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Home / Business News / The cost of a foreign exchange currency card

The cost of a foreign exchange currency card

While it provides a host of benefits, a foreign exchange currency card is riddled with hidden costs that one must be aware of. Arnav Pandya tells more.

business Updated: May 14, 2008, 00:03 IST
Arnav Pandya
Arnav Pandya

The foreign exchange card is a new member of the card family that is establishing its position in the market. An individual can use this card while travelling abroad. This reduces the need and bother associated with carrying cash or travellers cheques. However, this card has a few costs associated with it and one needs to see whether these costs are reasonable or not.

Issue cost
A bank issues this card at a specific cost, which can range between Rs 100 and Rs 200 depending upon the bank. This is known as ‘issue cost’ and is the first impact on your pocket for the convenience. Since this is an additional card it has to be issued when it is needed, unlike a normal one an existing limit is already present. After this, the card has to be loaded with the necessary amount of foreign exchange so that the exchange rate is fixed at this point of time.

Cash withdrawal charges
There are two ways in which the card can actually be used. The first way is by swiping the card after making a purchase or availing a service on foreign shores. However, this card can be used to withdraw cash too. Using the card to withdraw cash frequently is not very wise since there is an additional charge applicable with each time you make the withdrawal.

Balance inquiry charge
A person with this card may have to face some additional charges too. These are in the form of balance enquiry charges. The card is loaded with a specific amount and when the expenses are made the amount gets deducted so that the remaining amount is the figure that can be used by the cardholder. Since it is difficult to keep track of the actual usage, the person might have to check the balance at some ATM. This will involve a charge that adds to the overall cost.

Miscellaneous charges
You want to recharge the card? Then get ready to pay a charge on a recharge. There are quite a few charges of this type which can vary depending upon the issuer hence the user must go through the conditions carefully before they make any decision about taking the card. These additional charges can severely impact the overall position of the user making it an expensive proposition.

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