Ouch!

American Express forum. Talk about AmEx credit cards like Blue, Gold, Platinum, Centurion, and more.
11 posts
GoCreditGo!
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Ouch!

Postby GoCreditGo! » Mon Jan 06, 2014 5:41 am

Just returned from holidays. 10K in charges results in $900 in foreign exchange fees. I think I need to revisit how I spend abroad.


DavidNY
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Postby DavidNY » Mon Jan 06, 2014 9:02 am

Welcome back. Which card did you use?

takeshi
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Postby takeshi » Mon Jan 06, 2014 9:19 am

IIRC the Platinum and Centurion are the only non-FTF personal cards.

On 10K spend the FTF can quickly add up.

samhradh
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Postby samhradh » Mon Jan 06, 2014 1:20 pm

Ouch is right. I never would've traveled abroad without a no FTF card. There are actually a lot of options: CSP, Barclay Arrival, Venture, Premier, many airline/hotel branded cards, etc. But if you're strictly talking AmEx then the Plat is your friend.
Citi Forward ($10.1K), AmEx Blue Cash Everyday ($30K), Chase Freedom ($12.4K), Discover it ($5.5K), Barclaycard Arrival ($12.5K), L.L. Bean Visa ($5K). FICO 806 (TU), 812 (EQ), 806 (EX).

chas0039
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Postby chas0039 » Mon Jan 06, 2014 3:08 pm

I feel your pain. Before I went to a card with no fees for foreign, I got caught for a few bucks when I was careful to make a transaction in $ and I still got dinged.

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djrez4
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Postby djrez4 » Mon Jan 06, 2014 4:29 pm

chas0039 wrote:I feel your pain. Before I went to a card with no fees for foreign, I got caught for a few bucks when I was careful to make a transaction in $ and I still got dinged.


You should NEVER request to be charged in USD when in a foreign country.

What you experienced is called Dynamic Currency Conversion (DCC). Foreign merchants offer to charge you in your home currency when finalizing the transaction. The problem is, the exchange rate is opaque and they can tack on additional fees (up to 7%) for the convenience of converting the transaction to your home currency.

Always ask to be charged in the local currency and pay with a card that waives forex fees.

More info:

http://thepointsguy.com/2013/07/just-say-no-to-dynamic-currency-conversion/
http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/china/1146772-using-credit-cards-china-great-cc-rip-off-dynamic-currency-conversion.html
[RIGHT][size=100]- Sapphire Preferred - Freedom - Ink - Platinum - Everyday Preferred -[/size]
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chas0039
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Postby chas0039 » Mon Jan 06, 2014 7:57 pm

djrez4 wrote:You should NEVER request to be charged in USD when in a foreign country.

What you experienced is called Dynamic Currency Conversion (DCC). Foreign merchants offer to charge you in your home currency when finalizing the transaction. The problem is, the exchange rate is opaque and they can tack on additional fees (up to 7%) for the convenience of converting the transaction to your home currency.

Always ask to be charged in the local currency and pay with a card that waives forex fees.

More info:

http://thepointsguy.com/2013/07/just-say-no-to-dynamic-currency-conversion/
http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/china/1146772-using-credit-cards-china-great-cc-rip-off-dynamic-currency-conversion.html


That is not what I did. I was online and the conversion was in my favor.

PhoenixDown
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Postby PhoenixDown » Mon Jan 06, 2014 11:30 pm

I didnt know about DCC so appreciate the heads up on that :)

GoCreditGo!
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Postby GoCreditGo! » Tue Jan 07, 2014 3:08 pm

The Gold charge one

DavidNY wrote:Welcome back. Which card did you use?

amexcurious
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Postby amexcurious » Wed Jan 08, 2014 5:29 pm

GoCreditGo! wrote:Just returned from holidays. 10K in charges results in $900 in foreign exchange fees. I think I need to revisit how I spend abroad.


That's almost 10%. I travel abroad multiple times every year and I've never seen that kind of FTF.

Can you give us a little more detail?



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