ING scraps international fees

ING scraps international fees: now the pressure is on the Big 4 to follow suit

ING has today scrapped all international ATM, credit and debit card charges for their customers. 

This includes ATM withdrawal fees, ATM currency conversion fees, international purchase fees on  debit cards and a refund of any overseas third party ATM fees.

They have also confirmed they will only apply the wholesale exchange rate when converting currency.

The catch? You have to be a “primary” bank customer by depositing at least $1,000 a month into an Orange Advantage Account and making a minimum of five transactions a month.

No credit card international fees will also apply to their credit card product.

The international institution says the move is intended to encourage more Australians to make ING their primary bank.

ING Australia’s head of retail banking, Melanie Evans, said:

“We’re relentless in finding new ways give our customers what they want: convenience and value. All we want in return is that our customers make ING their main bank.”

RateCity research indicates that an average person spending a total of $5,000 a year overseas would save $171 a year if they switched banks to ING. A person spending $10,000 could save $342 a year.

“Using your card overseas always comes with a high degree of angst,” said RateCity CEO, Paul Marshall.

“Most people just shut their eyes and hope for the best, despite knowing they’re being hit with a flood of fees.

“Credit and debit cards used at the point of sale typically incur a 2 or 3 per cent fee, which can add up if you’re using your card for every purchase.

“But the biggest culprit by far is ATM withdrawals. Most Australians using their debit cards are charged a fee from the ATM provider, a fee from their own bank, plus a currency conversion fee which can be as high as 5 per cent.

“It gets even uglier if you use your credit card at the ATM as that’s classified as a cash advance, and should be avoided at all costs,” he said.

If you’re someone who travels a lot, it’s worth looking into the best cards for overseas. Make sure you pick one with low or no ATM fees, minimal currency conversion fees and no account keeping fees. It’s slim pickings but there are a handful of accounts on the market that won’t sting you at every step.

RateCity picks – Best transaction accounts for overseas spending

ING Orange Everyday Account No overseas fees, wholesale exchange rate, no domestic ATM fees, no account fees
Citibank Plus Account No overseas fees except the ATM vendor fees, free bottle of wine at certain partner restaurants in Australia, free domestic ATM fees at affiliate ATMs only, no account fees
RAMS Action Account No overseas fees except ATM vendor fees, free domestic ATM fees but only at affiliate ATMs, no account fees
Macquarie Classic Account No overseas fees except a $5 ATM withdrawal fee and third party ATM vendor fees, free domestic ATM fees, no account fees

Overseas ATM fees – What we’re being charged

Fee type Average fee Big 4 fees
ATM withdrawal $4.51 $5.00
ATM currency conversion fees 2.77% 3.00%
ATM provider fee At cost At cost if not part of global network

ATM fees – examples

Amount withdrawn Average fee*
$200 $14
$500 $22

*Based on an estimated third party ATM fee of $4.

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