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Blocked Thread -- Wells Fargo Increases Conversion Fees Again

Blocked Thread -- Wells Fargo Increases Conversion Fees Again

Old Jan 26th, 2005, 06:15 PM
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Blocked Thread -- Wells Fargo Increases Conversion Fees Again

It seems that Fodors has blocked further comments on this topic. Why would that be?
hopscotch is offline  
Old Jan 26th, 2005, 06:25 PM
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I don't know. Is Fodors owned by Wells Fargo, and will tolerate no criticism of its owner?

At any rate, the mark up is a rip off.
If you have such a credit card, don't use it overseas.

Last year, I did NOT use my Bank of America card because of its 2% add-on.
I used another card, one that did not add on any surcharges for currency conversion.

I checked when I got back, and I don't think there were any charges higher than expected.

I think we should reveal all the issues on this question. I will start with my pet peeve:

Why do some banks think they can soak us an extra 2% or 3% on foreign conversion purchases. And, why do people pay the charge??

If I know about it, I will not.
But, I guess it is an issue similar in logic to the fact that some people will pay $.10 more per gallon of gas rather than drive across the street.
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Old Jan 26th, 2005, 06:29 PM
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I think a lot of travelers pay these fee because they are not aware of them. But thanks to threads on Fodors we are aware.
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Old Jan 26th, 2005, 06:30 PM
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Hi there--

That thread wasn't blocked...just buried far down. Just a moment ago it was #76. Take a look for it.

Kelbert
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Old Jan 26th, 2005, 06:38 PM
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I saw the thread; it is there.
BUT, I could not respond and post a reply. Look at the bottom. There are no red marks for Preview and Post.

I think the thread was blocked because the respondents were shedding more heat than light on the subject.

Seems to be a growing trend on this board.

I think it would be interesting if Fodors let the originator of the thread edit the thread. Non contributors in the originator's judgement could be deleted. That should be interesting.

I bet we get some those same comments here in a few minutes. Then this one will be blocked!!
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Old Jan 26th, 2005, 06:42 PM
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I recently received one of those 0% offers from Compass Bank; right on the disclosure it specifies that the "International Conversion Fee" is "up to 1% of the "converted transaction amount". I've never seen it actually disclosed before.
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Old Jan 26th, 2005, 06:44 PM
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What cards currently do not tack on the extra 2-3%?
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Old Jan 26th, 2005, 06:45 PM
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If you go look at that thread you will see that after the discussion had been pretty well beaten to death, that the last few posts turned to a political debate about the widening of the gap between rich and poor. Now that is hardly a travel issue, nor does it further the original purpose of the thread. Also, when Fodors dead-ends a thread, they often remove a really offensive post or two. I don't know, but possibly that happened here as well. I know what many threads turn to once they become political arguments rather than travel issues.

I really wouldn't think Fodors ended it because it was anti Wells Fargo. If that was the problem they would have deleted the thread, not just ended the rambling off topic discussion.
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Old Jan 26th, 2005, 06:47 PM
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Why doesn't someone post a link to the thread so we'll know what you're referring to?
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Old Jan 26th, 2005, 06:52 PM
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Here it is:

http://www.fodors.com/forums/threads...2&tid=34556902
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Old Jan 26th, 2005, 06:58 PM
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Grandmere, neither MBNA nor Capital One charge any extra %.
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Old Jan 26th, 2005, 11:22 PM
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Travelnut--

I spoke with MBNA yesterday and they said there is now a 1% charge for "conversion" fees. Still less than my Wells Fargo VISA or my B of A VISA, so that is what I'm going to use.
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Old Jan 26th, 2005, 11:25 PM
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bump
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Old Jan 27th, 2005, 12:06 AM
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I will be very gentle as this has been gone over and over but here goes...

Visa and/or MC to be hereinafter called the card companies actually do the conversions using that day's interbank rate. They add 1% to protect against currency conversion problems if any particular currency has a devastatingly bad day on the international currency exchange.

They then send the charge through their system to your bank.

Your bank may then...

1. Eat the 1% (None that I know of do)

2. Pass along the 1% (MBNA, Capital One, USAA to name 3) do. That is why MBNA says they have a 1% fee, they are simply passing along the card companies fee. Banks which claim they have no fee are usually telling a fib; they put no additional fee on but every one does pass along the 1% fee.

3. Add an additional fee for performing no service as they have no currency fluctuation problem, the charge they receive has already been converted. Up to now, in general, the fee has been 2% by such banks as Citibank (which also controls AT&T), Chase, Bank One (which is now part of the Chase family), Bank America (which now controls Fleet) which are the largest credit card banks.

Now Wells Fargo is increasing the 2% to 3%. I suspect if they get away with it, other banks will follow.

Try to get one of these banks to tell you what service they are providing and you will get lie after lie. They play no role in the currency conversion; it is done by the card companies pure and simple.

Finally the only reason these fees continue is that dumb people pay them despite what is written on travel boards. Now there are those who claim they are content to pay the extra fee to an outfit such as Citibank because they get frequent flyer miles and okay that is understandable.

But why others pay these fees is beyond my power to comprehend,. If the general public when these fees had started had told these near criminal banks (near criminal because of the lies) to shove it and moved to banks not applying the fees, the fee would have probably been still born. But no, people continue to use these cards on foreign trips with comments such as, I'm spending a couple of thousand dollars on my holiday, what's another $100....it's only 2% etc.

The analogy is annual fees. Other than the airline cards for the most part (and there are some rewards cards that don't have fees but not in general the specific airline cards which all have fees)anybody who pays an annual fee for a credit card is just throwing money away. When the bill comes charging the annual fee, simply pick up the phone, call customer service and say, "Why should I continue to use your credit card when I can go to MBNA and not pay an annual fee?" The customer service rep will say, "Just a minute, let me check sometbhing." Followed by, "I can remove the annual fee if you so desire." Gu arantee that will happen.

If only people had done the same with this asinine foreign currency fee, it would have died a swift death.

Ah but you can't help people who don't mind throwing money away....
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Old Jan 27th, 2005, 06:31 AM
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Kelbert, the 1% is a VISA charge, not an MBNA charge. The issue is around banks that tack on additional fees above the 1% Visa charge. MBNA and Capital One do not, at least as of 2004.
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