and flight rewards alongside an exemption from foreign transaction fees.

As for RBC and CIBC’s US cards, these are an alternative, but we warned that they require you to open a US dollar account, meaning that if you’d like to use it within Canada, you’ll pay a foreign transaction fee for buying in your local area. Be sure to read the fine print, and ensure that no fees are taken from transactions made in all countries (even your own).

We hope that helps,

GreedyRates Staff

Ian says:

Please update this article. I got a Rogers Bank Platinum Card based partly on this recommendation and discovered after using the card extensively during travel that the “4% Cash Back” is NOT CASH BACK. It is a store credit at the Rogers store! I called their customer service and they told me they considered the credit to be “cash” so they do not consider it to be false advertising.

GreedyRates says:

Hello Ian,

We are very sorry for this late reply, and even more so for the misunderstanding caused by the representative to whom you have spoken to. We got official confirmation from the Rogers bank that “The customer can apply their cash back against any Rogers [card] purchase either instore or online or more importantly, they can redeem against their Rogers bill. Or, they can contact us once per year to receive a statement credit for the value of the points.”

We hope this helps clearing things out.

GreedyRates Staff

Bob says:

I would consider calling it cash back as false advertising, since i am not a Rogers client.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Bob, thanks for replying. We always encourage a free discussion in our comments section. To address your concerns, Rogers’ official stance is that their customers can apply their cash back against any Rogers purchase, either in-store or online. More importantly, they can redeem against their Rogers bill. Once per year, you can receive a statement credit for the total value of your points. You are welcome to confirm this matter with Rogers representatives over the phone. If we were unclear, please let us know! Thanks very much.

GreedyRates Staff

Brenda says:

I’m a snowbird and I’ve been using the Scotia Momentum card (transferred over from Sears/Chase), which will start charging the currency conversion charge as of June 1st, so am looking for a replacement. From reading your article, it appears my only choices are Rogers/Fido and Marriott.

Unfortunately, unless I have missed something in reading their web pages, none of these are a true cash back card, like Scotia was, but rather a rewards card (like the old Sears/Chase card that had no conversion charge) and the points are only good for use at Rogers/Fido or Marriott. Is this right?

Amazon would have been good, as it was just a straight credit on the charge account, but as you pointed out, they aren’t taking new applications.

GreedyRates says:

Hey Brenda, thanks for asking us for clarification.

We understand that you want a true cash back card that does not charge foreign transaction fees on your travels, and are concerned that Scotia will soon be returning to the model of charging these fees. Technically, the Rogers Mastercard is a cash back card, but the method they use to counteract foreign fees is simply by rewarding 4% cash back on these purchases. This means that after the 2.5% fee, you’d earn 1.5% on things you buy abroad (or in foreign currencies).

Regarding Marriott, alongside straightforward exemption from foreign transaction fees, it accrues points only for the Marriott (and Ritz Cartlton, and Starwood Preferred Guest) rewards system. It doesn’t sound like you’re into the hotel rewards, so we recommend checking out the Roger’s Platinum Mastercard instead. Good luck!

GreedyRates Staff

Paul says:

Rogers isn’t a viable option because on top of the 2.5% foreign transaction surcharge, the 4% ‘cashback’ isn’t actually cashback as it can only be used as a credit on rogers products. The 2.5% foreign transaction surcharge on top of the rates set by visa and mc (which are already at 1-1.5% above the mid-market rate, so banks make money even with 0% foreign transaction surcharge). So foreign transaction surcharge is really close to 4% here

Getting a USD card at a Canadian institution isn’t a viable option either because a) annual fee b)no, or almost no rewards c) you still got to exchange from CAD to USD. If the banks exchange it for you, they’ll also charge you 3-4%, so you’re even worse off. You can use an fx broker to get it down close to 1%, but by the time you do that, and given the lack of rewards, this option isn’t viable.

Last option is getting a USD card at a US financial institution. The vast majority of US issuers will NOT grant you credit without a SSN and/or US address. I tried Chase, citi & capital one and a few others. But I know of at least 1 – RBC Bank (US). BMO Harris bank wasn’t sure if they could grant me credit or not, and I never heard back from them – they have a 3% fx fee on non-USD transactions anyways though. TD Bank seems like an even better option, but i’m waiting to hear back if they will accept me yet without a US address. The employee wasn’t sure. TD bank USA has the added benefit that a few of there credit cards have no foreign transaction fees on non-USD transactions, plus decent rewards to. I have gone with RBC Bank with the time being, but they do charge a 1.5% fee on non-USD transactions if I were to do any. So pretty good, but not quite as good as TD’s credit card. Getting a US credit card rather than a no fx fee CAD credit card has the added benefit that there’s no 1.5% charge on top of the mid market rate, although with a no fx fee CAD card, that charge still occurs. Plus you still get rewards with US credit cards from US institutions

Now for the fun part. Getting your US credit card paid. You can’t do it from a Canadian financial institution. You need to set up a US bank account with a US institution. The bank account does NOT need to be with the same institution that you have your US credit card with, although it does make it a little bit easier. Between TD/RBC/BMO Harris USA banks, TD actually seems the worst of the 3 because of monthly. BMO seems the best because of no fees, and RBC follows closely in 2nd IMO because they have some no-fee savings account options with limited transactions, and a low fee US chequing account for which the balance can be waived, with unlimited transactions.

Although you don’t need to have your US bank account with your US issuer, you should have a US dollar bank account with a Canadian financial institution. This is because you need to be able to make cross border payments and cibc/td/rbc are the only ones I know that will allow you to do this easily & for free. So make sure to take a look at the US dollar account options at canadian financial institutions as well.

Why are these banks not charging a boatload of money for transfers between the USA & Canada? Well they are actually. If you don’t have a US dollar savings account on both ends the banks take 3-4% on currency conversion – again a rip off. In order to avoid this you need to find a good fx broker. You can get the currency conversion down to as low as 0.5% from the mid-market rate – a far better deal than any bank will give you. You’ll likely need to send your fx broker an EFT in CAD funds, and they will then deposit to your US savings account @ a US financial institution via Direct Deposit. Then you can transfer it over. Most FX brokers will offer to wire funds directly to a destination account in another country, so you bypass the need for a US account at a Canadian bank although. The problem is wires are expensive, so they almost always charge extra for this (usually about $15, which is still a lot better than the banks which charge $40-100). If they don’t charge the $15, they are embedding that cost somewhere in the currency exchange.

So the last step is now to find an FX broker. I’m not going to give out recommendations here, because I don’t want to be advertising for any of them & I’m not affiliated with them. But if you want some suggestions, shoot me a reply or email.

Paul says:

I should clarify that RBC bank USA will definitely grant you and uses your Canadian credit history to do so. I ended up going to RBC bank’s visa signature black card. I although got US dollars accounts with RBC canada & rbc USA although it appeared BMO would have worked just fine as well even if I still used RBC bank usa’s credit card.

Joel says:

Call Rogers bank in December and they will apply your cash back to your account in January.

diam says:

In Regard of Rogers
FOREIGN
CURRENCY
CONVERSION All transactions made in a foreign currency are converted to Canadian dollars at the rate established by MasterCard International in effect on the date that we post the transaction to your Account (which may not be the same date as the date of the transaction plus an amount equal to !!!2.5%!! of the transaction amount after it has been converted to Canadian dollars.

So 4 minus 2.5 = 1.5 in favor for FOREIGN CURRENCY CONVERSION. Just want to make sure that everybody understand that is will be NO 4% cash back from it.

Also 29 dollars annual fee on top.

nobody says:

Looks like Rogers Platinum card now has 2.5% foreign transaction fee.

From application:

All transactions made in a foreign currency are converted to Canadian dollars at the rate established by MasterCard International in effect on the date that we post the transaction to your Account (which may not be the same date as the date of the transaction plus an amount equal to 2.5% of the transaction amount after it has been converted to Canadian dollars.

GreedyRates says:

Hi,

We made note of it in our article here:

“Rogers offers 4% cash back on foreign purchases, but charges 2.5% in foreign transaction fees – the net cash back rate is thus 4% cash back – 2.5% fx fee = 1.5% in net cash back. The Amazon card used to offer 1% cash back with no foreign transaction fees, 1% cash back – 0% fx fee = 1% in net cash back. As a result, Rogers offers 50% more cash back than the Amazon Visa card.”

We hope that helps,

GreedyRates Staff

Ivan says:

Tangerine CC is going to charge 2.5% soon, Amazon is shutting down its Visa.

We have only two options now: Rogers Platinum MasterCard and Chase Marriott Rewards Visa Card

Chase Marriott Rewards Visa Card is not for everyone ($120 per year fee) so we have only one option for now: Rogers Platinum MasterCard

Greedy banks 🙂

Robert says:

I was just on the phone with Amazon.ca. They has just sent me a renewal card since my expires in June 2017. I mentioned to them what I have just read regarding Amazon.ca Visa not being available any more. This is incorrect information. IT IS AVAILABLE and there are no FX charges. I travel a lot in Europe and the US and use only Amazon.ca Visa.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Robert,

Thank you for your comment. We apologize for the confusion, should have mentioned that only new applications for the Amazon.ca credit card are no longer accepted as of April 3rd, 2017. Existing Amazon.ca customers will still be serviced and will be able to receive new cards.

Thanks for reading!

GreedyRates Staff

Ian says:

Anyone know what’s up with the Amazon card? I’m kind of kicking myself now for not applying for that. Is Chase partnering with a different insitution?

Also, FYI there is a $29 Annual Fee for the Rogers Mastercard, but it’s waived in the first year and every year after that if you have a Rogers / Fido phone and pre-authorize your payments on the card.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Ian,

We’re sorry to say that Chase bank no longer offers the Amazon card in Canada. While this is unfortunate (you’re right, it was a great card), there are other options out there that are just as beneficial. One of the biggest advantages of the Amazon card was the exemption from foreign transaction fees.

The good news is that Chase still offers their powerful Marriott card to Canadians (read our full review here), which also does not charge foreign transaction fees. And for those who enjoy luxurious hotel visits, it gives cardholders a free night in any 1-5 star hotel every year and 5 points per dollar spent at Marriott and Starwood properties worldwide. With 2 points per dollar on car rentals, restaurants and airfare, those who love travel benefits will love this card as well.

We hope this helps,

GreedyRates Staff

Yves says:

Hi Greedy Rate,

I already have the Amazon Chase Visa card, is it still good ?
Also does that Amazon Vaisa Chase card still offer no fee for foreign transaction like on Europe ?

