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As per this question about US banks, I would like to know if any Australian bank offers an account with an ATM card (or Visa/Mastercard debit card) with no or low fees for travellers using them in foreign cash machines.

This includes whether certain Australian banks have deals with certain other banks in other countries where fees are waived/reduced.

My current bank account seems to have too many and too high fees when I'm travelling. If there's a better one I may change banks when I get home.

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2 Answers 2

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28 Degrees offers a Mastercard (credit card) that doesn't charge international fees. If you put your card into credit and just withdraw your own money, you won't be charged cash advance fees.
But if you withdraw their money, you get charged at credit card interest rates until it is repaid. It's a way of avoiding the fees charged by the Australian banks when travelling abroad, but you might still get charged withdrawal fees by the local bank responsible for the ATM.

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What about the percentage charged when I withdraw overseas? That always seemed to be my bank charging it rather than the local one. –  hippietrail Jan 31 '12 at 14:46
    
Be warned that it's run by GE Money. –  nathanchere Dec 16 at 15:55

NAB currently charge a fee of $4 plus 2% on foreign cash withdrawls, and 2% on foreign transactions (other than cash withdrawls). However, if you have a NAB Gold account (which has a monthly fee unless you pay in a lot each month), then there are no foreign transaction fees (including no fees on foreign cash withdrawls). So, if you want to take money out abroad more than about 25 times a year, it's worth going for their Gold account.

A normal St George's account currently charges $5 plus 3% on overseas cash withdrawls, and 3% on foreign transactions, so NAB looks cheap... Commonwealth Bank charge a similar $5+3% / 3% fee structure, though they do have a cheaper rate of $2+3% on certain ATMs in New Zealand, Indonesia and Vietnam. Westpac also charge $5+3% / 3%, but they have a larger list of countries where the ATM from a particular bank will avoid you the $5 fee (but not the 3%).

Looks like there isn't a really obvious choice, unless you pay enough in every month to get one of the premium accounts for free. Well, unless you can talk NAB into letting you only pay for a Gold account for only the time you're away!

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Excellent answer @Gagravarr! You only left out my current bank, ANZ. I know they are in the same ballpark ±$1 ±1%. Do you know the amount of NAB's monthly fee? –  hippietrail Aug 13 '11 at 6:11
    
I linked to their Gold Account page so you can check the details, but it's currently $10/month unless you pay in at least $5,000/month –  Gagravarr Aug 13 '11 at 7:32
    
Even $10/month is two international withdrawals a month not including the percentage... –  hippietrail Aug 13 '11 at 7:36
    
Or probably about 25/year including it, hence that bit of the answer :) Guess it depends exactly how often you're away if it makes sense or not –  Gagravarr Aug 13 '11 at 7:37
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You do get a few extra bits on top of the no foreign fees part, might be worth you looking through their site and see if any of the other NAB Gold benefits are useful to you. Either way, you have the info now, so you can weight it up and decide! –  Gagravarr Aug 13 '11 at 8:08

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