Guide to Comparing EU and EEA currency conversion charges

At APS we believe in transparency and clarity when it comes to our charges. It’s important to be able to compare currency conversion charges when making a card transaction in European Economic Area (EEA) currencies. This could be a purchase or an ATM withdrawal.

What charges will you incur when using your card abroad?

You’ll be charged one or both of the following:

  • The currency conversion rate – this is the VISA exchange rate, which is set daily for card-based transactions done in a different currency, i.e. Non-Euro ATM withdrawals and card payments.
  • The international bank withdrawal fee as per our Tariff of Charges, which is also applied per withdrawal.

Why should you compare currency conversion charges?

When using your card overseas in a non-Euro currency country within the European Economic Area* (EEA), you may be able to choose whether you wish to pay in the local currency of the country you are in or in Euro.

If you choose to pay in the local currency, we (APS) will convert the amount of the transaction using the daily card exchange rate(s) provided by VISA.

If you choose to pay in Euro, the merchant will take care of the currency conversion (from the country’s currency to Euro) there and then in exchange for a fee.

What does this mean for you?

When you are given the option of paying in Euro or the alternative local currency at either POS / ATM, the provider should disclose charges for dynamic currency conversion. These should include any fixed fees that will apply as a percentage mark-up, over and above the latest Foreign Exchange Rate(s) issued by the European Central Bank (ECB).

This gives you the chance to compare the cost of paying in Euro versus paying in the local currency and we perform the currency conversion (using the exchange rates provided by VISA).

All banks are required to use the European Central Bank (ECB) reference rates to help you compare these charges. You can use these rates to compare our rates with the published rates of other providers.

How much are our rates?

The below table shows you the percentage mark-ups over the latest available Euro foreign exchange reference rates issued by the European Central Bank (ECB) for each currency within the EEA other than Euro. It’s important to note that the mark-ups shown in the table may differ from the actual currency conversion charge applied to your payment. This may happen for the following reasons:

  • The ECB and VISA rates may change between updates to the table; and
  • The processing date of the transaction converted by VISA may be different to the day on which you ask us to make the payment.

Please refer to the downloadable table below for indicative % mark-ups when using your APS VISA debit card in the EEA:

This table was last updated on the latest business day 09/04/2021 at 16:10

 

* European Economic Area – countries within the European Union, plus Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway.

 

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APS Bank plc is regulated by the Malta Financial Services Authority as a Credit Institution under the Banking Act 1994 and to carry out Investment Services activities under the Investment Services Act 1994. The Bank is also registered as a Tied Insurance Intermediary under the Insurance Distribution Act 2018.