Thanks

GreedyRates says:

Hey Yves, thanks for asking us some excellent questions.

In regards to your concerns about your Amazon Chase Visa card, we are happy to tell you that there is little to worry about. While Chase and Visa no longer offer their Amazon card to NEW applicants, those who managed to grab this great credit card before it was discontinued can use it as intended without issue. It still works as it was advertised originally, however, it will only exempt foreign transaction fees for another undetermined length of time before incurring them again at some point. We think this may be soon. This is not because the deal was simply too good, but rather because Chase is leaving Canada and ending their relationship with Canadian rewards franchises.

We hope that helps,

GreedyRates Staff

Yves says:

Thansks a lot GreedyRates !

Harold says:

Using the Amazon card for a cash advance at a normal bank ATM in Europe, will there be any charges beyond the $5 or 1%? As in does Chase add on any ATM use fees…?

GreedyRates says:

Hi Harold, thanks for your comment.

Unfortunately, Chase no longer issues the Amazon card in Canada as of April 3rd. We suggest you read up on the other (only) two Canadian cards currently subsidizing foreign transaction fees: the Marriott Rewards Premier Credit Card from Chase and the Rogers Platinum MasterCard. We listed all their strong suites in the above reviews, you might find just what you’re looking for.

We hope that helps,

GreedyRates Staff

dainfamous41 says:

Hi Greedyrates,

Going to Europe (Italy, Greece, London, France) in May. Thought I was all set with my Rogers MC. I just learned about this Amazon MC.

Which would be the better option for purchases?

GreedyRates says:

Hi dainfamous41,

Huge breaking news on this! Chase is no longer accepting applications for the Amazon.ca credit card in Canada. Their relationship with Amazon.ca is either terminated or on hold. Rogers is looking pretty good right now!

Hope that helps you make your decision!

GreedyRates Staff

Matthew says:

Going to be due for an update here, since Tangerine is raising their fee from 1.5% to 2.5%, and Amazon Visa has officially ceased all new applications as of April 3rd.

dainfamous41 says:

What’s the best travel CC for Europe (Italy, Greece, UK and Switzerland) recommend right now? Rogers Bank MC?

Dennis says:

Does anyone have experience using either the Amazon or Rogers cards to withdraw cash while abroad?

I know if I make ATM withdrawals with my regular debit card (while abroad) that I will get absolutely screwed by the fees, so ideally I’d like to prepay an amount on a credit card and then withdraw cash with it.

If I do so, does anyone know what sort of fees I would incur? There should be no Forex fees, of course, and by prepaying the amount I will withdraw there should be no interest charges either. I’m sure I’ll have to pay something. I’m just hoping it will be significantly less than what I’ll pay if I use the debit card. Thanks for any info.

Ryan says:

Dennis! I’m so glad you asked. I have both the Amazon Visa and Rogers Mastercard and have been travelling SE Asia for three months now. The Rogers Mastercard works fine as you would expect (though unfortunately offers nothing special in the way of cash advances and charges the same 2.5% plus $5 cash advance fee as any other Canadian credit card, the Tangerine card would actually be better for foreign cash advances because 1.5% instead of 2.5%).

In regard to the Amazon Visa… I tried to use it for cash advances in various places in Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia. This card can NOT be relied upon in any regard. It’ll just decline, even when all my other cards work. I’ve been on the phone with customer service for hours over the last few weeks (just got off the phone again now actually), basically they claim that there is an automated security system in place that no one at any level has any control over that will identify you as a risk for taking out foreign cash advances and not give you back the cash advance room even after you pay off the balance. First they told me that I would get the cash advance room back in my next billing cycle. Next cycle nothing happened so a manager said that if we raise my credit limit then at least I’ll get the portion of that increase that would be available as cash advance. That did nothing and a whole cycle later they now just said it’s the system and there’s nothing they can do. So relying on the Amazon Visa would be a BIG mistake that would be easy to make when planning a trip in SE Asia – as most who do know that cash advances from ATMs are the only convenient way to get money and the Amazon Visa is the only card for Canadians that offers a $5 or 1% per foreign cash advance charge (whichever is greater).

I am probably coming back next year and when I do it will be with a Tangerine Card for at least 1.5% instead of 2.5% charge and if I am feeling brave also the Chase Marriott Rewards Card… though this one also concerns me since Chase is the operator of the Amazon Visa, so perhaps this unchangeable automated security system that screws it’s customers is also in effect. Maybe someone else can chime in on the Chase Marriott card in regard to foreign cash advances?

Ryan says:

To be clear: both the Amazon Visa and Chase Marriott Card offer only a $5 or 1% per foreign cash advance charge (whichever is greater), but the Amazon Visa is the only one of those two with no annual fee.

Also, I should have mentioned that the Amazon Visa works great up until you use all your cash advance room that is there when your trip starts.

But that’s it. Once you use that space it doesn’t matter whether you pay it off or whether you wait three months… no more cash advance possible… for how long? Who knows? Customer service and management certainly doesn’t (they claim the automated security system has no set rules… it just does what it does when it does). Maybe I’ll never get the ability to make a cash advance with the card again. Considering the uncompetitive 1% cash back rate, foreign cash advance was all this card was good for – cancellation time?

Dennis says:

Hi Ryan. Thanks so much for taking the time to respond. Your advice is especially relevant because we will be spending upwards of six months in Southeast Asia starting in November.

That’s very disappointing that the Amazon card is so unreliable when it comes to cash advances. I had hoped it would be our best bet for avoiding the sky-high fees that come along with withdrawing money while abroad. The Rogers card sounds like a great option for making actual credit card purchases (versus making cash withdrawals) but it is my understanding that cash is still very much king in that part of the world, so I don’t know how often we’d even be able to take advantage of the 4% cashback.

I’ll have to take a closer look at the Tangerine card. It may turn out to be the best compromise overall. Thanks again for giving me the heads up. Definitely will cross the Amazon card off the list.

Helen says:

Tangerine just sent out a notice that the Foreign Conversion rate will go from 1.50% to 2.5% on April 29, 2017. Cash advance fee goes from $2.50 to $3.50 within Canada. Outside of Canada it remains $5.

Deborah says:

Dennis, rather than take cash advances with a credit card, why not get a free, interest-bearing chequing account at Tangerine Bank? We use their debit card in Mexico on the ScotiaBank network without ATM fees OR foreign transaction fees. No rewards points, to be sure, but the overall cost should be lower.

Paqo says:

Actually, there is a $29 annual fee for Rogers platinum MasterCard which is waved for the first year.

GreedyRates says:

That’s correct.

GreedyRates Staff

AJohnB says:

Regarding Scotiabank’s Momentum Mastercard (formerly Sears/Chase MC): Could you clarify when the FX fee will be raised from 0% to 2.5%? Some think it has already been implemented but others are saying they have been advised it will be in effect from June 1, 2017. I shall cease using this card before the date of the change and switch purchases to the Rogers card as you recommend.

Ross says:

I just received the letter in the mail today. They are now going to charge 2.5% and they loose my business. Tome to find a new one.

Debi says:

I was told June 1. Also info came with recent billing.

Bev says:

yes i’ts June 1st according to a letter I received and saved. I will call in May to ask if its a done deal for us past Sears card holders and if the answers yes, I’m also cancelling. The grand-fathered interest rate I was getting with Sears of 9.9% is also going up to almost 20%.(not that I ever paid interest but it was one of the main reasons I got the card to begin with)

Karen Palmer says:

I have a Scotia bank momentum MasterCard. ( old sears card) No foreign currency surcharge. They sent it out a couple of years ago after Sears canceled their charge card with Chase.
I use it everywhere.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Karen,

Thanks for writing in. Unfortunately, it was grandfathered from the old Sears cards. It is not available to Scotia’s new applicants.

GreedyRates Staff

AJB says:

I’ve heard that for MasterCards grandfathered from Sears (I have one) the “no fee” on foreign currency transactions will end June 1. If this turns out to be true, I shall end my use of Scotiabank’s Momentum MC for all transactions on that date.

GreedyRates says:

Hi AJB,

You’re not alone on that one!

Greedyrates Staff

Ann says:

Just got something in the mail to do with Scotiabank Momentum MasterCard. As of June 1, 2017, there will be a 2.5 % foreign currency surcharge so they will soon be off the list of cards available in Canada without a foreign currency surcharge.

Jean says:

Just spoke to a Scotia bank momentum MasterCard Representative on the phone to verify whether the No Transaction Fee still applied now that the card was fully transferred to Scotia and was advised that the it will end on May 31, 2017 and that as of June 1, 2017, they will charge the standard 2.5%.

Action Jackson says:

Note:
Rogers annual fee of $29 will be charged, if you’re not a Rogers customer.

It’s a great deal otherwise though.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Action,

Not completely accurate! The $29 annual fee is waived in the first for EVERYONE – regardless of whether you’re a Rogers customer or not. Moreover, everyone also gets a $25 welcome bonus, which more or less funds the annual fee for the second year for non-customers. In our mind non-customers get the benefit of the card free for 2 years.

GreedyRates Staff

Que says:

oops…I forgot to mention, you would have to take into account the 35 basis point difference in my comparison. (MasterCard usually being 0.0035% lower that Visa)

Therefore, exchange rate break even point would be 1.2035

Mathieu Lavigne says:

Hi!

I also read your article about whether Visa or Mastercard offers the best exchange rate, which was very interesting as it explained in detail something that I did not quite understand. However, it also spoke about the dreaded FTF (Foreign Transaction Fee).

I am in the process of planning a trip to Morocco (where cash is still the best way to get around and in some places, the only way) and I’ve been looking at Prepaid cards as a mean to avoid having to pay excessive ATM fees or having to pay commission fees to change money at a bank/change office.

With all the information I have in hand, I guess that the best way to go would be to have a no-FTF Prepaid card that I would use in ATMs in Morocco… I suppose this doesn’t exist, but if it does, I would gladly take any info haha. What I’m wondering is if a card with a lower than 2,5% FTF exists or if that 2,5% is standard across the whole country. If needed, I’ll just go with a Mastercard prepaid card (because of their slightly better exchange rates, unless VISA has other advantages?)

Thanks for any info, I love your website!

