Best Cards With No Foreign Transaction Fees for August 2021

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Even if the farthest you’ve traveled this year is from your couch to the kitchen, a card with no foreign transaction fees can be a good way to earn rewards at home in preparation for a post-pandemic international adventure. 

If you’re in the market for a new card, choosing one with no foreign transaction fees can offer far more value than just saving you a fee when you swipe in a foreign country — especially during a pandemic when international travel is likely not top of mind. These cards have rewards that can just as easily be used at home as abroad, and will set you up for success on your next trip across the ocean. 

Cards offering no foreign transaction fees let you skip the charges you can incur when you purchase items in a foreign currency. Keeping a card with no foreign fees in your wallet can save you money and hassle when it’s time to buy food, tickets, or souvenirs on a future trip. And while you’re just dreaming of your next vacation from your couch, these cards can still save you money on everyday things. 

Before You Start

Any high-interest credit card can also lead to debt. Make sure you pay down any existing high-interest debt before you open a new credit card, and establish healthy credit habits like paying your full balance on time each month.

Best Cards With No Foreign Transaction Fees

Capital One Savor Cash Rewards Credit Card
Good for Spending on Vacation and at Home
Capital One Savor Cash Rewards Credit Card
Editor’s Score: (4.1/5)
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Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
Good for Travel Redemptions
Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
Editor’s Score: (4.5/5)
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Chase Sapphire Reserve®
Good for Premium Travel Benefits
Chase Sapphire Reserve®
Editor’s Score: (4.3/5)
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Citi Premier® Card
Good for Travel Rewards on Everyday Spending
Citi Premier® Card
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Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card
Good for Earning Flexible Miles
Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card
Editor’s Score: (4.3/5)
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Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards Credit Card
Good for Simple Cash Back
Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards Credit Card
Editor’s Score: (4.2/5)
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Journey Student Rewards from Capital One
Good for Students Studying Abroad
Journey Student Rewards from Capital One
Editor’s Score: (3.1/5)
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Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card
Good for Business Travelers
Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card
Editor’s Score: (4.1/5)
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Capital One Savor Cash Rewards Credit Card
Good for Spending on Vacation and at Home

Capital One Savor Cash Rewards Credit Card

Editor’s Score: (4.1/5)
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Rewards rate:

Earn unlimited 4% cash back on dining, entertainment and popular streaming services. Earn 3% at grocery stores Earn 1% on all other purchases.

  • Intro bonus: $300
  • Annual fee: $95
  • Regular APR: 15.99% – 24.99% (Variable)
  • Recommended credit score: 670-850 (Good to Excellent)

Overview

If you enjoy hitting the town, then the Capital One Savor Rewards Credit Card can make a great addition to your wallet. You’ll get unlimited 4% cash back on dining and entertainment, 2% cash back at grocery stores, and 1% on all other purchases, plus earn 8% cash back on tickets through Vivid Seats through January 2022. 

You can also get a $300 sign-up bonus if you spend $3,000 within the first three months of account opening. This card does have a $95 annual fee and a variable APR of 15.99%-24.99%. There’s no limit to the cash back you can earn, and rewards don’t expire as long as your account remains open. 

A few other perks of the Savor Rewards card include cellphone insurance, car rental insurance, a $10 Lyft credit if you take five rides in a calendar month, extended warranty, and price protection.

Why we chose this card

This card is a great alternative to the travel card options on our list. Instead of travel rewards, it’s most useful for the purchases you’ll be making while you’re actually on your next trip, across broad dining and entertainment categories.  Here’s what qualifies in the “entertainment” category:

  • Movie and theater tickets
  • Concert tickets
  • Record stores
  • Video rentals
  • Tourist attractions
  • Amusement parks
  • Aquariums and zoos
  • Dance hall, billiard, and pool establishments
  • Bowling alleys
  • Live sporting events

While this card is a great choice for international spending, it’s also a good spending tool to have at home for everyday dining and entertainment purchases or staycations. Based on average American spending data, we’ve calculated this card’s annual rewards value at $282.77 (after accounting for the annual fee).

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
Good for Travel Redemptions

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

Editor’s Score: (4.5/5)
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Rewards rate:

2X points on dining at restaurants including eligible delivery services, takeout and dining out and travel. 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.

  • Intro bonus: 100,000 points
  • Annual fee: $95
  • Regular APR: 15.99% – 22.99% Variable
  • Recommended credit score: 670-850 (Good to Excellent)

Overview

The Chase Sapphire Preferred offers 2x points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide, including eligible delivery services, takeout, and dining out. You’ll also earn 2x points on up to $1,000 in grocery store purchases per month through April 30, 2021 and 1x per dollar on all other purchases. 

