2018 Canadian No Foreign Transaction Fee Credit Cards

Most Canadian credit card companies add a nasty foreign transaction fee for purchases made in person or online. For a couple of purchases the 2.5%-3% is just irritating. However, if you are a frequent foreign traveller, a Snowbird, or make significant foreign purchase online, this fee can really add up. For example if you spend $10,000 on a trip, the foreign transaction fees would be ~$250-$300, and you would not even get any reward points for this expenditure. If you return your purchase you pay the fee again so your 2.5%-3% becomes 5%-6%. Most cash back cards do not give you enough to cover these charges.

Compared to our southern neighbours that have largely done away with foreign transaction fees, Canadian credit card companies have chosen a Made in Canada solution: Keep the foreign transaction fee on Canadian credit cards and make those Canuks pay for having a weaker dollar, a smaller less vocal population and less competition in the travel credit card arena.

These cards have no foreign transaction fees

Home Trust Preferred Visa (this is not a referral)

  • Annual Fee: $0
  • Foreign Transaction Fee: $0
  • Minimum Personal Income: $15,000
  • Interest Rate: 19.99%
  • Perks: 1% cash back (statement credit) on all purchases, no caps on cash, roadside assistance (think of it as a free substitute for CAA which costs ~$70), car rental protection, auto insurance, liability insurance

Brim MasterCard (this is not a referral)

  • Annual Fee: $0
  • BoomerTraveller review here

Brim World MasterCard (this is a not a referral)

  • Annual Fee: $99
  • BoomerTraveller review here

Brim World Elite MasterCard (this is not a referral)

  • Annual Fee: $120
  • BoomerTraveller review here

Scotia Passport Visa Infinite (this is not a referral)

  • Annual Fee: $139
  • BoomerTraveller review here)

HSBC Premier World Elite MasterCard (this is not a referral)

  • Annual Fee: $149 annual fee
  • BoomerTraveller review here

HSBC World Elite MasterCard (this is not a referral)

  • Annual Fee: $149 annual fee
  • BoomerTraveller review here

ICBC UnionPay cards(this is not a referral)

  • The Industrial Commercial Bank of China (Canada) has three cards with no foreign transaction fees.
  • See more about them here.

HSBC Jade World Elite MasterCard (this is not a referral)

  • Annual Fee: $299
  • Foreign Transaction Fee: $0
  • Minimum Personal Income: $80,000
  • Interest Rate: 17%
  • Comment: for existing HSBC Premier customers who hold more than $1 million in combined personal deposits and investments with HSBC Bank Canada for a period of at least 3 consecutive calendar months prior to the commencement of membership.

These cards charge a foreign transaction fee but provide higher rewards on all foreign currency transactions

Meridian Visa Infinite Travel Rewards (this is not a referral)

  • Annual Fee: $99 annual fee – 1st year free
  • BoomerTraveller review here

Fido Mastercard (this is not a referral)

  • Annual Fee: $0
  • Foreign Transaction Fee: 2.5%
  • Minimum Personal Income: $15,000
  • Interest Rate: 19.99% (remember never keep a balance on any credit card – if you need to you can’t afford it)
  • Perks: 1.5 % cash back on Canadian purchases, 4% cash back on foreign purchases, $25 cash back after first use (within three months) and another $25 cash back if you register your Fido bill for automatic payment (within three months)
  • UPDATE: Effective May 23, 2018
    • 3% unlimited cash back rewards on all your eligible purchases made in a foreign currency; 2% unlimited cash back rewards on Rogers products and services charged to your card including your Rogers, Fido or Chatr monthly bill; 1.25% unlimited cash back rewards on all other eligible purchases.

Rogers Platinum Mastercard (this is not a referral)

  • Annual Fee: $29 (waived in first year and in any year that your set up this card for automatic payment of your Rogers, Fido or Chatr bill)
  • Foreign Transaction Fee: 2.5%
  • Minimum Personal Income: $15,000
  • Interest Rate: 19.99% (remember never keep a balance on any credit card – if you need to you can’t afford it)
  • Perks: 1.75 % cash back on Canadian purchases, 4% cash back on foreign purchases, $25 cash back after first use (within three months)
  • UPDATE: Effective May 23, 2018
    • Annual Fee will be $0. If you have paid an Annual fee over the last year, a prorated credit of the difference will be applied to your account by December 31, 2018
    • 3% unlimited cash back rewards on all your eligible purchases made in a foreign currency; 2% unlimited cash back rewards on Rogers products and services charged to your card including your Rogers, Fido or Chatr monthly bill; 1.25% unlimited cash back rewards on all other eligible purchases.

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