Benjamin says:

I am temporarily stationed overseas in a country with an almost completely cash economy. Only a few grocery stores accept debit. However, the ATM’s accept the VISA/Debit card. I am currently getting my funds in Canadian dollars, exchanging it at my local Canadian credit union into United States dollars and then wire transferring the money to my bank here where I am currently living. Not counting the cost of the exchange, I am paying approximately 2% of my wire amount in the fees associated with wiring money. My question is: If I get one of the no FTF cards and use the Cash Advance feature and pay the balance off immediately (same day), would I be saving money versus the 2% wire + idk% exchange fees?

GreedyRates says:

Hi Benjamin,

That is a good option. But remember that Chase charges 1% of the cash advance amount (min $5). If you withdraw $100, that’s a 5% fee! So make sure you withdraw at least $500 at a time to limit your fees to 1% – and of course the added benefit of saving 2.5% in foreign transaction fees, which your local credit union is likely baking into their exchange fee as well.

Hope that helps!

GreedyRates Staff

Benjamin says:

Thanks for the reply – I will pursue this option!

Roger Horner says:

One thing to double check is the order in which payments to the Credit Card are applied. If you have both a charge and a cash advance on the card, make sure the payment gets applied to the cash advance first. If not, you will accrue interest on the portion of the cash advance that hasn’t been payed.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Roger,

Your logic is sound. Unfortunately, many Canadian credit cards don’t allow you to choose your payment allocation order. While Canadian credit card issuers are no longer allowed to allocate your payments to your lower interest balance first, most automatically allocate your payments equally based on the weighted average of your outstanding balances.

Great advice!

GreedyRates Staff

Cam says:

>>>If you’re a Rogers customer, you’ll be able to apply the cash back to the various Rogers products and services whenever you want. If you’re not a Rogers customer you can call in to have your cash back applied as a statement credit against your credit card bill once per year.<<<

I was about to apply for a Rogers card but I can see nothing about the option to have your cash back applied as a statement credit. Even reading the fine print, it seems that if you are not a Rogers customer the rewards are not available as cash??

GreedyRates says:

Hi Cam,

Rogers states “1. Min. $20 spend up to lesser of transaction amount, or cash value of rewards balance. Or, contact Rogers Bank once per year to receive statement credit for value of rewards earned.

You can find the disclosure on the Rogers MasterCard website. Simply click on the link above, then click on the Rewards tab on the Rogers page, then look at disclosure number one at the bottom of the page.

We’ve done it ourselves and so have many others. Hope the above helps clear things up!!!

GreedyRates Staff

Andrew says:

What is the best BUSINESS credit card for low foreign transaction fees? I am often in the UK. I use a UK card but the accountant prefers it all comes off the Canadian business account.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Andrew,

We don’t know of a Canadian business card with low foreign transaction fees. Unfortunately the Rogers MasterCard, Fido MasterCard, Chase Marriott, Chase Amazon and Tangerine (1.5%) credit card are all consumer only. If you’re a small business, is there any reason you can’t use a consumer card for business expenses – it’s done quite often.

Hope that helps,

GreedyRates Staff

Chris Bailey says:

Hi! I’m curious if you’ve encountered any since publishing this piece! I have my own corporation, so reimbursing myself is more complicated than if it were just a small business. Thanks so much for all the great work you do!

GreedyRates says:

Unfortunately, the credit card landscape doesn’t change that quickly, but we’re still happy to recommend that you use the Home Trust Preferred Visa or the Rogers Platinum Mastercard, if you want to escape foreign transaction fees. The Rogers card does not waive the fees per se, but it offsets them by giving added cash back on purchases made in a foreign currency. You can learn more about either card by reading our full Rogers Platinum Mastercard review or our full Home Trust Preferred Visa review.

Though they are consumer cards, there isn’t any reason why you can’t enjoy these benefits as a small business! Thanks again.

Akira says:

Hi GreedyRates, I’ve read elsewhere that Rogers Platinum Card generally gives a pretty low credit limit. Could you substantiate this claim? If so then it’s not ideal for me to use this card for purchasing from US suppliers or traveling more than a couple of days in US.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Akira,

It’s hard for us to substantiate the claim definitively. However, our understanding is that while Rogers tends to be a little more conservative on initial line assignments, once you’ve been approved, they tend to increase credit lines readily upon request.

Hope that helps,

GreedyRates Staff

Jess says:

Will I be able to use the rogers Mastercard in Mexico at resturants and grocery stores etc and not incur the hefty fees or am I better off using my tangerine debit card to withdrawal from an atm one of the scotiabanks and sticking to cash payments our entire trip? Thanks in advance 🙂

GreedyRates says:

Hi Jess,

You’ll get more value using your Rogers MasterCard. Here’s why:

1. Exchange Rate: You’ll be charged more or less the same exchange for whether you use your MasterCard or Debit card
2. FX Fee: You’ll net 1.5% in cash back rewards using the Rogers MasterCard (4% cash back – 2.5% FX Fee = 1.5%). You’ll lose 2.5% using your Scotia Visa debit (2.5% FX Fee, no rewards), whether at a merchant or withdrawing cash from an ATM. Plus, you may have cash withdrawal fees with your Scotia debit as well.

Hope that helps,

GreedyRates Staff

Peter says:

Tangerine Debit card does not charge any foreign exchange fees on international withdrawals so long as you make a withdrawal from Scotiabank or any participating Global ATM Alliance bank (BNP, Deutshe, Barclay’s, etc.).

Regardless, netting 1.5% cash back rewards using the Rogers MasterCard is still an added value.

Bassam says:

I’ve been looking everywhere at tangerine Website for how much Tangerine Debit card charges for foreign exchange but couldn’t find anything. Could you direct me where did you found about zero fees for foreign exchange
Thanks

GreedyRates says:

Hi Bassam,

We can’t find the foreign transaction fee disclosures for the Tangerine “debit” card either. The disclosures for the “credit cards” are on the application page disclosures in the “schummer” box. That said, Tangerine’s foreign transaction fees on its credit card is 1.5%.

Hope that helps,

GreedyRates Staff

Brad says:

What I have done is opened a US dollar account and exchanged my CDN dollars when it was at 78,now it is at 74,so by my calculations(5% difference) if I get a US dollar credit card,which if I am reading right does not charged the 2.5% rate on US dollars purchases (any other foreign currency is converted to US dollars + the 2.5% fee) so I will be better off as long as what I exchanged at 78 is > then 2.5% at the current exchange rate? Hope I am making sense.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Brad,

In your case, you gambled and the Canadian dollar happened to go down, so you won. Had it gone up in value, you would have lost. Regardless, when you initially exchanged your Canadian dollars to USD you paid a fee over and above the spot rate. That fee was likely 2% to 3.5% if you did it at a retail bank (they don’t break out their margins). With a credit card that subsidizes the foreign transaction fee, like the Rogers MasterCard, you would have netted 1.5% in cash back (4% cash back – 2.5% foreign transaction fee = 1.5% cash back).

Hope that helps,

GreedyRates Staff

Arm Pal says:

If I purchase goods on line in the US and use Rogers MC can I pay the bill with US dollars or they convert the US dollars to Canadian Dollars and the payment must be done in Canadian value?
Could I pay. the Rogers MC bill with a US dollars cheque ? Could I pay it with a US chequing account?

GreedyRates says:

Hi Arm,

The Rogers card is not a US Dollar card. As such all balances shown are in Canadian dollars. All payments will be made in their Canadian dollar value, so that your US Dollars would need to be converted to CDN to make your Rogers bill payment.

GreedyRates Staff

Gord says:

The Rogers website says that the Platinum card has a $29 annual fee.

ANNUAL FEES Primary: $29.00, to be charged on the first statement after your Account is opened (regardless of Activation) and annually thereafter in the same month.
Additional Card: $0

GreedyRates says:

Hi Gord,

“The $29 annual fee is waived for the first year and every year thereafter on your anniversary date as long as your Rogers bill is set up as a pre-authorized payment.”

EVERYONE gets the annual fee waived in the first year. It gets waived each and every year thereafter if you set-up ANY Rogers/FIDO/Chatr bill as a pre-authorized payment.

Hope that helps clarify,

GreedyRates Staff

Andy says:

one problem with Rogers™ Platinum MasterCard® is your foreign currency 4% cash back is nice but they still charge 2.5% transaction fee on FX purchases. You have 4% rewards toward Rogers products or affiliated services. I think they have MasterCard gift card app available but that’s troublesome to get your money back.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Andy,

Thanks for writing in!

First, you can redeem your cash back rewards as a statement credit once a year. You are not only limited to redeeming your cash back against Rogers products (inlcuding Toronto Blue Jays tickets) and your Rogers/Fido/Chatr bills at any time. So the cash back redemption process is the same as many of Canada’s other leading cash back programs.

Secondly, you’re still getting more value on foreign transaction from a Rogers MasterCard than ANY other card in Canada. For example, you get 4% cash back, and are charged a 2.5% foreign transaction fee for a total value of 1.5% cash back net. if you take a look at the amazon card, you get 1% cash back with no foreign transaction fee for a total of 1% cash back net. Rogers offers a full 50% more value!

Hope that helps,

GreedyRates Staff

Pam says:

The Costco MasterCard has no foreign transaction fees correct? I’m thinking of using that one when traveling to the US.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Pam,

Thanks for writing in. Actually that is incorrect. The Costco MasterCard does charge a foreign transaction fee of 2.5% on all transactions made in a foreign currency.

Hope that helps,

GreedyRates Staff

Mike H. says:

My wife and I have an RBC Visa Infinite Avion card. We travel to the states a couple of times a year and eventually will get a winter property down there. RBC is trying to sell us on their US Dollar card – would this be a wise thing to do? We have a US account so we could pay the card from that.

Would RBC allow us to combine the travel points from our Canadian dollar and US dollar cards?

GreedyRates says:

Hi Mike,

If you need to convert Canadian dollars to US dollars to pay your US dollar credit card statement, than a US Dollar credit card is not the best alternative in the marketplace. The reason is because when you convert your CDN to US dollars you will be paying a conversion rate + a fee (but they roll it into one number), that would be higher than if you used a credit card with a subsidized foreign transaction fee – like the Rogers MasterCard.

Here’s the math. If you use the Rogers MasterCard for US dollar purchases, MasterCard or Visa will charge an extremely low foreign exchange rate close to the spot rate. You’ll also net 1.5% in cashback (after 4% cashback -2.5% fees). However, if you exchanged your Canadian money in the bank to pay your US dollar credit card, you would likely be charged 2%-3% over the spot rate.

Does that make sense?

