Traveling Abroad: Should You Have an EMV Charge card?


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Most international travelers learn?that overseas merchants prefer accepting credit cards with an EMV chip over those with a magnetic strip. But that doesn’t necessarily mean?you need to?apply for a chip-enabled card before you decide to travel abroad.

EMV cards can make some transactions more convenient

Although other countries have moved away from magnetic strip cards, will still be possible to make use of this old-fashioned technology overseas. Shopkeepers and restaurateurs might grumble a little, but most are equipped to accept cards without an EMV chip if you ask.

However, traveling without a chip-enabled card will probably be inconvenient at some self-service payment kiosks in Europe. They are commonly found at train stations, where customers can use a machine to buy tickets. Many don’t accept magnetic strip cards, so you might have to look for a station employee to process your transaction. This really is something of a hassle, and may cost you energy if you are on a tight schedule.

No foreign transaction fees should be priority one

Many American creditors are beginning to produce credit cards with EMV chip capability; you may have one out of your wallet right now. Consequently, there’s a different attribute you should be searching for inside a card to use overseas: foreign transaction fees.

It’s common for creditors to impose a fee (usually 3% from the transaction cost) on purchases made abroad. That might not sound like much, however it could tack a serious slice of change on your vacation. For instance, if you spend $5,000 during a month-long backpacking trip to Europe, with a card that charges a 3% foreign transaction fee, you’ll wind up needing to shell out an additional $150 in fees.

Looking for a card that charges no foreign transaction fees before you decide to board the plane is a great idea.

? MORE: NerdWallet’s Best ‘EMV With Signature’ Credit Cards

The Nerds’ favorite cards for overseas travel

Here are several a good credit score cards which come chip-enabled and charge no foreign transaction fees:


Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card is among the most widely used travel charge cards out there, and it’s easy to see why. You’ll earn 2 points for each dollar spent on travel and dining in restaurants and 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.

Usually, points earned with the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card are worth 1 cent each. But if you redeem them for traverse Chase’s online booking tool, their value rises by 25%. You’ll also have the option to transfer your suggests participating frequent traveler programs in a 1:1 ratio, which provides lots of flexibility.

The?signup bonus is excellent:?Earn 60,000 bonuses after you spend $4,000 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening. That’s $750 toward travel whenever you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards?. It charges an $95.

Capital One? Venture? Rewards Credit Card

The Capital One? Venture? Rewards Credit Card is a good choice if you are thinking about minimizing annual fees. As with the Barclaycard Arrival Plus? World Elite Mastercard?, you’ll earn 2 miles for each dollar spent. Each mile is worth $.01, and rewards can be redeemed for nearly any travel purchase in the form of an argument credit.

The Capital One? Venture? Rewards Credit Card’s signup bonus is impressive: Have a one-time bonus of 50,000 miles once you spend $3,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening, comparable to $500 in travel. Its annual fee is $0 for the first year, then $95.

Enjoy your chip trip!