Avoid Travel Card Foreign Currency Conversion Fees

Employees who travel internationally will see currency conversion fees assessed on their travel card statements when making purchases in non-U.S. currency. Pay close attention to any fees added to the cost of the item(s) purchased to ensure that no inappropriate fees are assessed.

Some foreign merchants offer (as a service to their customers) “Dynamic Currency Conversion” (DCC) service. Employees should avoid DCC. DCC is a point-of-sale conversion that dynamically converts the charge from foreign currency to U.S. dollars. Although this conversion may seem like a good deal, typically the conversion is less cost-effective and unregulated.

Employees should make the purchase in the foreign currency and allow the conversion to be made through Visa. This approach will allow a regulated fee to be assessed that is in compliance with the GSA SmartPay master contract.