1% Markup on International Transactions: SBI Credit Card offer

By | April 6, 2017

Do you know that Forex markup fees are one of the major profit making areas for credit card companies? Its good to see that SBI is picking up creative offers to get attention of International travelers. SBI card team certainly seems to have the right people who’s pushing the right kind of offers, but it doesn’t help me as of now as this offer is applicable only on POS (swipe) transactions and not Online. Here are more details:

1% Forex Markup Fee on International Transactions

  • Get 2.5% Foreign Currency conversion mark-up waived off as Cashback on foreign currency transactions at retail stores (Point of sale merchant stores )
  • Maximum Cashback: INR 1000.
  • Valid between 01 Dec ‘2016 and 31 January 2017 (both days included)
  • Offer not valid on SBI Card Signature & SBI Card Elite cardholders.
  • Cashback will be processed within 45 days from the offer end date
  • This offer is over and above any other international offer and does not affect in any way the card holders participation in any other offer / promotion run by SBICPSL

In other words, They’ll charge you 3.5% Markup fee +tax and reverse 2.5% as cashback. I guess tax component wont be revered, unsure though. ICICI also has similar offer for Intl txn’s, but with real stupid terms & conditions. Here are some expired offers with HDFC related to Intl spends, just to get an idea.

Whatsoever, it helps only the real international travelers but doesn’t help card holders making Online Forex txn’s. Though, days are not far away for offers on Intl online txn’s to kick in, as demand is increasing and while cards with 0% markup fee like Indusind Exclusive Signature Debit card (my fav) is around, this offer stands nowhere.

By dealing with global consumers and with better data in hands, i’m expecting Amex to take an initiative on this in coming days, as they know what the user needs.

If you prefer credit cards for intl txn’s, you can grab any of these for better savings on International online spends with 2% markup fee on most cards.

If you’re looking for full review of credit cards with low markup fees, check out: Best credit card with low foreign exchange markup fees

What do you think about this SBI Card offer? and which credit card do you use for international spends? Feel free to share your comments below.

Author: Siddharth

Helping Indians to choose right credit cards, pick right offers and enjoy luxury vacations for less. Day & night exploring the spiritual reality of our human existence.

12 thoughts on “1% Markup on International Transactions: SBI Credit Card offer

  1. nilesh thakker

    I haven’t been able to get a credit card for two to three years now. I have my salary account with HSBC bank and every time I apply for a credit card, my application gets rejected. The reason I get is that the banks do not cater to people working in merchant Navy.
    Can you suggest if there are any banks which give credit card to merchant Navy people. We get our salariesin usd and we are less likely to default on our payments. Just that for taxation purposes we fall into the nri category, other wise we are very much resident Indians.

    1. Siddharth Post author

      Take HDFC savings account and use it for few months. They’re happy to issue one based on transactions. Even Axis is doing it in recent times i guess.

  2. Abhishek Roy

    Yes First Exclusive and Yes First Preferred Credit Cards give a 1.75% Mark Up fees by default which as far as I know are the lowest among all the Credit cards I know in India. I personally do all my international shopping with the IndusInd Signature debit card only though!!! 🙂

    1. Siddharth Post author

      Thanks for reminding YES Cards. Just updated the article 🙂

    1. Siddharth Post author

      I don’t think so. But yes, their website don’t say anything.

  3. Deepak

    Hi Sid,

    Pl confirm is lounge facility is discontinued in Master Card?

    Also please confirm is HDFC All Miles card is valid for Master clipper lounge however I have an update that they have discontinued Priority Pass renewal.

    1. Siddharth Post author

      Mastercard lounge access is still up.
      You can use Visa Allmiles card for lounge access.

  4. Ankit Tulsian

    I got an SMS from SBI today that they have reduced the foreign mark up charges on SBI Elite card to 1.99% from 3.5% which is really great and I believe this is going to be a permanent change rather than an offer for particular time.

    1. Siddharth Post author

      Yes, they also mentioned as if accelerated reward points is not applicable. Not sure though.

  5. kumar

    hi siddharth ,

    can u suggest a best credit card with low foreign exchange markup fee for online transactions while in india or abroad

    1. Siddharth Post author

      Check out the article last para for the link 🙂


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *