Heading overseas? Save up to 11x with your TransferWise Platinum debit Mastercard®.

TransferWise
14.08.19
11 minute read

Are you using a travel money card while you’re overseas? If so, you could save up to 11x by using TransferWise Platinum debit Mastercard® on your next trip.

The research was carried out in August 2019 by market research agency, Alderson Consulting (Bristol) Ltd, in conjunction with TransferWise. The data was gathered through publicly available pricing information and mid-market rate comparison data provided by Reuters.

Who we compared

TransferWise selected seven of the top travel card providers in Australia to compare pricing.

  • ANZ Travel Card
  • CommBank Travel Money Card
  • NAB Traveller Card
  • Qantas Travel Money Card
  • Travel Money Currency Pass
  • Travelex Money Card
  • Westpac Global Currency Card

Each of these providers offer similar pre-paid or top-up cards which allow transactions and ATM withdrawals in other currencies.

How we did it

The providers in this comparison charge their customers in the same way.

  • A markup added to their exchange rate
  • ATM withdrawal fees (Note: In the data below you may see the TransferWise ATM fees as A$0.00 in some instances. TransferWise allows for the first A$350 to be withdrawn for free then applies a 2% fee to the withdrawal amount thereafter).

There are three types of fees recorded for this price comparison:

  • Fee 1: The stated upfront top-up fee by each provider
  • Fee 2: The mark-up that travel card providers add to their exchange rate, also known as the hidden conversion fees. This is derived by (Provider’s rate - Reuters’ mid-market rate) x AUD amount to be converted
  • Fee 3: Fees associated with ATM withdrawals abroad (Note: In the data below you may see the TransferWise ATM fees as $0.00 in some instances. TransferWise allows for the first $350 to be withdrawn for free every 30 days, then applies a 2% fee to the withdrawal amount thereafter. We’re assuming that consumers withdraw from their existing balance, which does not take Fee 2 into account for calculation of ATM fees.)

To make sure that the comparison was fair, transparent and useful for consumers to understand, TransferWise built out two travel scenarios based on varying top-up amounts and ATM withdrawals.

  1. A $1000 top-up and 3 ATM withdrawals (of $200 in total).
  2. A $5000 top-up and 5 ATM withdrawals (of $500 in total).

Note: TransferWise always uses the real, market exchange rate when converting money with zero hidden markup. There are some instances where rate information is collected that shows TransferWise offers rates better than the market rate. For this comparison we exclude these scenarios and use the quoted market rate in all instances.

Each customer use case was evaluated using the same comparison methodology for spending in USD, GBP, NZD, and EUR.

How to read the following research tables

The tables below contain quite a lot of information, so we've summarised each in a short statement. If you do want to dive into the data, here's what you need to know.

  • Product: the provider and the product they offer.
  • Market Rate: the comparable rate provided to the research agency by Reuters.
  • Provider Rate: this is the rate the provider offers their customer when they top up. If it's different to the Market Rate, it means they are hiding fees in this rate.
  • Rate Markup (A$): the hidden fee the provider includes in their offered rate. This has been calculated in the source currency.
  • Upfront fee (A$): this is the fee that is openly stated by the provider to top-up or open an account.
  • ATM Fee ($/%): this is the per transaction fee for each ATM withdrawal. Most providers have a flat fee, but some use a percentage.
  • Total ATM Fees: this is the total amount in ATM fees a customer would pay on each trip. So if a provider has an ATM fee of A$3.00 per withdrawal and you take cash out twice, this will be A$6.00.
  • Total Cost (A$): this is the sum total of the Rate Markup fee, the Upfront fee and the Total ATM fees.
  • TW is X times cheaper: this is the number of times TransferWise is cheaper based on TransferWise's total cost versus other providers.

The research

For a $1,000 top-up and 3 ATM withdrawals (of $200 in total) in NZD, TransferWise is on average 18x cheaper.