GreedyRates Staff

Nicole says:

Hi

I’m planning on travelling for a year and I really don’t want to pay foreign transaction fees. I currently have a MasterCard that doesn’t have much rewards so I looking to get s card with no fees. I’m torn between the Amazon Visa card or the Rogers MasterCard. I know that even though the Rogers card doesn’t actually have a no foreign transaction fee, I still get 4% cash back.. How does the cash back work? Is it yearly that you get that cash back? Also I’ve heard that the amazing card has a low credit limit and customers are finding it difficult the do online backing with it. Any thoughts?

GreedyRates says:

Hi Nicole,

We think it makes more sense to go with Rogers, where you’ll get 4% on foreign currency spend, minus the 2.5% fx transaction fee, for a net rewards of 1.5% on foreign spend. Amazon will only give you 1% cashback on foreign purchases. As a result, you will get .5% more cash back, net, with the Rogers card than the Amazon card on foreign purchases. Moreover, our studies show that MasterCard offers a better foreign exchange rate than Visa by about 35 basis points, about 70% of the time.

If you’re a Rogers customer, you’ll be able to apply the cash back to the various Rogers products and services whenever you want. If you’re not a Rogers customer you can call in to have your cash back applied as a statement credit against your credit card bill once per year.

The issue with the Amazon card is that you can’t set-up pre-authorized payments to pay the minimum payment or balance in full. Our biggest objection to the Amazon card at this time is that we believe it’s going to be sold (it’s a belief, not a confirmation). Given that Chase has sold it’s Canadian operations to Scotia (call center, collections, adjudication, etc…), it just seems inevitable that the Amazon program will fall into someone else’s hands sooner rather than later.

Hope that helps,

GreedyRates Staff

P Rousseau says:

Hello Guys
I would like to have your opinion befor I make my move. I am employed by a major airline. And I fly out of the country all the time. I use credit wherever possible. I buy about 1000$ a month out of the country. I have the Amazon visa. I buy quite a bit of stuff with them also. I am also a Rogers customers with 2 services with them. (200$/month)
I want to know if I should stick with the. Amazon or if the Rogers would be a good option for me.
I was told by colleagues to get the Rogers. But now with the 2.5/4% I don’t know anymore.

GreedyRates says:

Hi P Rousseau,

We would recommend the Rogers card, with no annual fee. It’s pretty simple actually. With the Rogers MasterCard you get 4% cashback on foreign purchases, with a 2.5% FX fee, for a net cashback rate of 1.5%. With the Amazon card you get 1% cashback with no fx fee for a net cashback rate of 1%. The Rogers MasterCard offers .5% more cashback on foreign purchases than the Amazon card.

Enjoy,

GreedyRates Staff

Jill says:

Travelling to England in the next few weeks and trying to figure out the best way to exchange money… I looked at the Rogers Platinum Mastercard – the annual fee is $29 and the foreign currency conversion fee is 2.5%, the same as my RBC Visa card.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Jill,

The big difference between the two is that with the Rogers MasterCard, you will earn 4% cash back on purchases in a foreign currency, likely 2-4 times what you’re receiving from your RBC Rewards card (if it is one). Subtract the 2.5% foreign transaction fee from the Rogers card and you’re earning 1.5% net on purchases. You’re likely losing on any purchases you’re making with your RBC card.

Hope that helps,

GreedyRates Staff

Stacy says:

I just checked out the Rogers Platinum M/C and it looks like they waive the annual fee each year as long as your billing is set up as a pre-authorized payment…. “Get $25 in cash back rewards when you make your first card purchase. Plus, the $29 annual fee is waived for the first year and every year thereafter on your anniversary date as long as your Rogers bill is set up as a pre-authorized payment.”

Another Greg says:

My wife and I recently returned from a trip to the UK. She used a Scotiabank MasterCard for some transactions, and I used a TD First Class Travel Visa Infinite card for others. On identical posting days, the two cards charged substantially different rates. For example, on August 4, Scotiabank MC’s exchange rate on a purchase was 1.75757575; TD Visa’s was 1.79859. Any idea why there is such a big difference? Needless to say, TD Visa has just lost my business for foreign travel.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Greg,

Their may be two reasons. First, if you have a Scotia MasterCard, it’s likely an old Sears card. Scotia has grandfathered the no foreign transaction fee benefit on the old Sears cards it converted. The difference between the two exchange rates is pretty close to 2.5%, which is the foreign transaction fee TD charges.

The second possibility, is that Visa typically charges a higher foreign exchange rate than MasterCard. We know from our own studies that Visa on average charges 30 basis points more than MasterCard. The problem is, the delta here is over 200 basis points.

Hope that helps,

GreedyRates Staff

Another Greg says:

Her card is in fact an old Sears card. Guess we should hang on to that one!

Greg says:

I believe your comparisons aren’t exactly apples to apples. I’ve had the Chase Marriot Visa (no foreign exchange fee) card for almost 5 years. When I post a transaction in another currency it’s at the spot rate on the forex for that day (at the close). You can go to xe.com and compare. There’s no silly “Visa exchage rate” games going on. Also, for the annual fee you get a free night stay at a Marriot hotel every year so for me the card is free and usually the free night stay is worth more than the annual fee. Great card, highly recommended.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Greg,

While Visa and MC rates are pretty close to the spot rate, they are slightly higher, and each credit card issuer does apply the respective Visa and/or MC rates to foreign exchange – it is not set by the issuing bank.

We took your comments to heart and compared XE.com to the Visa exchanged rates, published by Visa. When comparing July 26th, XE.com had a spot rate of 1.32124, while Visa had a published rate of 1.324368. Like we said, the difference is not huge, but it does exist nonetheless. We actually did an extensive study on this subject over a 52 week period. It demonstrably proved the Visa and MC exchange rates were over spot, but not by much.

We agree the Mariott card is a GREAT card, especially if you can take advantage of its free nights welcome bonus with no first year annual fee. As you mentioned, the annual free night stay offsets the annual fee.

Thanks for the comments!

GreedyRates Staff

Kit Eakle says:

I’m not sure if my situation is relevant here, but… I am a retired dual citizen of Canada AND the US, and I have a small pension in both countries. I spend roughly half time in each place and have a bank account in both countries (TD Bank in Canada and a small community bank in the US). My wife insists that using our American credit card in Canada is cheaper than using our Canadian card as the exchange rate is so good. I believe that we would still be losing $ doing that as the fees and exchange would make spending American $ in Canada MORE expensive. Am I missing something here?

Kit Eakle says:

By the way, my wife is using an American ‘no foreign transaction fees’ Capital One card for Canadian purchases. As we have just begun splitting our time between countries by moving to Canada in July, we are maintaining our permanant residency for now in the US. So we only have a TD ViSA debit card in Canada, not an actual credit card.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Kit,

You are correct and your wife incorrect. Since you have both Canadian and US dollar income, you are best off using each currency in their respective countries to avoid currency exchange fees. Even though your wife is using a credit card without any foreign transaction fees, she is still being charged an embedded foreign conversion fee by MasterCard of approximately 35 basis points (not very much), based on our most recent analysis comparing MC fees to market spot rates.

Regardless, your theory is correct. Your wife is right that it feels cheaper for her to buy Canadian goods with U.S. dollars, however, you ALREADY have Canadian dollars, so it’s no more expensive to use the CDN to purchase Canadian goods. Why take your U.S. Dollars and convert them (in your case the credit card company is converting them) to Canadian to buy Canadian?

Hope that helps,

GreedyRates Staff

Azee says:

I don’t believe in paying annual fees ever so if I get the Rogers Mastercard and do not do any business at all with Rogers (and hence no pre-authorized Rogers bill to set up), is this card still a good one for me? I have considered applying for their card and cancelling at the end of 1 year but then I’d be looking around for another card with no FTF again! I spend roughly $100USD every month on online purchases.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Azee,

You’re effectively getting the Rogers Platinum card for 2 years free (1st year fee is waived for everyone, and you get a $35 welcome bonus, which covers the 2nd year annual fee).

That said, you can always look at the Amazon (no fee) or Chase Marriott cards as well, which don’t have foreign transaction fees. We’re just not convinced Chase will be in Canada for long after selling their operations to Scotia, but nothing’s written in stone either. Regardless, those are your only cards in Canada which subsidize foreign transaction fees.

GreedyRates Staff

Tim says:

Hello,

I read this post today and became very concerned. I’ve been a Amazon.ca and Marriott Chase customer for a couple of years, primarily because on the no foreign transaction fees. I used to have the Chase Sears MasterCard too, but cancelled it when Scotiabank took it over and dropped the no foreign transaction fees. I just got off the phone with Chase, and asked them about your claim that they will be selling the two other Visa cards to Scotiabank. The agent told me that this is untrue, he did mention the Sears card going to Scotiabank, but said they have no intention of selling the Amazon & Marriott operations. Could you please explain where you came across this information? Also, I had applied online for the Rogers card and was declined, I was told by an agent that if I went in person to a Rogers office I would be approved. I did this today, and I was approved.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Tim,

As we said, we are not convinced Chase will be keeping their Canadian Amazon and Marriott portfolios. We do not have any insider information, but believe given that Chase sold their Canadian card operations to Scotia (call center, collections, etc…) and the line staff and executive management with it, that it’s only a matter of time before it either sells or does not renew their remaining Canadian credit card programs.

Glad to hear you got approved on the Rogers card!

GreedyRates Staff

Alex Ernest says:

This past week while traveling in the states I used my Rogers card to test this no fees theory. I put $68.28 0n the card and on returning checked the conversion and it was $90.02, c0nsiderably more than the .25 1/2 cent dollar difference., in fact almost .32 cents on the dollar. I called master card and they said they don’t charge a fee however Master Card Global sets the exchange rate, this apparently regardless of the actual exchange rate. It would seem to me then that the rate to check wold be the exchange rate set by the issuing company i.e. VISA, MC, AMEX. etc. not the bank fee. The MC exchange rate could in theory be higher than the VISA exchange rate and with or without a bank fee surpass the other. I didn’t know that these credit card company’s could arbitrarily set their own exchange rate regardless of the actual rate until calling Rogers to inquire about it.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Alex,

You are correct. There are potentially two fees on every transaction made with a foreign currency on your credit card. First is the foreign exchange rate, which is set by Visa and MasterCard (not by the issuing credit card company i.e. Rogers, TD, RBC, BMO, CIBC, Chase, etc…). Second is the foreign transaction fee set by each credit card company.

We have actually done a study comparing the foreign exchange rates of MasterCard versus Visa. Our study demonstrated that over the course of 52 days, MasterCard charged a lower foreign exchange rate than Visa 70% of the time, beating Visa by approximately 38 basis points.

