Credit cards with no foreign transaction fees

When you’re traveling to another country, using a credit card is an easy way to cover expenses without converting your cash into the local currency. But some credit cards come with a foreign transaction fee when you use the card abroad or on foreign websites. That fee increases the cost of anything you buy abroad.

Each credit card issuer sets its own rules regarding foreign transaction fees. None of Capital One’s credit cards come with this type of fee, which can help you save money when you’re traveling outside the U.S. (View important rates and disclosures.) Plus, many of Capital One’s cards offer rewards on qualifying purchases.

Here’s what to know about credit cards that don’t charge foreign transaction fees.

Key takeaways

  • A foreign transaction fee is a surcharge on credit card purchases made abroad.

  • Foreign transaction fees and currency conversion fees aren’t the same thing. 

  • Capital One doesn’t charge foreign transaction fees—or currency conversion fees—on any of its U.S.-issued credit cards. (View important rates and disclosures.)

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What is a foreign transaction fee?

A foreign transaction fee is a charge that may be added to a credit card, debit card or prepaid card transaction that’s made abroad. 

Card issuers often calculate the fee as a percentage of the transaction amount after it’s converted to U.S. dollars. For instance, say you buy a hat in London that costs £10, which converts to around $13. The foreign exchange fee would apply to the $13 price.

The fee usually ranges from around 1% to 3%, and it may be made up of smaller charges by the card network as well as the bank or credit card issuer. So if your card issuer charges a 1% fee and the card network charges 2%, then the total fee is 3%. 

While these fees may start small, they can add up and get costly if you’re making large purchases or you’re on an extended trip abroad.

Foreign transaction fees vs. currency conversion fees

When using your card while traveling, you may also run into currency conversion fees—which aren’t the same thing as foreign transaction fees. A currency conversion fee is charged by the card or ATM network for converting one currency to another. It’s usually around 1% of the purchase amount.

Not only does Capital One not charge foreign transaction fees—it doesn’t charge currency conversion fees either. (View important rates and disclosures.) But other issuers might.

Credit cards without foreign transaction fees from Capital One

Capital One doesn’t charge foreign transaction fees on any credit cards and debit cards that it issues within the U.S. (View important rates and disclosures.) But some of Capital One’s travel credit cards are especially well suited for traveling abroad because of the rewards programs and travel benefits.

Here’s a look at a couple of Capital One’s travel credit cards—and a couple of other Capital One cards too:

Venture from Capital One

Venture from Capital One is a travel rewards credit card that offers 2X miles on every purchase. And when you book hotels and rental cars through Capital One Travel, you get even more miles for a total of 5 miles per dollar spent. 

As a new cardholder, you can earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend at least $4,000 on the card within the first three months. You also get a $100 statement credit for TSA PreCheck® or Global Entry, which can help you speed through the airport.1 For all of these travel perks, you pay a $95 annual fee. (View important rates and disclosures.)

Venture X from Capital One

Venture X from Capital One charges a higher annual fee of $395, but it comes with several premium benefits. (View important rates and disclosures.) Cardholders earn 2X miles on every purchase and 5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel. And cardholders earn 10X miles when booking hotels and rental cars through Capital One Travel.

New cardholders also earn a welcome bonus of 75,000 miles after spending at least $4,000 within the first three months, plus another 10,000 mile anniversary bonus each year starting with your first anniversary. Travelers will love the additional $300 annual Capital One Travel credit, complimentary lounge access and a statement credit for either Global Entry or TSA PreCheck®.1 

Savor from Capital One

Savor from Capital One offers a strong credit card rewards rate. You earn an impressive 4% cash back on dining, entertainment and popular streaming service purchases, plus 3% cash back at grocery stores and 1% on all other purchases.2 Cardholders also earn 5% cash back on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel.

The card also comes with a one-time $300 cash bonus when you spend at least $3,000 on the card within three months of account opening. The annual fee is $95. (View important rates and disclosures.)

Quicksilver from Capital One

Quicksilver from Capital One is a cash rewards credit card that offers unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase—and 5% cash back on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel. Cardholders can also earn a one-time $200 cash bonus after spending $500 or more on purchases within three months of account opening. There’s no annual fee, making it an excellent choice for earning cash back. (View important rates and disclosures.)

How to get the most out of your credit card when traveling

Using a credit card abroad can help you pay for expenses easily and securely. But before you set off on your adventure, consider a few tips for using a credit card internationally:

  • Use a credit card with trip cancellation insurance. 

  • Review your credit card’s travel benefits.  

  • Book your trip through a travel booking site, such as Capital One Travel

  • Take at least two credit cards, if possible, in case one is lost, stolen or declined.

No foreign transaction fee credit cards in a nutshell

Foreign transaction fees can put a dent in your travel plans by increasing the cost of the things you buy abroad. But you can get around them by finding a card that doesn’t charge fees for foreign transactions. None of Capital One’s credit cards charge this type of fee. (View important rates and disclosures.) 

If you’re a frequent traveler, you might consider comparing travel credit cards from Capital One. These come with plenty of rewards and benefits that can help elevate your experience abroad.

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