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I'm a 37-year old Seattle girl who was bitten by the travel bug on my first tour of Europe in 2004. This personal blog follows my attempts to visit as many countries as I can, as often as my budget will allow. Since starting this blog in 2007, I've also worked as a freelance copywriter for an online travel publication. This only served to add even more must-see locations to my already extended list.
Follow me as I try to balance "real life" with exploring the world, all while trying to conquer a wickedly ironic case of homesickness.



10.4.09

Read the fine print

Just a heads up to penny-pinching budget travelers like me. I just received a notification in the mail that Bank of America is redefining the term "Foreign Transaction Fee" for their credit cards. They are now including all transactions made outside of US soil no matter what currency the transaction is made in. This includes US dollars. Cheeky buggers.

So now when you buy that whatchamahoozit at Harrod's and the clerk kindly asks you if you want to process your purchase in US dollars, B of A will still charge you with that nasty foreign tranaction fee because you're standing in the United Kingdom at the time of purchase.

Now, to be honest, I advocate using Capital One while abroad anyway since they don't charge any foreign transaction fees at all. And I'll admit that a 3% charge generally isn't that huge. So it's up to you whether you think it's worth it.

But I personally want to save as much as possible. And on a $5000 trip, 3% comes out to $150 I'd rather spend somewhere other than some CEO's pocket. And if I hadn't caught this tiny addendum in this almost forgettable piece of mail, I wouldn't be aware of this re-definition.

So there you are. Charge wisely.

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