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If you are planning a trip to Canada this year, you may be wondering if your credit card will work at stores and restaurants during your visit.
The good news is that if your card was issued by Visa or Mastercard, it will be accepted by most merchants in Canada. However, you will want to read the fine print of your cardholder agreement. Since you are traveling outside of the United States, you may be charged a foreign transaction fee, which can range from 3% to 5%. This may not sound like much but these costs can add up while you are traveling.
If you discover your current credit card charges a foreign transaction fee, you may want to find a card that does not charge these fees. Many travel credit cards waive foreign transaction fees and reward you for travel spending. Below, we have outlined some of the best travel cards with no foreign transaction fees:
The Barclaycard Arrival Plus® World Elite Mastercard® is a great option if you would like to earn miles for travel and are looking for a balance transfer credit card. Currently, Barclaycard is offering new cardholders 0% APR for 12 billing cycles on balance transfers made within the first 45 days of opening the account. While balance transfers will not earn miles, new customers can earn 70,000 bonus miles when they spend $5,000 on purchases within the first three months of opening their account. All purchases earn 2X miles per dollar. Points can be redeemed at any airline, any time, and cardholders get 5% of their miles back whenever they redeem points. Additionally, Barclaycard charges no foreign transaction fees, and the $89 annual fee is waived for the first year. The card has an APR of 18.24%, 22.24% or 25.24% variable based on your creditworthiness.
The Capital One® Venture® Rewards card gives all cardholders 2X miles for every dollar spent and 10X miles for every dollar spent on hotels.com/venture. The miles can be used at any hotel or on any airline, there are no blackout days and they don’t expire. There is a $95 annual fee, which is waived for the first year. Cardmembers get a $100 application fee credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®. New cardholders can earn 50,000 miles when they spend $3,000 within the first three months, which is worth $500 in travel expenses. The card has an APR of 17.99% - 25.24% (Variable).
Like many cards on the list, the Citi Premier℠ Card gives new cardholders an introductory offer. When new account holders spend $4,000 within the first three months of opening their account, they will earn 60,000 bonus points, which can be redeemed for $750 worth of airfare via the ThankYou Travel Center or $600 in gift cards at thankyou.com. All cardholders earn 3X points on travel and gas station purchases, 2X points on dining and entertainment, and one point for all other purchases. There is a $95 annual fee, but no foreign transaction fees. The card has an APR of 18.24%-26.24% (Variable).
Bank of America also offers a very competitive card for the the traveler: the Bank of America® Travel Rewards Credit Card. The card offers 1.5 points per dollar spent on all purchases with no limit, and the rewards never expire. Each point is worth one cent as a statement credit towards travel purchases, including hotels, flights, vacation packages, rental cards, cruises and baggage fees. If you’re a Preferred Rewards client, you can increase that bonus to 25% – 75%. New cardholders can earn 25,000 online bonus points if they spend $1,000 on their card within the first 90 days of opening the account. That is worth $250 in travel statement credits. New customers will get 12 billing cycles of 0% APR on new purchases. After the introductory rate expires, the standard APR of 16.99% - 24.99% Variable APR on purchases will apply, depending on your credit worthiness. The card has no annual fee, and something very important to travelers: no foreign transaction fees will be placed on transactions made outside of the United States.
The Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards card is not necessarily a “travel” card but it is one of the best cash back cards on the market. Consumers receive 1.5% back on all purchases—there is no limit on the amount you can earn and no rotating categories. In addition, you receive a $150 bonus after spending $500 on the card during the first three months of ownership. There is a 0% APR on both purchases and balance transfers for 15 months and then an ongoing APR between 16.24% - 26.24% (Variable). There is no annual fee or a foreign transaction fee on the card.
Finally, before leaving on your trip, make sure to contact your credit card company to let them know you will be traveling abroad. This way, they will flag your account to ensure that your card is not declined due to suspected fraudulent activity.