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If you are searching for a multi-currency card for when you are overseas, Canara Bank offers an International Travel Prepaid Card. In it, you can hold 7 different currencies and spend like a local when you are abroad. It is not as competitive as other multi currency cards from Indian banks and requires you to show proof of future travel to be issued one. Plus there are the fees.
Read on to learn more about how this card works and if it is worth considering for your next trip. And if you're looking for a smart, cheap way to transfer money abroad, try Wise
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As the name suggests, the Canara Bank International Travel Prepaid Card is a prepaid card from Canara Bank where you can hold multiple currencies. The card is issued by both Canara Bank and Mastercard, so it works anywhere Mastercard is accepted globally, including at ATMs.
A prepaid multicurrency card is a handy replacement to carrying cash in different currencies as you travel. Instead, with this one card you can swipe, purchase and withdraw cash like a local. All you have to do is load up your wallet in any of the 3 currencies available, and then when you are overseas the amount will be withdrawn from the respective currency. To note, each currency works as a separate wallet within the singular account, so you can hold varying amounts of each.
But to get a card issued, you will be required to show proof of a trip coming up. You can apply for the Canara Bank International Travel Prepaid Card at a bank branch, and you must be carrying a copy of your passport, airline ticket, and visa for travel. Once you get the card, it stays valid for 5 years, but as you’ll see in the fee section, you are charged if you don’t use the card at least once a year.¹
Multi-currency prepaid cards, in general, are a good idea for frequent travellers like business travellers, students overseas or those with a passion for travelling. One account lets you swipe and spend locally without having to worry about the safety of cash or fluctuating exchange rates.
The Canara Bank International Travel Prepaid Card has similar uses and functions for use. So if you are getting dinner, buying books or reserving hotel rooms, you can do it with this card. And you can use it at ATMs to withdraw cash. You can also use it on foreign websites in the currencies available to pay directly in that country’s currency². The only downside of the card is that there are only a very small number of currencies available with this card, and there are high fees for use.
With the Canara Bank International Travel Prepaid Card, you can expect to pay fees to open an account and for normal usage. But there is also a fee you should expect hidden in the exchange rate.
Here are a few of the upfront fees you can expect when you sign up for the Canara Bank International Travel Prepaid card and when you use it³:
|Issuing the card
|$ 15 USD
|Inactivity for more than 1 year
The cross-currency markup is charged if you use your card in a currency that the wallet does not hold. For instance if you are in Thailand and you use your Canara Bank International Prepaid Travel Card even though the card does not hold Thai Baht. The purchase will go through and the money will be pulled from a set wallet but you will be charged extra as a cross-currency markup. There are also additional fees for cash withdrawals at ATMs which are covered in the next section.
The last fee to keep in mind is the hidden fee in the exchange rate you get on the currencies. Canara Bank and Mastercard set the exchange rates as they please which means they are often weaker than the real exchange rate. The real exchange rate, or mid-market rate, is the one that you see on Google which does not have a markup. By setting the Canara Bank International Travel Prepaid Card with exchange rates weaker than the mid-market rate, the card is able to slip you a hidden fee with every Indian rupee you convert.
Instead of paying for more fees and marked-up exchange rates, give Wise a try. Wise is completely online and lets you do global money transfers quickly, easily and for cheap from the comfort and safety of your home.
You always get the mid-market exchange rate with Wise, and you only have to pay one low fee every time you send money around the globe. And receiving money is free. It is as simple as that. It is no wonder over 7 million people choose Wise for their global money transfers.
Cash is still handy to have as your travel, so the Canara Bank International Travel Prepaid Card lets you withdraw local cash from ATMs when you are abroad. So for example, if you are in the States, the European Union or the UK and your respective wallets are loaded up, you can withdraw your money from any ATMs with a Mastercard logo. The cash that you withdraw will be then deducted from the corresponding currency wallet.
But that doesn’t mean it comes without fees. All ATM withdrawals will have a fee attached to it for every transaction you make. A quick example of the fees to expect are⁴:
|Great British Pounds
When you are at the ATM with your Canara Bank Multi-Currency Prepaid Travel Card, make sure to hit “Credit” on the screen for your withdrawal.
The Canara Bank International Travel Prepaid Card has fewer currency options than other Indian bank forex cards. In addition to US dollar, the only currencies available to hold on the card are:
|Great British Pound
As it is a Mastercard, you can use the card for other currencies, but you will be penalized with a ‘cross currency rate’ and a 3% additional markup.
The card can not be used in India, Nepal or Bhutan, or in any websites that do transactions in these countries’ currencies. You also can not withdraw cash in Rupees at an Indian ATM from your account.⁵Sources used for this article:
- Canara Bank International Travel Prepaid Card
- Uses for the Canara Bank International Travel Prepaid Card
- Charges & fees
- ATM Withdrawals
- Currencies available
All sources checked as of 3 August, 2020
This publication is provided for general information purposes and does not constitute legal, tax or other professional advice from Wise Payments Limited or its subsidiaries and its affiliates, and it is not intended as a substitute for obtaining advice from a financial advisor or any other professional.
We make no representations, warranties or guarantees, whether expressed or implied, that the content in the publication is accurate, complete or up to date.
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