Product Top Up / Reload Reuters Rate Provider Rate Rate markup Upfront fee ATM Fee($ or %) Total ATM Fees Total cost TW is X times cheaper
TransferWise Account A$1,000 1.0414 1.0441 -A$2.60 A$5.00 0.00 A$0.00 A$2.40
ANZ Travel Card A$1,000 1.0414 1.0141 A$26.21 A$0.00 4.44 A$13.31 A$39.53 16
CommBank Travel Money Card A$1,000 1.0414 1.0016 A$38.22 A$0.00 3.49 A$10.48 A$48.70 20
NAB Traveller Card A$1,000 1.0413 1.0028 A$36.97 A$0.00 0.00 A$0.00 A$36.97 15
Qantas Travel Money Card A$1,000 1.0413 1.0014 A$38.32 A$0.00 2.50 A$7.49 A$45.81 19
Travel Money Currency Pass A$1,000 1.0412 1.0090 A$30.95 A$11.00 3.47 A$10.41 A$52.35 22
Travelex Money Card A$1,000 1.0409 1.0005 A$38.81 A$0.00 0.00 A$0.00 A$38.81 16
Westpac Global Currency Card A$1,000 1.0412 1.0081 A$31.79 A$0.00 2.98 A$8.93 A$40.72 17

For a $1,000 top-up and 3 ATM withdrawals (of $200 in total) in EUR, TransferWise is on average 11x cheaper

Product Top Up / Reload Reuters Rate Provider Rate Rate markup Upfront fee ATM Fee($ or %) Total ATM Fees Total cost TW is X times cheaper
TransferWise Account A$1,000 0.6275 0.6275 -A$0.06 A$4.70 0.00 A$0.00 A$4.64
ANZ Travel Card A$1,000 0.6270 0.6066 A$32.54 A$0.00 3.63 A$10.88 A$43.42 9
CommBank Travel Money Card A$1,000 0.6270 0.5982 A$45.93 A$0.00 3.68 A$11.03 A$56.97 12
NAB Traveller Card A$1,000 0.6268 0.5950 A$50.73 A$0.00 0.00 A$0.00 A$50.73 11
Qantas Travel Money Card A$1,000 0.6269 0.5959 A$49.45 A$0.00 2.52 A$7.55 A$57.00 12
Travel Money Currency Pass A$1,000 0.6268 0.5961 A$48.98 A$11.00 4.19 A$12.58 A$72.56 16
Travelex Money Card A$1,000 0.6269 0.6007 A$41.79 A$0.00 0.00 A$0.00 A$41.79 9
Westpac Global Currency Card A$1,000 0.6268 0.6059 A$33.34 A$0.00 3.30 A$9.90 A$43.25 9

For a $1,000 top-up and 3 ATM withdrawals (of $200 in total) in GBP, TransferWise is on average 11x cheaper

Product Top Up / Reload Reuters Rate Provider Rate Rate markup Upfront fee ATM Fee($ or %) Total ATM Fees Total cost TW is X times cheaper
TransferWise Account A$1,000 0.5625 0.5625 A$0.01 A$4.70 0.00 A$0.00 A$4.71
ANZ Travel Card A$1,000 0.5619 0.5437 A$32.39 A$0.00 3.68 A$11.04 A$43.43 9
CommBank Travel Money Card A$1,000 0.5619 0.5358 A$46.45 A$0.00 3.73 A$11.20 A$57.65 12
NAB Traveller Card A$1,000 0.5618 0.5362 A$45.57 A$0.00 0.00 A$0.00 A$45.57 10
Qantas Travel Money Card A$1,000 0.5618 0.5346 A$48.42 A$0.00 2.34 A$7.01 A$55.43 12
Travel Money Currency Pass A$1,000 0.5618 0.5338 A$49.84 A$11.00 3.75 A$11.24 A$72.08 15
Travelex Money Card A$1,000 0.5618 0.5374 A$43.43 A$0.00 0.00 A$0.00 A$43.43 9
Westpac Global Currency Card A$1,000 0.5618 0.5430 A$33.46 A$0.00 2.76 A$8.29 A$41.75 9

For a $1,000 top-up and 3 ATM withdrawals (of $200 in total) in USD, TransferWise is on average 9x cheaper

