International Transaction Fees on Online A$ Credit Card Transactions


I’m a user of the Kogan Black Card. First time I’ve seen this but not sure if this is common or it is just something that Kogan does.

Completed 2 transactions on myprotein. 1 I used the Kogan card and to my surprise, an international transaction fee of over 3% but the website quoted everything in A$ and even paid it via PayPal in A$. I did the same transaction later but used ANZ black reward card and no international transaction fees there.

I contacted Kogan about it and they said it’s in their terms and condition that the online transaction was processed overseas even though it is in A$ and that attracts the foreign transaction fees. As a consumer, how in the world would I know when transaction are done online, if the processing of payment is done in or outside of Australia? I understand the fees will be charged if I transacted in a foreign currency as that’s clear as day, but when it’s in A$, how can I even tell?

Is this a common thing here or is this just another one of Kogan’s underhanded tricks?

Related Stores

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    • OMG! Majority of them charges? Isn’t this potentially
      misleading to consumers since there’s no way a consumer can tell. What exactly is the way to avoid this?

      • It would be in the info you get when you sign up for the card

        remember - they are there to make any $ out of you they can.

        • I’m not asking about the fine prints; I’m asking as a consumer, how can we shop online without risking having these fees being charged on us?

          • @Eugklng:

            how can we shop online without risking having these fees being charged on us

            Use your ANZ one
            The charges for overseas transactions would be mentioned in the PDS etc when you signed up.

  • +3

    not Kogan's fault.

  • Not a Kogan thing, happened to be with CT Shirts - luckily it was only $100 so roughly ~3 for lesson learnt.

  • And can someone maybe explain why Kogan charges but ANZ does not in the same website?

    • +1

      ANZ is a touch bigger financial institution than Kogan.

    • +2

      Kogan uses Citibank. Not necessary their fault. It is websites masking their card processors.

      • Yes Citibank charges 3% as well.

        • Citibank CitiPlus no fees.

  • +1

    For the same reason that several other cards do not charge international transaction fees.

    • Says here foreign transaction fee of 3%

      Has it got to do with definitions of what’s foreign/international transaction fees being different?

      • +2

        I used to have an ANZ Rewards Black card, closed it when I started getting charged the fees in this exact scenario (paying in AUD but international biller). My best guess is they just categorised it wrong or something on the backend and you got lucky.

  • I thought if you paid via PayPal there shouldn't be a foreign transaction fee. Foreign currency fee yea maybe, but you ordered from AU MyProtein which charges in AUD.

    • That’s what I thought as well and nope, got charged 3% and from all the comments here so far, everyone seems to think it’s normal and expected but I don’t see how as a consumer I can reasonably even tell whether or not an online merchant does their currency conversions when as far as I can see, it’s all A$.

      • +1

        FWIW I also ordered from MyProtein on a card that charges for international transactions, but did not get a fee for it.

        • Yes I did next order using ANZ card and no fees but Kogan charges. That’s why I think it’s something Kogan related but everyone here doesn’t seem to think so

  • +1 charges? Is that still current?

  • Online e-commerce is so common these days and if such fees are charged without notice and consumers does not have a reasonable way of telling whether or not it’ll happen should stink all the way up to the regulators level and yet nothing is being done about it?

  • I noticed this paying eBay fees with PayPal in AUD. If I used PayPal balance, no fee. It was a Westpac Mastercard.

  • +2

    Just a reminder AMEX don't charge for overseas AUD transactions.

    I'm surprised this hasn't been rewarded a Choice Magazine Shonky Award as it can be quite difficult to find out where your transaction is being processed.

    • really? Gotta check this

      • Here's an older thread which people do pinpoint amex didn't charge this:

        I haven't noticed any transaction fee after foreign AUD transactions on my Amex (ie from singapore). I have noticed after foreign currency transactions


        I did a transaction in AUD that was processed in July from Hong Kong and it didn't have any fee:


        But when I was in New Zealand my transaction had:

        FOREIGN SPEND 3.58 NZD
        COMMISSION $0.10

  • -1

    Just pay it

  • I got slugged a $90 international transaction fee after buying air tickets on Thai Airways Australian portal, using an ANZ Platinum Visa. It was an Australian website, in AUD. I complained to ANZ who explained Thai do their banking in Thailand, hence it’s an international transaction, but they acknowledged the customer had no way to know this, nor do Thai have any control over how banks charge fees. ANZ refunded it, as a goodwill gesture. I now have the BankWest no fee card.

