Skip Foreign-Transaction Fees When You Head Overseas

Foreign-transaction fees can add up when you make purchases abroad, but there are ways to bypass them.

A couple pays for coffee with a credit card.
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Whether you’re traveling abroad or shopping online, foreign-transaction fees can take a toll when you use a credit card or debit card to make purchases with merchants outside the U.S. The fees, which many cards charge to process transactions made in a foreign currency, typically tack on an extra 3% of the purchase amount to your bill. Check your card’s transaction history to review the fees, which are typically listed separately from the charges that triggered them.

Dodge fees at the register

Subscribe to Kiplinger’s Personal Finance

Be a smarter, better informed investor.

Save up to 74%

Sign up for Kiplinger’s Free E-Newsletters

Profit and prosper with the best of expert advice on investing, taxes, retirement, personal finance and more - straight to your e-mail.

Profit and prosper with the best of expert advice - straight to your e-mail.

Sign up

To continue reading this article
please register for free

This is different from signing in to your print subscription

Why am I seeing this? Find out more here

Emma Patch
Staff Writer, Kiplinger's Personal Finance

Emma Patch joined Kiplinger in 2020. She previously interned for Kiplinger's Retirement Report and before that, for a boutique investment firm in New York City. She served as editor-at-large and features editor for Middlebury College's student newspaper, The Campus. She specializes in travel, student debt and a number of other personal finance topics. Born in London, Emma grew up in Connecticut and now lives in Washington, D.C.