Travelling overseas with your Commonwealth Bank credit card

Information verified correct on November 27th, 2015

Find out how to use your Commonwealth credit card when travelling overseas, and the pitfalls to watch out for.

Where credit cards are concerned, travelling overseas can cause a few problems unless you know how to use your credit card abroad, and what precautions you should take before and whilst travelling.

Which card should you take when travelling overseas?

MasterCard and Visa are most widely accepted around the world, so either one would be ideal to take travelling overseas.

Where are Commonwealth credit cards accepted?

  • MasterCards are accepted at any ATM displaying the MasterCard and/or Cirrus logos, and at any merchant location displaying the Maestro logo.
  • Visa credit cards are accepted at any ATM displaying the Visa or Plus logo, and at any merchant location displaying the Visa or Visa Electron logo.
  • American Express credit cards are accepted at any ATM displaying the American Express logo, and at any merchant location displaying the American Express logo.

Not all foreign ATMs will provide you with a receipt when abroad so it is advisable to make a note of any transactions. Your available daily withdrawal limit when travelling overseas is the same as it would be in Australia.

Commonwealth Bank credit cards also include complimentary travel insurance which provides cover in events such as cancellation and rearrangement expenses, trip disruption and loss of luggage and personal items.

Find out more about Commonwealth Bank complimentary travel insurance for credit card holders

Accessing linked accounts with credit cards

If your credit card is linked to your main savings or cheque accounts, you can access these with your Commonwealth Bank MasterCard or Visa card through any overseas ATM that displays the MasterCard, Cirrus or Maestro logos. However, this does not apply in Europe, where you can only use your credit card to access your credit card accounts. Whatever selection you make on-screen at an ATM or merchant terminal – savings, cheque, or credit account – your withdrawal will be treated as a cash advance.

Foreign charges

A foreign transaction fee will be applied when travelling overseas with your credit card.

  • Transactions converted by MasterCard or Visa – 3.00% of the total transaction
  • Transactions converted by American Express – 2.00% of the total transaction
  • Transactions overseas, but in Australian dollars – 2.00% of the total transaction

American Express transactions are also subject to a 1.50% American Express currency conversion factor which is included in the converted transaction amount. Be careful of Dynamic Currency Conversion (DCC) when travelling overseas with your credit card. This is where you are charged in Australian dollars rather than the local currency. Transactions made in Australian dollars will attract a DCC fee of 4% or upwards from the foreign retailer or bank. Which currency you are charged in is 100% your choice by law.

What you need to do before going overseas

Activate your PIN

Many places abroad use PIN verification rather than signature, so you should make sure you have a PIN on your card or you may not be able to use it at certain merchants abroad.

Tell Commonwealth you are travelling overseas

Before your travel overseas, Commonwealth Bank should know your travel plans and how long you should be venturing abroad.

Note your card details

Make a note of your credit card numbers, including emergency contact numbers in case you quickly need to contact Commonwealth Bank should your credit card be lost or stolen. Visa, MasterCard and American Express all offer a zero-liability guarantee, but you should still inform the bank the moment a credit card goes missing.

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16 Responses to Travelling overseas with your Commonwealth Bank credit card

  1. Default Gravatar
    GaryAz | November 9, 2015

    I use PureVPN apps for online banking purposes while I am traveling outside the country. Do you recommend anymore security steps the travelers should follow?

    • Staff
      Jonathan | November 10, 2015

      Hi Gary, thanks for your inquiry!

      For specific security steps with using applications overseas it would be best to contact Commonwealth Bank directly on 13 2221.



  2. Default Gravatar
    Khatchig | May 22, 2015

    My wife’s brother came from Australia to USA with a Commonwealth credit card and we went to rent a car. The card was rejected because his name was not imprinted on the card. He is with his family to stay in US for a month and is relying on his credit card. To my understanding the card has to include his name and imprinted with protruded letters so the machine can read it.
    Please help, what shall we do to help him.
    They will call the bank in Australia. Please advise how to solve the issue. He is staying for a month.
    Your kind care is highly appreciated.

    • Staff
      Jonathan | May 25, 2015

      Hi Khatchig, thanks for your inquiry!

      The primary cardholder will need to contact the bank to resolve this issue. The possibility of accessing the credit facility provided by the Commonwealth Bank will depend on whether the primary cardholder is in the USA with the other family members. It would be best for the primary cardholder to contact the bank directly to resolve this issue.



  3. Default Gravatar
    Paul | March 25, 2015

    I am in Germany and Spain for the next few months. As your page says, I cannot access my Australian account with my Visa card. Is it possible to get a card with which I can do this?

    • Staff
      Jonathan | March 26, 2015

      Hi Paul, thanks for your inquiry!

      Visa credit cards are actually accepted at any ATM or merchant displaying the Visa or Plus logo, providing access to your Australian account overseas.



  4. Default Gravatar
    aaron | March 17, 2015

    i am going to america and which ATM would work for my debit mastercard

    • Staff
      Jonathan | March 17, 2015

      Hi Aaron,

      Any ATM which displays the Mastercard logo is compatible. You can search for specific ATM’s in any country on the Mastercard website search tool.



  5. Default Gravatar
    christine | November 9, 2014

    Hi in India and having difficulty accessing money from our master card please help

    • Staff
      Elizabeth | November 10, 2014

      Hi Christine and Brian,

      Thanks for your question.

      You can call Commonwealth Bank directly for account-related issues on 000-800-610-3122. You can also get in contact with MasterCard emergency services for card-related issues on 000-800-100-1087.

      I hope this has helped.



  6. Default Gravatar
    Meg | September 15, 2014

    I have a CommonwealthTravel Card and we are trying to log on to the site to check the details but have forgotten the password. The trouble is that the site says it has sent the new password to an email account that is asterisked out apart from the bit and no emails have arrived in the inbox of my hotmail account.

    Is there anything I can do to find out where these emails are going? very frustrating!!

    • Staff
      Shirley | September 16, 2014

      Hi Meg,

      Thanks for your question.

      Please get in touch with Commonwealth Bank Travel Money to see where the emails are going. I’ve emailed you their contact details.


  7. Default Gravatar
    Garry | July 25, 2013

    Hello. I am in Europe. I have forgotten my pin for my credit card as we never use it in Australia. I need to have my pin number sent to my email address. Regards. Garry.

  8. Default Gravatar
    Aaron | February 15, 2013

    Hi, my name is Aaron, I am a 27 year old male from Australia. I came to Rio De Janeiro in Brazil a week ago. I have both a Commonwealth debit MasterCard and a Commonwealth credit card. I have been trying to book flights within South America over the last few days, and I am having a lot of trouble. When I book the flight online, I am told that the payment is being processed, but shortly after I am told that the transaction has been cancelled. I have tried the process multiple times with both cards, and I am assuming that is why the transaction cannot be completed. Please contact me as soon as possible so I can fix this problem…

    • Staff
      Jacob | February 15, 2013

      Hi Aron. There are a couple of things you need to consider. First – have you contacted CBA and told them about your travel plans? They may have put a block on your cards when they picked up on overseas use. If that’s not the case, try another booking website. If that doesn’t work, you will have to contact Commonwealth directly. Thanks.

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