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Britons abroad should keep credit cards under wraps

06 March 2007
Many credit card holders would be better off sticking with travellers' cheques or cash when spending overseas, according to the Post Office, since the vast majority of card providers impose charges on each payment you make.

The typical fee on transactions made abroad is 2.75 per cent and all but two credit cards on the market charge a fee.

Although 49 per cent of Britons use their credit card while they are overseas, too few are aware they are paying up to £258 million collectively by cracking out their plastic.

Some 47 per cent of those surveyed had no idea about the additional cost despite the fact that Britons are now "four times more likely to spend on plastic abroad than ten years ago" according to the Post Office's head of communications, Claire Oldstein.

The Post Office credit card is among the few which does not charge a fee on spending abroad, but independent financial advisers warn customers to look at the full range of offerings on a given card and, if possible, to avoid using credit cards altogether.

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