Portofino Resort- Now with a new BEACH BAR!!
Page 1 of 3 1 2 3 >
Topic Options
#74574 - 10/09/03 04:53 PM Credit-Card Surcharges
Marty Online   happy
Credit-Card Surcharges

Consumer Alert:
Credit-Card Surcharges
If you travel with a Visa, MasterCard, American Express, or other credit card, watch out when charging purchases overseas.
The reason: Most U.S. and Canadian credit-card companies are now tacking an extra 2% to 5% fee on international transactions.
This is not a currency-exchange commission, because the Visa/MasterCard clearinghouse has already taken its commission (currently 1%) when converting your transaction from foreign currency into U.S. or Canadian dollars. Instead, it's just another way for the credit-card issuer to squeeze extra profits out of customers who may not be aware of the added fees.
More recently, the Washington Post reported that Providian National Bank is adding 4% to purchases in currencies other than U.S. dollars. Chase has announced a 2% surcharge. American Express, which isn't affiliated with Visa or MasterCard, has doubled its charge for U.S. cardholders from 1% to 2%.
How to avoid surcharges
·Don't use your Visa or MasterCard overseas until you've questioned your card's issuer about fees added to foreign-currency transactions. (Check before each trip, because policies may change on short notice.)
·If your credit-card company is one of the offenders, cancel your account--and tell them why you're switching to a different MasterCard or Visa issuer.
·If you have an American Express account, use your card only when absolutely necessary.
Note:
·In addition to surcharges on credit-card transactions, some banks are now charging hidden fees of several percentage points on foreign-currency ATM transactions. So, if you thought your ATM card was a safe haven from credit-card surcharges, think again-- before withdrawing cash abroad.
·Two major U.S. credit-card companies, Capital One and MBNA, weren't charging "conversion fees" at last report. (But check before using their cards, since policies can change at any time.) USAA is another option for U.S. military or National Guard personnel, retirees, and dependents.

Top
#74575 - 10/09/03 05:53 PM Re: Credit-Card Surcharges
SimonB Offline
All the more reason for the government and banks to step up and allow vendors to charge cards in US dollars. It can be done but you really need some clout for it to happen.

Things like this hurt tourism, time for Belize to be proactive on this one.

Top
#74576 - 10/09/03 06:03 PM Re: Credit-Card Surcharges
beach bob Offline
>> Two major U.S. credit-card companies, Capital One and MBNA, weren't charging "conversion fees" at last report.

I don't believe their info is current; Capital One charged me about 1.9% on my CC charges when I was in San Pedro in July, & I am a platinum card holder w/ them. Haven't had an MBNA card in years, so I have no idea 1st hand experience there...

Top
#74577 - 10/09/03 08:07 PM Re: Credit-Card Surcharges
Debbie Offline
My husband used his Bank One card in Costa Rica in August and had all kinds of fees on it. We were both astounded. eek Use fees, currency exchange fees, and two for a cash advance!!! It was ridiculous. Time to look for another card! Thanks for the info on Capital One. We just got smoozed by them in the mail. I'll look closer. Thanks.

Top
#74578 - 10/09/03 08:17 PM Re: Credit-Card Surcharges
beach bob Offline
Don't misunderstand me Debbie, I am happy with my Capital One Visa. If I could find a CC w/ none of these int'l. charges, I'd probably sign on. FWIW, I found out about the 1.9% charge prior to my trip, when I laid down the deposit for my room. I decided after some research it was on the low end of the fee range for the cards I have, so that's the one I used. As these CC co's go, Capital One is pretty good. (& considering my overall low opinion of CC co's.)

Far as I know, all cards charge for cash advances, though the fees vary considerably. A USE FEE? Sheesh ... sounds like the car dealership 'transaction fee': they charge $250 - $400 for the privelege of letting you buy the car from them... eck

Top
#74579 - 10/09/03 08:35 PM Re: Credit-Card Surcharges
ChrisW Offline
Do you have the link? I would like to pass this info on to some friends.

Thanks

Top
#74580 - 10/10/03 12:27 PM Re: Credit-Card Surcharges
dbdoberman Offline
CASH - don't leave home without it

Top
#74581 - 10/10/03 03:32 PM Re: Credit-Card Surcharges
Chris Offline
Time for US Dollarisation in Belize. The idea of Belize (pop. under 300,000) having its own currency would make a little - but still not much - sense if it was "floated" on the international currency market. Because it is fixed at 2:1 there is absolutely no reason to have a different currency. It is daft. The Belize dollar is virtually unexchangeable outside of Belize even though theoretically it is worth exactly 50US cents.