There’s a welcome offer of 100,000 bonus points when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first three months from account opening. You’ll earn 5x points per $1 spent on Lyft rides through March 2022, up to $60 in statement credits toward a Peloton membership through Dec. 2021, 12 months complimentary DashPass from DoorDash, primary auto rental collision damage waiver, baggage delay insurance, trip cancellation/interruption insurance, and trip delay reimbursement. 

The Chase Sapphire Preferred has a $95 annual fee, and a variable APR of 15.99-22.99%.

Why we chose this card

This valuable travel tool helps you save on booking your next trip and maximize the points you earn with a premium redemption rate. Within the Chase Ultimate Rewards program, 1 point is usually equal to 1 cent, but the Chase Sapphire Preferred offers a boosted redemption 1.25 cents per point on travel booked with Chase. 

This card can be especially useful for racking up points if you pair it with a Chase Freedom card. You’ll be able to transfer your rewards from a Freedom card to your Chase Sapphire Preferred account and redeem them for the boosted 25% rate through Chase Ultimate Rewards.

Chase Sapphire Reserve®
Good for Premium Travel Benefits

Chase Sapphire Reserve®

Editor’s Score: (4.3/5)
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Rewards rate:

3X points on travel immediately after earning your $300 travel credit. 3X points on dining at restaurants including eligible delivery services, takeout and dining out. 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases.

  • Intro bonus: 60,000 points
  • Annual fee: $550
  • Regular APR: 16.99%-23.99% Variable
  • Recommended credit score: 740-850 (Excellent)

Overview

The Chase Sapphire Reserve is Chase’s top-of-the-line premium travel card. You’ll earn 3x points on worldwide travel, 3x points on dining at restaurants worldwide, 3x points on up to $1,000 in grocery purchases every month through April 30, 2021, and 1x points on all other purchases. There’s also a 60,000-point welcome bonus after you spend $4,000 within the first three months from account opening. 

The card does come with a pretty steep $550 annual fee, but its long list of valuable perks can help offset that cost. You’ll get a $300 annual travel credit, up to $100 fee credit toward TSA PreCheck or Global Entry, a Priority Pass Select membership, up to $120 credit toward Peloton purchases, up to $120 credit for DoorDash and a complimentary 12-month DashPass, and 10x points on Lyft purchases and a Lyft Pink membership. 

Why we chose this card

The Sapphire Reserve makes a great choice for frequent travelers looking to maximize future travel with premium benefits. If you spend a lot of time abroad, and have a healthy annual travel budget, the value you gain can quickly offset this card’s high price. 

Chase Sapphire Reserve is one of the most valuable travel cards available thanks to its premium 50% redemption rate boost through Chase Ultimate Rewards. Usually points are worth 1 cent apiece, but you’ll get a boosted redemption value of 1.5 cents per point with the Reserve when you redeem for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards. You can further maximize your earnings with this card by pairing it with a cash back Chase card like the Freedom Unlimited or Freedom Flex, pool all of your points in your Reserve account, then redeem them for the 50% boosted redemption rate on travel.

Citi Premier® Card
Good for Travel Rewards on Everyday Spending

Citi Premier® Card

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Rewards rate:

Earn 3 Points per $1 spent at Restaurants and Supermarkets. Earn 3 Points per $1 spent at Gas Stations, Air Travel and Hotels. Earn 1 Point per $1 spent on all other purchases

  • Intro bonus: 80,000 points
  • Annual fee: $95
  • Regular APR: 15.99% – 23.99% (Variable)
  • Recommended credit score: 670-850 (Good to Excellent)

Overview

The Citi Premier Card has no foreign transaction fees and earns points on everyday spending, for a $95 annual fee. You’ll get 3x points at restaurants, 3x points at supermarkets, 3x points at gas stations, 3x points on air travel and hotels, and 1x points on all other purchases.

You can also earn 80,000 bonus points when you spend $4,000 within three months of opening your card and a $100 annual hotel savings benefit on a single hotel stay of $500 or more booked through Citi’s ThankYou Rewards program. You can redeem points through the program or transfer your points to one of Citi’s participating airline loyalty programs.

Why we chose this card

Purchases you make with Citi Premier earn Citi ThankYou Rewards points, a flexible currency for cash back or travel rewards. You can earn points by swiping your card in qualifying bonus categories, then redeem your points for travel (points are most valuable toward travel redemptions), gift cards, loan payments, statement credits, or direct deposit. 

You can also transfer points to Citi’s airline transfer partners, though the value of your points will vary based on which partner you choose. Most of Citi’s transfer partners are international airlines (such as Emirates and AirFrance-KLM), so this can be a valuable feature if you frequently fly internationally. 

Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card
Good for Earning Flexible Miles

Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card

Editor’s Score: (4.3/5)
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Rewards rate:

Earn unlimited 2X miles on every purchase, every day.

