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Money tips for travel abroad

Travelling abroad – Essential considerations for your money

Excited about your upcoming vacation to a new country?

You have done your research and are excited about exploring a new country! But have you given adequate thought to how you would manage your money on your holiday? It is always helpful to know how much you would pay in Indian rupees vis-à-vis the currency of the country you are travelling to.

Please go through the following points to ensure you come back with only good memories.

First things first!

Inform Citi about your travel by calling CitiPhone. The last thing you would want is for your bank to reject your card transaction for security reasons. Know the procedures followed by the bank in case of an emergency, just so you can be better prepared. Keep the international travel desk numbers handy.

Why use a card instead of cash?

  • Use one card across the globe - pay in multiple currencies
  • Enhanced protection against loss of card1
  • Accepted at all places where Master or Visa cards are accepted (over 170 countries/territories2)
  • No dealing with multiple forex conversion agents
  • Transparent rate of conversion
  • Get emergency assistance and insurance cover3
  • Manage all your spends online via Citibank Online and Citi Mobile
  • 24 x7 Global Customer Assistance Services
  • Safer and more secure with Chip & PIN card
  • Citi credit accepted in lieu of cash as entry requirement4
  • Lounge access at international airports3

What are the charges on your card for a transaction made in a foreign currency?

Citi charges a foreign currency markup fee of up to 3.5%. This is a standard charge levied across the market. This fee is calculated on the Indian rupee equivalent of the transaction made in a foreign currency. The exchange rate for conversion is determined by the associations(MasterCard/Visa).

Please note for any purchase done in a currency other than US dollars, the transaction is first converted into US dollars and then the US dollar equivalent is converted into Indian rupees. This is standard market practice.

Be aware of the currency you are paying in

Always note the currency you are making the final purchase in. Some foreign merchants offer the facility of ‘Dynamic Currency Conversion’ – which allows customers to make payments for the purchase directly in their home currency (i.e. Indian Rupees for cards issued in India). This service is offered by selected foreign merchants or websites. The final transaction amount (as determined by merchant/DCC service provider) is to be confirmed by you before making the payment. Depending on the amount provided by the merchant, Citi will bill you the final amount (in Indian Rupees). The process of conversion, the exchange rates and any markup applied in such cases is determined by the relevant merchant or DCC service provider, as the case may be.

If you do not opt for DCC then you will be billed by the merchant in the local currency. If the local currency is not US Dollars (USD) then, the transaction is first converted from local currency to USD and then from USD to Indian Rupees. Exchange rate will be prescribed by the associations (Mastercard/Visa). In this scenario, the foreign currency markup to be charged by Citi will be applicable.

Hold on to your transaction slips.

Having your card statement is good enough, but sometimes having your charge slips makes it easy for you to cross-check all your expenses.

Rely on your smartphone

Need to check balances? Use your phone to access your bank’s site or app. Avoid using public Wi-Fi or computers in internet cafes. Always be on the watch for card skimming tricks and practice safe usage wherever you are.

Safeguard your card

Always keep your card details secure and avoid sharing them with anyone. In event of loss of card, please call us at CitiPhone/International helpline number immediately to block your card.

Hope the above pointers have helped you prepare better for your trip abroad. Here’s wishing you a happy journey!


1 For credit cards only

2 Visa accepted in 170 countries, Mastercard accepted in 210 countries (source: Respective websites)

3 Select cards

4 Pls check the country of travel immigration requirements for exact information on ‘entry requirements’

For more, visit Citi Help, the one - stop destination for all your queries.