How the networks (Visa/MasterCard) set their exchange rates is indeed a complete mystery. What we have found though, is that they are much better than the rates offered by the banks in branches. Typically they are around 60 basis points higher than the Bloomberg spot rate, compared to the banks which charge 200-300 basis points more than the spot rate.

Hope that helps,

GreedyRates Staff

sonja mueller says:

As per Rogers website, their Rogers Platinum Mastercard will start to charge a 2.5% extra exchange fee, starting October 16, 2016.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Sonja,

That is correct, however, Rogers is also increasing their cashback rate on foreign transactions to 4%, for a net of 1.5% value on foreign transactions (4% cashback – 2.5% FX Fee = 1.5%). When compared to most cards that earn 2% rewards – 2.5% FX Fee = -.5%, per dollar spent on foreign transactions (you’re losing money on every dollar spent).

That said, the Marriott and Amazon no foreign transaction fee cards are also looking good, but we’re just not sure how much longer Chase is going to remain in Canada, now that they’ve sold their operations to Scotia.

GreedyRates Staff

Adam says:

Hi,

Given the fact that Rogers now offers a 4% cash back rate, as opposed to the regular 1.75%, when making a foreign transaction, don’t their cards now reign as the supreme king of foreign travel cards?

GreedyRates says:

Hi Adam,

From a pure value on spend perspective, Rogers still remains the best option for foreign transactions. You will earn 4% in cashback rewards on foreign purchases, compared to Amazon where you will 3.5% (1% cashback, plus 2.5% foreign transaction savings). You actually got more value from Rogers before the change of 4.25% (1.75% cashback, plus 2.5% foreign transaction savings), but the revised deal is still tops. You just have to redeem your cashback to earn the value.

Marriott remains a great option during the first year where there is no annual fee, no 2.5% foreign transaction fee and a very hefty up-front welcome bonus of up to 5 free hotel nights.

Hope that helps,

GreedyRates Staff

Mohammad says:

Hi. I plan to travel to South Africa for a 3 month and want to find a card that saves me the foreign transaction fees. I am with TD and used to love their Travel Infinity card but never took the 2.5% into account – I guess this is partly how they pay for the rewards?

I like the Rogers card but noticed someone saying they convert transactions to USD prior to then converting to CAD. Wouldn’t that be double conversion or is this better or worse for me?

GreedyRates says:

Hi Mohammad,

Although Rogers is one of the few credit card isuers to describe its full foreign currency conversion sequence, every issuer does the same thing, because the U.S. dollar is used as the peg currency for foreign currency exchange. All said, it costs no more to exchange international currency using a Rogers MasterCard than it does any other MasterCard – MasterCard excanges the currency at the same rate for all its issuers. The only difference is, Rogers is the only Canadian MasterCard issuer not to charge a foreign transaction fee.

Hope that helps,

GreedyRates Staff

Sally says:

Rogers is going to change this service, there will be 2.5% foreign transaction fee charged start from Oct 19,2016 but they will give 4% cash back on foreign currency purchase. I’m thinking to cancel the card recently, that benefit was the reason why I applied this card before.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Sally,

The revised deal is still solid, if you’re willing to redeem for cash back. Amazon gets you 3.5% in value for foreign transactions (1% cashback, no 2.5% foreign transaction fee), Rogers gets you 4% in straight cash back. At the end of the year you can have Rogers apply your cash back earnings to your statement for any expenses, whether they are Rogers or not. You can redeem against Rogers services anytime.

GreedyRates Staff

Tom says:

I don’t understand Amazon not charging the FTF. I bought two kindle books from Amazon within a minute of each other. Same US price. I am in Canada. One was charged on an Amazon card. The other on on an MBNA card. Both were exactly the same debit in CDN$. Yet I understand Amazon doesn’t charge but MBNA does charge ftf. My MBNA card is not tied to a bank.

Amazon Card says it uses Visa’s conversion rate. Perhaps the rate they “borrow” from Visa has the ftf included and all they are saying is that they don’t add an extra ftf onto top of what is included in their rate.

Any comments?

GreedyRates says:

Hi Tom,

That’s very strange. We do know based on an in depth study of ours comparing Visa to MasterCard foreign exchange rates that 70% of the time MasterCard offers a lower exchange rate than Visa, by about .38%.

However, you’re example suggests that Visa charged more than 2.5% higher than MasterCard. But for the two to come out exactly the same is very odd. You should call Chase to get an explanation. There’s no way they should be equal.

GreedyRates Staff

Ahmed says:

Hi I am leaving Canada this August to teach in Dubai for about 2 years. I plan on travelling as much as I can. I am want to avoid as much foreign transaction fees as I can. I was considering getting the Amazon.ca Visa or the Rogers Platinum card. Either way, if I am making my purchases online with one of these credit cards in Dubai where the currency is in AED, will a foreign transaction fee apply for booking flights or hotels in Dubai?

GreedyRates says:

Hi Ahmed,

Great question! The answer is yes. Any time you make a purchase from a Canadian credit card in a non-Canadian currency, your credit card will automatically exchange the currency (at Visa or Mastercard’s exchange rate) to Canadian dollars, and charge you an additional foreign transaction fee, unless the fee is waived, as with the Rogers, Marriott and Amazon cards.

Hope that helps,

GreedyRates Staff

Karen says:

I read this entire thread, this was very informative for me. I am considering 2 cards. BMO Rewards World Elite & Rogers 0% Foreign Transaction fee. I already have a Visa but I need a Mastercard. They offer a 2nd day free at Xcaret park which is a massive yearly savings for us. We spend about $15,000 a year on vacations & purchasing in the States & Mexico. I am not sure which card would make us come out ahead at the end of the day. We also spend about $1000 a month at Costco. Any insight? I am leaning towards the Rogers but I also like the idea of having access to the airport VIP lounges.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Karen,

Without knowing your Visa card its hard to say which MasterCard best rounds-out your wallet. The difference in rewards rate is only .25% per dollar spent. However, the BMO card has a $150 annual fee (but has a $300 welcome bonus), while Rogers is first year free and only $29 thereafter if you’re not a customer, free if you are.

Where the Rogers card will really shines is with the 2.5% it will save you on foreign purchases. On $15,000 foreign spend that will save you $375. The 4 free lounge passes on the BMO card are great if that’s something you like – a value of $200. It also comes with travel insurance – but if your Visa card does as well, you’ll be covered.

Hope that helps you with your decision. Either way, you’ll come out ahead!

GreedyRates Staff

George says:

Hi GreedyRates Staff,

With summer approaching I was wondering what credit cards you would recommend for US Dollar cards that don’t have a crazy foreign transaction fee etc. I plan on doing some traveling in Europe and plan to put most of my purchases on a good rewards card that is a US dollar card. The reason is I have US dollars in my account with my Canadian bank. I have read about the TD US Dollar that gives no points and the RBC gold travel that gives some points, although not a great amount. Could you give any advice on what I should do? I don’t plan on using an AMEX, can’t justify the annual fee.

GreedyRates says:

Hi George,

If you already have funds in U.S. dollars it’s not a bad idea to get a U.S. dollar card. You have a few alternatives. The first is to get a typical U.S. Dollar card from a Canadian bank. As you observed, those remain pretty vanilla, come with a fee and virtually no rewards.

However, you can apply for a TD credit card, through TD Bank in the U.S., and they will pull your Canadian credit history to adjudicate their decision. Another alternative is a credit card through RBC’s U.S. bank subsidiary. They too will pull your Canadian credit file to make a decision. In either case, go to the bank’s U.S. website, otherwise you’ll just get the U.S. dollar card offering.

Hope that helps,

GreedyRates Staff

Nana says:

So I may be daft … If using the Rogers credit card, no foreign transaction fees, bill is in Canadian $ for transactions made in USA and then client pays bill from Canadian account or is the bill in USD? And better to pay from US account

GreedyRates says:

Hi Nana,

Not daft at all! When using the Rogers card, your bill will be in Canadian dollars, and you will pay the bill in Canadian dollars.

If you do not earn your income in US dollars, it is almost always better for you to have your dollars converted by the Rogers MasterCard, as opposed to the bank. This is so because the exchange rate on the Rogers MasterCard (without the foreign transaction fee), is more competitive than the exchange rate provided by your retail bank. Remember, on a US Dollar card, even though you’re paying your bill in US Dollars, you’re still converting your Canadian dollars at some point, to get the US dollars to pay down that bill. You have to compare that exchange rate to the Rogers exchange rate.

Our analysis shows that the Rogers exchange rate (really the MasterCard rate) is usually around 2% better than the rate you can get in the bank.

Hope that helps,

GreedyRates Staff

Teri says:

This is a lot of great information. I just want to make sure I understand before applying for another card. I am retiring and will be travelling globally, beginning with a 2-3 month trip through the U.S. I do not have a U.S. account and don’t plan to get one. It looks like my best option is the Rogers MasterCard because they will convert my purchases into Canadian dollars at a lower exchange rate than the bank and boutique exchanges. I will pay my bill in Canadian funds and receive 4% cash back on my purchases.

I was also surprised to find that using Hotels.com and Expedia.com would result in extra fees. I will definitely make sure that I use Hotels.ca and Expedia.ca when booking. Does this apply to other sites as well?

GreedyRates says:

Hi Teri,

Yes, with the Rogers card, you will pay your credit card bills in Canadian funds (Rogers will convert your U.S. Dollar purchases automatically), and you will received 4% cashback on those foreign transactions (1.75% everywhere else). Just to be clear though. Rogers will charge a 2.5% foreign transaction fee, which means you will net out at 1.5% rewards (4% rewards-2.5% FX fee) on all foreign transactions.

If you compare that to most other credit card rewards programs you’re coming out ahead. Let’s say you get 2% rewards from another card, which is high. You will then deduct the 2.5% foreign transaction fee, and be left with net -.5% rewards, in the negative.