  • Here is something interesting for Citibank Credit Card Holders with Diners Club companion card.

    Paypal apparently allowed Diners Card to be used as default payment card.

    To date I have paid Telstra and some random non Diners vendor and paypal paid them using my Diners. So far, I am not seeing any Diners surcharge for local transactions. If this changes, I will update here.

    But the point is, Diners don't charge international transaction fee so if you can pay by Paypal that is linked to Diners, maybe that's one way to skimp the fee.

  • I complained to citibank when they charged me on an AUD purchase from the store.
    Although they maintained they were entitled to charge me, they did refund the charge.
    Worth following up as it was a $2000 drone. Probably not worth the bother for a small purchase.

  • Yes, it's sh!t but all above board according to the T&Cs. It's not the currency but where the transaction is processed. The fact that we the consumer has no way of knowing where the transaction is going to be processed is irrelevant apparently.

    Commbank allows blocking of international transactions so I have that turned on to avoid getting stung though still got charged the fee on something with lock on, complained to CBA and they refunded it. I assume it was due to this loophole "Lock, Block, Limit doesn't apply to transactions that are flagged as recurring (e.g. direct debits) and transactions not sent to us for authorisation." It wasn't a recurring transaction so I assume didn't request an auth first, but when I asked why it was processed while the lock was on they said they didn't know, and if it happens again just contact them for a refund.

    Stick to my 28D card now for anything that has a chance of being processed overseas.

  • Is this a common thing here or is this just

    From my experience many or most Credit/Debit cards providers do this (Commonwealth & Westpac as experienced)

    Using HSBC Everyday Global Account debit card solved this problem, no extra fees for online overseas transactions. Bingo!

  • Is there a sure fire way to determine whether you will get charged international fee or not?

    • There's a handful of cards that state they do not charge international fees. If you don't want one, or don't qualify for one, no, not really.

      • I mean in the website itself.. is there a way to find out whether you will get stung by intl fees or not?
        Some websites have .au domain but still charged..

        • +1

          As I said at the end, no, not really. You can guess. If it's a 100% Australian site that processes payments in Australia, then there will be no fees. It's often pretty hard to tell though.

    • +1

      Use 28 Degrees credit card all the way.

      • In order of preference:

        Diners Card (Now Paypal linked)
        28 Degrees
        HSBC Everyday Global DEBIT card

        • Even more debit card options include.

          86 400

        • Any 2% cashback if use the HSBC Debit card online?

  • Merged from Coles Mastercard Charging International Transaction Fees on Oculus Australian Dollar Purchases

    Just wondering if anyone else has had international transaction fee charged by Coles Mastercard when making purchases from Oculus even though the purchase was in Australian dollars? It seems Oculus is based in Ireland and this is Coles' excuse for the international charge which seems odd/unfair given that the currency was actually AU$

    I was recently charged $20 international transaction fee when buying the 2x Oculus Quests in the recent sale and Coles is unwilling to budge on the fee.

    I did find another case of something similar occurring on OZB when someone purchased from Vistaprint in aussie dollars and they were charged a small transaction fee.

    Any avenues to contest this charge? Their customer service line is not fun.

    • +3

      This comes up quite reguarly. Agree - it's scammy of the banks to do it.
      Good luck with the dispute - I've managed to get it refunded the first time - they said it was a "goodwill gesture" and switched banks after that.

      List of other sites to beware of

      • Hmmm… interesting indeed. I added to the list. I noticed on the OZB Oculus sale thread that at least one other person was initially charged the fee on their ING card but it was later refunded without any action on the cardholder's part.

        • ING refunds international transaction fees as long as you meet their deposit criteria

      • Thanks for the link but needs an update daily they're all going to turn on us eventually

    • +1

      It doesn't matter if the amount displayed on the website was AUD.
      Overseas merchant services used by the business = lower merchant fees, and the buyer gets charged International Transaction Fees.

      • I was also charged in AUD though, not a foreign currency.

        • What matters is not just the currency, but also where it is processed.