Belizeans wanting to get US dollars for overseas purchases have to pay as much as $2.25BZE-$1.00US with black market moneychangers....the Central Bank of Belize makes it almost impossible for Belizeans to get US dollars legally.

Time for Belize to use the US buck. Now that the new peach coloured $20.00US bill is out it has a tropical look! I wonder if that was a hint from Uncle Sam?

Top
#74582 - 10/10/03 03:39 PM Re: Credit-Card Surcharges
chismera Offline
Better switch to Euros

Top
#74583 - 10/12/03 08:14 PM Re: Credit-Card Surcharges
bywarren Offline
Here is an interesting perspective on the Belize dollar http://www.ambergriscaye.com/BzLibrary/trust287.html
It would be VERY hard for the Belize government to switch to any currency that is traded. That would result in a hugh devaluation of the Belize dollar. The government now pays all of it's "local" bills, ie. salaries for goverment workers and purchases in Belize dollars. They need all of the foreign currency they can get their hands on to service the national debt. That is why US dollars are so hard to come by for the private sector. It would be much better for Belize in the long run to switch. That would help to attract foreign investment, but would be a very hard "fiscal pill" for the government to swallow. It is much easier for the government to print Belize (funny money) dollars than to get "real" money. I am just surprised that the government has not required all those entering the country to change their foreign money into "funny money" thus giving the government access to all that foreign currency. I hope the government doesn't read this board and get any ideas. I have always said the only thing Belize money is good for is buying rice and beans and a joint. laugh

Top
Page 1 of 3 1 2 3 >

Links
Click for excellent scuba lessons with Elbert Greer!


Things to do

News
Daily News
Daily Weather

Classified Ads
BelizeNews.com
San Pedro Sun
Ambergris Today
SP Town Council
Channel 7
Channel 5
Amandala
Love FM
The Reporter
Caye Caulker
Chronicles

PLUS TV
TV Newscasts
Radio Stations

Click for our
Search thousands of Belizean-only websites

Event Guides
Event Calendar
Specials & Events
Things to Do
SanPedroScoop
iTravel Belize
Paradise Theater

Blogs
San Pedro Scoop!
Tia Chocolate
Tacogirl
My Beautiful Belize
I-Travel Belize
Belize Adventure
Belize Hub
Romantic Travel
Bound for Belize
Conch Creative
As The Coconuts Drop
More Blogs...
Search thousands of Belizean-only websites
Chaa Creek is an award-winning luxury Belize Resort, rated as one of the worlds best Eco Lodges. We are a pioneer in adventure travel to Belize since 1981!
White Sands Dive Shop - 5 Star PADI Dive Facility - Daily diving, SCUBA instruction and Snorkeling
Caribbean Inspired All Natural Condiments & Spice Blends, Over 100 are Gluten Free!
We manage a variety of homes, apartments, condos and commercial properties here on Ambergris Caye. Our minimum lease on ALL properties is six months.
Conch Shell Inn: All rooms are right on the beach in the heart of San Pedro, so within walking distance to anything and everything!!
Lil’ Alphonse has snorkel equipment to fit anyone as well as Marine Park Tickets and flotation devices to assist those not as experienced.
Coastal Xpress offers a daily scheduled ferry run to most resorts, restaurants and private piers on the island of Anbergris Caye. We also offer  private and charter water taxi service.
Mini Chat

Cayo Espanto
Click for Cayo Espanto, and have your own private island
More Links
Click for exciting and adventurous tours of Belize with Katie Valk!
December
S M T W T F S
1 2 3
4 5 6 7 8 9 10
11 12 13 14 15 16 17
18 19 20 21 22 23 24
25 26 27 28 29 30 31
Who's Online
0 registered (), 33 Guests and 7 Spiders online.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Forum Stats
18,673 Registered Members
44 Forums
64,048 Topics
462,275 Posts

Most users ever online: 1,262 @ 06/10/07 07:16 PM




AmbergrisCaye.com CayeCaulker.org HELP! Visitor Center Goods & Services San Pedro Town
BelizeSearch.com Message Board Lodging Diving Fishing Things to Do History
BelizeNews.com Maps Phonebook Belize Business Directory
BelizeCards.com SanPedroDaily.com Picture of the Day

The opinions and views expressed on this board are the subjective opinions of Ambergris Caye Message Board members
and not of the Ambergris Caye Message Board its affiliates, or its employees.