Hope that helps,

GreedyRates Staff

Richard says:

I got my Amazon Visa Card recently and did two small amount US$ purchases today to compare the foreign exchange fees. But comparing to another credit card, I don’t see any differences on final exchange rate. Any reason to explain this?
Amazon Visa Card: Purchase in USD:2.57 ; charged on credit card: CAD:3.39;
Calculated exchange rate: 3.39/2.57 = 1.3191

RBC Credit Card: Purchase in USD:3.04 ; charged on credit card: CAD:4.01
Calculated exchange rate: 4.01/3.04 = 1.3191

Today’s Visa Exchange rate(referring Visa website): USD vs CAD: 1.298470

Richard says:

BTW, I was using eBay and Card Payment method(not Paypal) on both purchases.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Richard,

It’s likely there is a delay from the date the transaction is posted, to the date when RBC posts the 2.5% foreign transaction fee. Some issuers will only charge their foreign transaction fee (as well as all others) on your next statement. What your numbers do prove however, is that the foreign exchange rate is the same for both issuers and is a pass-through expense from VISA.

Let us know if we have this right.

GreedyRates Staff

Richard says:

Thank you for the response!
To confirm if foreign transaction fee is changed in final bill, I’ll have to wait until the statement of this cycle is issued.
What I’m concerned is that there is a gap between published VISA exchange rate(1.298470) and actually charged rate(base on my own calculation:1.3191).
I’m guessing that eBay may has its own policy to set a rate for all card issuers.
Will keep info updated.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Richard,

It seems like there was an additional 1.5% charge on both transactions. It’s very possible it was EBay or the merchant. We tried to find Ebay’s policy on foreign transactions (not PayPal’s per your instructions), but couldn’t find anything related to foreign exchange fees.

We double checked to see if Visa exchange rate went up from the time of the transaction date to the posting date, but it actually went down, so we can rule that out.

We’d guess it’s something on EBay’s end.

GreedyRates Staff

Theripe says:

I’m going on a year trip with my gf on july. I took the Rogers and the Marriot Card. I still have my TD INfinite Aeroplan because I really like Aeroplan. If I’m in Indonesia, and I reserve my hotels and flights on the internet with my TD Card, will it charge de foreign transaction fee (2,5%)? Thank you!

GreedyRates says:

Hi Theripe,

If the reservation is made in a foreign currency, the 2.5% foreign transaction fee will apply. If the reservation is made in Canadian dollars, for example you use Expedia.ca or Hotels.ca, then no foreign transaction fee will apply. If you book through Expedia.com however, which is in U.S. dollars, a foreign transaction fee will apply.

Hope that makes sense.

GreedyRates Staff

Tony K. says:

Quick question for you experts…

I have been using the TD US dollar travel card for years. I am fed up with not receiving any points or rewards. I have US funds in the account so converting Canadian to US funds is not a big issue. But what card would you recommend then for me to receive points for purchases in US dollars? I have read above about the RBC Gold VISA US DOLLAR Card. Is this also good for foreign travel? I make many purchases on my US dollar TD card while traveling globally as well.

Thanks,

Tony

Tony K. says:

Anyone can help out???

Raymond says:

I have heard in the past that if the exchanged currency is not USD, then the credit card company will first exchange the needed currency (i.e. Euro) to USD then to our CAD. As a result, we will lose twice in the exchange process. Is this true? thanks!

GreedyRates says:

Hi Raymond,

In actual fact, we believe all currency transactions are effectively done this way, since the U.S. dollar is the peg dollar for international currency exchange.

Regardless, it should not impact you, and we had done some research to figure this out. At the time our research showed that if you wanted to exchange your money from Canadian (CDN) to British Pounds (GBP), you’d get .50091 pounds per CDN dollar (rounded to 5 decimal points). However if we went from CDN to US first, we’d get .72302 US. Then if we went from US to GBP we’d get .69280 GBP. If we multiply .72302 X .69280 we’d get .500908, which if we round to 5 decimal points would be .50091, the same exchange rate, as that if we went directly from CDN to GBP.

Does that help?

GreedyRates Staff

Raymond says:

Hi,

Thank you for your response!
Given that the exchange rate provided by credit card companies are usually worse than the mid market rate. I guess, if the funds are converted twice, which means for one transaction we will lose twice in exchange.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Raymond,

Actually no. That’s what the math from our previous example shows. Moreover, because the U.S. dollar is the peg currency for currency exchange, almost all banks first convert int USD then into the local currency. That’s why the USD is called a peg currency.

GreedyRates Staff

Bruce says:

Hi Guys

Not sure if anyone has touched on this but after looking into the fine print for the Amazon Visa, which is a Chase card it states that when a “foreign” purchase is made it will be converted using the exchange rate determined by Visa. These rates will be anywhere from 0-10% higher than the actual rates of the currency conversion, similar to how a bank will charge higher rates in order in disguise transactions fees.

So in essence although the amazon card claims not to have a transaction fee, you the consumer are still paying more than the absolute conversion of the exchange rates set by the world banks.

If anyone with more insight can chime in it would be really appreciated.

Seems like its pick your poison when it comes to making international purchases. Either pay more with the banks or take on the foreign transaction fees from the credit cards and now even the so called “no foreign transaction fee cards”.

Bruce

GreedyRates says:

Hi Bruce,

We actually addressed this issue in a recent research article we published which uncovered Visa and MasterCard’s margin over and above the spot rate.

You are correct, Visa and MasterCard do charge a margin over and above the spot rate (our research shows that MasterCard charges less more often than Visa when exchanging CDN to US dollars). MasterCard averaged about 58 basis points more than the Bloomberg spot rate, and Visa charged 98 basis points more.

However, a no foreign transaction fee card still provides a much cheaper alternative to a credit card with a foreign transaction fee. In both cases, the credit card will be charged the same foreign exchange margin by Visa and MasterCard, except that the credit card with the foreign transaction fee will be charged another fee by the issuing credit card bank another 2.5% or so.

Moreover, the 58-98 basis points charged by MasterCard and Visa on average, is still far lower and better than the exchange rate you will receive at the bank.

Hope that helps,

GreedyRates Staff

ukiegirl says:

I’ve read through the chains, and am going around in circles – please help!
Travelling for 6 weeks in Europe (2 people), anticipate $20,000 trip.
No foreign transacation fee makes sense…

BUT:
-is the Mariott rewards in my best interest?
-or a cash back card like Rogers?

OR:
-suck up the foreign transaction fees, and pay with my Cdn Gold Amex, whose points are more flexible for flight redemption?

Thanks so much – applying soon!

GreedyRates says:

Hi Ukiegirl,

You can cancel the Cdn Gold Amex off the list. It charges a 2.5% foreign transaction fee, which will more or less cancel out the value of any rewards you earn from the card on foreign spend.

That leaves the Rogers MasterCard or Marriott, both have no foreign transaction fees, so they are more or less equal from that respect (slight advantge to MasterCard though). Marriott provides a MUCH richer welcome bonus, with no annual fee in the first year and up to 5 free hotel nights – all you have to do is activate your card. Maybe you can use a free hotel night while you’re in Europe!

Rogers on the other hand, offers a much richer rewards rate than Marriott for ongoing spend. At 1.75% compared to Marriott which is closer to 1% on non-Marriott spend. You can then redeem your rewards for cash back as a statement credit once per year, by calling into Rogers.

Frankly, you could get both cards, just in case one gets lost, stolen or frozen. Neither will have an annual fee for at least a year, so their both risk free. Get Marriott for the welcome bonus, and Rogers for the earnings rate.

GreedyRates Staff

Trevor Pienaar says:

Hi Greedyrates Staff

I have had the Marriott Visa for a couple of years and it is fine.
Just as an interesting point I have just finnished reading an article by a British card comparison site and they compared VISA FE rates to MASTERCARD’s FE rates and it would appear that Mastercard has a better rate most of the time.Assuming both cards have a 0% FE transaction fee you may be better off with Mastercard issuer however would need to take into account annual fees, cash back etc

Trevor

GreedyRates says:

Thanks Trevor. Our analysis showed something a little more nuanced. It showed Visa beat MC more often, however when MC beat Visa, it did so by a far greater margin. As a result, the MC beat out Visa on a weighted average of savings basis. So in the end, our numbers also showed you were better off using an MC over a Visa card.

That said, the difference between the two was typically negligable. Such that, it made more sense to look at the value of the rewards or fees than the disparity between Visa or MC exchange rates.

GreedyRates Staff

Curt says:

I had always assumed I was paying the 2.5% fee for US purchases made on my Canadian Visa card (TD Infinite) as specified in the cardholder agreement. What I missed was the additional fee and had wrongly assumed the rate would be as per Bank of Canada or similar benchmark. It turns out the rate is set by Visa, the 2.5% is added to this and then the issuing bank adds their fee. All in if you use the Bank of Canada rate as the benchmark I found I was paying well over 4%. I spent some time on the phone with the bank and never was able to determine just what Visa bases their exchange rate on. As I spend considerable time in the US and have a US account with funds in it I have applied for a US card and will discontinue using my Canadian card. As an aside some banks will issue credit cards to Canadians with no US SIN’s.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Curt,

That seems surprising. First, Visa does charge the exchange rate, but then the issuing bank adds only the 2.5% on top of the Visa exchange rate (not the no foreign transaction fee cards we recommend above). based on your comment, we compared the Visa exchange rate on March 4th, 2016 to the bank of Canada rate. We got the following:

Visa: .748036
Bank of Canada: High 0.7423 Low 0.7509 (they don’t give one rate, rather a high and low for the day)

It seems like the Visa rate is pretty much in the middle of the day’s range, which makes sense given Visa’s rate is based on the days average.

The Visa rates are published here and the Bank of Canada Rates published here.

We don’t think using a US dollar card will help you any. You will still have to convert your Canadian dollars to U.S. dollars regardless, before paying your statement in US currency. You’ll just be incurring the exchange at th bank or exchange bureau, which will still be 2-3% or higher. You’re best bet will always be a no foreign transaction fee credit card.

Hope that helps,

GreedyRates Staff

Florin says:

Hi Curt,

Could you share with us, from your experience, which banks in the US will issue credit cards to Canadians?
About a year ago I applied for a credit card at Bank of America, upon the bank adviser’s suggestion, but the application was rejected after few weeks, receiving a letter saying that I do not have a credit history in the US….

Thanks,
Florin

Eddy says:

Florin,
Banner Bank will give you a credit card as long as you open an account with them.They will check your Transunion credit file.Then wait several months and apply at the Bank of America where they will check your US credit file.Another option is to get a credit card with the Royal Bank USA.Visit your local branch or phone RBC Bank but dont apply online for anything at RBC.I speak from experience as I have a Banner Bank credit card and tried to apply online for a RBC Bank credit card online.I deal with the Banner Bank branch in Point Roberts.I give them my Canadian physical address and my mailing address at the Shell station in Pt.Roberts which only charges one dollar per piece of mail.I received a $5000 credit limit at 9.99%.My transunion credit score was 775.