  • Intro bonus: 60,000 miles
  • Annual fee: $95
  • Regular APR: 17.24% – 24.49% (Variable)
  • Recommended credit score: 670-850 (Good to Excellent)

Overview

The Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card earns two miles per dollar on every purchase. It comes with a welcome offer of 60,000 miles when you spend $3,000 in the first 3 months. 

The card has a $95 annual fee, offers up to a $100 fee credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck, and comes with travel assistance and insurance protections.

Why we chose this card

The Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card offers a flat rate for earning miles on every dollar you spend, which you can put toward your next trip. If you spend an average $15,000 each year, for example, you’ll rack up 30,000 miles annually.

You’ll get the most value if you use your points to book travel. Plus, Capital One miles are an especially flexible rewards currency. You can redeem them through Capital One Travel or use Capital One’s Purchase Eraser to redeem miles for statement credits toward any eligible travel purchases you made in the last 90 days. Capital One also has 10 travel transfer partners. 

And while your travel plans are still grounded, Capital One allows you to redeem your miles at eligible restaurants and delivery services, for streaming service, or for wireless phone services through the Cover Your Purchases program (through April 2021).

Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards Credit Card
Good for Simple Cash Back

Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards Credit Card

Editor’s Score: (4.2/5)
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Rewards rate:

Earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase, every day.

  • Intro bonus: $200
  • Annual fee: $0
  • Regular APR: 15.49% – 25.49% (Variable)
  • Recommended credit score: 670-850 (Good to Excellent)

Overview

The Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards Credit Card is a simple flat cash back card with no annual or foreign transaction fees. You’ll get 1.5% cash back on every purchase you make. The card comes with a welcome bonus of $200 when you spend $500 in the first three months of account opening. 

You can also benefit from an introductory 0% APR on purchases for 15 months from account opening, and 15.49%-25.49% APR after that. 

Why we chose this card

For a simple card that has no foreign transaction fees, the Capital One Quicksilver is as straightforward as it gets. If your spending isn’t concentrated within common bonus categories, or you simply value flexibility, this can make a great card option. You’ll get 1.5% cash back on every purchase you make, for no annual fee, and a nice 0% interest introductory period. 

This card can really snag you some savings both at-home and on your next international trip. For example, if you spend $3,000 per month you could earn $540 in cash back rewards every year. This card also offers the ability to redeem your cash back through a check, statement credit, gift card, or directly through PayPal or Amazon.com.

Journey Student Rewards from Capital One
Good for Students Studying Abroad

Journey Student Rewards from Capital One

Editor’s Score: (3.1/5)
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Rewards rate:

Earn 1% cash back on all your purchases. Pay on time to boost your cash back to a total of 1.25% for that month.

  • Intro bonus: No current offer
  • Annual fee: $0
  • Regular APR: 26.99% (Variable)
  • Recommended credit score: (No Credit History)

Overview

With the Capital One Journey Student Rewards Card, you can get automatic 1% cash back on all purchases, plus boost your cash back to 1.25% each month you pay on time. The card has no annual fee and you’ll be subject to a variable 26.99% APR.

There is no cap to the amount of rewards you can earn, and you can redeem your cash back as statement credits or checks. You’ll also be eligible for up to $60 in credits toward qualified streaming service subscriptions when you pay using your card.

Why we chose this card

For students ready to adventure abroad, the Capital One Journey Student Rewards card is a good starter credit card that also earns some cash back. No foreign transaction fees and flat cash back rewards make it a great option for your international travel. However, the card does come with a high variable APR, so make sure you’ve established healthy credit habits and can pay your bill on time and in full every month to avoid paying interest. 

Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card
Good for Business Travelers

Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card

Editor’s Score: (4.1/5)
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Rewards rate:

Earn 3 points per $1 on the first $150,000 spent on travel and select business categories each account anniversary year. Earn 1 point per $1 on all other purchases–with no limit to the amount you can earn.

  • Intro bonus: 100,000 points
  • Annual fee: $95
  • Regular APR: 15.99% to 20.99% Variable
  • Recommended credit score: 670-850 (Good to Excellent)

Overview

The Chase Ink Business Preferred Credit Card offers 3x points on travel; shipping purchases; internet, cable, and phone services; and advertising purchases made with social media sites and search engines on up to a combined $150,000 per year, then 1x points on all other purchases. 

It comes with a $95 annual fee and a variable 15.99-20.99% APR. You can earn 100,000 bonus points after spending $15,000 on purchases in the first three months after account opening. Cardholders also get extra employee cards at no additional cost.

Why we chose this card

If your business requires international travel, but that travel isn’t necessarily your most frequent business cost, Chase Ink Business Preferred’s wide-ranging rewards categories make it a great option for earning year-round.  And when it comes to redemptions, the value is tough to beat. You can redeem your points through Chase Ultimate Rewards for 25% more when using them to book travel, plus earn points back on travel. That can increase the value of your welcome bonus from $1,000 in cash back to $1,250 in travel.

