Best ways to maximise points earn on overseas spend while keeping overseas transaction fees low?

I have a 6 month trip to the US coming up and want to get as many points as I can with overseas spend but don’t want to have to pay huge amounts on overseas transaction fees. I understand the obvious solution would be to get a card that doesn’t charge overseas transaction fees but generally the points earn is quite low on these cards. Any good suggestions how I can do this?

Given that almost all cards charge a 3% surcharge for overseas transactions , you are better off going for a lower points earning rate card with no overseas transaction fee.

In my view a 3% surcharge would add up substantially on a 6 month trip.

Check out this comparison table

I believe the only ones that charge no overseas transaction fees and earn points are Bankwest Platinum Mastercard with an earn rate of .66 Qantas points per dollar spend and their World Platinum Mastercard with earn rate of 2.5 Reward points per dollar spend.

Our Bankwest Mastercard Qantas Platinum gives 0.5 QFF per $ and no overseas transaction fees. That is the only card we have that does not charge overseas fees.


Hi, you can consider the ANZ Rewards Travel Adventure Card, just launched by ANZ in 2016. It comes with $225 annual fee but if you do domestic travel once a year, then it is well worth it. After $500 spend in your first 3 months of approval, you get a free domestic Virgin Australia return flight, including from Mel/Syd to Perth. No foreign transaction fees on the Amex/Visa combo, earning 2 pts and 1 pt per $ spent respectively.

Thank you so much for the suggestions everyone. I didn’t realise that almost all of the banks charge the foreign transaction fees. Looks like ANZ and Bankwest are the two to look into.