2022 travel plans? These 4 debit cards won’t cost you the world in fees

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After nearly two years of border closures, international travel is back for fully vaccinated Australian citizens and permanent residents, with Canada, Fiji, Italy, Spain, the UK and the US among the countries currently open to Aussie jetsetters. But has enthusiasm for international travel come back yet?

According to a survey conducted by the University of Sydney in September, 28% of respondents said that they were planning to travel internationally to visit family and friends in the next 12 months, and 30% would do so to ‘treat themselves’.

If you are among that group ready to take to the skies in 2022, you might already be looking at flights, planning your itinerary and surveying travel insurance options. One task that may be worth adding to your list though is finding a travel money option to take along with you.

From cash and credit cards to prepaid travel cards, there are a variety of travel money options out there, but if you’re looking for a relatively inexpensive and simple way to pay and access your own money then a travel debit card may do the trick.

What makes a debit card travel-friendly though? Ideally, it doesn’t charge overseas transaction fees on your international purchases or withdrawal fees when taking out cash from foreign ATMs (though fees from ATM operators are a different matter).

The good news is that a handful of debit cards don’t come with either of those fees, including from banks such as 86 400, Citi, HSBC, ING, Macquarie, Suncorp, UBank and Up.

So, if you’re looking to give overseas transaction and ATM withdrawal fees a miss during your 2022 international getaway, we’ve wrapped up four travel-friendly debit card options in more detail below.

Suncorp - Everyday Options
  • 2021 Mozo Experts Choice Award^
  • No overseas transaction fees or ATM withdrawal fees
  • Apple Pay and Google Pay available
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A 2021 Mozo Experts Choice Award^ winner for Exceptional Everyday Account, Suncorp’s Everyday Options bank account and linked Visa Debit Card could also be a useful partner on your next trip abroad. Aside from being able to pay whether Visa is accepted throughout the world, cardholders will be able to make purchases without incurring overseas transaction fees. Plus, if you’re in need of some actual cash, Suncorp won’t charge you a withdrawal fee for using ATMs abroad - though just remember, the ATM operator may still charge you a separate fee. Prefer paying with your smartphone? You’ll be able to do so in Australia and abroad by setting up the Visa Debit Card with your Apple Pay or Google Pay digital wallet.

ING - Orange Everyday
  • 2021 Mozo Experts Choice Award^
  • Overseas transaction and ATM withdrawal fees waived (if conditions met)
  • Additional ATM rebates (conditions apply)
Find out more

ING’s 2021 Mozo Experts Choice Exceptional Everyday Account Award^ winning Orange Everyday bank account and linked Visa Debit card are one of the more iconic banking combos in Australia. They’re also a pretty handy option for international travellers, because cardholders can avoid paying overseas transaction and ATM withdrawal fees plus have up to five ATM operator fees refunded each month when they withdraw cash in Australia or abroad. There’s a ‘but’ though. To enjoy those fee waivers and refunds you’ll need to deposit $1,000 or more into a personal ING account from an external account (e.g. your salary) and make five or more eligible purchases - which are settled, not pending - using your ING card.

Citi - Global Currency Account
  • 2021 Mozo Experts Choice Award^
  • Zero overseas transaction and ATM withdrawal fees
  • Hold and pay in up to 10 currencies
Find out more

Citi’s Global Currency Account acts like an everyday bank account and a multi-currency travel card all rolled into one. First of all, the account can hold up to 10 currencies including Australian Dollars, Euros, Japanese Yen, Pound Sterling and US Dollars which you can switch between on the go (at Citi’s exchange rate) in order to pay in the local currency when you’re abroad. Speaking of paying, you’ll be able to do so using the linked Debit Card without being charged overseas transaction fees, plus Citi won’t charge you for withdrawing cash from international ATMs either (the operator might though). And did we mention the Global Currency Account was named a 2021 Mozo Experts Choice Award^ winner for Exceptional Everyday Account?

HSBC - Everyday Global Account
  • 2021 Mozo Experts Choice Award^
  • Avoid overseas transaction and ATM withdrawal fees
  • Hold up to 10 foreign currencies

Named a 2021 Mozo Experts Choice Award^ winner for Exceptional Everyday Account, the Everyday Global Account from HSBC is also packed full of useful features for international travellers. Account holders can buy and hold up to 10 different currencies including AUD, CNY, CAD, EUR, GBP, HKD, JPY, NZD, SGD and USD with the account, and spend it using the linked Visa Debit Card. They can also make international purchases without forking out overseas transaction fees and withdraw cash from foreign ATMs without being charged a withdrawal fee by HSBC (operator fees may apply though).

Interested in seeing how these cards stack up against other offers? Head on over to our dedicated debit card comparison hub to browse through over 90 debit cards being tracked in the Mozo database.

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