The Best Debit Cards for International Travelers

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A while back I started researching the best debit cards for international travel.

Most banks charge fees to withdraw cash from a non-affiliated ATM and these fees can get pretty high especially while abroad. If you’re going to be traveling regularly, you want a debit card that is free of all fees as they can add up quickly. This may mean opening a new account at a new bank, but trust me it’s worth it!

With apps like Circle, you can transfer money nearly instantly between accounts, and make your life a whole lot better!

Best Debit Cards for Travel

Best Debit Cards for Travel

Here are the two debit card accounts I recommend all travelers open:

1. Charles Schwab Investor Checking

I can’t even begin to describe how thankful I am for the Charles Schwab Investor Checking account. What I’m about to tell you may come as a shock, but it’s true: Schwab refunds all ATM fees worldwide when using this debit card to withdraw cash. Yep, you read that right. Whether in the US, Mexico or abroad, any fees you incur while withdrawing cash at any ATM (inside a bank, grocery store, on the street, etc.) will be refunded at the end of the month. This is the main debit card I use to withdraw cash when traveling. What’s the catch you ask? There really isn’t one! Schwab Checking has no monthly fee, unlimited ATM refunds, round the clock customer service, and no minimum balance requirements. It pays a .15% APY on your balance. I always keep about $200 in this account for when I need it.

2. Capital One 360

As a back up, I travel with a Capital One 360 debit card as well. While Capital One 360 doesn’t refund other banks’ ATM fees, they don’t charge a fee to withdraw your own cash. So, as long as you can find a free ATM withdraw, this card works great! There’s also no monthly fee or minimum balance requirement. Capital One currently gives you .20% APY on the money you keep in the account too!

Both of these debit cards are in my wallet and so I can personally recommend them to all American travelers!

What are your favorite debit cards for travel?

December 30, 2017

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I’m an American photographer and writer based in Paris after living in New York for 7 years and then and spending a year and a half traveling. My work has been featured by the Paris and Nice Tourism Offices, Art Basel, and Refinery 29. Culture Passport is a place to share my travels and experiences in new places, with a focus on cultural attractions.

3 Comments Leave Yours

[…] personally own two credit cards and two debit cards so I split them up perfectly. You may have more or less, but it’s always good to keep some things […]

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[…] by your bank? Want a debit card with no fees and no minimum balance? Then you need this debit card! Click here to read about why I 100% recommend this card for all […]

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[…] the local currency. If you’re a savvy traveler, you’ll already have a fee-free credit card (or debit card) to make purchases in local currency. You should always choose this option if you do. If you choose […]

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