Make sure you use your card for the qualifying business expenses to maximize your rewards, and spend $15,000 in the first three months to nab that valuable sign-up bonus. But your 3x rewards categories are capped at $150,000 in purchases every year, so if your business routinely spends more than that you might want to consider a different card.

Best Cards with No Foreign Transaction Fees of August 2021 Summary

CardGood ForSign Up BonusRewardsAnnual Fee
Capital One Savor Rewards Credit Card*Spending on Vacation and at Home$300 if you spend $3,000 in the first three months4% cash back on dining and entertainment, 2% cash back at grocery stores, 1% on all other purchases$95
Chase Sapphire PreferredTravel Redemptions100,000 bonus points when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first three months from account opening2x points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide, eligible delivery services, takeout and dining out, 1x points on all other purchases$95
Chase Sapphire ReservePremium Travel Benefits60,000 bonus points if you spend $4,000 in the first three months from account opening3x points on worldwide travel, 3x points on dining at restaurants, 1x points on all other purchases$550
Citi Premier Card*Travel Rewards on Everyday Spending80,000 bonus points when you spend $4,000 within three months of opening your card3x points at restaurants, 3x points at supermarkets, 3x points at gas stations, 3x points on air travel and hotels, 1x points on all other purchases$95
Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card*Earning Flexible Miles60,000 miles when you spend $3,000 in the first 3 months of account opening2 miles per dollar on every purchase$95
Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards Credit Card*Simple Cash Back$200 when you spend $500 in the first three months of account opening.1.5% cash back on every purchase you make$0
Capital One Journey Student Rewards*Students Studying AbroadN/A1% cash back on all purchases, plus boost your cash back to 1.25% if you pay on time$0
Chase Ink Business Preferred Credit CardBusiness Travelers100,000 bonus points after spending $15,000 on purchases in the first three months after account opening3x points on travel; shipping purchases; internet, cable, and phone services; and advertising purchases made with social media sites and search engines on up to a combined $150,000 per year, then 1x points on all other purchases $95

Guide to Using Credit Cards Internationally

What Is a Foreign Transaction Fee?

A foreign transaction fee is a fee charged by your credit card issuer to make a purchase in a foreign currency. Foreign transaction fees are usually a flat percentage of your charge paid to your issuer for processing the transaction. Depending on the currency you make a purchase in, this fee may be higher or lower. 

What Currency Should I Pay In?

If your credit card does charge foreign transaction fees, you should select to pay in the local currency instead of in U.S. dollars when swiping abroad. This way your credit card network will handle the conversion. Otherwise, the merchant selects the exchange rate (known as dynamic currency conversion) to convert the cost of the item, which may result in a higher cost. 

What Credit Card Issuers Are Accepted Abroad?

Visa and Mastercard are the two most widely accepted credit card networks outside of the U.S.  While American Express and Discover cards are accepted widely in the U.S., you’ll be more limited swiping on these networks outside of the United States. 

Do I Need a Chip Card?

You’ll want to make sure your credit card comes with a chip, which is standard technology, especially in Europe. Not only are they increasingly common, but EMV chips provide more security against fraud than swiping the magnetic strip on the back of your card. You’ll know if your card has an EMV chip if you can insert it into a card reader when you make a purchase, rather than swiping. Some merchants may even deny your credit card if it does not have a chip. 

Foreign Transaction Fees by Issuer

IssuerForeign Transaction Fee
American Express2.7%
Bank of America3%
Barclays3%
Capital One0%
Chase3%
Citibank3%
Discover0%
U.S. Bank2-3%
Wells Fargo3%
Note: This table represents current fees found within pricing and terms agreements from each of these issuers as of March 2021. These charges apply to cards which do carry foreign transaction fees. Capital One and Discover charge no foreign transaction fees on any credit cards.

Methodology

EDITORIAL INDEPENDENCE

As with all of our credit card reviews, our analysis is not influenced by any partnerships or advertising relationships.

To determine our picks for the best no foreign transaction fee credit cards, we began with the pool of cards currently available that charge no fee for purchases you make abroad. Beyond that, our primary focus was on card rewards. While the types of cards offering no foreign transaction fees span different types of spenders and rewards-seekers, we recognize that a no foreign fee card implies use for travel (more specifically, international travel), and our picks reflect this.

We purposefully did not choose rewards cards from American Express or Discover. While cards on these networks are now accepted by most merchants within the U.S., they are not as widely accepted outside of the United States. Both of these issuers have solid travel options and several cards with no foreign transaction fees, but the cards on our list have a greater chance of acceptance as you travel abroad.

*All information about the Capital One Savor Rewards Credit Card, Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card, Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards Credit Card, Capital One Journey Student Rewards and Citi Premier Card has been collected independently by NextAdvisor and has not been reviewed by the issuer.