Australia, we’re asking you to “$*it and Think about It”


A year after launching the Wise Platinum Debit Mastercard in Australia, our customers have saved themselves a whopping $2.6million (over $7000 a day) in fees when spending in another currency shopping online with overseas retailers and on international travel (pre-pandemic). This is compared to if they'd used their bank issued card.

To celebrate, we built a giant transparent vault in Sydney's Circular Quay, filled it up with one of a kind Wise loo rolls, some stuffed with cash.

But why?

A survey of 1000 Australians showed that while 60% claimed to know which fees their banks charge them, most were unable to correctly answer which fees these were. We’re on a mission to help put an end to that.

Since Aussies value saving loo paper a fair bit, we’re asking them the next time they use that precious paper, to instead "$it And Think About’" the other precious paper they could be saving because it's time to stop flushing your cash down the toilet on international card fees and exchange rate markups.

Which fees should you watch out for when paying in a different currency using your bank card?

  • Foreign transaction fee: Even if you pay in Australian dollars, most banks charge what's known as a foreign or international transaction fee if the retailer is outside of Australia. If you have a Visa, Mastercard or American Express credit/debit card with any of the big four banks, you'll be hit with these international transaction fees which shows up on your statement after you purchase.
  • Currency conversion fee: While some debit or credit cards won’t charge a foreign transaction fee, a hidden cost you won't know about until it happens is the currency conversion charge. Credit and debit card issuers will often charge you a transaction fee of 3-3.5% of your purchase in order to convert your Australian dollars into the currency used by the retailer.

The Wise ‘loo roll vault’ has opened in Circular Quay, for one day only (30th September). Not only will lucky passers-by score some free toilet paper, but randomly placed rolls will also include a wad of cash – $145 – reflecting the average saving each Aussie Wise Platinum Debit Mastercard holder made in hidden international card charges over the past year.

Click here to find out more about the Wise Platinum Debit Mastercard.

About the Research: Wise commissioned PureProfile to conduct a consumer survey in September 2020 to help understand how much Australians really know about hidden international card fees. The consumer survey was a nationally representative sample of 1,000 consumers, carried out online.

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