When you travel overseas, you don’t want to look at the exchange rate you are getting on your credit card. And because you don’t want to look at it most people don’t. In fact, with most traditional routes you lose a ton exchanging currencies.

OzForex are a great Australian innovation. Basically, they are doing what is surely easy to do: offering currency conversion at a very, very low effective commission. I used it to transfer my vast wealth to Canada because the exchange rates offered were very close to spot and they had incredibly reasonable forward contracting.

Well now, you can take advantage of that as a traveller for smaller transactions with a pre-paid MasterCard. This seems well worth checking out. Sadly, they don’t offer this in Canada so I can’t try it out myself.

One Response to OzForex prepaid travel card

  1. Bruce says:

    They appear to take about a 1.2% cut currently.  The current quote for USD is 1.0279 vs 1.0396 interbank rate.

    This is quite good, assuming the fees are very low.  I have used XE Trade, which usually charges around 1.5-1.8%, so I’ll definitely check out OzForex.

    For travelling Aussies, I strongly recommend the 28 Degrees MasterCard http://www.28degreescard.com.au/ .  I have used this overseas for years, and from what I can tell (by comparing the transaction dates to rate histories), they are charging extremely close to the bank rate.  You can even pre-load the card with and do cash withdrawals from ATMs with no fees whatsoever (if the ATM itself doesn’t charge a fee).  

    Most banks hide their cut by giving very bad rates, knowing that few people check the rates on the day.  I think it would be appropriate to require banks to report both the rate charged and the interbank rate at the time the rate was processed.

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