Product Top Up / Reload Reuters Rate Provider Rate Rate markup Upfront fee ATM Fee($ or %) Total ATM Fees Total cost TW is X times cheaper
TransferWise Account A$1,000 0.6995 0.6996 -A$0.07 A$4.70 0.00 A$0.00 A$4.63
ANZ Travel Card A$1,000 0.6987 0.6794 A$27.62 A$0.00 3.68 A$11.04 A$38.66 8
CommBank Travel Money Card A$1,000 0.6989 0.6706 A$40.49 A$0.00 3.73 A$11.18 A$51.68 11
NAB Traveller Card A$1,000 0.6988 0.6723 A$37.92 A$0.00 0.00 A$0.00 A$37.92 8
Qantas Travel Money Card A$1,000 0.6987 0.6701 A$40.93 A$0.00 2.91 A$8.73 A$49.66 11
Travel Money Currency Pass A$1,000 0.6987 0.6753 A$33.49 A$11.00 3.70 A$11.11 A$55.60 12
Travelex Money Card A$1,000 0.6987 0.6787 A$28.62 A$0.00 0.00 A$0.00 A$28.62 6
Westpac Global Currency Card A$1,000 0.6987 0.6755 A$33.20 A$0.00 2.96 A$8.88 A$42.09 9

For a $5,000 top-up and 5 ATM withdrawals (of $500 in total) in NZD, TransferWise is on average 13x cheaper

Product Top Up / Reload Reuters Rate Provider Rate Rate markup Upfront fee ATM Fee($ or %) Total ATM Fees Total cost TW is X times cheaper
TransferWise Account A$5,000 1.0414 1.0441 -A$13.01 A$25.00 3.00 A$3.00 A$14.99
ANZ Travel Card A$5,000 1.0414 1.0141 A$131.07 A$0.00 4.44 A$22.19 A$153.26 10
CommBank Travel Money Card A$5,000 1.0414 1.0016 A$191.08 A$0.00 3.49 A$17.47 A$208.55 14
NAB Traveller Card A$5,000 1.0413 1.0028 A$184.83 A$0.00 0.00 A$0.00 A$184.83 12
Qantas Travel Money Card A$5,000 1.0413 1.0014 A$191.59 A$0.00 2.50 A$12.48 A$204.07 14
Travel Money Currency Pass A$5,000 1.0412 1.0090 A$154.73 A$55.00 3.47 A$17.34 A$227.07 15
Travelex Money Card A$5,000 1.0409 1.0005 A$194.06 A$0.00 0.00 A$0.00 A$194.06 13
Westpac Global Currency Card A$5,000 1.0412 1.0081 A$158.95 A$0.00 2.98 A$14.88 A$173.83 12

For a $5,000 top-up and 5 ATM withdrawals (of $500 in total) in EUR, TransferWise is on average 9x cheaper

Product Top Up / Reload Reuters Rate Provider Rate Rate markup Upfront fee ATM Fee($ or %) Total ATM Fees Total cost TW is X times cheaper
TransferWise Account A$5,000 0.6275 0.6275 -A$0.32 A$23.50 3.00 A$3.00 A$26.18
ANZ Travel Card A$5,000 0.6270 0.6066 A$162.68 A$0.00 3.63 A$18.13 A$180.81 7
CommBank Travel Money Card A$5,000 0.6270 0.5982 A$229.67 A$0.00 3.68 A$18.39 A$248.05 9
NAB Traveller Card A$5,000 0.6268 0.5950 A$253.67 A$0.00 0.00 A$0.00 A$253.67 10
Qantas Travel Money Card A$5,000 0.6269 0.5959 A$247.25 A$0.00 2.52 A$12.59 A$259.83 10
Travel Money Currency Pass A$5,000 0.6268 0.5961 A$244.89 A$55.00 4.19 A$20.97 A$320.86 12
Travelex Money Card A$5,000 0.6269 0.6007 A$208.96 A$0.00 0.00 A$0.00 A$208.96 8
Westpac Global Currency Card A$5,000 0.6268 0.6059 A$166.72 A$0.00 3.30 A$16.50 A$183.22 7