John says:

I have Costco membership and I found out that the costco capital one mastercard has no foreign transaction fee so it works well for me since it gives lots of cashback as well.

GreedyRates says:

Hi John,

That’s strange. We reviewed Captial One Canada’s Costco terms and we believe they do in fact charge a 2.5% foreign transaction fee. Here are their terms:

“We will bill you in Canadian dollars when you use your Card to make a Transaction in a foreign currency. The Transaction amount will be converted to Canadian dollars using the MasterCard rate of exchange current at the time MasterCard processes the Transaction. When the converted Transaction amount is posted to your Account, we will add to the converted Transaction amount a foreign currency conversion charge equal to 2.5% of the converted Transaction amount.”

Where did you see, or where were you told, that the Costco card had no foreign transaction fee?

GreedyRates Staff

Kier says:

Hmmm, I am trying to find out if the Capital One Costco MC has a Foreign Exchange transaction fee (2.5% generally). I will contact them directly tomorrow to see what they say. In the U.S. It looks like Capital One has no foreign transaction fee, but it doesn’t really show or answer this on the Canadian website.

GreedyRates says:

Kier,

The Costco Canada Capital One Platinum MasterCard does charge a foreign transaction fee of 2.5%. The cardholder agreement reads as follows:

“We will bill you in Canadian dollars when you use your Card to make a Transaction in a foreign currency. The Transaction amount will be converted to Canadian dollars using the MasterCard rate of exchange current at the time MasterCard processes the Transaction. When the converted Transaction amount is posted to your Account, we will add to the converted Transaction amount a foreign currency conversion charge equal to 2.5% of the converted Transaction amount.”

Hope that clarifies things,

GreedyRates staff

Rita says:

Just contacted the chat box on the Canadian site. (Noticed on the American site that I was directed to first, does not charge the fx fee.)
“We will bill you in Canadian dollars when you use your Card to make a Transaction in a foreign currency. The Transaction amount will be converted to Canadian dollars using the MasterCard rate of exchange current at the time MasterCard processes the Transaction. When the converted Transaction amount is posted to your Account, we will add to the converted Transaction amount a foreign currency conversion charge equal to 2.5% of the converted Transaction amount.”

Pat says:

thanks for the tip, I will be traveling soon to South America

Gilles says:

As a Costco member I was glad to see your note. However I checked with Costco and they state that they apply a 2.5% conversion charge like so many others.

GreedyRates says:

As we’ve stated before Costco absoultey charges 2.5% foreign trsnaction fee. It says so in their disclosures:

“We will bill you in Canadian dollars when you use your Card to make a Transaction in a foreign currency. The Transaction amount will be converted to Canadian dollars using the MasterCard rate of exchange current at the time MasterCard processes the Transaction. When the converted Transaction amount is posted to your Account, we will add to the converted Transaction amount a foreign currency conversion charge equal to 2.5% of the converted Transaction amount.”

GreedyRates Staff

Jay says:

I noticed that Rogers card converts foreign currency to us$ first and then converts it to can$ as it says. Chases cards have different ways, I think it converts directly to can$. What is the big difference? Thanks!

GreedyRates says:

Hi Jay,

We reviewed the disclosure statements of both companies, and spoke to a few issuers. We believe it’s 2 sides of the same coin, and both processes are the same. Rogers has actually been transparent in the way it describes its transaction flow – it is using the method (without the fees) used by all the other big Canadian banks. We believe Chase is using the same method, but has not articulated the process in as much detail as Rogers.

Regardless, when spending U.S. dollars it shouldn’t make a difference. The only time it could make a difference is if your spending in say Euros, then the euros are converted to U.S. dollars, then converted to CDN dollars. We think everyone does it that way, as the U.S. dollar is used as the peg. If anyone has any other informed perspective, we would be more than happy to include it.

Rogers reads as follows: “All transactions made in a foreign currency will be converted first to US dollars and then to Canadian dollars at the exchange rate(s) established by MasterCard and in effect on the date that we post the transaction to your Account. Rogers Bank will not charge you any additional foreign currency conversion fees.”

Chase reads as follows: “We will bill you in Canadian Currency if you use your account to make a transaction in foreign currency. We will
convert it into Canadian currency at the exchange rate set by Visa International in effect at the time we post the
transaction to your account”

GreedyRates says:

Hi Jay,

Rogers has just changed their disclosure statement regarding foreign transactions today. It now reads: “Transactions on your Account will be billed in Canadian currency. Transactions in a foreign currency are converted to Canadian dollars at the rate established by MasterCard International in effect on the date that we post the transaction to your Account (which may not be the same date as the date of the transaction).”

It now reads the same as that of Chase.

GreedyRates Staff

Jay says:

Thanks a lot for the explanation!

E B says:

Hello GredyRates Staff,
I just received the disclosure statement with my new card. It reads:

“All transactions made in a foreign currency will be converted first to US dollars and then to Canadian dollars at the exchange rate(s) established by MasterCard and in effect on the date that we post the transaction to your Account. Rogers Bank will not charge you any additional foreign currency conversion fees.”

I prefer the version that you quoted.

GreedyRates says:

Hi EB,

Given that MC is exchanging at the mid-market/spot rate it should make no difference. In fact, we’re not sure the other banks don’t do the same thing, but just aren’t articulating the transactional steps.

Regardless, we did some research. If you wanted to exchange your money today from Canadian (CDN) to British Pounds (GBP), you’d get .50091 pounts per CDN dollar (rounded to 5 decimal points). However if we went from CDN to US first, we’d get .72302 US. Then if we went from US to GBP we’d get .69280 GBP. If we multiply .72302 X .69280 we’d get .500908, which if we round to 5 decimal points would be .50091, the same exchange rate, as that if we went directly from CDN to GBP.

All that said, our understanding is Rogers will be changing their language to conform with everyone elses, because this has caused more confusion than clarity, and their process (which is actually MasterCard’s process, since they perform the exchange, not Rogers)), to our understanding is consistent with everyone elses. Regarldess, if done at the spot rate, it shouldn’t have an impact.

Hope that helps,

GreedyRates Staff

Sandra says:

Is it still in my best interests to use this mastercard when travelling in Europe, saving the foreign exchange charge or will it end up costing me more in the end now that I know it is converted first to U.S. dollars than CAD?

thanks,
SP

GreedyRates says:

Hi Sandra,

It is absolutely still in your best interest to use a no foreign transaction fee credit card when travelling in Europe. It makes no mathematical difference whether Rogers converts your Euros first into USD then to CDN, or first into CDN. Here’s the math explaining why, using the the real exchange rates MasterCard used for Feb 11, 2016.

1. Euro to USD =.886289. US to CDN =.713725. Now multiply .886289 X .713725 =.632566
2. Euro to CDN = .632567

You can see there is absolutely no difference, except for what amounts to a rounding error.

As we explained in the comments of another article, MasterCard isn’t charging a tansaction fee everytime it performs a currency conversion. It’s using wholesale rates. As a result there’s no impact on your exchange rate by using the USD as the base currency. The only difference that will impact the cardholder will be the exchange rates used by Visa and MasterCard. To that effect, we have seen some discrepencies, where sometimes Visa is more expensive, and other times MasterCard. However, we have noticed that when Visa is more expensive it deviates from the mean to a greater extent then MasterCard.

No matter what, you’re better off paying no foreign transaction fee sthan 2.5% that’s for sure!

Hope that helps,

GreedyRates Staff

Sandra says:

wow! – complicated but I appreciate the detailed response!

thankyou!

GreedyRates says:

Sorry! isn’t there a proverb, “genius is the ability to make the complicated, uncomplicated.” Well ee’re not geniuses (although we might be nerds). Bottom line, use your Rogers no foreign transaction fee credit card while in Europe, you’ll save 2.5% on every transaction. The rest is just a proof.

Dennis says:

This article is misleading. Rogers does give you 1.75% cash back but only on purchases of Rogers products. That will not help when making foreign purchases when you will get nothing back.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Dennis,

Fortunately you’re incorrect. Cardholders earn 1.75% cash back on ALL purchases, and can redeem their cash back earnings as a statement credit against ALL purchases as well. For whatever reason, Rogers hides the fact that cardholders CAN redeem once per year for a cash back statement credit in their fine print – not just against Rogers bills and services. We confirmed it directly with Rogers as well.

You can read it here in the cards discolsure: “You can redeem points towards an eligible purchase made with your Rogers Platinum MasterCard® equal to or greater than $20.00 and up to the full transaction amount, or the cash value of your rewards balance, whichever is less. Or, you can contact Rogers Bank once per year to receive an annual statement credit for the value of the rewards you have earned during that period.”

Hope that helps clear things up a little.

GreedyRates Staff

Christine says:

Just a heads up, not ALL Sears Mastercards were picked up by Scotiabank. I made the mistake of opening the Sears Voyage MasterCard in December 2014 instead of the basic card. As of Monday January 4, 2016 my card has been cancelled. I was not given an option to transfer to the Momentum card by Scotibank and they said there might be a product available for me by the end of this year. I was also not offered to transfer to another Chase product either.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Christine,

Yes, you’re correct. Scotia cancelled the Sears Voyage MasterCard as of January 4th (without converting it) and did not convert the Sears store card either.

Thanks for clarifying,

GreedyRates Staff

Lee says:

NEW SUMMARY OF CARDS REQUIRED
Hi this has all been very helpful and now that there has been input from other sources, is it possible that you can list another summary of cards including the ones that helpful users brought up? Because now I’m really confused. Lol. Thanks so much. Lee

GreedyRates says:

Hi Lee,

We just added the newly issued Rogers Platinum MasterCard, which does not charge a foreign transaction fee. We did not include the Sears MasterCard, since it has been discontinued.

Best,

GreedyRates

Girlie says:

I still have the Sears MasterCard, but now converted to Scotiabank (billing wise), but the actual card is still Sears MasterCard.
It says in the disclaimer that they still do not charge the foreign currency conversion charge. I will call them later to confirm.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Girlie,

Scotia has so far committed to maintaining no foreign transaction fees on converted Sears accounts, even when you get your new Scotia Momentum cards. Scotia is not waiving foreign transaction fees for anyone except former Sears cardholders.

Best,

GreedyRates Staff

Craig says:

Hey Greedyrates – so, I took your advice, and applied online for this card. I just finished a trip to the US and was amazed at how much I got hammered with exchange rates etc (TD First Class Infinite card). So, here is my story (You might want to change your recommendation). Also, I have an impeccable credit rating, high limit on my personal visa card, etc etc.