          From T&Cs:

          The International Transaction Fee will change to 2.50%, debited to your Account on the Transaction Date, of which a service and assessment fee of 1.10% is payable by us to Mastercard, for any Retail Purchase or Cash Advance transaction in:
          1. Foreign currency once converted to Australian dollars; and/or
          2. Australian dollars (or any other currency), when either the merchant or its financial institution/payment processor is located or registered overseas, including transactions that involve dynamic currency conversion (that is where a transaction denominated in a
          foreign currency is converted to local currency which is a service that is offered by certain ATMs and merchants). The process of conversion and the exchange rates applied will be determined by the relevant ATM, merchant or dynamic currency conversion service provider as the case may be. We do not determine whether a Card transaction will be converted into local currency by the merchant or ATM and you may
          have to check with the relevant merchant or ATM provider.
          *Note: It may also not always be clear that the merchant or its financial institution/payment processor is located or registered outside of Australia. *

    • Coles is unwilling to budge on the fee

      Guess it's because their Rewards Mastercard doesn't charge international transaction fee. That card has $99 annual fee tho.

      • Yeah its the definition of international transaction that is shady though, if the transaction was in a foreign currency then I can see why they might charge a fee but it was not.

        • +1

          Not really. The wording of this extra fee has changed over the years from “foreign currency exchange fee” to an “overseas/international transaction fee” just so they can charge the fee to you now even if it’s charged in AUD but processed by an overseas payment processor, which, like the name suggests, is still an “overseas/international transaction”

          You’ve been hit with pretty much double fees, because it’s unlikely that the overseas payment processor would have converted the charge from the base foreign currency the company normally uses for free, so they would have charged you 3-5% for that convenience. Then your bank/card provider has charged you an extra “overseas transaction fee”, which is again another 3-5%.

          As far as I know, Amex is the only card provider that doesn’t do this, if it’s charged in AUD, they don’t charge any extra fees regardless of whether the payment processor is overseas or local. Visa/MasterCard does unless your bank/provider specifically absorbs the charge for the card you hold eg, 28degrees, Citibank plus, etc,

          • @Kenb0: Farkers….. thanks for that info.

    • Wife gets charged an additional international fee every time she sends a card via Moonpig - despite website ending in and amounts all being listed/paid in AUD.

      It's never disclosed at the time of payment - only when you receive the credit card statement.

  • Merged from Citibank Banggood International Transaction Fee Charged through PayPal

    Bought and paid through Pay Pall from Banggood price was all in AUD looking at my Citi statement they've just clipped me an additional near $7 on a $185 transaction.
    PP have billed me in AUD if this was because of BG are international that's double dipping as PP always give a bad conversion rate.
    I can't re-call seeing anywhere that it has been converted from USD and the parcel is being mail from Australia due to the heavy weight.

    • +5

      You must select on the PayPal check out page to use your card's conversion instead of PayPal doing it.

      Not a scam, user error…

      • -5

        I know you get an option either their rates or your banks. Whether that was an over site on my behalf with PP the statement still reads in AUD so it's a new double dip.
        You pay PP for their crappy rates in conversion then another 4% on top of that with Chiti bank. But this wasn't the case deal was all done in AUD on BG page.

    • +3

      Nah it's your mistake just face the truth

      • -6

        sorry Mum

    • Well it would have been better if you checkout using US$.

      • -3

        deal was on the Aus site
        Sent you a PM how to solve this but you where to busy sending negs somewhere else.

    • +1

      Isn't Citi supposed to charge zero international transaction fee?

      • +1

        Diners do. You can now link Diners to Paypal

      • might be thinking of the debit card zero withdrawal fees from them on international ATM's

    • +1

      To OP, here is a tip for next time.

      Link your Diners to Paypal and pay Banggood using it. It should be free of international transaction fee.

      • Don't have Dinners but if I new I was going to get charged the ITF I would have used either my ING or 28Deg card.

    • +1

      Chat with Citibank - they may waive the fee for you.

      • +1

        They did and didn't take much effort Thanks

    • Hmm, I always use Citibank debit mastercard via PayPal for international purchases and have never been charged any fees. I use Citi for currency conversion though.

      • That's right MC you should be OK but keep an eye on it all I'm saying
        However the Chiti Visa card is opportunistic paid last month in Brazil dollars no charge through PP this month a charge.
        Point is keep an eye on skimming. Banks are running a Muck it's easier to steal with a computer than with a gun and that's what they're starting to do.

        • Oh I see, Citi Visa! My CBA credit card also has international transaction fees, so I've locked it from 'online international payments' to avoid getting stung unexpectedly (ie. payment won't go through if it's an overseas merchant. Then I can cancel my order or swap to my Citi debit MC etc).

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