For a $5,000 top-up and 5 ATM withdrawals (of $500 in total) in GBP, TransferWise is on average 9x cheaper

Product Top Up / Reload Reuters Rate Provider Rate Rate markup Upfront fee ATM Fee($ or %) Total ATM Fees Total cost TW is X times cheaper
TransferWise Account A$5,000 0.5625 0.5625 A$0.03 A$23.50 3.00 A$3.00 A$26.53
ANZ Travel Card A$5,000 0.5619 0.5437 A$161.95 A$0.00 3.68 A$18.39 A$180.34 7
CommBank Travel Money Card A$5,000 0.5619 0.5358 A$232.25 A$0.00 3.73 A$18.66 A$250.91 9
NAB Traveller Card A$5,000 0.5618 0.5362 A$227.84 A$0.00 0.00 A$0.00 A$227.84 9
Qantas Travel Money Card A$5,000 0.5618 0.5346 A$242.08 A$0.00 2.34 A$11.69 A$253.77 10
Travel Money Currency Pass A$5,000 0.5618 0.5338 A$249.20 A$55.00 3.75 A$18.73 A$322.93 12
Travelex Money Card A$5,000 0.5618 0.5374 A$217.16 A$0.00 0.00 A$0.00 A$217.16 8
Westpac Global Currency Card A$5,000 0.5618 0.5430 A$167.32 A$0.00 2.76 A$13.81 A$181.13 7

For a $5,000 top-up and 5 ATM withdrawals (of $500 in total) in USD, TransferWise is on average 7x cheaper

Product Top Up / Reload Reuters Rate Provider Rate Rate markup Upfront fee ATM Fee($ or %) Total ATM Fees Total cost TW is X times cheaper
TransferWise Account A$5,000 0.6995 0.6996 -A$0.36 A$23.50 3.00 A$3.00 A$26.14
ANZ Travel Card A$5,000 0.6987 0.6794 A$138.11 A$0.00 3.68 A$18.40 A$156.51 6
CommBank Travel Money Card A$5,000 0.6989 0.6706 A$202.46 A$0.00 3.73 A$18.64 A$221.10 8
NAB Traveller Card A$5,000 0.6988 0.6723 A$189.61 A$0.00 0.00 A$0.00 A$189.61 7
Qantas Travel Money Card A$5,000 0.6987 0.6701 A$204.67 A$0.00 2.91 A$14.55 A$219.22 8
Travel Money Currency Pass A$5,000 0.6987 0.6753 A$167.45 A$55.00 3.70 A$18.51 A$240.96 9
Travelex Money Card A$5,000 0.6987 0.6787 A$143.12 A$0.00 0.00 A$0.00 A$143.12 5
Westpac Global Currency Card A$5,000 0.6987 0.6755 A$166.02 A$0.00 2.96 A$14.80 A$180.83 7

Thinking of using TransferWise? Check out our product disclosure statement first. This advice has been prepared without taking account of your individual objectives, financial situation or needs. Before acting on the advice, you should consider the appropriateness of the advice, having regard to your objectives, financial situation and needs. TransferWise Australia Pty Ltd is registered at Level 40, Gateway, 1 Macquarie Place, Sydney NSW 2000. TransferWise Limited is registered at 6th Floor, TEA Building, 56 Shoreditch High Street, London, E1 6JJ, United Kingdom and is the parent company of TransferWise Australia Pty Ltd. In Australia, TransferWise Ltd holds an Australian Financial Services Licence (AFSL 456295) issued by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC). TransferWise Australia Pty Ltd is an authorised representative of TransferWise Ltd AFSL (authorised representative number: 001269088).

The TransferWise Platinum debit Mastercard® is issued by TransferWise Australia Pty Ltd. under license by Mastercard Asia/Pacific Pte. Ltd. For full conditions of use refer to transferwise.com/legalstuff. Mastercard is a registered trademark, and the circles design on the card is a trademark of Mastercard International Incorporated.

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