I haven’t heard about my application for awhile (3 weeks) so I phone up the Chase toll free number and spoke to the rep – it was denied. So I asked why, and was told that because my current card at the time had a high balance on it (since paid off because when I switched over to TD Aeroplan I got a bonus month without a statement) that is why it was rejected – so I said just check it now – again, the figures they had were wrong. He said they didn’t check anything else except the balance and that was it.

So I had a bit of time on my hands and asked to be put through to a customer service rep, and then was told that they did a full credit check etc – which is bogus because the front line guy told me that they did not do that, etc etc.

All in all a BAD experience, and you should update your recommendations. I was also told that my purchasing history did not fit the kind of client they wanted – so if they are looking for people who spend $4 – 5000 dollars a month in the states then yeah, I don’t fit their criteria (I do that here in Canada), but that is not what your recommendation says –

sara says:

The Scotia Momentum card which replaced the Sears Mc has no exchange fee, plus there’s 0.5-1% cash back.

Sue says:

Hi Sara

I haven’t been able to get this information confirmed with SCOTIA Momentum officials. Do you have it in writing from Scotia?

Cheers
Sue

sam says:

You have over looked Amazom no fee no foreign exchange rates cedit card. Available to Canadians

GreedyRates says:

Hi Sam, you’re correct, Chase’s Amazon Visa card in Canada does not charge foreign transaction fees. Another option – although we love the sign-up bonus of 5 free nights on the Marriott card.

Gloria says:

Sears Financial (MasterCard) confirmed today there are no fte’s charged with the sale to Scotiabank and no plan to change this benefit. Currency conversion is based on the MasterCard rate at the time of the transaction.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Gloria,

We’ll have to monitor, as it’s doubtful the Sears or Chase representatives know exactly what’s going to happen prior to the card converting to a Scotia product.

GreedyRates Staff

Sue says:

Hi

Any update to this inquiry regarding US transaction fees when using Scotia MasterCard Momentum credit card. In the US?

Cheers and thanks
Sue

GreedyRates says:

Hi Sue,

Good news. If you haven’t already, Scotia will be replacing your Sears MasterCard with the no-fee Scotia Momentum cash back card. Scotia will be honouring the terms and conditions of the converted Sears card, meaning they will NOT charge a foreign transaction fee on the newly issued card. Scotia sent out a notice that included the following: “There are no changes to the interest rates, fees or other Card features at this time. If we make any changes to your rates or fees in the future, we will tell you first.”

Hope that helps,

GreedyRates Staff

terry says:

If you question your bank about this, it would seem that they may now have just built this in to their ‘exchange rate’. I think they no longer want to mention the term ‘foreign transaction fee’ because i suspect they know people hate that. If you ask RBC about it, they claim that there is no ‘Foreign Transaction Fee’, and there is only the exchange rate. BUT, pay attention to the spread on that ‘Exchange Rate’. I just did a mock buy and sell for $1.00 on the RBC Exchange Currency Converter site. Buy rate: 1.3454. Sell rate: 1.2762. So the current spread is: 7.88%.
From experience I know that traditionally the bank spreads have generally been between 4 and 5%, typically closer to 5%. So, it looks like they are now just adding the 2.4% to the exchange rate, probably so they can claim they don’t have a ‘Foreign Transaction Fee’.
Hmmm… almost smells of a class action lawsuit.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Terry,

Great observation, you’re absolutely right. Anytime you exchange money at the bank, or at a foreign exchange bureau, they combine both the exchange rate and their fee into the exchange rate they quote you. Often times, they charge a lot more than 2.4% above the spot rate for smaller transactions.

However, on a credit card it’s different. Because of previous class action lawsuits, credit card issuers are now required to show exactly how much they are charging you in foreign transaction fees (usually 2.5%). They then charge you the foreign exchange rate that MasterCard or Visa are able to secure (close to the spot rate), which is usually, if not always better than an individual is able to secure for him or herself.

That’s why, when you can find a credit card that doesn’t charge a foreign transaction fee, you’re actually getting the best exchange rate possible. No froeign transaction fee, plus the spot rate.

GreedyRates Staff

terry says:

Right. Actually, I need to partly take back what I said. RBC DOES actually advise you of the 2.5% foreign transaction fee when talking about credit cards, but the wording they gave me is “the foreign transaction fee comes directly from Visa/Mastercard International”. If I understand what you are saying, it is actually the other way around….. Visa/Mastercard dictate the exchange rate, but the banks just add the 2.5% Foreign Fee. If that is true, then they are misleading people by saying that Visa/Mastercard is the culprit.

Then, as you point out, if you are unlucky enough to need to exchange the money at the bank, then they merge them together calling it ‘exchange rate’.

Luckily I got the Marriott card last spring when they had that great points offer to Canadians.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Terry,

You’re correct, the foreign transaction fee is charged by the credit card issuer / bank, not Visa or MasterCard. That’s why RBC is able to charge a foreign transaction fee of 2.5% on foreign credit card spend but Chase Canada (Marriott & Amazon) and Rogers Bank MasterCard do not.

GreedyRates Staff

sanjeev says:

HSBC premier.No annual fee. No ftf.

GreedyRates says:

You are correct, the HSBC Premier MasterCard does not charge an annual fee, although you have to be an HSBC Premier Checking account customer, and maintain minimum of $100,000 with HSBC. Also, we checked both the HSBC Premier and the HSBC Premier World, from what we read, both charge the foreign transaction fee (ftf). If you’ve read otherwise, please let us know where.

Hope that helps,

GreedyRates Staff

Rednell says:

Now that Chase has sold it Canadian credit card holdings to ScotiaBank, it would seem we will no longer have any options left to avoid the greedy foreign transaction fees. I am assuming, with great hope, that I will have until the second week in November to avoid the fee when I use my current Sears Mastercard to pay off the balance of my booking.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Miss Rednell,

Even if Scotia adds the foreign transaction fees, it will likely only do so after the conversion of the card, which may take a little time (look out for a letter soon). There are other options in the marketplace, such as the Amazon and Marriott card (both Chase, so who knows what will happen to them in the next year), and the new Rogers MasterCard recently eliminated their foreign transaction fees.

Hope that helps,

GreedyRates Staff

Ziad says:

I thought only the Sears card was sold to Scotiabank. As a student studying in the USA, I rely on my Chase cards to save 2.5% on everything I buy and still get 1% cash back, with no annual fee. I pay my tuition, rent, and all living expenses on that card. That saves me 2000 dollars a year and I still get that cash back! The exchange rate at my bank is actually higher than the Visa rate!

GreedyRates says:

Hi Ziad,

You are correct, Chase has only sold the Sears credit card portfolio to Scotia. However, Chase also sold its Canadian credit card operations to Scotia. We would suspect (and it’s only a suspicion) that the writing is on the wall for it’s other programs in Canada, which are very small by comparison to Sears. Obviously keep your Amazon card while it lasts, but don’t be surprised by a change sometime in the future.

GreedyRates Staff

Eddy says:

They sold their Canadian division so Scotiabank would be managing the Amazon credit card for Chase in Canada.That’s what I think.Chase no longer has a credit card division in Canada.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Eddy,

As of right now, Chase has sold its Canadian operations to Scotia. Chase still owns the Amazon.ca credit card portfolio and manages it, although it is being serviced by Scotia. We expect Chase to divest the portfolio itself in the short term.

Hope that helps clarify things,

Greedyrates Staff

Yvonne says:

I was notified a couple of days ago that my amazon.ca rewards visa will be closed by March 15, 2018, because the cc relationship between amazon.ca and Chase ends by that day. 🙁

Michael says:

You can check out our article on the situation here:
https://www.greedyrates.ca/blog/chase-sounds-final-death-knell-amazon-marriott-cards/

GreedyRates Staff

pats says:

Rogers platinum mastercard now has 0% foreign exchange fees. Annual Fee will be waived for the first year, and thereafter if you use your Rogers Bank Platinum MasterCard® to preauthorize payments for any Rogers monthly bill.

GreedyRates says:

Thanks for the update Pats!

Jimmy says:

Update: I just called Rogers customer service. The $29 annual fee is waived for the first year (even though it does not say so on the letter that comes with the card), and will be waived in future years if you pay your Rogers bill with the card.
Furthermore, there is currently no foreign currency conversion fee, but there will be starting October 19, 2016. There is still cashback of 4% on foreign currency purchases, so before October 19 is a good time for using this card for foreign currency purchases.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Jimmy,

It’s still the best card in Canada for foreign purchases even after October 19th. You get 4% cashback on foreign purchases, pay 2.5% in foreign transaction fees, for a net gain of 1.5%. Either of the two other options (Amazon or Marriott), give you 1% rewards max, with no fee, for a net gain of 1%.

Moreover, Rogers gives you 1.75% cashback on ALL other purchases, which is massive for a no-fee card.

GreedyRates Staff

cquinn says:

Chase also offers an Amazon.ca Visa that comes with 0% foreign transaction fee. Even better, it has no annual fee!

Saj says:

Sears MasterCard is also from Chase and comes with 0% foreign transaction fee and no annual fees.

GreedyRates says:

Hi Saj,

Given the announcement that Sears is ending its credit card partnership with Chase, not sure how long that card is going to last!

GreedyRates Staff

Ali says:

Same goes for Smazon.ca by March 15, 2018!

Michael says:

You can check out our article on the situation here:
https://www.greedyrates.ca/blog/chase-sounds-final-death-knell-amazon-marriott-cards/

GreedyRates Staff

Alec Martin says:

Chase has now discontinued the Amazon.ca card, all accounts are to be closed March 15, 2018

Michael says:

You can check out our article on the situation here:
https://www.greedyrates.ca/blog/chase-sounds-final-death-knell-amazon-marriott-cards/

GreedyRates Staff

Tami says:

Chase is cutting their ties with Amazon in March 2018.

Michael says:

You can check out our article on the situation here:
https://www.greedyrates.ca/blog/chase-sounds-final-death-knell-amazon-marriott-cards/

GreedyRates Staff

P. Martin says:

Just received a letter from Chase and the Amazon Card is being terminated at end of Feb 2018. It was good while it lasted.

Joey Middleton says:

Sorry to say but Amazon is ending its relationship with Chase

Michael says:

You can check out our article on the subject here: https://www.greedyrates.ca/blog/chase-sounds-final-death-knell-amazon-marriott-cards/

GreedyRates Staff

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