Visa Vs Mastercard Credit Card

Looks like my Citibank credit card is switching from Visa to Mastercard, and upon expiry the replacement card will be a Mastercard.

Is there much of a difference in practice? I've never had a Mastercard before - I always thought Visa was accepted at more places, and Mastercard always had higher surcharges. Might just be my perception though as I've never really paid close attention in the past.

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Citibank Australia
Citibank Australia


  • I've got both and have used both for some years … no practical difference in my experience. 99%+ of my transactions are with local merchants (whether online or B&M) and then the occasional overseas online purchase/overseas travel.

    • Great, thanks for sharing. My usage sounds like yours, hopefully I won’t see any difference.

  • Just your perception. There is no difference in practice. Only American Express is sometimes not accepted. Visa and MasterCard are ubiquitous. Sometimes there will me promotions specific to one or the other, but for general shopping, no difference. Vale Bankcard.

    • Thanks - puts my mind at ease. Maybe I’m thinking of Amex.

      • Almost definitely AMEX and/or Diners you are thinking of. I have never seen anywhere that doesn't take Visa and Mastercard, and neither of them have a specific surcharge.

  • +2 votes

    From my previous research, I think Mastercard had better exchange rate than visa.

  • There has to be some give and take but we haven't experienced it just yet.

    They won't move to one scheme to another and just expect everything to be staying the same (otherwise why did they want to rock the boat?)

  • +8 votes

    i find mastercard usually gives a slightly better rate

    mastercard using

    2020-07-03 1 USD = 1.446341 AUD
    2020-07-04 1 USD = 1.446341 AUD
    2020-07-05 1 USD = 1.446341 AUD
    2020-07-06 1 USD = 1.444043 AUD

    visa using

    2020-07-03 1 USD = 1.449483983 AUD
    2020-07-04 1 USD = 1.446967154 AUD
    2020-07-05 1 USD = 1.446967154 AUD
    2020-07-06 1 USD = 1.446967154 AUD

  • For most uses, Visa and Mastercard will have equivalent acceptance. Some exceptions exist if you decide to go overseas:

    • Singapore taxis do not accept Visa cards (due to a dispute with Visa). This has been ongoing since ~2015 or so (and was still in place last I heard)
    • When I was in Canada, they didn't accept Visa cards at Costco (Mastercard was fine). From what I read online, this might be a commercial decision
    • I was thinking in my earlier comment that there was some difference when I visited Singapore and couldn't remember what it was.

      Probably the only time in my life I have been told I couldn't use a Visa and had to pay with AMEX instead.

  • like other said, they're almost identical in Australia, about 10 years ago visa were more common but mastercard seems to take over the lead for now, at least for me, out of the 10+ bank issued card I have I think I only have 1 visa from ANZ

  • Citibank - no linked Diners with MC or some reason.

    Mastercard cheaper to issue for the banks (fees the bank gets charged) that is why they are all moving. But I am assuming it is country specific deals VISA / MC are cutting in certain countries for market share reasons.

  • My Citibank debit card is Mastercard, whilst my Citibank credit card is Visa. I assume this will change over to Mastercard when the existing one expires?

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