During July I will be updating the ‘Preparing for Summer’ series of articles that I first ran last year. These cover the best ways to earn Avios from car hire and hotels and how to save money paying bills abroad.
One of the easiest ways to save money whilst travelling is to use a credit card with no foreign exchange fees. 99% of UK credit and debit cards charge a fee of 2.75% to 2.99% when you use them outside the UK.
A small number of credit cards (including Post Office and Halifax Clarity) do not charge foreign exchange fees. These two cards are also free. However good your mileage credit card may be, it is unlikely that the points you will get for using it abroad will offset the 2.99% cash saving you will make with either of these cards.
The Lloyds Avios Rewards card also has no foreign exchange fees. And you earn Avios points when you spend as well! This gives you the best of both worlds – a 3% saving compared to using any other credit or debit card AND you earn a chunk of miles back.
The only fly in the ointment with the Lloyd Avios Rewards card was the £24 annual fee. This meant that you would need to spend £2,000+ on the American Express card abroad before the value of the Avios earned outweighed the fee – otherwise you might as well get the Post Office card instead.
Until Sunday or Monday (the site is not totally clear), however, cashback site Topcashback is offering £20 back when you successfully apply for the Lloyds Avios Rewards card. This means that the card is effectively free for the first year.
Unless you need to put spending onto another card to trigger a spending target (such as £10,000 on the British Airways Premium Plus American Express card to trigger the 2-4-1 voucher) then the Lloyds Avios card is worth a look purely for your Summer spend in foreign currency.
For reference, the representative APR of the Lloyds Avios Rewards card is 22.7% variable including the fee, based on a notional £1200 credit limit.
(To see our complete list of all current credit card bonuses, click here to visit our ‘Credit Cards Update’ page or use the link in the menu bar at the top of the page.)
Disclaimer: Head for Points is a journalistic website. Nothing here should be construed as financial advice, and it is your own responsibility to ensure that any product is right for your circumstances. Recommendations are based primarily on the ability to earn miles and points and do not consider interest rates, service levels or any impact on your credit history.